Sunday, February 21, 2010

Eat Like a Soldier

This post sponsored by FH!  Something a little different for y’all!!

Eat Like a Solider Day!

When FH was away for training in November he brought home some treats for the blog.  Military issue Individual Meal Packagesaka: IMPs.

These packages have been sitting on top of our cupboards ever since.  Honestly because I was afraid!!  These packages are reportedly like 3000 calories each!!  I mean, they are intended to feed starving soldiers that have been toiling away in the boonies under serious physical duress for a couple of days.  Those boys need their big eats.  Um, but this girl does not!

So last night we chatted about it and agreed that today we would open them up, but I didn’t need to feel obligated to chow down.  Taste testing, sharing and tossing out were all viable options.


FH felt that I needed to be dressed like a soldier in order to make this authentic.  How unflattering! 


We had breakfast, lunch and dinner packages.  Each package has the main meal, dessert, bread, and all kinds of condiments, drinks, treats, etc.

IMG_2584 IMG_2591 IMG_2595 IMG_2598

The main meals and desserts are boil-in-bag (but can also be eaten cold which is generally what ends up happening because of time constraints in the field).


I was happy to discover that the meals themselves were no more than a few hundred calories each.  If you ate every last bite of stuff included in the package I think you might top out at 1500 calories per meal.  Still high for a normal day, obviously…but not so scary for our tasting party!


Breakfast consisted of Sausage & Hashbrowns


Review:  not too bad at all.  Kind of just tastes like those breakfast sausages you would get at Denny’s or some place like that.  The potatoes are a bit mushy, but all in all totally edible.  I had a few bites.


Lunch was Chicken & Gravy…which I apparently didn’t photograph.

Review:  gross.  Chicken floating in flavoured water.  Water flavoured like what I think cat food would taste like.  Neither of us made it past one bite.

Dinner was Beef Bourguignon


Review:  Well, it ain’t Julia Child’s beef bourguignon but it was tasty enough.  Basically tasted like Chunky soup.  Beef and spuds in beefy sauce. 


Side dishes were strawberry oatmeal, buttered rice, onion flavored mashed potatoes, and cream of celery soup.  Each of these is just an add water thing.

Oatmeal was yummy (haha, of course).  It was actually “crispy cereal” which can be mixed with hot or cold water.  We used hot and I ate almost the whole thing.  It was better than regular instant oatmeal!  Kind of granola-like.


Rice was fine.  Like minute rice.  I hate that it actually said “MSG added” on the package.  I don’t wanna know!


The potatoes smelled horrible and tasted worse.  Blech.


Same with the soup. Disgusting.  Although I did get a mouthful of undisolved powder so maybe that did me in. I spared you a photo.

And then there is the bread.  The bread that is packed up airtight with one of those anti-moisture packets you might find with your new shoes.  FH calls it the “good for 10 years bread”.


I don’t want to know what they put in it, but it was actually fine.  Looked like bread, tasted like bread.  I had a couple of bites but it freaks me out so I stopped.  LOL.

FH also stirred himself up one of the powdered drinks.  Basically it’s a Gatorade-type mix for the soldiers to keep their electrolytes up.  This one looked just like Tang!


We saved the desserts and a bunch of the condiment packages.  No peanut butter in this selection but lots of honey and such.  We threw out the instant coffee and powdered creamers. There is a mint hot chocolate I have dibs on!

FH got the Hershey bar treat from the lunch kit and I get the Peak Freans from dinner.


At the end of our “meal” I said that all in all it’s not terrible.  I mean it’s not like they can eat gourmet in the field, but it’s nice to know that most things taste pretty good.  Too bad for all of the preservatives and lack of vegetables (that’s why the desserts are fruit I’m guessing) but everything is designed by dieticians so I’m sure they have their reasons for everything. 

Pretty fun experiment though!! 

(don’t worry I only had a few bites of everything…I’m guessing maybe 400 calories worth…if that)

Followed a little later by a yummy green smoothie to help flush out all of that sodium…


The basic green:  ice, 1/2 banana, flax, Amazing Meal, spinach, UVAB


And dinner tonight was just some leftover Chicken Alfredo


Canada vs USA in Olympic Hockey tonight!  I think a few snacks might be needed for this!!  There is a bag of popchips with my name on it. I hope it’s a tense game that ends well for our Canuck boys!!

Go Canada Go!!

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Jessica said...

that's very interesting!! For some reason I have never really thought of what they might eat while out and about!! :)

Doesn't look so tasty, and seems like small portions for super hungry solider boys!!

Great post!

Lex said...

Ahahah awesome experiment!

Love this post!

Anonymous said...

You look cute in the gear :)

S Enman said...

The meals remind me of airplane food. Wonder which is actually better? I am surprised they have MSG in the potatoes because some people can get very ill from eating MSG. Thanks for that entertainment!

Healthy. Happy. Well. said...

My brother is in the military and I have had those instant meals before and thought they were quite good, but yes, the bread is scary.

Anonymous said...

Huh! Interesting! I love your reviews. Denny's sausage isn't bad, I don't think! Not necessarily healthy, but what pork sausage is? : )

I was rooting on USA. As a hockey player, I was GLUED to the TV! :)

Ali @ Fat to Fit said...

Great idea for a post - love the pictures of you in the clothes ;)

I guess I never really thought about what they would be eating out there!

Let us know how you feel tomorrow after your body has turned to salt water :)

Susan said...

I LOVE this post!! And not just for the hilarious camo shots ;) I lived with a guy who was in the army and we had a whole drawer dedicated to the silver bags of food he'd get. And glow sticks. I never actually tried the food though, just some of the drink powders. Props to you for your courage! And yes, I think that bread is the sketchiest thing out of the bunch. It must have the twinkie gene ;)

andrea. said...

Love this post -- How cool that you were able to try that stuff! It's totally a good reminder that there are many people out there -- whether by circumstances, finances, or whatever -- who are not able to eat the fresh healthy foods that we all like to go on about. :) Bet your smoothie and veggie pasta tasted extra good after that! :)

Heather said...

haha...I ate a bunch of those IMP's when I was on various Air Cadet camps back in the day! Fun times, most of the food is pretty good...from what I remember anyway, it's been over 10 years since I ate

Anonymous said...

Sorry it took me so long to leave a comment, loved this post!

You're so cute in the all his gear! :) It's cool to see what they're eating out in the "fields" some of it looks decent... others looked sorta nasty. Eww to 10 year bread, lol.

Shirls said...

love the outfit to go with the food, your just super cute! Good for you for braving out that food!

Anonymous said...

Very interesting - more so that one of the food companies is "Baxter's" - don't they make soup?

Jaime said...

Cali, I commented on that too! Pretty much the entire kit is made by a name-brand food co. Almost entirely Canadian too.