Here is a guest review blog from expert wild camper Lee Taylor - you can visit his blog site here:
Lee bought a range of Bla Band meals from us...
Bla Band Wilderness Stew
Mountain House have been a leading supplier of freeze dried meals for over 40 years and are a leading brand in the US and are gaining popularity in the UK. Mountain House meals UK are made in Lancashire by European Freeze Dry.
Base Camp Food has a wide range of Mountain House Meals, all with free delivery to the UK. This includes main meals, breakfasts and desserts. We have a wide range of Mountain House vegetarian meals and I have been looking forward to taking the Vegetable Tikka and Rice out to lunch for a while!
During a few days of coastal walking in Cornwall, I stumbled across Vault Beach which provided a perfect lunch spot. My weapon of choice for this test was the Esbit 985ml Cookset which I was testing at the time
Packaging and Nutrition
The Mountain House Vegetable Tikka and Rice weighs in at only 112g making it lightweight and easy to carry. It comes in a tough pouch which can provides all the necessary protection for being tossed about in a pack.
For the weight, it has a relatively high calorie at 442 Kcal per 100g. Mountain House meals are prepared before they are freeze dried, meaning they have the original taste and texture when they are rehydrated.
The ingredients are mainly made up of tomato, rice, onion, peas, sweetcorn, pepper and cauliflower. This is in a Tikka sauce of garlic, ginger, lemon, coconut, tikka spices and coriander.
All Mountain House meals are easy to prepare in the pouch…
Boil some water on your nearest Esbit 985ml Cookset!
Open the pouch by tearing above the zip lock and add approx. 400ml of boiling water to the pouch – give it a really good stir, making sure you get all the way to the bottom of the pouch!
Once stirred, simply seal the pouch at the top and set aside. I’d always recommend leaving freeze-dried meals for a little longer than suggested as it makes the rehydration perfect. All Mountain House Meals have this same ziplock on the pouch meaning they are very simple to prepare.
If you have managed to wait more than 10 minutes then it is time to tuck in! You can eat straight from the pouch (as I did) or serve in a bowl or mug.
Mountain House meals are mainly very tasty and this one was no exception (thank goodness as I was particularly peckish!).
It rehydrated very well and all the pieces were tender and tasted like fresh vegetables. The benefit of freeze drying versus dehydrating means you get a great taste and texture and this meal tasted very fresh. I normally prefer the main pieces in the meal to be a decent bite size and my only slight gripe with this was the pieces are fairly small however this means you don’t get any hard, unhydrated pieces making it a pleasure to eat.
There is a great balance of curry and rice and the dish was very filling. I though the taste was superb, vegetable curry is a favourite of mine and this one has a really good balance of flavours and a nice amount of spice. The spice blend was well balanced and there was a good creamy, coconut(ty) flavour balanced with lemon and ginger.
Although small pieces, there was lot’s of cauliflower, totamtoes, peas and peppers and they really took on the flavours of the curry well. The Mountain House meals are a good portion size for one person and the meal really filled me up. Perhaps after a 12 hour mountain day, a little more would be needed but I would normally pop a pitta, naan or flour tortilla in and with that it would be plenty!
Mountain House meals are always tasty and nutritious – this Vegetable Tikka with Rice was light to carry, easy to prepare and was really tasty with a great blend of spice and vegetables. Definitely recommended if you like curry, regardless of whether you are a vegetarian!
Mountain House meals are priced at £4.99 and come with free UK delivery
Here at Base Camp Food, our aim is to be the UK’s leading supplier of lightweight meals, cookware and stoves. It’s an easy thing to say and write but what does that mean in practice and how can we be ‘leading’?
It’s not just about having a fantastic range of meals, it’s not just about an expanding range of lightweight cookware and stoves. It’s about how we develop relationships with our customers. It’s about delivering outrageously good customer service. It’s about surprising and delighting everybody who crosses our path.
We are a small, but growing, company and we have been giving real thought as to how we can involve our customers and friends in developing our business and providing the best product range. Of course this because we want to increase our sales, without sales we can’t grow our business. It’s also about feeling great about our business and really feeling proud to say we are Base Camp Food.
One step on this journey is to create a panel of reviewers for our products. We want all kinds of people, who enjoy the outdoors in one way or another, to be a real part of how we develop our range. Over the last ten days, we have been looking for reviewers to volunteer for the first Base Camp Food Tasting Team and we now have the shortlist.
We will ask our review team to take one our products out on their next adventure – big or small. This may be one of our freeze-dried meals, but will also evolve in to the lightweight cookware, such as our titanium sporks, and stoves. We have some great woodburning, lightweight stoves like the Solo Stove Original, and we really want to get a balanced view (we obviously love our products!) so we can share with other outdoors folk thinking about trying something new.
The review process will be simple, and we will simply ask for some thoughts and opinions on the product and how it performs in different situations. It will also be great to get some photographs showing our range in it’s natural environment!
We now have a shortlist of panel members but if you want o be considered for the next round, please just email me at email@example.com
Our friends at LYO Expedition food have created the first freeze-dried 100% vegan meal ever! This tasty barley and lentil risotto, with avocado mousse is both lightweight and nutritious. If you are looking for a 100% vegan camping meal then this is the answer. Combining lentils, red pepper, pearl barley, avocado and leek, flavoured with lemon, parsley, oregano and sea salt you don’t have to be vegan to enjoy this one!
Our range of LYO meals, fruits and soups – exclusive to Base Camp Food in the UK - are becoming increasingly popular with new and existing customers, but what makes it so special?
LYO use only 100% natural ingredients, with no additives or preservatives added. LYO even grow many of their own herbs in their fields.
Many other meals mix the ingredients after they have been cooked separately – LYO cook their meals and then freeze dry, meaning their lightweight expedition food has the taste of a homemade dish.
The freeze drying process used means the meals are high energy with a high calorie count. It also keeps all of the food’s natural vitamins and minerals giving great nutritional value. The process also removes 98% of the moisture content meaning the meals are lightweight and compact.
LYO Expedition foods also check their meals are safe twice – both after the cooking process and after the freeze drying process to ensure the highest safety standards.
Perfect for all backpacking meals, expedition food and lightweight camping meals – LYO food is simple to prepare:
- Tear off the top of the pouch above the zip lock
- Remove the oxygen absorber
- Add hot water and stir
- Close the zip for 5 minutes
- Open, Eat and Enjoy!
It’s no wonder that our customers love LYO!
I've been looking forward to trying the LYO Expedition Mexican Dish for a while. It is one of chief taster Laura's favourites and I've been waiting for an excuse to take myself off in to the Peak District for a night and tuck in!
This is one of the award winning range from LYO Expedition, for which we are proud to be the only UK stockist. The food is lightweight, easy to prepare and usually very tasty.
As always, my Vargo titanium spork came along too!
It's simply a case of adding the dried mixture to about half a pint of boiling water and leaving (if you can) for 8-10 minutes - give it a quick stir and it's ready!
Once ready, it looked appetising and smelt great.
The dish is made up primarily of chicken, rice, sweetcorn and kidney beans and comes together in a sauce. It is not too spicy but has good chilli and paprika flavour. If I was eating this at home I would probably add a little more spice. The chicken tastes like the excellent quality we come to expect from LYO and as always it tastes great and was warming and wholesome.
I took a standard size portion with me and, after a 4-5 hour hike this was perfect for one. At 93 grams, it is relatively lightweight and contains 360Kcals. As with all LYO food, the ingredients are 100% natural with no preservatives or artificial additives.
For a full day out in the mountains the larger size may work better but it depends on your appetite (equally the larger size would be good for two to share for as lunch stop). This one weighs in at 126 grams with 488Kcals.
The team are really looking forward to Base Camp Food's first Christmas. So, in preparation, we have all come up with our favourite items that we would love to have waiting for us wrapped up under the Christmas tree on the 25th December!
It was difficult to choose which were our favourite items but we managed to decide on a few ranging from a Spork, Energy Fuel to a Titanium Stove.
These are the favourites for the Base Camp Food team's Christmas list: http://www.pinterest.com/basecampfood/base-camp-foods-christmas-wish-list/
Why not tell us which of our products you would like for Christmas and why? - Maybe for an expedition in 2014? Let us know!
An early Merry Christmas!
Lucy (and the rest of the Base Camp Food team)