here some experiences from the Andes:
1) reduce fuel consumption: Cooking at full power for the half time and put then the pan in to a (temperature stable) bag:
-> the meal continue to cook but do not overcook (or only seldom?)
-> you can eat from the pan and it do not get cold
e.g.: Rice: 5min at full power, than covered in the bag
2) use a pan with a heat exchanger (looks like a small radiator) around the bottom (Primus EtaPower pan set) ->faster and less fuel consummation. Be careful on traditional house-stove as it cook very fast!
3) Primus EtaPower stove:
+ It is compact and light-weigth and with the special pan very energy efficient!
– when using fuel/diesel (or other hydrocarbons) a large part of the stoves gets sooty and needs to be cleaned. Primus Omnifuel gets only sooty in the jet area, which do not need to be cleaned!
4) for e.g. rice or pasta, you can use less water and energy (gas, fuel): use less water for cooking: pasta only need about 200ml with 100g pasta. Just stir a little bit from time to time.
5) Primus Omnifuel with some work on a separate jet, drill an about .5 to .65mm hole. Then you can use that specific jet for Ethanol. The jet works with pure Ethanol but as well with 90ml Ethanol / 10ml tap water (120g Ethanol, 20g water). At higher water concentration, there is not enough heat to evaporate the water. A try at 120g Ethanol and 40g water (150ml EtOH/40ml H2O): it could be possible to cook, but the flame is not stable and needs hands-on.
See that link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wvnHMEPF5ak
-> At your OWN RISKS! see info in comment of that blog entry!
– disadvantage of ethanol: contains
a) substances, that can attack your aluminum bottle. Don’t store ethanol into it.
b) not as much energy as gas
c) corrosion of metals (bottle, inside of stove) -> see info in comment of that blog!
a) no gas
b) no overpressure
c) not smelly
d) not sooty
e) “green” as from renewable vegetation
f) can be used in a room (be careful)
g) much less toxic (for human and nature) as fuel
h) can be used for disinfection as well (like white benzine)
g) ethanol do not really explode like gas
6) Spoon/Fork: no need of Titan… (it will only scratch the teflon coat). Better telescopic spoon/fork. You can then pack them into the pan for transport and when using, they won’t fall into the hot soup!
here a good recommendation: http://shop.jetboil.com/index.php/utensil-kit.html
7) Food: rice with soup, pasta with soup… you will “always” find a soup that fit your taste. Just add water and cook!
8) breakfast: Coffea powder, milk powder. There are kind of “precooked” cereals: only ad milk poweder and hot water and you have your hot porridge! 🙂 Good tip from Rocket-Gérard: in the evening, cook some more water and keep it hot for the next morning. Saves time and money / gas! Thnx Gérard!
9) when you want to save water (because you are in a dry region): clean your pan with a little water (no soap) and drink it. Clean afterwards with disinfection solution (iso-propanol based) – if needed
10) chlorate tablets vs drops: drops can be used as well for just a glass while the pills need to be used for liters.
11) if you take chlorate pills: be aware that they will easy get out of the aluminum recipient and fall around.
12) if you have to drink chlorinated tap water (e.g. USA, France, …), you can add 1-2 drops of dechlorination solution (thiosulfate)… the water looses its Chlor-taste!
13) be aware, that your filter will filter 99.9% of organics but not enough of inorganics like cyanid (used for gold production), mercury (Hg), lead (Pb) and other unwanted metals
My favorite stove/cooking equipment: