Last night we had the lamb dinner, our favorite – dried lamb in a sauce of dried roasted onions, tomatoes, peppers and olives, served with orzo – except for maybe the carbonara or the dried chicken with Thai coconut sauce. There are six dinners on this trip that repeat over and over again. Besides those three are a chicken curry with dried fruit and veg, an adzuki bean chili with polenta, and lentils. The lentil one didn’t quite work out as planned, but tweaked a bit, cooked up with some salami and noodles and a few bouillon cubes it makes an awesome soup, good for lunch too.
Planning meals for this 33 day long journey was a mind boggling affair – huge spread sheets, lots of online shopping at sights that catered to both hikers and preppers, and a million trips to grocery stores to find cheap organic foods. The final shop was done in a specialty cheese shop in Quebec. After a world class tasting experience, Bryce and I walked out of there with $320 worth of premium cheeses and meats. This was the one item we didn’t want to mess up on. As was explained to us by the man behind the counter, we could get by with less food by choosing products with more intense flavors. Needless to say, never having done this, I was a bit stressed that either there wouldn’t be enough food or that there would be too much for our tight constraints: our total Twin Otter load including us and the kayaks was just 2000 pounds, and space in the kayaks is at a premium.
But so far it has worked! Although we miss everything we don’t have (conversation revolves constantly around dumplings, burritos and chocolate cake), the weeks spent drying meat, roasted onions, grated carrots and bell peppers has paid off. Dinners are really good and filling and easy to prepare.
As everyone should know by now, we eat grilled cheese for lunch. What we never talk about is breakfast. Except for the odd pancake breakfast, it is gruel: a combination of oats, grains, polenta, seeds, nuts, dried nuts and fruits. With a bit of sugar, it does the job of filling us up.
And then there are snacks. We each get our own snack bag. Designed to last for five days, they do, but only if you are over thirty. There seems to be an inverse correlation between age and speed of snack consumption. The same correlation holds true to talk about the same food when it has left the body. Which brings us to that final question, we each got three rolls of “cashmere,” by some accounts, the premium brand of Canadian TP.