The trail is long, your pack heavy.
Unless, of course, you’re going lightweight. Then the trail appears shorter with your lightened pack. NOLS Word of Mouth Coordinator Casey Pikla offers one means of lightening your load in the form of down-home cooking. Casey’s original lightweight jalapeño grits recipe is meant to be prepared in a large batch at home. Portions (usually about four ounces per person per meal) can then be packed into the field. This recipe should create about four backcountry meals, depending on your appetite.
In the most recent episode of the NOLS Cooking Show, Casey and NOLS Environmental Stewardship Coordinator Amy Rathke join forces to walk you through each step of the recipe, then garner reviews so you can be sure it’s something you want to try living on.
And, so you can just sit back and enjoy the show without taking notes, the recipe is located below.
1 cup instant grits
½ cup nut mix
½ cup crushed Fritos
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
¼ cup dried jalapeños
¼ cup bacon bits or imitation bacon bits
½ teaspoon onion powder
½ teaspoon garlic powder
Pinch of salt
1) Prepare the nut mix by combining equal parts almonds, cashews, and sunflower seeds in a food processor. Pulse until the mixture is granulated, but not powdered and set aside.
2) Prepare the crushed Fritos in the same fashion and set aside. Both the nut mix and Fritos are a great way to add calories without adding much weight.
3) Combine instant grits, nut mix, crushed Fritos, Parmesan cheese, dried jalapeños, bacon bits, onion powder, garlic powder, and salt in a large container.
4) Using a scale, measure the desired amount of grits mixture to take into the backcountry and place in a bag.
In the backcountry:
1) Boil ½ cup of water for each serving.
2) Remove the pot from the stove, and pour a serving of the grits mix into the water.
3) Place the pot in an insulating cozy for about five minutes.