2012 HDR review

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rock_or_something
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2012 HDR review

Postby rock_or_something » Tue Aug 28, 2012 2:00 pm

I'd always wanted to check out an HDR (after learning about them here), and I was happy to get a nice fresh case at Cheaper Than Dirt. I don't have a pic of the case at the moment, but it was packed in March 2012. I was able to control my curiosity for maybe a week, and opened one today. Seems like there are some new menu items not listed here on the site, and some slightly new packaging. I know some folks have bought these, but no one has posted about them yet....

hdr.JPG


Lots of stuff inside. Remember, it's a whole day's food for a slightly malnourished aid recipient (or 2/3 of a day's food for an over-nourished American like me). :D Two entrees, crackers, fig bar, oatmeal cookie, raisins, peanut butter, strawberry jam, spoon, accessories.

foodbox1.JPG

foodbox2.JPG

stuff1.JPG

stuff2.JPG

fig.JPG

cookie.JPG


The crackers, spreads, and fig bar were pretty standard.The oatmeal cookie was hard, and was more like a spice cookie than an oatmeal raisin cookie; the Pop Tart I was expecting probably would have been better. The entrees were a mixed bag (MRE puns?). Peas and noodles, and beans and potatoes.There wasn't much difference between cold (first image below) and microwaved (second image).

cold.JPG

hot.JPG


Which was a shame, because the beans in each entree (the "peas" are listed on the ingredient list as garbanzo beans, but they were more like a field pea, or a bean) could stand some cooking. They were tough, barely cooked, almost crunchy. The peas and noodles had a good flavor, and the texture benefited from having a good bit of noodle cushion around the hard beans. But I couldn't finish the beans and potatoes, and I'd have to be pretty hungry to do so. I guess that's the idea though. Maybe if you threw in some canned chicken and some cheese, and mashed it all up good, they'd be OK. The hot stuff sat in my stomach well though, which is more than you can say for Menu 12 Veggie Burgers with BBQ Sauce.

Hopefully all the entrees in here won't be full of crunchy beans. I might post as I eat into the case, but that might take awhile. I'd probably buy a case of MREs instead if I had to do it over, but I'm glad to have scored these!


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Name_not_found
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Re: 2012 HDR review

Postby Name_not_found » Tue Aug 28, 2012 2:39 pm

First, Welcome to the Forum.

Second, Great way to start!
Good pics, clear info, nice review thanks for sharing.

The microwave is not the preferred method of heating for these.
They are intended for disaster/third-word relief, that means no electricity, none the less a microwave.

Next time boil it in the pouch for about 10 minutes, this will let the beans/peas revive much better.

(if you do choose to microwave, 90 seconds or less, i usually to 30sec then stir and repeat until hot enough)
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housil
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Re: 2012 HDR review

Postby housil » Tue Aug 28, 2012 3:17 pm

Welcome to forums :D

Nice pic´s and review, thx for sharing.
I never tried an HDR entree as they are a little bit bland. Did you notice they have ~400kcal each, a MRE entree has 300-350kcal-

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Re: 2012 HDR review

Postby Name_not_found » Tue Aug 28, 2012 3:53 pm

Did you notice they have ~400kcal each


One package is 2200 kcal, its meant for an entire day!

Also only 10 in a box so 22,000 kcal per case

They are vegetarian and halal also (i think)
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cavguy
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Re: 2012 HDR review

Postby cavguy » Tue Aug 28, 2012 6:29 pm

Next time boil it in the pouch for about 10 minutes, this will let the beans/peas revive much better.


Good advise NNF! It took your post for me to realize this - even though it should be clear duh!

rock_or_something
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Re: 2012 HDR review

Postby rock_or_something » Tue Aug 28, 2012 6:34 pm

Yeah, I probably should have thought about the whole microwave thing. Definitely more appropriate for a campfire (and if you could capture the HDR-related methane, you could have a self-generating fuel source for a camp stove!) :shock:

As Housil stated, it seems like pretty bland stuff. But cool nonetheless.

Oh, and I suppose this should be moved to the review section of the forum. Oops.
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TurtleNomad
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Re: 2012 HDR review

Postby TurtleNomad » Wed Aug 29, 2012 1:06 am

Rocking good first post, rock! :)

Does your case contain all the same or different menus?
I'm guessing yours is a "4" (can someone confirm that?). Please take a quick inventory of the rest - thanks! :)

That's the big question that's been keeping me from ordering these!
(That and I'm in the midst of yet-another-multi-state-move.)

Ditto on all of NNF's advice.
Kman (The Site Founder) has also always recommended boiling vs microwaving.

You don't even have to "boil" as such.
Just use a kettle or microwave to boil the water, put the MRE/HDR item (still in its mylar bag) in a big enough bowl or pot, then pour in enough boiling water to cover it. Then, instead of monitoring an active stove, just walk away for 10-15 minutes. Easy is good. :) That's all I ever do, typically with a pyrex bowl, but have used metal pots. Nest/wrap the bowl/pot in a towel/blanket/etc for somewhat better results.

I highly recommend you open up another one, and try the oatmeal cookie after about five minutes immersed in boiled water. It's a completely different experience! Soft, and much better taste. :)

My first MRE oatmeal cookie was eaten unheated, and I was thoroughly disappointed. I decided to try boiling my 2nd, on the theory that no way could it be worse. I'm glad I did. :)

Thanks a ton for the review! :)


P.S. Cavguy & rock, personally I consider it non obvious to use boiling water! I would bet that most people in industrialized countries microwave at least 3/4 of their home "cooked" meals. Or maybe that's just Americans?
Thanks to Kman for repeatedly advocating boiling water.
Thanks to NNF for explaining the reasoning, particularly in the context of HDR entrees.

P.P.S. Stay tuned for an upcoming thread from me explaining the "art" of hotel cooking. There will be boiling a plenty, including pics of boiling MREs inside the kettle itself - no bowl required! ;)
The important thing is the spices.
A man can live on packaged food from here til Judgement Day if he's got enough Marjoram.

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dirtbag
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Re: 2012 HDR review

Postby dirtbag » Wed Aug 29, 2012 3:41 am

One note of caution, Microwaving stuff in the metallic mylar wrappers can be hard on the machine, lots of sparks...
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rock_or_something
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Re: 2012 HDR review

Postby rock_or_something » Wed Aug 29, 2012 8:55 am

TurtleNomad wrote:Rocking good first post, rock! :)

Does your case contain all the same or different menus?
I'm guessing yours is a "4" (can someone confirm that?). Please take a quick inventory of the rest - thanks! :)

That's the big question that's been keeping me from ordering these!
(That and I'm in the midst of yet-another-multi-state-move.)



My case matched the information posted here on MREinfo: "There are five different menus of HDRs. With a case of 10 HDRs, you'll have two of each type of HDR available."

I suppose what I ate yesterday was an updated version of menu 4, meal A, which is currently listed as:

Beans w/Potatoes
Brown & Wild Rice w/Lentils
Flat Bread
Crackers
Peanut Butter
Strawberry Jam
Raisins
Accessory Pack *

It's a standard case, and very fresh. I didn't hesitate at all to order mine, knowing how infrequently they are available by the case.

cavguy
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Re: 2012 HDR review

Postby cavguy » Wed Aug 29, 2012 11:50 am

I wonder if any of the meals contain MSG? If you notice any in your case that do please post up.


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