Homesteading and Survivalism

Living a simple life

Tag: storing food

Storing potatoes

Rate This Article

How do you store potatoes?  So far this year the potato harvest has gone well.   I have probably gotten close to 3 bushels, and that has not even made a big dent in the garden.

If you had a shed or a barn, you could put down a layer of hay, layer of potatoes, layer of hay, layer of potatoes,,,, until all the potatoes are covered with hay.

Space the potatoes so that they are not stacked on top of each other.  The spacing allows airflow and will help prevent potato rot.

The layers of hay add a cushion between the potatoes and will help prevent rot.

  • Keep the potatoes out of direct sunlight.  It is ok to put them in the sun for a little while.  But do not leave potatoes in direct sunlight all day.  Sunlight releases a toxin in the potato, which will turn the potato green.
  • Be careful when harvesting potatoes as to not bruise them.
  • Do not wash the potatoes, just wipe the heavy dirt off.

Besides a shed or barn potatoes can also be stored in a bushel basket.

(more…)

Principles of canning and preserving food

Rate This Article

In the preservation of foods by canning, preserving, etc., the most essential things in the processes are the sterilization of the food and all the utensils and the sealing of the sterilized food to exclude all germs.

BACTERIA, YEASTS, AND FERMENTATION

Over one hundred years ago François Appert was the first to make practical application of the method of preserving food by putting it in cans or bottles, which he hermetically sealed. He then put the full bottles or cans in water and boiled them for more or less time, depending upon the kinds of food.

In Appert’s time and, indeed, until recent years it was generally thought that the oxygen of the air caused the decomposition of food. Appert’s theory was that the things essential to the preservation of food in this manner were the exclusion of air and the application of gentle heat, as in the water bath, which caused a fusion of the principal constituents and ferments in such a manner that the power of the ferments was destroyed.

The investigations of scientists, particularly of Pasteur, have shown that it is not the oxygen of the air which causes fermentation and putrefaction, but bacteria and other microscopic organisms.

Appert’s theory as to the cause of the spoiling of food was incorrect, but his method of preserving it by sealing and cooking was correct, and the world owes him a debt of gratitude.

In their investigations scientists have found that if food is perfectly sterilized and the opening of the jar or bottle plugged with sterilized cotton, food will not ferment, for the bacteria and yeasts to which such changes are due can not pass through the cotton. This method can not be conveniently followed with large jars.

(more…)

Food fatigue after TEOTWAWKI

Rate This Article

Food fatigue = eating the same thing over, and over, and over, and over,,,. Eventually leads to vitamin and mineral deficiencies; extreme cases of malnutrition can lead to death.  Food fatigue, vitamin and mineral deficiencies go hand in hand.

Couple of examples:

Pellagra – vitamin deficiency caused by a lack of niacin. Seen in people who eat a diet of mostly corn based products.

Scurvy – caused by long term vitamin C deficiency.

Eat the same thing over and over and over,,, everyday, people develop food fatigue. When people get fatigued, they stop eating. When people stop eating, they starve and eventually die.

How do we prevent food fatigue? We stockpile a range of assorted foods, and we have a source of fresh food.

Lets say that some kind of long term SHTF / TEOTWAWKI situation happens, what are your plans to ward off food fatigue?  Are you stockpiling a wide range of foods?  What are your sources of fresh food?  What are your renewable food sources?

Stockpiling Food

Lets talk about stockpiling food for a little bit. My food stockpile consist of four categories – canned foods, mylar bags, #10 cans and fresh food.

Stockpiling canned foods for TEOTWAWKICanned Foods (also includes boxed and jarred foods) – assorted soups, black eye peas, chili, corn (creamed and whole kernel), green beans, honey, ketchup, lasagna, mac & cheese, mixed fruit, mixed veggies, oats, olives,  peanut butter,  peaches, pears, pickles (spear and hamburger slices), pineapple, ramen noodles, ranch style beans, ravioli, refried beans (pinto beans), rice, salsa/picante sauce, spam, spaghetti sauce, tamales, tuna fish, vienna sausages,,, you get the general idea.

To facilitate rotation of the canned foods, my wife and I bought several wire racks. New cans go in the top, old cans go out the bottom. Each wire rack holds around 12 cans. Each shelf holds 5 racks. Cut a piece of 1/8 plywood that goes on top of the racks for extra storage. When full, each shelf of 5 wire racks holds around 60 cans in rotation, plus whatever is top of the racks waiting to go into rotation.

With 4 shelves, and 5 wire racks per shelf, that is around 240 cans in rotation, plus whatever is on top of the racks.

(more…)

Prepping for the everyday person

Rate This Article

Southeast Texas Whitetail DeerThere was an interesting comment posted on the survivalistboards facebook page,

You want the world to End, But subscribe to a Survival group….. I hate my VCR I wish Y2K bug was Real….

My reply was,

No, I do not want the world to end. But just in case something happens, I want to be prepared.

Prepare for the worst, hope for the best.

Some people take prepping a little too far. They prepare for the worst regardless of where they are at or what they are doing. I agree with having a get home bag. But on the other side of the coin there are people that keep a complete Bug Out Bag along with a small arsenal in their vehicle. Reading what some people post in forums, its like they are prepping for a zombie invasion to breakout at any second.  Unlike what is portrayed on TV, the majority of preppers do not live on the fringe of society.  We are everyday people living in the cities, suburbs and rural areas all across the world.

Related Articles:

Long Term Survival Plans
Hunter Gatherer or Farmer Survivalist
Shortsighted Survival Plans
Everyday Carry Gear (EDC)

When people look at prepping, they get on the forum and get a little overwhelmed by what they see. It is easy to forget that some of the members of the forum have been prepping for decades.

Prepping is not for the lazy.  Sure you can buy some rice and throw it in an airtight box, buy some canned foods and think you have a well rounded survival plan.  Just because you “think” you have a well rounded plan does not make it true.

Where do we start?  A lot of people start prepping in the wrong order.

(more…)

Solar Dehydrator Project Part 1

Rate This Article

Looking through woods with AR-15Earlier today (June 2, 2012) a buddy of mine and I were talking on the phone about long term food preps.  Its one thing to plant a garden, harvest your crops, and have something to eat when the harvest is good.  But what about when the garden is not producing, in-between seasons, or during the winter time?

The conversation turned to storing food.  Once you harvest your crops, then what?

Pressure cooker are a viable option.  For the “long” term you are going to have to stockpile a truckload of jars and extra seals for the jars.  But lets not put all of our eggs in one basket.

Part of prepping for a long term SHTF / TEOTWAWKI situation, includes expanding our knowledge.  There is the theory of survivalism, and then there is survivalism as an experience.

The purpose of this solar project to gain hands on, first hand experience.  Its one thing to “talk” about building a solar dehydrator, its another thing to build and use a solar dehydrator.

After talking with my wife, and getting her opinion, we decided on a few things:

1 – The dehydrator will be built out of material we have at the house.  The only thing we bought for the project was some clear plastic.

The purpose of only using material we already have was 1 – to save money, 2 – to see how a dehydrator could be made from basic building materials.

2 – My wife and I bought a couple of different types of fruit to test the dehydrator on:  2 peaches, 2 apples, strawberries and bananas.

On the first test we are going to do one of each type of fruit, just to see how it goes.

(more…)

US society not prepared

Rate This Article

Stockpiling food for SHTFA couple of weeks ago my wife and I went to Sams Club in Beaumont Texas.  One of the main things I wanted to pick up was some freeze dried foods in #10 cans.  The food is listed on the Sams Club website, so I thought the store would have some in stock.  Guess what, the store did not have any freeze dried food in #10 cans.   After walking up-and-down the isles, I finally decided to stop and ask an employee.  I was told that the store had not got any emergency type food in a couple of years.

For those of you that do not know, Beaumont sits just a few miles inland from the Gulf of Mexico.  In the past few years Hurricane Rita and Hurricane Ike have made landfall close to Beaumont.  Why wouldn’t a major outlet store sell some kind of emergency food in a Hurricane prone area?  I think its a lack of forward thinking, and maybe even a lack of demand.

A couple of nights ago my wife and I went to Lowes in Jasper Texas, we were looking for some kind of can rotation system.  Wal-mart in Jasper sells a wire rack for rotating soda cans, but a regular sized chili or soup can will fit in the rack.  So my wife and I have been buying the wire-racks and setting up a can rotation system on a set of shelves.

What really surprised me was the Lowes store in Jasper does not carry any type of can rotation system.  Why wouldn’t a hardware store that sells cabinets sell some kind of system to keep can goods organized?

(more…)

Storing survival gear

Rate This Article

Storing survival gearIts time for a change. My survival gear is spread out all over a spare bedroom, couple of storage boxes and 2 closets. Its time to round everything up and get things organized.

My wife and I have a spare bedroom that my son uses when he comes to  visit.  Since the room is only used a few times a month, we decided to install some shelves and organize our survival gear stocks.

The shelving unit was bought from a local china-mart. The unit is 6 feet tall, each shelf is 36 inches long, 17 inches wide and there is 15.75 inches between each shelf.

To prevent the shelving unit from being pulled over by the grand kids, the support poles of the unit were zip-tied to a set of bunk beds, and the shelves were screwed to the wall with 2 1/2 inch long screws. With small children around, you have to plan on them climbing on everything.

The plan is to have two shelving units side by side, with each unit holding a certain type of survival gear.

Fishing gear – one shelf is going to be dedicated to storing my fishing gear. Currently my fishing gear is being stored in 2 or 3 different places, in the closet, in a tackle box, in a fishing bucket,,,.

A 5 gallon bucket fits perfectly between the shelves, so I should have no problems storing my extra lures, trotline string, extra spools of monofilament line, extra hooks,,,. I need to buy a couple of wire trays to store the smaller items in, such as the spools of trotline string.

(more…)

Starting with mylar bags

Rate This Article

survivalistI have a confession to make, this was my first time to seal food in mylar bags. To be perfectly honest, I was a little intimidated by it all. What if I screwed everything up, what if I sealed the food wrong, what if the seals did not hold,,,,,.

Thanks to SafeCastle, Prepared.pro I have a bunch of 1 gallon mylar bags, and 50 02 absorbers. So off a sealing I went.

After work today my wife and I went to the super wal-mart in Jasper and I did a little grocery shopping. While we were getting our usual stuff, I picked up a 10 pound bag of Krusteaz instant pancake mix, all you have to do is add water and your good to go.

Went home, got everything ready, and started sealing the mylar bags.

March 31, 2011 food cache:

20 pounds white rice
10 pounds instant pancake mix
5 pounds pinto beans
1 pound navy beans
5 boxes mac & cheese
2 boxes pasta
2 pounds 4 ounces (2 containers) Quaker instant oats

I’ll post an update tomorrow evening as to how the mylar bags look. I also did some videos, but before their uploaded to youtube I want to see if the bags are going to suck in.

I will work on getting some pics and a video up tomorrow, or this weekend.

The only question I have so far, how do I eliminate the wrinkles while sealing the mylar bags?

What finally got me to take the plunge into mylar bags is the current food situation. I was planning on making a purchase of #10 cans,,, and some other supplies this week. But after looking through several online stores, it seems that just about all of the good stuff is sold out. After doing a few google searches, and several of them taking me back to this forum about can good shortages, I decided it was time to take action, while there is still time.

Its also the climate change that has me worried.  Texas has been in a drought state for over a year, maybe even 2 years now.  Last year it was so dry that small trees died around my house.  This year, we have not gotten enough rain to support the garden.  I don’t even know if the garden is going to make this year due to lack of rain.

Instead of buying pancake mix in a #10 can, I decided to buy a 10 pound bag from the local grocery store and seal it in mylar bags, as well as rice, mac & cheese, oats,,,, and a few other things.

Post your comments in this forum thread about storing food in mylar bags.

3 types of seeds to stockpile for shtf

Rate This Article

radishes

Home grown radishes

Lets talk about food production during some kind of long term SHTF situation.  Whether its nuclear war, some kind of new disease, climate change,,,,, combination of several things, there might come a point in time when you have to grow your own food.  So what kind of seeds should you stockpile for some kind of long term SHTF situation?  Lets break it down to 3 categories – short term storage, mid term storage, long term storage.

Short term storage foods – these are the foods that need to be eaten within a few days to a couple of weeks of being harvested.  This is going to include most of your leafy greens, radishes, cucumbers, broccoli, spinach, summer squash and zucchini.

Beans and peas are a good example of short term and long term foods.  We will get into storing peas and beans later in the article.  For snap beans, they can be picked, boiled and eaten right after their harvested.

One of the benefits of beans – they do not require extra nitrogen to be added to the spoil.  Throw some manure and pot ash down, and the beans will supply their own nitrogen.

Leafy greens do not make good warm – hot weather crops, bugs love them.  I have seen bugs wipe out several rows of greens in a matter of 1 or 2 days.

Turnips and radishes are easy to grow, but will need to be eaten within a few days of being harvested.

Cucumbers can stay good for several days, to maybe a week or so after being harvested.  Cucumbers have certain “issues” that may not make them good for a long term post SHTF situation – they like lots of water and they require lots of nitrogen.  So unless you have some kind of organic high nitrogen fertilizer available, and lots of water, cucumbers may not be a good choice.

Okra is a good quality high producing plant, but you have to cook or boil the okra pods before their edible.  One of the problems with okra, their a hot weather plant that likes lots of water.  If you live in a cool region, okra may not be a good plant for you.

(more…)

Page 1 of 11


Kevin Felts © 2017 Frontier Theme