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1974 Spaghetti with Beef Chunks MCI Review

Posted: Sat Sep 08, 2018 10:52 pm
by SentientTootsieRoll
I was at an army surplus store a few months ago and saw an opened case of MCIs with individual meals for sale. They were $30 each and by the way they looked, I thought they were asking a bit too much. But I was tempted to get one anyway, so I did. I put it in my closet and forgot about it until I was cleaning it out and came across it again. I also found many others that were in better condition that I had forgotten about. Normally, I shy away from even opening these old MCIs because I'm afraid of botulism or some other form of sickness. I'm also afraid to cut myself on one of the cans and infect myself that way, so I began to regret ever purchasing these for that reason. Today, I finally decided I was going to open it. I don't plan to eat more than a tiny bite should everything pass the "senses exam".

As you could probably tell by the post title, this is a 1974 Spaghetti w/ Beef Chunks Meal, Combat, Individual. This would be the first full MCI I have ever opened. Let's get on with it!
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Re: 1974 Spaghetti with Beef Chunks MCI Review

Posted: Sat Sep 08, 2018 11:10 pm
by SentientTootsieRoll
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What an experience! The first thing I did was prepare some boiling hot water, not only to prepare the any hot drinks but to have on hand as a sanitary item just in case I need to clean off any utensils and the like. As you can tell by looking at the can, the spaghetti's days were over a long time ago. I truly wasn't looking forward to opening the can, but that was the first thing I did after opening the ration. Out of consideration for those with a weak stomach (myself included) I redacted pictures of it since the form doesn't seem to have a "spoiler" feature that I could use to hide the pics from unsuspecting visitors. If for some reason you want to see the spaghetti, you can PM me. Essentially, its appearance wasn't too far off from "you-know-what". I threw that out in a separate trash bag, put it outside, and sanitized the tray (I finally purchased one!) and any other surfaces.

Next was the coffee. The coffee and sugar were fine, but the creamer had chunked up. This was coffee instant type II, but it wasn't like the current type II coffee, but more like the type I coffee you'd typically see in a 1980s MRE. It was good! The taste wasn't too strong and the smell was very reminiscent of freshly brewed coffee.

Then there was the B-2 unit. It had crackers and some cocoa beverage powder, hurray! The crackers were a toasted, salty and were still perfectly fine! I thought it was neat how they packed the cocoa powder in the can. The packaging was some odd, flexible waxed paper or something. Upon opening it, it passed initial inspections. After pouring water into it, I took a few sips but noticed that while it didn't taste bad, it tasted a bit off. In a way, it was a bit like spoiled milk so I didn't finish it.

The apricot jam was incredibly dark but other than that, it looked fine consistency wise and it even smelled okay. I dabbed my finger in it just a little bit, took a small taste and I could tell it was metallic. So I had to say "no" to that one.

The pecan cake roll smelled and looked just fine. I took a few small bites and it tasted like cinnamon-raisin bread. After a few seconds, my tongue was very numb so I had to pass on the rest of it, sadly.

Let's just say that if you got stuck with this as your only meal today, you'd be out of luck. The only items that survived were the crackers and, coffee and gum. Oh, I almost forgot about the gum! Sweet and awesome as always in these older rations!

Re: 1974 Spaghetti with Beef Chunks MCI Review

Posted: Sat Oct 20, 2018 4:08 pm
by gijoe44
So no cigarettes in 1974?

Re: 1974 Spaghetti with Beef Chunks MCI Review

Posted: Sat Oct 20, 2018 6:10 pm
by SentientTootsieRoll
No, those had been removed a few years earlier IIRC.

Re: 1974 Spaghetti with Beef Chunks MCI Review

Posted: Sat Oct 20, 2018 9:10 pm
by WorkmanMRE
Great review. Nice pictures snd descriptions! Cheers!

Re: 1974 Spaghetti with Beef Chunks MCI Review

Posted: Sat Oct 27, 2018 10:35 pm
by Treesuit
I was at an army surplus store a few months ago and saw an opened case of MCIs with individual meals for sale.
Yep, I think I know which store you visited in Spokane. :lol:

Re: 1974 Spaghetti with Beef Chunks MCI Review

Posted: Sun Oct 28, 2018 6:20 pm
by SentientTootsieRoll
That's the one! :mrgreen: Have you been there recently? I went up there a few months ago to pick up some ammo, but their ammo prices and selection are out to lunch and they didn't have any MREs in stock. As far as ammo goes, good thing White Elephant is just down the street! :)

Re: 1974 Spaghetti with Beef Chunks MCI Review

Posted: Mon Jun 17, 2019 8:43 pm
by Joey61301
Cool review I would really like to try some old gum one of these days, looks good.

Re: 1974 Spaghetti with Beef Chunks MCI Review

Posted: Tue Jun 18, 2019 4:14 am
by housil
Spaghetti was one of my favorites MCIs back in the 80s!

Re: 1974 Spaghetti with Beef Chunks MCI Review

Posted: Tue Jun 18, 2019 2:45 pm
by Flange
My very first experience with MCIs were when I was a kid in the Civil Air Patrol.

On an exercise, I was given a spaghetti and meat chunks meal. I was pretty excited because "how can you mess up spaghetti and meat?"

Well, I opened the can and right on the top was a giant chunk of beef tongue with the taste buds staring up at me. I was disgusted. However, I managed to flick the chunk into the woods along with a bunch of the other chunks and just ate the pasta. Thank God for the sides!