Trail Cooking

Commercial Meal Review: Three From Alpine Aire

Three meals from Alpine Aire: 2 dinners, 1 breakfast. The dinners are “add boiling water, wait, and eat”, the breakfast takes cooking after.

Cheese Enchilada Ranchero.

This meal can serve two easily with the addition of flour tortillas, using it as a burrito filling. Bring along some cheddar to sprinkle on. I was not a huge fan of it plain (I am not a fan of saucy meals), but as a filling it worked. I’d go as far as saying pack a bag of lettuce shreds in, and use it to make a taco salad, with a bag of chips. While not a 10 star dinner, it can be the basis of a good one.

Wild Quinoa Pilaf with Hemp Seeds.

I had a hard time with this dish. We often eat a plant-based diet, and I truly enjoy earthy flavors. But I couldn’t eat it. The smell was simply overwhelming, and it ruined so many good ingredients (we eat hemp seed on so many meals at home!). And let me state that the smell was overwhelming as I opened the bag. Dry. Cooked, it was even worse. Sadly it ranks as one of the Top Ten Meal Fails.

Was it that they put in so many spices and herbs to try to make the base ingredients jazzy? I have to think so. Miso powder, paprika, broth powder, Italian seasoning and more. Choose one or two, and focus on them!

Peasant Omelet.

Eggs are something that always intrigues me. When I was a young hiker I never took them along, I saw it as “too much work”. And maybe that is true, but it is a nice touch in the morning to enjoy eggs on the trail, especially with a side of bacon. This omelet comes with potatoes, onion and garlic blended in. You can do it as an omelet, or simply scramble it in your pan. Yes, you will need plenty of oil and preferably a non-stick pan to do it in. Keep the heat low on your flame, and keep the eggs moving and you won’t have a fried on mess.

The other thing I noted, is that the packaging needs to be updated. Most commercial meals are going to wide/short bags now, making it much easier to stir and eat. Alpine Aire is one of the last to hold onto the tall/wide packs. Pro-tip: Once cooked and ready to eat, cut off the top half of the bag, very carefully, to make a bowl to eat out of. Have the bag on the ground when you do this though! You don’t want to drop or spill your meal.

~ Sarah

FTC Disclaimer: We received complimentary product for potential review. All thoughts and opinions are ours.

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