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My Favorite Penny Stove Recipes
Healthy one pot meals slow cooked using the simmer ring on 2/3 oz. of fuel.

"For cooking, I cannot more highly recommend a Penny Stove... I broke out my penny stove and camp pot. Cooked up 2 cups of rice in 20 minutes with 2 tablespoons of Heet (yellow bottle) for fuel..." Mike S.

" ...realized that i could use my heat reflector from under the stove to fold into a baking tin to make bread. works great. use the penny stove with simmer ring and it took me about 8 minutes for bread. mmmm, biscuits taste good with rabbit or snake in the morning."

I have tested the simmer ring for the Penny Stove... It takes much longer to burn the same amount of fuel with the simmer ring than without. I was able to easily cook a pot of rice. This was regular rice that takes 20 minutes to cook; not minute rice." Scott


These recipes take advantage of the simmer ring to slow cook natural high energy one pot meals. Each uses one stovetop of fuel (about 2/3 oz.) and two cups of water to make one large single serving, or two "normal" portions. The meal will simmer for up to 20 minutes with little or no pot-watching. And, most will leave you with an easy to clean pot.

Most one pot meals are cooked the same way:
#1 Put two cups of water and the basic ingredients in the pot, then cover with the lid. Fill the top of the stove with fuel and light. After the jets light, carefully drop on the simmer ring.
#2 When the pot begins to boil (about 10 min) remove or crack the lid and stir in any "extra ingredients".
#3 When stove runs out of fuel, cover the pot and let it sit for 5 or 10 minutes. If it's cold, cover with a cozy, hat or jacket.

The ingredients can be cooked from scratch - real rice, real pasta, whole-grains ("Beyond Backpacking by Ray Jardine pg.191), fresh or dried vegetables, fish, meat and eggs. As with other universal basics, simplicity, versatility and light weight are the key. Most ingredients are dehydrated and can be consumed for any meal, either out of the bag or cooked. You can pre-assemble individual servings at home. However, I prefer to keep the dried ingredients in separate plastic bags, then mix to taste based on my appetite, nutritional needs, and daily cravings. Packing this way saves weight and space in your pack. With this kit of ingredients and a Penny Stove, you should be able so stay healthy, happy, and energetic in the back country for a very long time.

For infromation on using dehydrated backpacking foods, I suggest you visit Dehydrated Bushwalking Food. If you like to assemble each gourmet meal at home, I suggest that you check out Dicentra's wonderful site at One Pan Wonders and also visit Red Elephant Eats.

The KIS ingredients kit
Even this Keep It Simple list provides all of the menu options below, and I can get them all at any market. The longer the trip the more variations of each category I take. Since dehydrated weights very considerably, exact weights are impossible, but one small hand full could be 2 to 3 ounces - 60 to 80 grams. my total food weight is usually a little over one pound. In my experience, big hand people eat more than small hand people:-)

For each day of the trip I take:
* Handful of beef jerky (fish, turkey, pork).
* Handful of dried fruit.
* Handful of dried tomatoes (onions, mushrooms, peppers, squash).
* Handful of nuts (sunflower or pumpkin seeds).
* A few slices of toasted french bread (corn tortillas).
* Half quart portion powdered lemonade.
* Half quart portion powdered milk.
- One cup of real or dehydrated rice (small pasta or Top Ramen).
- One quarter cup Steel Cut Irish Oatmeal (ground grains or instant cereal).
- Two tea bags (coffee, honey)
- Garlic powder (cinnamon, herb mix of sage, rosemary & thyme).
- Salt, pepper (olive oil).
- Two ounces of Everclear -the extra for making tea or drinks.

* I eat these raw for cold meals and mix for slow cook one pot meals.
- I usually add one extra day's food for emergencies or to stay an extra day.
- I usually home dehydrate meat, tomatoes, onions, vegetables, fruit & bread, but fresh potatoes, fruits, vegetables and eggs are often a good option if you plan to cary water.

#1 - Rice and Whatever Looks Good
Real rice is one of the easiest and most versatile meals. There must be a reason that most of the world lives on rice. For high altitude trips, instant rice is a better option - it uses less fuel and probably will taste better.

#1 Add one cup rice and some combination of presoaked dehydrated meat, tomatoes, onions, and vegetables to two cups of salted water. If I cannot presoak, I add about an extra half cup of water at the beginning.
#2 After the pot boils, remove the lid and stir in some combination of nuts, pepper, garlic powder, dried herbs, and a few drops of olive oil.
#3 After stove goes out, cover and let stand 5 or 10 minutes.

If you happen to have a fresh trout lying around, you can cut it into large pieces and set on the dried rice at the start. Just watch for the bones...

#2 - Beef Tomato Stew
This is like the rice option above, but without the rice. I use round steak - cut into strips, and covered with seasoning to make my jerky. I cut tomatoes into quarters and onion into thin rounds/strips.

#1 Add a cup of beef or fish jerky and some combination of presoaked dehydrated tomatoes, onion, and vegetables and olive oil if you have it. Cover completely with water, or if not presoaked, add about an extra cup of water at the beginning.
#2 After the pot boils, remove or crack the lid to keep from boiling over. Usually the jerky provides any salt or seasoning required.
#3 After stove goes out, cover and let stand 5 or 10 minutes.

Use fresh fish instead of jerky.
Or, add some bullion or vegtable seasoning and extra water to make a nourishing soup.

#3 - Irish Oatmeal or Whole-kernel Grains
Real full grain oatmeal or other whole-kernel ground grains provide healthy long term energy. Ray Jardine says that instant oatmeal has the nutritional value of cardboard. He recommends his "way-of-life" combination of equal parts barley, oats, millet and corn. Mix your own blend at a health foods store.

#1 Add one quarter cup Oatmeal to two cups of salted water.
#2 After the pot boils, remove the lid and stir in some combination of dried fruit, sunflower seeds, nuts, cinnamon, honey, and a little powdered milk.
#3 After stove goes out, let it sit covered for as long as you can stand it.

If you like to hike in the morning, cook it the night before, put it in a zip-lock bag or sealed tub and eat it cold on the trail. It makes a great energy rich brunch.

#4 - Pasta or Macaroni
I haven't had much luck cooking pasta at any altitude over about 5,000 ft. However, whole-grain wheat and corn pasta is very good and provides lots of energy. The smaller the shape the faster it cooks.

#1 Boil two cups of salted water.
#2 After the pot boils, add the simmer ring. Remove the lid and add one cup of small pasta or macaronistir and some combination of dried tomatoes, dried onions, dried peppers or pepper flakes, garlic powder, herbs, and olive oil.
#3 After stove goes out, cover and let stand 5 or 10 minutes.

After stove goes out, mix in powdered milk, herbs, a few drops of olive oil, and if you have it, graded or small chunks of cheese. Cover and let it stand.

#5 - Top Ramen and What Ever Looks Good
Ramen noodles are easy to cook but not very healthy and the flavor packets are not very exciting. Adding dried vegetables, fish and/or meat can make a more balanced and tasty meal.

#1 Start with dried meat or fish and vegetables in two cups of water (pre soak if you can).
#2 After the pot boils, remove the lid and add the broken up package of Ramen noodles and add things like a few drops of olive oil, herbs, garlic power, dried onion, and maybe a dash of the original flavor packet.
#3 After stove goes out, cover and let stand 5 or 10 minutes.

#6 - Fruit Surprise Dessert
Some basic kit foods can be used to make tasty and healthy deserts.

#1 Add a one cup of mixed dried fruit to two cups of water - if possible, pre-soak for as long as you can.
#2 After the pot boils, remove the lid and mix in some combination of cinnamon, powdered lemonade, and/or honey.
#3 After stove goes out, cover and let stand 5 or 10 minutes. If you can, put the pot in a cold stream or snow bank.

Add a tea bag when you take it off the stove.
When it's time to server, mix in a lot of snow, pour a little Everclear alcohol on top and light for a flaming frozen treat.

#7 - Real Potatoes or Vegetables
Many people hike with an extra quart of water for emergencies. But, for this weight, you could carry a few large emergency potatoes or fresh vegetables. Eat them the first night and cary water for the remainder of the trip. Nothing nourishes and tastes better after a long hike.

#1 Cut up one large potato including the peel into 1" cubes, add to the pot and cover completely with salted water and dry herbs or garlic powder.
#2 After the pot boils, remove the lid.
#3 After stove goes out, cover and let stand 5 or 10 minutes.

Drain or drink the water and add salt, pepper, olive oil, and garlic powder.
Or leave the water and smash the potatoes with powdered milk and seasoning.

#8 - Real or Powdered Egg Frittata
Dried eggs are not that bad, and it seems ridiculous to bring eggs on a ultra-light trip. However, if you think of them as emergency water, it makes sense. And, you save fuel. They cook almost instantly so require only 10 or 15 ml. of fuel - just cover the jets. Just 1 oz. of fuel cooks eggs and a hot drink for two. To pack, cut off a section of the egg container, wrap with a rubber band, and put in a plastic bag - they will be safe once in your pack.

#1 Use olive oil to just cover the bottom of the pot - tip to run around sides. Cover this with dried vegetables (pre soak if you can) - tomato, onion, mushrooms, pepper, etc.
Use your cup to mix four + eggs & four + tbs. water or milk, salt, pepper, garlic powder, &/or basic herbs. Carefully dribble this on top of the veggies - cover and cook.
#2 After the pot boils for about 5 minutes, take it off the stove.
#3 Let stand 5 or 10 minutes and the steam will lift it from the bottom. Wipe the pot with a paper or dried leaves and it's ready for tea.

Simmer pre-soaked veggies in oil first, then add the egg mixture, cover, bring to boil and let sit.
Or, Set small chunks of cheese on the top before you cook.
Or, Set small chunks of trout on the bottom before you cook.

* Cooking on the trail is a joy -
I've been cooking on the trail for most of my life and have come to the conclusion that a simple blend of real foods is the best tonic for mind and body.

I often cook my big meal in the early afternoon while my cloths dry in the sun and my feet soak in a cool stream. I let my appetite tell me what I need: protein, fruit, vegetable or starch. The clean air, exercise, and slow pace of nature let me appreciate whatever concoction I come up with. Usually it tastes great - it's actually hard to make a bad meal from good food.

As the pot simmers on the stove, I check the map, take some pictures, record my thoughts, or take a nap. Half an hour of pure time to think about the trip ahead and the family that I miss. Real free time to be thankful for one more day of life with the bounty of nature. After a mid-day meal, I am recharged and ready to enjoy my hike through the cooling afternoon and look for sheltered spot to spend the night.


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©2006 mark jurey