With all the cycling we’re doing, food is always on our minds. We’re thinking about food, eating food, or planning for the next meal. And, here on the South Island of New Zealand, sometimes it’s many cold, windy kilometers between provisions so “being prepared” with enough fuel to keep us going takes on new meaning. Food is expensive so we’ve come up with the most calorie and fat for the NZ dollar to keep us energized. Here are our four staples:
Meat Pies – These warm, butter and gravy laden delicacies are delicious for breakfast, lunch, dinner or anytime in between. They can be found at Dairies, Pubs, Taverns, quickie marts, and grocery stores. There are even some speciality shops that sell only pies which are real finds. So, even if we’ve had a pie for breakfast and lunch, if we come to a town like Te Anau, that has a “speciality” pie shop, we go ahead and have another.
Pints of Beer – After a long, hot ride, there is nothing better than a cold pint. Not only do we replenish our fluids, we give ourselves some needed carbohydrates to fuel the next ride, or (if we have a pint at lunchtime) the afternoon’s kilometers. We used to stop for coffee, but a pint is about the same price and we get more carbohydrates for our dollar, so “why not?”
Chips – I’ve never been a big fan of French fries (chips) but with the delicious new crop potatoes, fried in good oil, and topped with lots of salt, the chips replenish the salt we sweated during the day plus they give us some starch, fat and carbohydrates to keep us pedaling.
Ice Cream Cones – The yummy, high-in-butter-fat, NZ ice cream cones produced from cows eating all the luscious, green grass from the rolling hills that zap our energy from pedaling up and down all day are just the ticket for quick bursts of energy and Vitamin D for strong bones and teeth to complete our NZ cycling diet.
Just so you don’t worry about our mental health and sanity from lack of B vitamins, occasionally, if the small store near our tent site has any green vegetables like broccoli or Brussels sprouts, I’ll steam up a few for good measure.
As you can see, we are getting protein, carbohydrates, salt, Vitamin D and some vitamin B in tasty and inexpensive manners. We’re saving money, fueling up, and building a layer of fat to keep warm.