In an effort to bump up traffic, let’s talk Army Chow!

I can cook. I just can’t cook very well. I mean, it’s certainly edible, as long as we’re talking about making pork chops, or grilling a chicken breast. My primary concerns when cooking are ease of prep, speed, and ease of cleanup. I mean, I’m usually just cooking for one. And as a smoker, my taste buds went AWOL years ago.  And my cookbook may not be the best.

Some of my friends take their food just a little more seriously

And then there is Army chow. I’ve written several times about MREs and T-rats and other elements of the Army’s Field Feeding System. Most of the emphasis on the research being these field rations has been on food preservation technologies.  But there’s also a surprising amount of research on the nutritional side of the equation as well, extending back to the days of the Revolution, and ongoing even today.

Craig might find this long research paper on the diets of soldier’s in the Civil War interesting. (.pdf warning)

4 thoughts on “In an effort to bump up traffic, let’s talk Army Chow!”

  1. I never eaten Army food. Except for MRE’s. I’ve eaten Marine chow. It’s quite good at the beginning of the month, but quality declined towards the end of the month, something to do with monthly budgets, if I remember correctly. Quantity was never an issue. I’ve have Navy chow a few times. Pretty good also. The one time I was on ship, all the food was prepared by Marine cooks, still good. But the best military food I ever had, and consistently so, was Air Force food at Kadena AFB. The quality was quite good, maybe approaching restaurant quality. The thing that sticks in my mind, still to this day, is that all the condiments and salad dressings were available from bottles like you would find at home. Not a stainless steel tub. And they were all name brands like Wishbone, A-1, Heinz, etc. One more thing, the hot sauce was Tabasco, not the horrendous Louisiana Hot Sauce the Marine chow halls were so infatuated with.

  2. Roger on Kadena. Concur!

    Worst chow, bar NONE, including MREs, I ever had on a consistent basis was senior year of college. And I have eaten on a number of Army, AF, Navy, and every Marine base around the globe. And a fair number of Navy ships, too. The food service that senior year was horrendous, absolutely horrendous. All but inedible. Even the salad bar, which started out as about the only thing left to eat, was full of half-rotten vegetables and rubber chicken chunks by November. Any USMC chow hall end-of-month meal put it to shame. And it cost a pretty penny, too.

  3. That was a well-written thesis. I really had no intention of reading a 150-page thesis when I clicked on it, but then I saw he was from Virginia Tech. He really used the diary excerpts to advantage.

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