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Fork in the Trail: Mouthwatering Meals and Tempting Treats for the Backcountry

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Fork in the Trail: Mouthwatering Meals and Tempting Treats for the Backcountry [Paperback]

Laurie Ann March
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)

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Book Description

December 12, 2007
Inspired by foods from all over the world and the guiding principle of “if you wouldn’t eat it at home, why eat it in the backcountry,” Laurie Ann March has created over 200 lightweight, taste-tested recipes to turn an ordinary backcountry outing into a gourmet adventure. In addition to the recipes, March covers menu planning, recipe creation, and meal planning for families and larger groups. Color photograph insert.

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Fork in the Trail: Mouthwatering Meals and Tempting Treats for the Backcountry + Another Fork in the Trail: Vegetarian and Vegan Recipes for the Backcountry + Trail Food: Drying and Cooking Food for Backpacking and Paddling
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Editorial Reviews


"An outdoorswoman with a palate!"
—Tamar Fleishman, Examiner

From the Author

Author Laurie Ann March has taught the online course "Wilderness Cooking: Level 1" for a number of years to hundreds of satisfied students.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 312 pages
  • Publisher: Wilderness Press; 1 edition (December 12, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0899974317
  • ISBN-13: 978-0899974316
  • Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 7 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #179,777 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars On the Trail or On the Water February 24, 2008
A Fork in the Trail: mouthwatering meals and tempting treats for the backcountry

By Laurie Ann March

I have really enjoyed A Fork in the Trail even though I am not a hiker and am rarely in the backcountry. I do, however, have a boat, and the recipes in this book fit my needs as a boater to a T. There is not much space on our boat to store consumables, and in the moist environment at the marina or on the river does not lend itself to longevity for prepared dishes, so the use of dehydrated items and those that are easy to carry and take up little space in storage is perfect for me. I am very grateful to Laurie Ann March for doing the thinking part of meal planning for those long boat trips.

Even though it is winter, and boating season is a few months off, I did try a few recipes from this book. It is my policy to cook from every book I review, and A Ford in the Trail was no exception. I even rehydrated dehydrated items to achieve authenticity. I first prepared March's Salmon Cakes, and found the addition of mozzarella cheese brilliant. We enjoyed them immensely on a Lenten evening with sides of buttered noodles, and green beans. (I had to resort to a fast food restaurant to get the packets of mayonnaise, but the recipe was worth the effort) Of course, people who hike and people who boat collect additional packets of sauces and seasonings whenever possible anyway. March's Breakfast Bread Pudding was an ingenious use of powdered egg mix, and quite good. Prepared in my kitchen it was quite easy. I cannot attest to the outback oven method, but it does seem quite doable.

I do recommend this cookbook to anyone preparing to hit the trails or water this summer. You may want to experiment, as I have, before the season starts so you will have an idea of how the dishes come out.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome awesome awesome April 23, 2008
I just got this book a few days ago, and have already read it cover to cover. I am going on a month-long hike in Turkey soon, and am really looking forward to trying out some of these recipes. This book is a must-have for anyone tired of cheeseburger in a can. Laurie is creative and informative, and her recipes seem more like things you'd find on a gourmet menu than what you would find in the back country. If you enjoy cooking or just want to have great food on the trail, GET THIS BOOK!
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Will become a classic June 13, 2008
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Delicious, easy to prepare recipes presented in a clear, logical format prefaced by very informative, helpful backcountry cooking instruction. I love that the recipes start with a personalized introduction and are divided into 'At Home' and 'At Camp' instructions.
Far more than just a compilation of recipes, it is a good read from cover to cover.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very tasty recipes with helpful instructions December 6, 2011
I really have enjoyed this book and it inspired me to get a food dehydrator to make my own dehydrated meals for backpacking. There is a lot of variety, with different ethnic styles and spices.

The one downside of the book is that the recipes are fairly complicated, needing a lot of ingredients and planning ahead. As I planned my meals for a 5-day Grand Canyon trek I found myself mixing in a few of the recipes in this book along with simple standbys like instant oatmeal for breakfast, pb&j for lunch, and pasta for dinner. I doubt I will have a lot of energy for baking cakes in the evening after a day of intense hiking!

One suggestion I have for future editions of this book is to list the approximate weight of each meal as you would carry it (dehydrated ingredients plus canned, etc.) I would be interested to flip through and select the lighter meals when on a more intense trek.

This book is totally perfect for car camping with the family, when you have time and energy to prepare more interesting food, bake bread, make cakes, etc. For a lightweight intense trek I will probably still stick with simpler fare, but I enjoyed the opportunity to think more creatively about mobile food!
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Of all the backpacking/dehydrating books I've used, this one is my favorite! The author's experience in camp cooking is evident. (Anyone who celebrates Thanksgiving every year by going camping and cooking a turkey in her a cardboard box oven has my respect.) The book is very well organized with a helpful section in the beginning covering everything from dehydration tips to sample meal plans for a week-long trip.

The recipes cover an amazing variety of tastes and styles. Forget beef stew and gorp--try having African Chicken and Groundnut Stew or Blueberry-Orange Tea Cake. The ingredient lists on the side of the page, the symbols indicating whether the recipe is ultra-light, and the stats on serving size and dehydration time helped me quickly pick the recipes I wanted for our most recent trip. My favorite recipe so far is the Thai Chili Salad (page 72). It was easy to make, dehydrate, and rehydrate, but the combination of tangy lime and spicy cillantro was absolutely amazing on trail. The book splits it's space between light-weight backpacking/paddling recipes and more elaborate car-camping dishes.

This book has changed the way I think about lightweight backpacking cooking! And the recipes are tasty enough that I may start using them for regular meals at home, too. Want to impress your friends with orange cupcakes baked inside hollowed-out oranges? This book is for you.

Mary Ann Miller Bates
(Author of "CH is for Chocolate: Individually Wrapped Tastes of Switzerland")
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Love this book
Love this book. After buying it in kindle I wanted the proper book as I use it so often. Easy recipes that I use time and time again
Published 2 months ago by Elissa Brittenden
5.0 out of 5 stars Get an Excaliber dehydrator and you're good to go
My backpacking food bible. Get an Excaliber dehydrator and you're good to go.
Published 3 months ago by Katy
5.0 out of 5 stars Good fair price
Exactly as expected. Quality product. Good fair price. Fast shipping.
Published 7 months ago by Nirocz
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book for new and seasoned hikers
This book will provide the A to Z about preparing your meal at home to enjoying on the trail. Included are all receopies for your meals and the tools you will need to serve the... Read more
Published 10 months ago by Randall
5.0 out of 5 stars love it.
GREAT BOOK. I highly recommend it. I have made many recipes. She opened my eyes to safely make my own backpacking food that includes MEAT... crazy good stuff.
Published 11 months ago by Terri
4.0 out of 5 stars Some Good Recipes
I have purchased many backpack food books in the past. I liked this book, but it is not my favorite. I found some recipes that I have tried and liked. Read more
Published 19 months ago by Samantha Schafer
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent! must have for inspiration to make your own recipes. and...
Very well written, plenty to choose recipes. Just have for dehydrating foods. Give you a good incentive to create you own recipes.
Published 20 months ago by Jo Evans
3.0 out of 5 stars not what I expected, but has some good recipies
I thought this would have a lot of great recipes in it, but I am just not that impressed with it. I was hoping for more meals that I can make and dehydrate and that would not be... Read more
Published 21 months ago by Jennifer Greisel
5.0 out of 5 stars Just what I was looking for!
Great recipes for long hikes, air travel, etc. Prompted the purchase of an Excalibur deluxe food dehydrator for better recipe results.
Published 22 months ago by Lisa Rearick
5.0 out of 5 stars great
Looking forward to a great backpacking trip and this will make it like home and the trip a little better ....
Published 24 months ago by Robert Orsborn
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More About the Author

Laurie Ann March is an avid backpacker, hiker, and wilderness canoeist. So much so, that she has turned her passion into her day job as owner and editor of the popular e-zines and

Laurie started her backcountry cooking adventures as a child camping with her big brother and mentor Bruce. As a preteen, she took a 4-H outdoor living course that taught her the basic foundations of roughing it, as well as how to preserve foods through dehydration. She hosts wilderness cooking workshops, where she teaches and supports students learning the special skills needed to prepare food for their wilderness excursions. Her first book, A Fork in the Trail, has been enjoyed by backpackers and paddlers around the globe.

Laurie is not just an author and outdoorswoman; she is also a mom, wife, artist, and photographer. Laurie lives in Brant County, Ontario, Canada, near the picturesque Grand River and the Great Lakes.


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