Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Backcountry Vegan Camp Meal - Mushroom & Veggie Gravy & Mashed Potatoes

Mashed potatoes with rich mushroom gravy is one of my favorite comfort meals at home - taking it on the trail is really a no brainer.  While instant potato flakes don't taste nearly as good as freshly steamed and riced Yukon gold potatoes - they weigh next to nothing, are very quick to prepare and very satisfying when covered with a rich sauce made by soaking some dried mushrooms (which also weigh next to nothing!) and the nutritional value is improved with the addition of other dried veggies in your pack.

This is less a recipe, per se, than process as ingredients will vary with your preference & preparation!

  • potato flakes (I buy these in bulk at Rainbow Grocery)
  • dehydrated zucchini, porcini, cherry tomatoes, carrots & onions
  • dried herbs to taste - thyme, rosemary, etc
  • brown gravy or mushroom gravy - store bought packet is ok, or you can bring corn or potato starch
  • fresh garlic made it into your pack? fresh herbs along the trail? 
  1. Put about 1/2 cup of dried vegetables into a widemouth plastic quart bottle with 2 cups of water at least an hour before you get to your final destination for your meal.
  2. Once you arrive at your destination, boil water and prepare the mashed potatoes, set aside.  Make sure that you don't make TOO many mashers if you are eating solo, you can just pour the gravy right into the same pan they were mixed.
  3. If you have any fresh veggies - sautee those first and leave in the pan.
  4. Strain the water from the pre-soaked veggies into the pan to heat up along with any dried herbs.
  5. Bring to a simmer, whisk in the prepared gravy packet or starch with a fork to get the lumps out.
  6. Add veggies and cook low til gravy thickens up.  Pour veggie gravy over top of mashed potatoes and eat with great relish and satisfaction, knowing that your other meals will be just as delicious and easy. 
Buen provecho!

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