Precooking some foods before a trip

10:59 a.m. on June 7, 2009 (EDT)
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5,245 forum posts

If you like to eat things like beans but hate to waste fuel or have to build a campfire just to be able to cook them for two hours to soften the beans try this at home first.

At home cook the beans like usual, then drain them and spread them out to airdry on a sheet or something to absorb more water. Then put the precooked beans in a Ziploc bag and seal out the air. Be sure though that they are totally dry before putting them in a bag as they can mildew/mold if not used soon after.

Then when you go camping resoak the beans in water for about 20 minutes and bring to a boil. They will be ready to eat when boiled again.

Also you can do the same with rice. Instant rice in the box at the store is nothing more than precooked rice, that has been (like the beans above) precooked and dried. Again you can do this at home prior to the hike.

Any vegetable can be done this way. Precook your own homemade soups/stews at home, dry out the entire engredients and rehydrate in the field.

Even water cooked meats can be done this way and dried at home and rehydrated in camp. If you do try this, sear the meat chucks first to hold it more of the fats and juices which give the meats their flavors. This will reduce their drying times and add flavors to soups later. Just be sure to put whatever you have dried into a seal containers or Ziploc bags to keep them dry.

Experimenting at home can make many outdoor meals taste as good or better than the repmade stuff we all like.

11:03 a.m. on June 7, 2009 (EDT)
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103 forum posts

I also do this with pasta for just-add-water pasta dishes. A dehydrator speeds up the process, or a trip through the oven with the door propped open.

Several good books on prepping meals for backpacking. A Fork in the Trail is a really good one - made chili, mango chicken, and other dinners.

5:59 p.m. on June 7, 2009 (EDT)
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3,956 forum posts

So...if it's the same as instant rice, how come no one sells instant beans? That would be handy!

Good idea on the bean & pasta.

6:47 p.m. on June 7, 2009 (EDT)
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5,245 forum posts

I am not sure about grocery stores but many restuarants have already cook and dehydrated beans, like instant potatoes you just stir in boiling water.

May 20, 2018
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