£6.50 each www.outdoorfood.com
When I suggested I was putting this feature together, a colleague suggested it was impossible – “lightweight – you’ll be lugging tins of beans around for the kids!”. Food is a tricky one to get right for youngsters … but the brand reckon their chilli has 50% less sugar, 35% less salt and 100% less palm oil, plus more carbs than others on the market… which means I feel OK about giving ‘dehy’ to the whole family. Locally sourced Dorset produce is cooked and dehydrated as whole meals, not as separate ingredients.
The food can be rehydrated either in the pouch or in a pan – just add boiling water and wait. Instructions and timings vary from meal to meal, and are found on the sides of each packet. There are gluten free and vegan options, and calorie content varies from 540-700Kcal for the regular size, and up to about 1000Kcal for the larger sized meals.
We found the regular meals filling but not bloating, and overall, we could taste the difference, although we noticed a lack of salt. For us, the Spinach and Dal, and Posh Pork and Bean were just ok, but the Mushroom Risotto and Bolognaise were really tasty. The pouches had a useful tear mark to avoid the ‘soggy knuckle’ effect of eating from the bag, but could use a water level mark on the inside rather than the outside – it’s quite hard to judge. Dehydrated weight, 135g, rehydrated around 475g.
► Verdict: Healthy, nutritious and lightweight expedition ready meals.
► Best for: Backpacking and cycling touring. Not needed everyday if staying put in one place.
Review by David Lintern @davidjlintern