Military food is a Clint Eastwood movie: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly.
Breakfast in most chow halls I’ve been in is pretty good. Eggs to order, french toast or panckaes, bacon, sausage, grits, gravy, biscuits, and so on.
At Thanksgiving and Christmas: Full holiday dinners with all the trimmings. You can’t go wrong.
Once during a base exercise, the chow hall was open, but it only served one thing: Chili-mac. I like chili mac, so that was fine with me, but imagine going in there thinking you’d have the usual variety, only to find every single steam table was filled with chili-mac. At least it’s better than…
The “box nasty:” Not a hot meal, not an MRE. Basically, a “sandwich” consisting of a single piece of mystery meat, one slice of American cheese, and whatever condiments you hate slapped between two slices of Wonder Bread; a piece of fruit, a warm can of unpopular soda or a small bottle of water, and a bag of stale, off-brand chips that have been pulverized between the drink and the fruit, plus maybe a cookie. Comes in a flimsy white box (hence the name) about the size of one adult shoe. Usually issued before a flight on a military aircraft, long-ish ride on a bus, or to troops manning a guard post. But even a box nasty is better than…
The first MRE I ever ate was a “Dehydrated Pork Patty.” I opened the main “entree” packet and withdrew a dessicated discoid of “pork-o-foam” covered with a sawdusty, gritty substance. I followed the instructions to rehydrate it. The thing transmogrified into a lung-chunk covered in extraterrestrial snot-vomit.