Lou blogged a while back from the Outdoor Retailer Show about Cache Lake Camping Food powdered eggs. He said “Yep, they tasted great.” That caught my attention, since my family and I were planning a four-night backpack trip above our hometown into the Enchantments in the Wenatchee Mountains, Washington.
My previous experiences with powdered eggs were on 1970s Boy Scout trips. The dehydrated food back then, especially powdered eggs, was not very good in my memory. In fact, it was downright terrible and we Boy Scouts had some illustrative names for some of that stuff!
I placed my order from the Cache Lake Camping Foods website. The goods arrived in a timely fashion in a small box. The “2 Servings” size powdered eggs are packaged in clear tough plastic that required a knife to cut. We were looking forward to having eggs for breakfast while backpacking in place of the usual fare of oatmeal, muffins, peanut butter, etc.
In camp, we first used one of our plastic bowls to mix the eggs and found that to be messy and annoying to clean up. So I decided to just dump the powder in our lightweight MSR backpacker skillet and then mix in the water with a fork. Erin, my daughter, and I thought that the eggs were delicious, even when just mixed in the pan before cooking. My wife Jenny ate the eggs for two breakfasts, then decided she wasn’t as keen on them. No problem, more for Erin and I ! (The two-person servings are generous.)
After solving the mixing mess, the only tricky part was evenly cooking the eggs in the very thin coated skillet over my tiny-torch Giga Power cookstove. I did not bring a spatula, intentionally, and the light fry pan is my standard kit for frying trout (or snow-melting in winter). As I quickly learned, when cooking on the hot flame in a thin pan, one must concentrate and stir constantly with a plastic fork or spoon to avoid browning or blackening the eggs, and also to completely cook them. Fortunately, after I scorched the first 4-serving batch, we learned that even so the eggs tasted good! But practice makes perfect, and by the end of our 4-day trip I was able to cook the eggs evenly and efficiently, with little extra mess when the eggs were mixed then cooked in the same pan.
For three days we ate pre-cooked packaged bacon with eggs, then we chowed on individually packaged slices of Spam with eggs after the bacon ran out. The generous application of Tabasco added to my backpack-breakfast bliss. Erin and I give a big thumbs-up for Cache Lake powdered eggs. In my view, it is great to have the highly nutritious option of eggs for breakfast while backpacking. As for preparation, I can testify that using my very light MSR fry pan to fix and cook the eggs was simple enough even for on-snow overnight camping.
(Guest blogger Rob Mullins lives in Leavenworth , WA and averages about three days per week year-around randonnee skiing and backcountry skiing, hiking, biking, snowmobiling, backpacking, etc., mostly in the Wenatchee Mountains east of the Cascade crest.)