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Gas Station MRE II -- second helpings...

Nix · 331 · 12369

us Offline Nix

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Gas Station MRE II -- second helpings...
on: March 15, 2022, 08:11:44 PM
The return of the Gas Station Meal-Ready-to-Eat (GSMRE) challenge is here!  :tu:




The first GSMRE challenge last year was great fun (for me anyway) and stimulated some great discussion and ideas for quick and easy meals. Because the Soldier On! challenge is also running currently, this seemed like a great time to get another GSMRE going.

GSMRE challenge concept:

The legendary…sometimes loathed…military MRE. Call it a ‘meal ready to eat’, ‘mostly repugnant edibles’, ‘meal refuses to exit’, ‘meal rejected by enemy’, or a ‘meal rarely enjoyed.’  No matter the name, the MRE has a durable place in legend and lore. The only thing more durable than the MRE’s notoriety may be the MRE’s themselves. The shelf life of a US MRE was designed to be 5 years, but many are eaten decades later. Who knows how long these things really last......?  :dunno:




Recent versions of the MRE often looks like they were compiled from snacks picked up at the local gas station…and that’s where the idea for the GSMRE challenge was born.

In this repeat challenge, participants….we euphemistically call them ‘diners’…are going to take the idea of the MRE—an assortment of shelf-stable foods crammed into a small, man-portable package—and develop their own ‘Gas Station MRE’ version from items readily found shops, stores, gas stations, or online. A ‘GSMRE’.

Each diner will create a 24-hour ration according to his or her dietary preferences. Post a snapshot of the completed GSMRE by 16 April 22 to show it is completed. We’ll leave the GSMRE on the shelf for a week, then all consume our ‘rats’ on the same day, Saturday, 23 April 22.

I’m hoping this challenge will again spark some ideas for food and fuel to take on hikes, camping trips, or that escape to the hills when the zombie apocalypse arrives. The last GSMRE challenge saw some great meal ideas! If nothing else, it should be fun…and filling.

Unfamiliar with MRE’s?  :think:

Don’t worry, there are many resources out there. Complete menu lists are available on-line and videos abound on the Youtube.  A a starting point, here’s a link to a review by YouTube legend Steve1989 of a Ukrainian 24-hour ration:

Steve1989MREInfo

To keep the challenge somewhat uniform (no pun intended), there are some DO’s and DON’T’s to be observed:

• DO use common sense and safe food handling practices while participating in this challenge. Food borne illness can cause serious illness and even death. If something doesn’t seem safe, DON’T eat it….don’t even touch it! Rule of thumb: if you can’t peel it, cook it.

• This is a 24 hour ‘mission’, so please DO assemble a 24-hour ration in the style of a military ration or MRE. Please DO post the contents and menu design for your ration. Post a photo of the contents on 16 April, 2022.

• DO be sure the food in your GSMRE contains a minimum caloric value of 2400 Kcal (There is solid military reasoning behind this number). 3000 - 3700 Kcal is closer to the US military standard for calories in temperate climates.

• While 2400 Kcal is our minimum to pack, DO add extra calories if you like—if you will be working or camping outside in a cold weather environment, you may wish to assemble a ration of 4000-5000 Kcal. Antarctic trekkers aim for 7000 Kcal per day.

• Diners DON’T have to eat the entire ration as assembled. Military personnel typically eat only 75-80% of their rations. This can be a problem for sustained operations! Eat what you like, and tell us why you did or didn’t eat some components

• DO make your ration tasty and appealing. One of the challenges of military ration designers is get troops to eat all their food. Hint: hot sauce is your friend.

• DO create a breakfast menu, midday meal/snack menu, and supper menu from what ever items you like. Additional snacks are permitted…even encouraged. You can use 2400 Kcal of snickers bars if you really want, but, remember this is the only food you’ll be eating for 24-hours.

• DO include beverages! Each menu should contain food and drink items. No MRE is complete without having some “Coffee, instant, type II” or a delicious “Beverage base powder, lemon” component. Participants will choose their own appealing beverage mixes to include in the GSMRE according to their personal preferences. These are the only beverages permitted during chow day, so plan well. Hint: Gatorade fruit punch really hits the spot on a hot day.

• DON’T include items that have a long cook or prep time. Military field rations are designed to be eaten quickly. If it can’t be prepared and eaten within 30 minutes, DON’T include it. However, camping stoves and ration heaters are permitted.

• DO ensure that each food item is shelf stable, safe for consumption after being left at room temperature for days, weeks, and months, and capable of being transported by backpack, school bag, or haversack.

• DO include food that can be heated up before serving. Warm rations are typically more palatable and a real morale booster. Military rations around the world use different methods of reheating and some require hot water. For this challenge, all reheating methods are permitted and encouraged. However, any component that requires reheating or cooking, e.g. freeze-dried food, must be capable of being prepared using a camping stove or open fire.

• DO pack up all your items into a waterproof bag or sack capable of fitting into a backpack. Aim for a 2-gallon or 8L size maximum.


How the GSMRE challenge will be run:

✓ Today…until storage day: diners will sign up and begin assembling their “Gas Station MRE’s”.

✓ April 16, 2022, aka “Storage Day”: Each participant will post a photo of their packed  up GSMRE and store it in the proverbial “cool, dry spot” for a week.

✓ April 23, 2022, aka “Chow day”: Beginning at 0001 Local time…or whenever the alarm bell rings… each diner will consume the items in their MRE for the next 24 hours. No other food will be eaten during “Chow day”, just the stuff in your GSMRE. This includes beverages! Your carefully crafted menu plans may be disregarded…’cuz that’s what happens in the field…but you are entirely reliant on your GSMRE (and water as needed). Please post photos of meals eaten or action shots of that grape jelly on your face. Photos can be posted later if you don’t have internet access during Chow Day, but we want to see what you ate and how you ate it. As Steve would say, “let’s get that out on a tray!”

✓ April 24, 2022: GSMRE survivors will be asked to provide some feedback on their rations and experiences. Did you have too much food? Too little? Was it too salty? Too sweet? Would more beverages have been nice? Did your ration survive the 7-day storage period? Let the other GSMRE sufferers survivors know what worked...and what didn't! 

If you are ready to grab a spork or ration spoon, fill your haversack, and try something new, sign up! (And, by-the-bye, there is a merit badge for those who complete the challenge.  :tu:)


“Boil em, mash em, stick em in a stew.”
― Samwise Gamgee
« Last Edit: March 15, 2022, 10:23:11 PM by Nix »


us Offline Nix

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Re: Gas Station MRE II -- second helpings...
Reply #1 on: March 15, 2022, 08:22:04 PM
01: Nix


wales Offline GearedForwards

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Re: Gas Station MRE II -- second helpings...
Reply #2 on: March 15, 2022, 08:43:23 PM
Oh yes! I regretted not getting in on the original one, definitely down for this  :tu:

I'll assemble per instructions but may not eat all of it based on whatever my calorie allowance is at the time. I finally get to use my MSR Pocket Rocket  :ahhh
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wales Offline GearedForwards

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Re: Gas Station MRE II -- second helpings...
Reply #3 on: March 15, 2022, 08:43:44 PM
01: Nix
02: GearedForwards
Check out my Youtube channel  for gear reviews, comparisons, and carry philosophy.

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us Offline Nix

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Re: Gas Station MRE II -- second helpings...
Reply #4 on: March 15, 2022, 10:06:45 PM
 :tu:  Should be fun.

I didn't manage to eat awl my GSMRE during the last one....  :rofl:


se Offline RF52

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Re: Gas Station MRE II -- second helpings...
Reply #5 on: March 15, 2022, 10:12:57 PM
I'm possibly in :tu:

01: Nix
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se Offline RF52

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Re: Gas Station MRE II -- second helpings...
Reply #6 on: March 15, 2022, 10:13:36 PM
Just a small question. Isn't 2 gallons more like 8 liters 🤔


us Offline Nix

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Re: Gas Station MRE II -- second helpings...
Reply #7 on: March 15, 2022, 10:22:42 PM
Just a small question. Isn't 2 gallons more like 8 liters 🤔

 :doh:


Fixed......  :D


wales Offline GearedForwards

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Re: Gas Station MRE II -- second helpings...
Reply #8 on: March 15, 2022, 10:24:45 PM
I think the hardest part for me will be finding an appropriate sized container and making myself give up the regular chippy Friday  :facepalm:
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us Offline Nix

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Re: Gas Station MRE II -- second helpings...
Reply #9 on: March 15, 2022, 10:31:02 PM
I love dry bags for carrying camping food!




Here's a shot of last year's GSMRE with some objects for scale:



se Offline RF52

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Re: Gas Station MRE II -- second helpings...
Reply #10 on: March 15, 2022, 10:31:59 PM
:doh:


Fixed......  :D
:cheers:

Another question, if I choose freezedried meal(s), do I have to use open flame to heat the water or is it enough to know/explain how to do it? :dunno:
It's kind of strict with open flames at work with bio gas powered buses :facepalm:

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us Offline Nix

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Re: Gas Station MRE II -- second helpings...
Reply #11 on: March 15, 2022, 10:35:05 PM
:cheers:

Another question, if I choose freezedried meal(s), do I have to use open flame to heat the water or is it enough to know/explain how to do it? :dunno:
It's kind of strict with open flames at work with bio gas powered buses :facepalm:


This is MTo, so.... SAFETY IS ALWAYS, AT LEAST, THIRD!   :ahhh

(If you have a safety issue, it is permissible to cheat, and use hot water from a SAFE source.  ;))


se Offline RF52

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Re: Gas Station MRE II -- second helpings...
Reply #12 on: March 15, 2022, 10:36:11 PM
:tu:

I always put safety in at least top 5 :tu:

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us Offline Nix

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Re: Gas Station MRE II -- second helpings...
Reply #13 on: March 15, 2022, 10:37:20 PM
 :cheers:


wales Offline GearedForwards

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Re: Gas Station MRE II -- second helpings...
Reply #14 on: March 15, 2022, 10:55:08 PM
So you're saying that I must use a challenge as an excuse to buy new gear?

Nix... I couldn't possible do that *glances at the several SAKs bought within the last 12 months for 'challenges'* too many more times after this  :whistle:
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br Offline Santos

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Re: Gas Station MRE II -- second helpings...
Reply #15 on: March 15, 2022, 11:37:58 PM
This is going to sound weird but I'd like to participate but then I will be Airborne on the 22nd of April and due to mystical powers the 23rd will only exist for me for 40 minutes.  :dunno:

“A good plan isn't one where someone wins, it's where nobody thinks they've lost.”
- Terry Pratchett


us Offline Nix

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Re: Gas Station MRE II -- second helpings...
Reply #16 on: March 15, 2022, 11:38:30 PM
So you're saying that I must use a challenge as an excuse to buy new gear?

Not really an excuse....more.... a requirement....  :rofl:


us Offline Nix

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Re: Gas Station MRE II -- second helpings...
Reply #17 on: March 15, 2022, 11:39:04 PM
This is going to sound weird but I'd like to participate but then I will be Airborne on the 22nd of April and due to mystical powers the 23rd will only exist for me for 40 minutes.  :dunno:

Santos, LEAD THE WAY!   :salute:


br Offline Hevy (CT-782)

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Re: Gas Station MRE II -- second helpings...
Reply #18 on: March 16, 2022, 01:10:39 AM
Awesome!!!

Of course WE are ready for more fun!

Hevy and Vítor ready for one more GSMRE challenge!

We enjoyed a lot the last one, and I and my son (or clone) were expecting for the next.
We had great moments together learning about MRE, selecting the items (for dismay of Mrs Hevy) and eating all the stuff.


br Offline Hevy (CT-782)

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Re: Gas Station MRE II -- second helpings...
Reply #19 on: March 16, 2022, 01:12:28 AM
01: Nix
02: GearedForwards
03: RF52
04: Hevy and Vítor


us Offline Nix

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Re: Gas Station MRE II -- second helpings...
Reply #20 on: March 16, 2022, 01:42:09 AM
OH, NOOOOOO....! :ahhh




us Offline Barry Rowland

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Re: Gas Station MRE II -- second helpings...
Reply #21 on: March 16, 2022, 02:04:13 AM
01: Nix
02: GearedForwards
03: RF52
04: Hevy and Vítor
05: Barry Rowland
Barry


us Offline Nix

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Re: Gas Station MRE II -- second helpings...
Reply #22 on: March 16, 2022, 02:08:00 AM
 :cheers:


us Offline Barry Rowland

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Re: Gas Station MRE II -- second helpings...
Reply #23 on: March 16, 2022, 02:54:35 AM
 :ahhh :cheers: :ahhh. This is a great time buddy!  I had a blast on the last one.
Barry


us Offline Nix

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Re: Gas Station MRE II -- second helpings...
Reply #24 on: March 16, 2022, 03:07:53 AM
:ahhh :cheers: :ahhh. This is a great time buddy!  I had a blast on the last one.


I'm looking forward to it. Still have a few components left over from last year's.......  :facepalm:


us Offline Barry Rowland

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Re: Gas Station MRE II -- second helpings...
Reply #25 on: March 16, 2022, 03:16:37 AM
 :facepalm: I wish I had.  My girth attests to how good it was :rofl:
Barry


wales Offline GearedForwards

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Re: Gas Station MRE II -- second helpings...
Reply #26 on: March 16, 2022, 03:52:11 AM
Looking forward to it already:

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za Offline Humayd A R Mahomedy

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Re: Gas Station MRE II -- second helpings...
Reply #27 on: March 16, 2022, 05:18:57 AM
i'm in,because the concept is intriguing,and practical,and i've always wanted to compile my own Ratpack from readily available items.
i may be away during the last week of April/beginning of May,so,my chow day pics may be postponed.
even if i don't complete the challenge,i will have learnt something


gb Offline MichaelGT83

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Re: Gas Station MRE II -- second helpings...
Reply #28 on: March 16, 2022, 01:23:43 PM
I'm going to tentatively consider this. I'm watching football that day, thankfully at home which will make it easier, but it will mean I'd have to consider my participation. Especially as there'd normally be a few pints consumed on the day as well. :drink:

Also, as a thought, how does claiming the GSMRE badge in parallel with another challenge work? With it not being a "traditional" challenge badge, could we claim it whilst still going through the Soldier On! badge? I don't want to be brought up in front of High Command for misdemeanours in the field. Again. :ahhh
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wales Offline GearedForwards

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Re: Gas Station MRE II -- second helpings...
Reply #29 on: March 16, 2022, 04:00:00 PM
I'm going to tentatively consider this. I'm watching football that day, thankfully at home which will make it easier, but it will mean I'd have to consider my participation. Especially as there'd normally be a few pints consumed on the day as well. :drink:

Also, as a thought, how does claiming the GSMRE badge in parallel with another challenge work? With it not being a "traditional" challenge badge, could we claim it whilst still going through the Soldier On! badge? I don't want to be brought up in front of High Command for misdemeanours in the field. Again. :ahhh

The rules encourage you to provide beverages and things to improve morale  :pok:
Check out my Youtube channel  for gear reviews, comparisons, and carry philosophy.

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