Backpacking food, both commercially available and home made, sometimes suffers from being bland. While we can certainly carry a spice kit, that is for many Ultralight backpackers (to say nothing of the super Ultralight crowd) an often cumbersome thing to do. Worse, when you want dinner after a long day you probably are not too inclined to fiddle about much with individual, small, spice containers. Sedona Trading Company has come up with an innovative solution to this problem: small gelatin capsules that contain multiple spices to form a tasty mix. Their Trail Gourmet Seasoning capsules come in a variety of flavors and Sedona Trading Company has been expanding their menu. We were able to try the Sedona Mild and Medium flavors. These are chili-based seasonsings that remind one of the Southwest. I tried mine with pasta dishes and bean stews. While I preferred the Medium version that owes more to my tastes in spices and shouldn’t be considered a slight against the Mild flavor. Both were good and I have no doubts I’ll enjoy other flavors when I try them.
The capsules look like large pills that you would swallow. Since they’re made of gelatin they dissolve in water. The hotter the water the quicker the capsule will dissolve, but even in cool water you can dissolve a capsule in just a few minutes. If the idea of dissolving the capsule makes you queasy or you want to create a dry rub say for a fish fry simply break the capsule open and sprinkle the spices into your food that way. Of course, then you will have to carry the capsule out with you as part of your trash.
Determining how many capsules to use per meal is, of course, a trial and error business. I found that sometimes I could get away with fewer capsules if I sprinkled their contents on an already re-hydrated and cooked meal. However, when doing things this way you do tend to create flavor bombs. Often times I found 4 of the Sedona Medium capsules was a good starting point for meals. I simply dropped the capsules into my heating water and then continued to cook as normal.
Features and Specifications
- Pre-packaged spice capsules. No muss; no fuss.
- Capsules are the size of a large pill
- Capsules weigh slightly less than 1 gram each
- Capsules are approximately 1/2 inch long by 3/16 inch wide (20 mm by 4 mm)
- Package size: 3″ x 5″ or 4″ by 6″ (8 cm by 13 cm or 10 cm by 15 cm) and comes with about 60 capsules
- Currently availale flavors: Asain, Cabo, Great Lakes, HabaJala, Hatteras, Italian, Sedona, Southwest
- MSRP: Prices range from $2.69 to $2.99 for the various flavors in packages of 20 capsules; $4.79 to $4.99 for packages with 60 capsules.