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#286858 - 10/23/17 04:47 PM Compact food
Tirec Offline
Newbie

Registered: 08/24/07
Posts: 46
Loc: Rocky Mountain West
I've recently repacked my BOB, using the medium size ALICE pack. Things were going well until I put in three MRE's and realized how much space they took up!

I've gotta find more compact options. Looking at Pemmican type recipes. Maybe pemmican, energy bars, granola bars, GORP, meal replacement bars, etc.

Did you know they have single-serving spam packets? http://forums.equipped.org/images/icons/default/tongue.gif

Bug Out Bag Foods
Pemmican

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#286859 - 10/23/17 05:30 PM Re: Compact food [Re: Tirec]
Montanero Offline
Veteran

Registered: 10/14/08
Posts: 1295
Loc: North Carolina
If you plan on rotating your MREs every year, you can eliminate much of the bulk by removing much of the packaging. We used to do this for the same reasons. I do not know how long they are good for in storage once you begin to break seals though. We would eliminate the cardboard and the large amount of air in the main bag, along with whatever you do not plan on using. The foil bags will remain sealed, and inside the main plastic bag, then they can be compressed much more and taped closed. We did not use this for long term storage, however.

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#286860 - 10/23/17 05:39 PM Re: Compact food [Re: Tirec]
Ren Offline
Member

Registered: 11/05/07
Posts: 117

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#286861 - 10/23/17 07:02 PM Re: Compact food [Re: Tirec]
chaosmagnet Offline
Sheriff
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/03/09
Posts: 2893
Loc: USA
For short-term storage (anything I plan to move by foot), I pack Millennium bars. They're high-carb and highly-processed, definitely not the thing that I love to eat, but they will keep body and soul together for a few days.

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#286862 - 10/23/17 08:33 PM Re: Compact food [Re: Tirec]
Phaedrus Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 04/28/10
Posts: 2103
Loc: Great Plains
Personally I loath the Millenium bars. I've bought three separate batches over the years thinking maybe I just got a bad batch but all of them are the same. They're hard as a rock! Literally, like granite, nearly impossible to even bite through! And while each "flavor" has a different odor they all taste identical to me- like pure sugar. If you want to try them I'd suggest just trying a few bars at first.

Personally I really like the Datrex bars. Obviously when it comes to flavor and taste opinions will vary but the Datrex are quite tasty. They're a little crumbly but less sweet and kind of coconut-tasting. Kind of like a cookie. You can buy them in two sized of blocks and both have a five year shelf life if unopened, and once opened the individually wrapped sections are supposed to keep for a year.

There are some other single serving/400 calorie bars on the market that I haven't tried, too.

I'm not crazy about MREs. Some of them are pretty good. The beef stew tastes basically like canned stew, not terrible. All of them taste really salty to me but if you're sweating a lot the salt may be a bonus. As Montanero mentions you can save some space by removing a lot of the packaging.

Mountain House makes some really compact foods that I like. My faves are the LRPs (Long Range Patrol) packs. They're freeze dried but packed into tight blocks with the air removed, so unlike the stuff that you find at Wal-Mart or REI these are pretty small. The same basic stuff is sometimes found under the name "Pro-Pak" by MH. The downwide is that LRPs are sometimes hard to find and a bit spendy. But some of them are very tasty although again, a bit salty to my tastes.
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#286864 - 10/23/17 11:06 PM Re: Compact food [Re: Phaedrus]
chaosmagnet Offline
Sheriff
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/03/09
Posts: 2893
Loc: USA
Originally Posted By: Phaedrus
Personally I loath the Millenium bars. I've bought three separate batches over the years thinking maybe I just got a bad batch but all of them are the same. They're hard as a rock! Literally, like granite, nearly impossible to even bite through! And while each "flavor" has a different odor they all taste identical to me- like pure sugar. If you want to try them I'd suggest just trying a few bars at first.


That's always good advice. The ones I've bought haven't been quite as hard as you describe but still pretty tough to bite through. Agreed on taste and smell. I don't care for them all that much.

But it goes to taste because I might actually not be able to eat a Datrex bar based on the one attempt laugh.

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#286865 - 10/24/17 12:55 AM Re: Compact food [Re: Tirec]
Bingley Offline
Veteran

Registered: 02/27/08
Posts: 1383
This is the first thing that popped up when I searched for "millenium bar." No wonder it's as hard as steel -- because it is steel!

https://inward-scooters.com/products/ygw...awaApqTEALw_wcB

I agree with Phaedrus on Datrex. I did a taste test and it was like a coconut cookie to me. It seems like different people have different reactions to this type of survival ration, though, so your mileage may vary. But stuff like Datrex is just calories, with little nutrition. That's a downside.

I'd recommend that doing more than taste-test -- do stomach test of some of the foods for a day or two, and see whether your body tolerates it, and how well you can perform with that kind of fuel.

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#286866 - 10/24/17 01:26 AM Re: Compact food [Re: Tirec]
Phaedrus Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 04/28/10
Posts: 2103
Loc: Great Plains
Good advice! Most of the lifeboat-ration-type foods are indeed just calories, not something you would want to live on long term. That's not a bad thing necessarily. They're compact and will keep you going. Unfortunately the SAD (Standard American Diet) isn't much better than e-rations, nutrition-wise!

In keeping with the compact food theme, I think the Survival Caps aren't bad, either. Kind of a 'food pill' of sorts, kind of like a large malted milk ball without the coating. They are somewhere between bland and somewhat pleasant and supposedly have better nutrition than many other survival foods. They don't provide a huge amount of calories but may be a good lightweight supplement to other foods.

Food isn't the most critical thing to have in a survival kit geared to "typical" survival situations, but if you have room it certainly can't hurt! When out hiking or camping I prefer to have the food I'd normally eat anyways. For food storage at home I would rather just keep the food I normally eat and some canned stuff in the pantry.

All that said, I do like having Datrex and MH stuff in my gear.
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#286867 - 10/24/17 09:09 AM Re: Compact food [Re: Tirec]
adam2 Offline
Addict

Registered: 05/23/08
Posts: 412
Loc: Somerset UK
I favour "lifeboat rations" these are high energy compressed biscuits with a long shelf life and are intended to be eaten straight from the pack.
One packet is said to last one person three days, but that is presuming little activity as would be the case in a lifeboat.
A day and a half from each packet would IMHO be more realistic if hiking or otherwise exerting oneself.

I could suggest a UK supplier, but probably better to buy from somewhere in the USA.

I prefer the "seven oceans" brand, but others exist.

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#286868 - 10/24/17 01:16 PM Re: Compact food [Re: Tirec]
Ren Offline
Member

Registered: 11/05/07
Posts: 117
If looking at old recipes, an old medieval survival food is Panforte.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Panforte

GORP held together with flour, honey and sugar.

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#286871 - 10/24/17 04:33 PM Re: Compact food [Re: Tirec]
Tirec Offline
Newbie

Registered: 08/24/07
Posts: 46
Loc: Rocky Mountain West
Perhaps a combination of Pemmican, Panforte, Logan/Expedition Bread, and lifeboat rations.
http://www.tastereport.com/TasteReport.com/food/Entries/2013/7/31_Fruitcake_The_breakfast_%28lunch_snack%29_of_champions.html

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#286873 - 10/24/17 07:37 PM Re: Compact food [Re: Tirec]
TeacherRO Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 03/11/05
Posts: 2265
Any sort of protein bar -- Cliff bars, for example. (Lightweight back[packers think about this a lot -- highest calorie to weight ratio)


Edited by TeacherRO (10/24/17 07:38 PM)

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#286877 - 10/25/17 06:56 AM Re: Compact food [Re: Tirec]
CANOEDOGS Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 02/03/07
Posts: 1828
Loc: MINNESOTA
I take MRE's on canoe trips as a "treat".freeze dry gets old after a few days.i would suggest just taking the meat packs without all the sauce in them.beef stew with all the vegetables is a filling meal but heavy.after a trip with those type packs I got the pork rib,chicken patty,and beef patty.adding instant rice or some sort of pasta on the side makes a real filling meal.
the Spam singles need to be fried otherwise they are just salty blobs if cooked in any sort of stew type meal.a single cooked up in a pot of Knorr rice side,teriyaki,was one of the most nasty meals I had on the canoe trail
the meat patty's can be eaten cold or the pack heated in any water you might use for something else.
half a Cliff bar was enough to keep me going between lunch and dinner but expect a hard chew.i can't say enough good things about some sort of hard chocolate with fruit and nuts in it.
I cut out hard sausage because it's salty and leaves a taste in you mouth for a long time.
if you want real hard core survival food make up ground toasted corn and take it with water.it expands in your stomach and has all the nutrition you need.i tried that when I was much younger at home to see if it worked,it does but it's not a real meal just something to keep you alive.

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#286878 - 10/25/17 11:07 AM Re: Compact food [Re: Tirec]
bacpacjac Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 05/05/07
Posts: 3593
Loc: Ontario, Canada
I haven't seen Millennium bars around here yet, but I too am a fan of Daytrex and Cliff bars. I snack on them once in a while, and my kids love them, but I try to reserve them for emergency rations.

As for actual planned menu items, MH and MREs do make appearances in my packs, but I find them too expensive. MREs are heavy and bulky too, at least until you factor in the water that you may need to make other stuff. Water weight is water weight and there's just no getting around it. Try eating those ration bars without washing it down with a litre of water. UGH!

I love finding my own DYI rations and recipes. I haven't started dehydrating my own stuff yet, but grocery stores, Walmart and Dollarama all have lots of options for ready-to-eat-condensed-dehyrdrated foods that are budget-friendly, packable and tasty. The options available for grains and canned meat these days is pretty impressive, for example.

Not sure what your taste buds like, but check out the International section of your local stores. Ours are carrying lots of interesting stuff!
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#286887 - 10/27/17 06:03 AM Re: Compact food [Re: Tirec]
Burncycle Offline
Addict

Registered: 09/16/04
Posts: 512
I like the taste of some MREs personally (Beef Stew and Cheese Tortellini especially) but I generally strip them down to the entrees as the complete MREs are too bulky.

I'd love mountain house to shape their pro-pak meals like their long range patrol rations (into bricks basically) since they store much better that way.... but they're so expensive I don't buy either.

As far as snacks go, I like clif bars not for the taste but because they don't melt into a mess in the heat, they just get softer. Sometimes I'll pack nature valley crunchy granola bars too.

My "iron ration" is a 3600 cal lifeboat ration (mainstay or the walmart UST one that has a mild apple taste) I generally keep in the bottom of my bag.

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#286926 - 10/28/17 08:20 PM Re: Compact food [Re: Tirec]
hikermor Offline
Geezer in Chief
Geezer

Registered: 08/26/06
Posts: 6349
Loc: southern Cal
Generally, I can get the food I need, even when weight is critical, from standard supermarket fare, especially if I don't need to pack a lot of water. Stuff like instant oatmeal, dehydrated potatoes, cheeses, beef jerky will generally do quite nicely. i will repackage if bulk is an issue. I also toss in some MH stuff, but it is quite expensive.

If I must carry water, or if travelling by vehicle, I go for favorite canned goods - Dinty Moore beef stew is a current fav. You can often supplement what you carry with gathered items - berries, miners lettuce, and the like. This adds fresh greens and variety. Once can be surprised at what is out there for the taking...
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Geezer in Chief

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#286946 - 10/31/17 03:10 AM Re: Compact food [Re: Tirec]
CANOEDOGS Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 02/03/07
Posts: 1828
Loc: MINNESOTA
has anyone tried the emergency rations from China that I see on Ebay?

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#286957 - 10/31/17 02:46 PM Re: Compact food [Re: CANOEDOGS]
Bingley Offline
Veteran

Registered: 02/27/08
Posts: 1383
Originally Posted By: CANOEDOGS
has anyone tried the emergency rations from China that I see on Ebay?


It looks like you can get MREs (or equivalent) from different countries -- Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Russia, Norway, etc. A multicultural survival experience is completely within your grasp! So the question, I suppose, is which country's army feeds their soldiers the best, assuming the MREs are authentic. I notice you can get the French ration individuelle d'exercise as well as the Italian ratione viveri da combattimento...

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#286962 - 10/31/17 04:55 PM Re: Compact food [Re: Bingley]
AKSAR Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 08/31/11
Posts: 1090
Loc: Alaska
Originally Posted By: Bingley
Originally Posted By: CANOEDOGS
has anyone tried the emergency rations from China that I see on Ebay?
It looks like you can get MREs (or equivalent) from different countries -- Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Russia, Norway, etc. A multicultural survival experience is completely within your grasp! So the question, I suppose, is which country's army feeds their soldiers the best, assuming the MREs are authentic. I notice you can get the French ration individuelle d'exercise as well as the Italian ratione viveri da combattimento...

Hmmm....Do the French and/or Italians have wine in their rations? Personally, I prefer a good red.
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#286974 - 11/01/17 03:43 AM Re: Compact food [Re: Tirec]
Bingley Offline
Veteran

Registered: 02/27/08
Posts: 1383
Suddenly, ETS is now ETSWC -- Equipped to Survive with Class. People on the internet say the French MRE had liquor at one point, but I don't know the truth of it.

Here's some info with pictures: http://www.slate.com/blogs/browbeat/2011/10/13/which_countries_have_the_tastiest_mres_.html

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#286976 - 11/01/17 08:18 AM Re: Compact food [Re: Tirec]
Tjin Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 04/08/02
Posts: 1715
The French do like their wine and certainly drink wine with lunch and diner. Both take forever. I was a bit surprised to see the fire service chief jump in his car after lunch, but apparently, that was normal...

More annoyingly is that you now have to have an alcohol tester in your car, when driving in France.

Back on compact food; freeze-dried is my choice for something that actually looks like a meal. But for an emergency kit, something like a ration bar might be mine choice, simply due to shelf life. The NRG-5's are now rated for 20 years.
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#286982 - 11/01/17 03:59 PM Re: Compact food [Re: Tirec]
Bingley Offline
Veteran

Registered: 02/27/08
Posts: 1383
Interesting, Tjin. I saw a checklist of things you must have in your car when driving in France, and I don't think it's half bad --

http://www.drive-france.com/checklist/

People can get fined on the spot if they don't have a high visibility vest! One day perhaps some sort of basic safety/first-aid kit would come standard in all cars, like seat belts and air bags.

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#286985 - 11/01/17 06:42 PM Re: Compact food [Re: Bingley]
hikermor Offline
Geezer in Chief
Geezer

Registered: 08/26/06
Posts: 6349
Loc: southern Cal
Interesting. I must wear glasses while driving, so I determined a few years ago that my spare specs are best cached in my vehicle. I also keep hi-vis items handy, unfortunately stashed in the truck.

What are these "head light converters" of which you speak?
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#286986 - 11/01/17 07:17 PM Re: Compact food [Re: hikermor]
M_a_x Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 08/16/02
Posts: 995
Loc: Germany
Originally Posted By: hikermor
What are these "head light converters" of which you speak?


Headlights are built asymetric to iluminate the curb side of the road more. Continetal Europe has right side traffic and the British have left side traffic. Those head light converters shape the light to avoid blinding oncoming traffic. The are not required if your head lights are already built for right side traffic.
The courtesy of requiring those converters is returned by the british if you take your car over there.
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#286987 - 11/01/17 08:33 PM Re: Compact food [Re: hikermor]
chaosmagnet Offline
Sheriff
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 12/03/09
Posts: 2893
Loc: USA
Originally Posted By: hikermor
Interesting. I must wear glasses while driving, so I determined a few years ago that my spare specs are best cached in my vehicle.


Me too. Highly recommended.

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#286990 - 11/01/17 09:58 PM Re: Compact food [Re: Bingley]
Tjin Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 04/08/02
Posts: 1715
Originally Posted By: Bingley
Interesting, Tjin. I saw a checklist of things you must have in your car when driving in France, and I don't think it's half bad --

http://www.drive-france.com/checklist/

People can get fined on the spot if they don't have a high visibility vest! One day perhaps some sort of basic safety/first-aid kit would come standard in all cars, like seat belts and air bags.


As a proper ETS'er, i do have a pretty good collection of things; mine is equipped to handle all EU county laws, so 2 warning triangles, safety vests for everybody, spare light bulbs, spare glasses, FAK, fire extinguisher, alcohol testers, lots of stickers on the windscreen, etc...
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#286991 - 11/02/17 01:34 AM Re: Compact food [Re: Bingley]
acropolis5 Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 06/18/06
Posts: 332
Bingley: What are “ headlight converters” ?

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#286992 - 11/02/17 05:26 AM Re: Compact food [Re: Tirec]
Bingley Offline
Veteran

Registered: 02/27/08
Posts: 1383
Acropolis, it looks like Max has answered your question above.

Tjin, which countries require a fire extinguisher in the car? (I'm assuming a regular passenger car.)

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#286993 - 11/02/17 08:22 AM Re: Compact food [Re: Bingley]
Tjin Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 04/08/02
Posts: 1715
Originally Posted By: Bingley
Acropolis, it looks like Max has answered your question above.

Tjin, which countries require a fire extinguisher in the car? (I'm assuming a regular passenger car.)


Yes passenger car. In Europe: Greece, Portugal and Turkey (well sort of Europe).
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#286996 - 11/03/17 09:55 AM Re: Compact food [Re: Tjin]
Herman30 Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 08/08/06
Posts: 218
Loc: Finland
Originally Posted By: Tjin

Yes passenger car. In Europe: Greece, Portugal and Turkey (well sort of Europe).

And Estonia.

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#287129 - 11/18/17 04:10 AM Re: Compact food [Re: Tirec]
nursetim Offline
Newbie

Registered: 08/29/06
Posts: 29
Loc: the last bastion of PHRASECENS...
How did we get from compact food to cars?

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#287131 - 11/18/17 08:27 AM Re: Compact food [Re: nursetim]
Bingley Offline
Veteran

Registered: 02/27/08
Posts: 1383
Originally Posted By: nursetim
How did we get from compact food to cars?


Just making the segue to discussions about the best firearm caliber and bear defense.

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#287135 - 11/18/17 09:48 PM Re: Compact food [Re: Bingley]
clearwater Offline
Old Hand

Registered: 03/19/05
Posts: 1024
Loc: Channeled Scablands
Originally Posted By: Bingley
Originally Posted By: nursetim
How did we get from compact food to cars?


Just making the segue to discussions about the best firearm caliber and bear defense.


Bear fat is very calorie dense.

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