Monday, February 15, 2010

3 Pronged Attack.....

As I was packing up food that I had just purchased because I didnt have room in this house, I decided it was time for another FOOD STORAGE post :)

In thinking about it - about saying something that hasnt been said before, I realized I wanted to give you a new view of Food Storage.

Food Storage IS nitrogen packed whole wheat berries......

Food Storage IS Kraft Mac and Cheese.....

Food Storage IS seed stored AND growing in your backyard kitchen garden......

You see - Food Storage is more than just any one of these all by itself. Any of these all by themselves is GREAT, but it lacks depth, variety, and longevity....

For example - having TONS of beans, rice, wheat berries, salt, powdered milk and some honey is great. It will keep you alive for as long as it lasts. And if properly stored, can last darn near FOREVER......

But honestly, how long would you like to eat it? I think after about month 6, I might be praying for a permanent ending ;)

But if you add to those wheat berries, some prepackaged, store bought goodies, I could limp along indefinitely..... This is where my couponing comes into play. I have posted on this before, but to keep you having to go the archives and search, or having me do it for that matter, I will quickly retell my method. I clip all the coupons in the Sunday paper. I dont read the drivel, but I do love those coupons. I then found the local store that doubles the coupons. Love that store for this.... Anyway, they put out a weekly circular and I match my coupons with what is on sale - and ONLY WHAT IS ON SALE..... Because, honestly, if I were just going to use the coupons, there would be cheaper stores to visit, even if they dont double the coupon.

Now - there are things that I buy that if I were to just choose on merit, I probably wouldnt choose. Certain hair care products that arent my favorite, certain deodorants that I just dont think do the job on a 105 degree summer day, certain artificially flavored/colored, corn syruped crap that I wouldnt just buy and put in my kids..... But I do buy it.... I buy because it ends up free sometimes and if not free, dirt cheap.... I buy because there are times that the artificial crap just is a comfort and a fun little treat.... I buy because the expiration date is years away because of said artificial crap.....

This past week's couponing I spent more than usual. I spent about $120 on 3 trips in and out the store (they only double the first coupon and I want all my savings). I had not been couponing in several weeks and had a bunch of things to use and could be used. This amount spent is WAY above average - usually about $40 or less is a weekly expenditure. Anyway, I got about $400+ worth of food. Mostly boxed items - Hamburger Helper, pasta boxes, fruit snacks. I also got a bunch of ham chunks, yogurt, plastic cups, and hair products.

Most goes into storage to be rotated as needed or as liked when dinner needs to be quick. Some is used pretty quickly since it is a perishable. How is this not a WIN/WIN for my family and my food storage pantry?

But, prepackaged, easy food like this wont help you make it in a crisis....especially if the electrical grid is down. Why? Because most of this stuff needs milk....needs butter..... Needs something added to it.

So you do need that long term storage stuff. You need nitrogen packed wheat berries - powdered milk - powdered eggs - powdered/canned butter. You need canned meats. A side note on canned meats - I find most of them gross.... There is a slime on the top - you know what I am talking about. And yes, if my kids were starving, I would suck it up, probably fry it and thank my God for Spam.....

But living now with all the conveniences, I am taking a different approach. I buy the Chicken Helper and cans of chicken..... I like crab and buy cans of crab and a few cans of Tuna and use those in the Tuna Helper. I dont want to end up with items that require things that might be difficult to fix because of lack of available ingredients. Think about long term possibilities, even in your coupon choices - in your ease today.

So - you have your long term items - you have your easy items....but they wont last forever. There may be a possibility that at sometime in the future going to the store and purchasing Madagascar Vanilla......Brazilian Bananas.....Argentinian Beef.....might not be possible - there may not be the choice or it may not be fiscally viable.

You need to be able to grow your own. You dont have to plow up your backyard this afternoon. But what about a small kitchen garden? What about learning how to coax seeds into sprouting and following through the growth process.....What about learning how to harvest the seeds that amazingly keep the process going? What if you had the satisfaction of clipping some greens for your dinner's salad? What about a fresh tomato?

Adding seeds to a long term storage is a cheap, easy option. Seeds arent that expensive and can be kept long term. Practicing now improves your skills set, improves your health and really is a fabulous hobby. Of course, this hobby will naturally lead to canning, drying, and a sharing of fabulous recipes :) But making the title "6 Pronged Attack....." just sounded a little ridiculous :)

So, this is my 3 pronged approach to food storage.....

What do you think - is there an area where you need to spend more energy or expand your expertise? Mine is absolutely the 3rd prong....gardening..... But flipping through a seeds catalog and its all I can do not to dig under the backyard this afternoon.....

Pray for time - time for our Country

Praise for the time we have had and the Country we have

Prepare for the future - to put this Country back together if need be.....

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

Don't forget sprouting, lot of goodness in those little sprouts and its very easy to do taking no space at all indoors. I love my mung bean sprouts raw and cooked.

half(UK)

Anonymous said...

Reminds me of Hombre's lines from the movie of the same name, "You ever been hungry? I don't mean just ready to sit down to supper hungry. You'd eat dog and you'd lap up the bones."
Mountain rifleman

Bustednuckles said...

AAAAUGGGH!
I hate it when I grab some random box of pre packaged crap to make dinner and I have to get my magnifying glass out to read the directions, only to find out it needs milk and or butter!
I gave my powdered milk to my neighbor when he broke his knee and haven't replaced it yet and canned sweet milk is just gross.
I don't keep fresh milk on hand, it makes the beer taste funny.
A very good point you made there.

HermitJim said...

Good plan and I agree 100%...especially about the couponing! Using coupons is an art form, for sure! Some folks eat very cheaply on using coupons and that's a good thing!

Good post...

Mayberry said...
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The Hermit said...

I went about two and a half months last summer essentially just eating what we had stored. I wanted to see if I had stored the right things and the right quantities. I have huge amounts of bulk food stored in nitrogen packed pails and I really thought I would just eat that. But I ate up the canned meat that was supposed to go with things made from the bulk food. I ate up all the sweet things and the canned vegetables. Turned out I had a lot more bulk food in long term storage than I needed, and far less canned food than I should have had.

オテモヤン said...
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theotherryan said...

Seems like practice is the key when it comes to growing food. Ragnar Benson said it takes something like 3 years (or maybe it was 5) of gardening in an area to be able to really grow stuff there. I imagine it is longer for harsher climates.

Mayberry said...

You still kickin' Pearls?

deafnsmart said...

I'm missing your postings!! Hope you'll post again soon...