Rural Lifestyle

Life in Rural America

Tag: storing food

Tips on Storing Home Grown Potatoes

Half bushel of fresh potatoes

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.

Principles of Canning and Preserving Food

Canned home grown Jalapeno Peppers

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 Fran├žois 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.

United States Society Not Prepared for a Disaster

Stockpiling canned foods for SHTF / TEOTWAWKI

A 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?

Storing Survival Gear for SHTF

Stockpiling food and ammunition for long term SHTF situation

Its 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 For SHTF

Starting with mylar bags

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

Kevin Felts © 2008 - 2018