Wednesday, December 18, 2019

Convenient and Tasty - Neutral Cold Soaking

Earlier this year I outlined a cold soaking strategy that worked well for me while backpacking. Briefly, the idea is to reconstitute a neutral base and then add flavor to it. This is a vast improvement over my previous cold soaking attempts which had me eating gloppy and questionable tasting mixtures.

Lately, I've been using this strategy in the comfort of my own kitchen as convenience for meals throughout the day. In about 2 minutes I can prepare rice, toasted couscous and steel cut oats:

Step 1. Grab 3 single serving 8oz containers.

Step 2. Fill with 1 serving of a cold-soaking friendly base. That's 1/2C (46g) of Minute Rice, 1/4C (40g) of steel cut oats and 1/3C (50g) of toasted couscous.

Step 3. Add a 1:1 ratio of water, so 1/2C for the the rice, 1/4C for the steel cut oats and 1/3C for the couscous.

Step 4. Wait. I come back a few hours when I'm ready to eat again.

Step 5. Marvel at how the grains have properly re-hydrated. Put two of the containers in the fridge for later. Grab the third container, add mix-ins and eat.

Sometimes I'll add backpacking friendly mix-ins, like maple syrup, olive oil, cheese powder, raisins or nuts. Other times I'll microwave or stir-fry the base, say adding spaghetti sauce, cheese and seitan to make a quick and delicious spaghetti and meatballs type meal. Regardless of what I mix in, I find the strategy tasty, convenient and excellent practice for backcountry and travel cooking.

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