The freeze dried food for my next walk has arrived. Normally I use Mountain House who deliver some pretty good meals. However, over the last year and a half I have been around their menu several times, which has resulted in me looking elsewhere for this walk.
I have tried several other manufacturers foods, which can be viewed at: https://ukbackpacker.wordpress.com/2013/08/24/freeze-dried/
However, after getting good recommendations from various people I decided to go with Fuizion Freeze Dried Foods.
Normally when I’m out and about I eat double-sized Mountain House meals, so I decided to order enough Fuizion meals to allow me to eat two a day on the walk and have two left over for home testing 🙂
The order arrived in a day and a half which was surprisingly quick.
Having now tried two of them, I’m now wondering whether I actually need two a day. It’s always hard to tell as one hasn’t been walking all day when eating at home, so it is very hard to gauge whether one pack a day will be enough. I suspect that in the event, I will take all of them, as they don’t weigh much and provide additional options when in the field.
The first thing I noticed with the packages is that they are very long and narrow. Right away I could see this causing problems for my spork as that eating utensil is quite short. In some ways I wished the packages were wide and short, as this makes them much easier to eat without getting ones fingers covered in food.
The second thing I noticed about the packages is that they have no obvious tear strip. I tried forcing the top open by hand, but this proved impossible so I ended up using a pair of scissors from my hiking first aid kit. These are perfect for the job.
On opening the package – in this case Kung Po Chicken – I was very surprised at the size of the ingredients. That and the fact that I could actually identify them! Most freeze dried meals have ingredients that have been pummelled into such small sizes that they are almost impossible to make out!
I also noticed that all the packs took exactly the same amount of water to reconstitute – 310 ml. So all I will need is one mark on the inside of the JetBoil to make sure I’m using the appropriate amount. This is important as freeze dried foods are very sensitive to the amount of water one uses.
In fact this was something that did catch me out with the Mountain House meals on first use. Their meals take varying amounts of water and on the second day of my first big walk, I accidently flooded one of my meals with way too much water, thinking that it required the same amount as the meal from the previous day!
As with most freeze dried meals, the Fuizion one’s reconstitute in around 10 minutes or so. The result of the Kung Po Chicken can be seen below:
Once again I was impressed. Even reconstituted one can see full sized real ingredients. I knew at this point that I was in for a good meal!
Up close on the fork the results are even more impressive as seen below. I could not believe I was eating from a freeze dried meal!
The tall and narrow shape of the packaging meant that I found it difficult getting the food out, even with a full sized fork. However, this issue was soon resolved by once again deploying the first aid scissors.
It was such a refreshing change eating from a freeze dried meal and being able to identify and taste the ingredients I was eating. Even the meat came in large sizes to!
Ok, so the million dollar question, what does it taste like?
For me, the answer is awesome! The flavours are strong without being artificial or salty.
Fuizion have really excelled themselves with the quality of their food and I highly recommend them. It remains to be seen whether one pack will suffice for me per day, but I will only find that out next week.
Finally, at last, I now have a great alternative to Mountain House! Wooot!
If anyone is interested in ordering Fuizion foods, their website can be found at: http://www.fuizionfreezedriedfood.com/