Bananas, our intrepid Appalachian Trail hiker, should reach the first mail stop today & receive the first care package we sent her. The second package has been mailed already, and the food dehydrator is merrily humming away--this time with brown rice and a spicy tomato-bean mixture. Doing all of this, we have learned
* You can make your own Minute Rice by cooking rice, then dehydrating it. The end result takes far less time to cook. Finally!!! A way to work with brown rice that does not involve postponing dinner!
* Always, always, always spray the drying sheets with olive oil or cooking spray before putting anything on them.
* Measure the volume & weight of everything before AND after cooking & dehydrating. There is no other way to figure out how much dehydrated rice really makes 1 cup when rehydrated.
* Wash dryer trays often, especially after anything strongly flavored.
* It's easier to experiment when you're not eating the results yourself.
If she makes it all the way to Maine (from the starting point in Georgia), she'll be done sometime in September and will have hiked 2174 miles. The trail, which was specifically created for hikers, was started in the early 1920s and the first documented "thru-hike" was in 1948 by a gent from Pennsylvania named Earl Shaffer. Admittedly, this would not be my idea of a fun undertaking, but I would support anyone who decided to do something they have always wanted to do. Life is short.
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