When I see news headlines like these…
U.S. Drought Driving Up Already Rising Food Prices While Economy Collapses! Get Prepared!
Drought means beef prices could rise
…my first reaction is to freak out! It’s natural to experience feelings of fear and/or anxiety when reading news stories like this, right? But why, why would I waste one second of my life worrying about something I have no control over? You know what eases my fear: knowledge, preparedness, and a community of people that I trust.
About six months ago we began storing food. Buckets and buckets of organic beans, rice, quinoa, millet, oatmeal, popcorn, etc. now fill the once empty spaces of our closets. Given the access to water, we would be able to feed our immediate family and my parents (maybe even help out the neighbors) for about half a year. However, my thoughts lately are turning toward the possibility of using this food in the event prices of commodities were to increase, even more than they already have.
I’ve also been trying to organize what we do have and make it more practical for use. Today I began working on “meals in jars.” By combining beans, grains, dehydrated veggies/fruit from the garden, and seasonings I am attempting to ensure that we will have a supply of tasty and nutritious meals in the case of an emergency. Not to mention, it’s been a fun activity for the kids and I. It’s like canning beans and grains, but instead of using the pressure cooker all we do is place an oxygen absorber in the jar (smile).
There are thousands of different recipes you could follow when creating your meals in jars. Just remember to combine items that take approximately the same amount of time to cook. For example, do not intermix pasta with navy beans. The pasta will cook much quicker than the beans.
For an abundance of recipes to use as a foundation for your meals in jars look on this forum. Below I have also provided you with a few of the recipes we put together today.
Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal (1 pint jar)
-1 cup oatmeal
-1 tsp cinnamon
-1/4 cup sliced almonds
-1/4 cup dehydrated apples
*2 cups water necessary to reconstitute
Vegetable Millet (1 pint jar)
-1 cup millet
-1/4 cup dehydrated mixed veggies
-1/4 cup dried parsley
-1 tsp dehydrated minced garlic
-1 tsp salt
*3 cups of water necessary to reconstitute
Quinoa and Lentil Soup (1 quart jar)
-1 ½ cup quinoa
-1 ½ cup red lentils
-1/2 cup dehydrated veggies
-1/4 cup dehydrated onion
-1 tsp minced garlic
-1 tsp salt
-2 bay leaves
*5 cups of water necessary to reconstitute
Lemon Dill Rice (1 pint jar)
-1 cup rice
-1/2 tsp dried dill
-1 ½ tsp dehydrated lemon peel
-1/2 tsp salt
*2 cups of water necessary to reconstitute
For each recipe, layer ingredients in order as listed. Use the size jar as indicated. Place an oxygen absorber on top and then close lid. Store jars in a safe place. Keep off shelves.
-The best way to store beans, grains, and dehydrated veggies/fruit is in a sealed mylar bag along with oxygen absorbers. The individual meals could then be stored in a 5-gallon bucket. Lightweight, takes up less space, it’s just a much better option. So, I’ll continue saving for the supplies required for this system of storage.
I recommend purchasing mylar bags, oxygen absorbers, and heat sealers from the fine folks over at Preparing Wisely and SorbentSystems.com who sell Made-in-America products.
Please comment and let me know how you are finding creative, practical methods for long-term food storage.