August 28, 2013
Comfort Food: What’s Your Top Post-Hunt Craving?
By David Draper
Continuing with Monday’s blog theme about eating on backcountry hunts, the next inevitable question is—what’s the food you crave most when you come out of the woods? For me, it’s usually something like pizza and beer, though I do also like a big salad made with cool, crunchy iceberg lettuce—none of that soft, wilty stuff. It seems my way of thinking is along the lines of what Mars explorers, or those practicing for a stay on the red planet, will be wanting should they make it back to earth.
According to this story on NPR, a half dozen researchers spent four months living on foods similar to what space explorers would have to subsist on. When they finally came out of their isolated dome, they went right for the fruit basket.
“After several months of freeze-dried food, even the most committed carnivores would probably reach for the fresh produce. So it's no surprise that the six explorers who were cooped up studying space-friendly foods on a simulated mission to Mars for the past four months went right for the mangoes and pineapple during their first meal outside their habitat Aug. 13.
"The freeze-dried stuff has a really nice taste, but not the right texture. It gets soft," says the Cornell University researcher who helped run the experiment, dubbed (Hawaii Space Exploration Analog and Simulation.) "What they missed most was fresh fruits and vegetables."
The simulated space crew also discovered what I’ve long asserted—everything tastes better wrapped in a tortilla:
'Sure, they had many prepared meals on hand—the creamy wild rice soup and mashed potatoes were favorites, as well as the comfort of Nutella and the novelty of Tang. But HI-SEAS crew commander Angelo Vermeulen says some of the best meals were improvised and hand-held. "Wraps work really well: We combine tortillas, different vegetables, Velveeta cheese, and sausage or canned fish into ever-changing combinations," Vermeulen tells Astrobiology Magazine.'
I’ll have plenty of tortillas on my backcountry elk hunt next week, as well as some bagels, but come day seven, I’ll be dreaming of a hot slice of pizza and a cold beer.
What’s the first food you order when re-entering civilization after a long backcountry hunt?