Nov 14, 2006 at 1:00 pm #1220223
I was looking at a list of foods to take on a backpakcing trip, and the author of the list (Carol Crocker) says that she uses the “boil and set” method. Does that mean pouring hot water into a plastic bag and letting it set? Or pouring dry food into hot water in the mug and letting it set?
–shannonNov 14, 2006 at 1:36 pm #1367144
People do it different ways… Carol probably has her specific way, but boil and set can be in the pot or in the bag. Good to use a cozy regardless…Nov 14, 2006 at 2:01 pm #1367148
either way.Nov 14, 2006 at 3:11 pm #1367156
what are your favorite cozies? I have a fleece hat that I made that would seem to work well.
Also I was thinking it might make sense to use a hard sided plastic container to “set” in, instead of plastic bags. That way the food would be less likely to spill. But most people seem to use plastic bags; not sure why.Nov 14, 2006 at 3:18 pm #1367158
@mrschurrLocale: SW US
I use a fleece hat that is cut down. It works well. But I would not plan to wear it unless you want your head munched on.Nov 14, 2006 at 3:38 pm #1367159
I use AntiGravityGear
Reliable and fit to the containers that I use.
RogerNov 14, 2006 at 4:40 pm #1367168
Elizabeth, you can make your own cozys with the same stuff antigravitygear uses. Next time you are at Lowes or HomeDepot, etc.. get a small roll of Reflectix and the Reflectic aluminum tape. I also prefer a hard plastic container enclosed in a cozy if I can spare the room; got the idea from a mountaineering school packing list. Keeps all my misc “kitchen” goods safe between meals.Nov 14, 2006 at 4:45 pm #1367169
There are as many types of cozies as there are ways of cooking ;-)
I use an AGG Reflet. bag cozy most times. In winter I use a handcrafted pipe insulator that has a plastic shell. In summer, if it is over 90* I just use an Oriskao dish to hold my freezer bag.
Basically boil and set means either boiling water and adding to dry ingredients in a bag, or boiling water and dry food together, and once it boils, you park the pot in a pot cozy (which AGG sells many types of.)
As for wether to use bags or a hardsided container, that is a personal issue. Bag users want simplicity usually. (Ie..no cleanup)
My website is http://www.freezerbagcooking.com I have a lot of info on cozies on there if you are intrested!
PS: Why carry a cozy? They save a lot of fuel, as they keep your food hot while it finishes “cooking”.Nov 18, 2006 at 6:24 am #1367550
Wow, I just looked at all the Anti Gravity Gear cozies. There’s a lot. But my pot is a cheap $12 aluminum pot that is not listed. Maybe I will make one from the Reflectix stuff.Nov 18, 2006 at 7:37 am #1367553
You could DIY, but if you don’t want to, drop him an email. He’ll do custom ones usually :-) And he might have one that fits your pot already.Nov 22, 2006 at 4:09 pm #1368094
I made my cozy out of a Hot/Cold bag. It’s the kind of bag that you get from the grocery store to keep hot food hot and frozen food cold. I cut off the top of the bag including the handle and then cut the bag vertically in two parts. I then used duct tape on the side that was cut and put velcro strips along the top to seal it when the food bag is inside. It works great.Nov 26, 2006 at 10:15 am #1368399
@pietriykLocale: Northeastern PA
I made my cozy out of material from a windshield sunscreen, basically the same as Reflectix, but free. I actually won it as a door prize at the opening of an outdoor store in Japan. I had enough to make 3 more after mine for my friends. I used tape to hold all the edges together. It has a closure sort of like an envelope, you can tuck it in to keep it shut, so no mechanical fasteners/clips needed. I find that if I boil my water, dump it into the bag inside the cozy, and set it aside, by the time I’ve boiled water for coffee, my dinner is ready, and still screeching hot usually. A long-handled spoon of some sort is a must, unless you like having dinner substance smeared on your hand. Sarah’s site and book are excellent guides to this art, check them out for many, many ideas.Nov 26, 2006 at 11:39 pm #1368453
@dealtoyoLocale: Mt Hood
I use the same type of cozy. The windshield sunscreen is made of a thin layer of foam sandwiched between two layers of mylar. I line my cozy with aluminum foil tape. The tape protects the delicate mylar as well as retains and reflects heat better. This setup works better in cooler conditions but weighs slightly more.Dec 4, 2006 at 5:12 am #1369318
I use an Aquatherm and a 32 oz wide-mouth Nalgene for rehydrating my meals with boiling water. Then I pour/scoop our food into bowls to eat. I know it isn’t exactly ultralight but I don’t like the way plastic bags (Glad and Ziploc) react with the boiling water. There are also 3 of us sharing the said system and meal so it is more practical for me this way.
Edit: I forgot to mention that the Aquatherm is made by Granite Gear and has been a great product for us.Dec 4, 2006 at 5:49 am #1369320
Laurie, That is a great idea using a nalgene to reconstitute food. I don’t like eating out of a bag.
Previously I carried two pots, but the Nalgene loop top round bottle (32oz) is lighter than even the 0.9L Evernew Titanium pot, closes more securely while “cooking”, and can be pressed into service to carry water during the hike unlike the titanium pot. My BPL long Ti spoon can reach the bottom.. Finally, a reason to buy the big nalgene! I’l make a cozy with reflectix. Excellent..Dec 4, 2006 at 6:20 am #1369322
I like it too – because I can give it a good shake and that helps quite a bit. I find it holds the heat better and with the addition of a “cozy” it is still eating temp after 20 minutes or more. If I rehydrate something for a longer time (such as a sauce with chicken) then I can plop the whole Nalgene in my pot of boiling pasta water to heat it back up (just be sure to vent the lid if you do this). I still can’t bring myself to dehydrate the pasta (unless I am in a high altitude area) – I prefer to cook it at camp.
So for three of us I dirty 1 Nalgene, 1 pot, 3 Lexan bowls and 3 small Lexan spoons. Hubby does the dishes anyway.
I have to admit I am a bit of a klutz with freezer bags too.
I had never thought of eating right out of the Nalgene – lol – guess I’ll always be a bowl or plate type of gal.Dec 4, 2006 at 1:57 pm #1369414
@rcaffinLocale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
> PS: Why carry a cozy? They save a lot of fuel, as they keep your food hot while it finishes “cooking”.
I tried measuring the rate of cooling with and without a ‘cozy’. There was little in it, and the food cooked just fine without.
Fwiiw, I bring the water to the boil with the rice or pasta etc in it, and with a good lid!, and then turn the stove off and close up the windshield around the pot and stove. Nothing else. Works wonderfully. Food still is too hot to eat after 10 minutes.
So, for me, a cozy is just another bit of extra weight I don’t need.Dec 4, 2006 at 2:12 pm #1369417
If you are rehydrating something such as chicken you generally need a good deal longer than 10 minutes. A cozy can be very beneficial for a variety of meals.Dec 4, 2006 at 8:03 pm #1369472
@bdavisLocale: Mt. Lassen - Shasta, N. Cal.
I use a used Mountain House food cooking bag for my extra pot, etc. So I don’t worry too much about a cozy. Since I don’t know how a cozy would work with it. I’m generally so hungry when I get to cooking that things don’t have much of a chance to cool. Even cold smashed potato stuff tastes good.Dec 5, 2006 at 1:14 am #1369502
@rcaffinLocale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
> If you are rehydrating something such as chicken you generally need a good deal longer than 10 minutes.
Um … are you talking about home-dried dinners? Dessicator and all? In that case I have to plead ignorance.
We usually use freeze-dried dinners and commercially dried stuff, which seems to rehydrate in about 5 minutes. I know many will say ‘oh yuk’, but I can’t agree, at least for the stuff we buy here in Oz.Dec 5, 2006 at 4:28 am #1369511
Actually some of the commercial stuff isn’t bad. With a family of 3 it just got really expensive. You definitely don’t need a cozy with commercial stuff. Shhh – I’ve been known to sneak one or two of those in my pack from time to time.Dec 5, 2006 at 7:22 am #1369518
BD, the Mountain House packages work as a cozy in their own way. That is why they stay warm. The old MH packages (where the food was in a see thru bag) could be reused for home made meals to park them in.Dec 5, 2006 at 9:02 am #1369525
@bdavisLocale: Mt. Lassen - Shasta, N. Cal.
Thanks so much for that insight … I knew it worked, but I never thought of the fact the MH bags are meant to hold heat. Maybe I’ll even try boiling water in one on my bushbuddy, when it gets here — that would supplement my edible gear and make my carrying weight SUL :)
We dehydrate some of our own foods and they rehydrate pretty quickly, still experimenting after all these years … posted a review of the Nesco Dehydrator (only like $60 I use, and have for about 12 years or so) under the Cooking threads …
… while Mountain House stuff costs a bit, we buy the bigger bags with like 4 or more servings and break them down. One normal main course serving for one person + corn + dried mashed potatos or a baggy of really lite turkey stuffing mix, and a bit of other junk like home dried hamburger is enough for two of us = about $ 6.50 for an entire dinner out on the trail. Breakfast is really cheap, muessili w/ dried fruit and nuts we add or flavored instant oatmeal package and a cup of that instant Cappucinno stuff or tea, or lemon juice heated or an EmergenC fizzy in hot weather = about $1.50 for 2, i’m guessing. Breakfast of lunch can be supplemented with Nature’s Harvest granola bars for a cereal if we want: powdered milk + water + put the bar in the pot and let it disintegrate into a cold ceral + dried fruits/ nuts/ raisins/ cranberries, etc.
Lunch is whatever, usually more granola bars, dried fruit, homemade jerky (of all kinds) ….. also carry light weight rice crackers, corn puff crackers, and candy that is light weight, sometimes honey for fun, in the little stick packages, and some really syn food meat sticks like the Xtreme Stick or Smokey Joes … and now am adding Pringles per forum leaders, gurus, gate guarders, and over masters recommendations …. = about $3 – 4 for both of us for lunch/snacks … paving the trail for us to get to din din … (really looking forward to bushbuddy & alternative wood stoves to eliminate cost of carrying gas cannisters or fuel, which will help with overall cost issues once bushbuddy pays for itself in few years) …
…. so the cost of a hot, tasty dinner isn’t too bad considering we can get away with one dinner main course package and one vegetable package plus some other stuff we add. Will splurge and get cheap cheesecake mix and divide it up into portions, with the jam top, and make cheese cake — sometimes works — sometimes produce whitish paste, like elmers glue with sugar ….(Still trying to perfect instant pudding desert — generally get instant pudding thick guck desert … any ideas?)Dec 5, 2006 at 9:16 am #1369527
hey b d
I’ve had good luck with Mountain House and Alpine Aire.
I too use Nesco and this year I gear tested their new Pro model which is 700 watts. Most of my food will rehydrate in 5 to 15 minutes – it is just the chicken and pork dishes that seem to take a little longer.
We often go for anywhere from 9 days to 3 weeks per trip so MH also gets a little boring/expensive for us. That and it is a little harder to find in my area. Bryan, my darling hubby, will eat a 2-serving MH himself. My son eats about 2/3 of a serving and I eat a standard serving. At $12.95 CAN for a 2 serving (using the price from our most local store where I have never seen the 4 serving varieties) over a 16 day trip that is almost $400 just in dinners. Even though it is more effort I prefer to dehydrate my own for the cost savings and variety.
The big thing I love to make myself and have for trail lunches would be dehydrated salads. I have about a dozen recipes that I use and it just adds a little something to the day. Some days we gorp graze; it really depends on my mood.
Send me a pm and I will tell you my secret ingredient to make amazing instant pudding on the trail (and not of that sugar-free stuff either – sorry I am anti-aspartame).Dec 5, 2006 at 10:49 am #1369533
@pietriykLocale: Northeastern PA
My cozy adds very minimal weight, and I use it to store misc. items when not in use. I only carry the UL Outfitters beercan stove, and never cook in it, only boil water. Thus, I only have a spoon to clean and a ziploc to carry out. I think the cozy helps for people like me who get caught up doing other things and dinner ends up sitting for 30 minutes or so until I eat it. I’ve also experimented with vacuum-sealing my meals, does save space, and the bags hold up to hot water better than thin zip bags. But I’d still use the cozy, or at least a fleece hat as a holder so I don’t burn my paws. Plus, the reflectix cozy can be worn as an “anti-mind-control ray” hat if you are so inclined!
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