* I have a variety packet of seeds that was marketed as “Storage Seeds,” supposed to be good for 10 years. But, I’m afraid to rely on them. As a result, every year, I just buy an additional 8-10 packets of seeds. They are discounted at Winco, a local supermarket. I date them and keep them from year to year.
* I was reminded this week of the power of setting goals. We have to do more than just live day-to-day. We need to be working toward something. Think about setting 3-4 goals for yourself, or for your family. Write them down. Put them on the fridge. Doesn’t have to be food storage (although I think it’s a pretty good goal), can be paying off a credit card, or visiting someone you haven’t seen in a while, or learning a few phrases in another language. Set the goal. Start working on it.
LONG TERM FOCUS: Rice
Rice is available from the Church Of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints Distribution Center. This service is open to anyone, you don’t have to be a member of this church. You can follow this link:
White Rice | United States Store. It is sold in boxes of 6 #10 cans only. It is a little over 32 pounds for $47.90. This works out to $1.50 per pound. If you buy it at the store and get it on sale 20 pounds for $9, that’s only $.22 a pound. BIG difference. BUT….. you then have to package your rice for storage. You can use clean 2-liter bottles, or mylar bags, or vacuum-sealed jars. For a price comparison, if you use quart jars, it will take only a dozen quart jars for all 20 pounds. (about $15). You have still only spent $24 for the rice, sealed and ready for storage, compared to the #10 cans. BUT, jars might break, cans are more durable. You decide. Suggested amount? 1 #10 can (5.4 lbs) per person per month.
SHORT TERM FOCUS: Canned Meat
I’ve been canning meat for several years now. I like it because I can buy meat on sale, and store it up for future use. I started with chicken. To can chicken, start with boneless, skinless chicken breast. You can sometimes find this REALLY cheap ($.99 per pound). Chop in big chunks and shove it down into the jar. 1 pint jar = 1 pound meat. Cover with chicken broth or bouillon and process. You need a pressure canner. The last time I looked, you could buy one at Walmart for about $75. It’s such a money saver. It allows you to store any vegetable or meat product. It tastes JUST like canned chicken you would buy in the store.
Canning hamburger is basically the same, but I brown it first (then it’s not meatloaf when I want to take it out of the jar). The biggest problem for me, is I don’t particularly care for the taste of canned hamburger. SOOOO, I’ve found if I simmer the meat in sauce – especially tomato sauce – I can’t tell the difference. I use my hamburger for spaghetti, skillet lasagna, chili, things like that. I try to use meat that is 85% lean or less. I don’t spend more than $2.99 a pound, and sometimes a lot less. I watch. Then I buy – usually 20-30 pounds at a time.
I’ve canned roast, ham, and bacon. I have not canned fish, but I know people who have, especially if you catch it yourself, or get it super cheap. I canned spaghetti sauce once that had ground beef and sausage. I never liked the texture, and I think it was the sausage, so I don’t do that anymore. A bonus is knowing that if my freezer goes out, I can “can” the meat and not lose my food. Just additional peace of mind.
72-HOUR KIT FOCUS: First Aid
When I was searching for something to put in my 72-hour kit, I found this video.
I liked that his kit was small, yet well-stocked. This kit contains a lot of individual-sized items. I realized that if I wanted those small packets of antibacterial cream, for example, I would have to buy more than I needed. So I decided to make kits for all my kids and their families. Then I did a small class for others who wanted kits and were willing to pay for their share of the supplies. Any leftovers went into the “Family First Aid Kit” that stays at home in the garage.
If everyone has a small FAK in their 72-hour bag, then it will be enough for most emergencies.
MISC FOCUS: Lip Balm
It would be a good idea to have some kind of lip balm in your kit. My suggestion is to buy the kind in a tube or screw-top container. Otherwise, in a hot car or environment, the lip balm may melt and you’ll have a big mess.
FOOD STORAGE RECIPES
Cuban Beans and Rice
From the Prepper’s Cookbook, by Tess Pennington
4 c. prepared white or brown rice
3-4 c. cooked black beans
1 15-oz can Rotel tomatoes with chiles
1 can whole kernel corn, rinsed and drained
1 TB chili powder
1 TB garlic powder
1 tsp. onion powder
1 TB lemon or lime juice
1 TB chopped fresh cilantro if available
1 c. rice
1 c. water
1 can Cream of Mushroom Soup
2 TB beef bouillon
2 TB dehydrated onions
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 – 1 pint beef
Mix together. Bring to a boil. Reduce very low and simmer for 20 minutes.
“A great recipe for leftover rice!”
From the Prepper’s Cookbook, by Tess Pennington
(disclaimer: I have never made this one, but it looked good.)
2 c. cooked white or brown rice, cooled
3 eggs, beaten
1/2 c. sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp vanilla
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 – 1 c. flour – Add just enough flour to hold the batter together.
Pour 2 – 3 inches oil into a skillet and heat over medium-high until oil begins to sizzle. Drop batter by heaping spoonfuls into the hot oil. Fry until golden brown and crisp 6-8 minutes. Drain on paper towels and generously sprinkle with powdered sugar.