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May 2011 Issue
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Nasi Goreng takeaway

Nasi Goreng Takeaway. Photo: Mark Banham

I’m no sociologist, but over the years I’ve noticed two distinct traits of the backcountry ‘tribe’: they have a fondness for frugality and a slightly off-beat sense of humour. This recipe puts both to good use.

When you’re doing your traditional pre-tramp café breakfast, batt your eyelashes and ask the waiter very nicely if you can have a few single-serve sachets – you’ll need salt, pepper, peanut butter, tomato sauce, two serves of soy sauce and a couple of unused takeaway containers.

Then when you’re on your tramp, leg it to the campsite or hut to arrive at least twenty minutes ahead of your companions, whip up the recipe below (you might need to hide the dirty frypan in the bushes) and serve it in the takeaway boxes.

When your companions arrive and enquire as to the mysterious culinary arrival just reply with: “Oh, I was feeling a bit lazy, so I just got takeaway tonight.”

Then, pointing to the most unappealing stretch of switch-backed trail in the vicinity, say: “Yeah, some enterprising backpacker has set up a little kiosk at the top of that big hill over there.”


Serves: 2 hungry trampers

Weight: 0.7kg

Volume: 1.2l

Calories: 1020 kcal

Cost: $5.50

Cooking time: 20min

Fuel: 160ml of white spirit or 60g of gas.*

*Based on an MSR Whisperlite or Primus Classic operating at sea level.


1 cup long grain rice

1 tin sardines

½ cup of dried fried onions (Asian )

1 and ½ sachets soy sauce

S and p

2 large eggs

¼ cup dried beans

4 spring onions (optional)

For the spice paste

1 tbsp oil

1 garlic clove, crushed and finely chopped

1 tbsp dried onion, crumbed then re-hydrated in water

1 sachet peanut butter (1 tb)

½ teaspoon chilli powder

1 sachet tomato sauce (1 tb)

½ sachet soy sauce

Special utensils

A regular pot for the rice and a fry pan (or even better a wok).


Cook the rice in boiling water, stirring frequently for 15min until just tender. Drain, rinse well and spread out on a plate. Set aside to cool.

Mix paste ingredients until smooth.

Beat eggs with salt and pepper. Heat the pan until very hot, add one tablespoon of oil and swirl to coat sides. Add the eggs, swirl to coat and cook for two minutes, or until set. Remove the egg, then roll it up and cut into thin slices.

Add some oil to hot wok, add paste. Stir fry for two minutes. Add cooked rice and stir-fry over high heat for two minutes. Add omelette and dried fried onion, and stir fry for another minute. Add soy sauce, fish, beans, and spring onions. Serve.