Monthly Archives: June 2009

  • Food Storage Rotation

    |79 COMMENT(S)

    Whole grain bread
    We've had a lot of questions and comments about how to rotate your food storage over the years, and we've been very impressed with the great ideas we have heard from you. For example, one of our customers uses sour cream powder when making bread. Another uses cheese blend on top of casseroles while another uses tomato powder in place of tomato paste in everyday cooking.
    Here are a few more excellent tips you've shared about food storage rotation:
    "I mix the freeze dried fruits (berries, bananas, etc.) with nuts and seeds in sandwich bags to carry as trail mix for hiking." --Amy
    "I “inherited” lots of powdered eggs. I use them in all my baking needs. They work wonders. I’ve even used them for French toast when I was out of “real” eggs. You have to beat the mixture smooth, but they tasted really good. I’ve also used sausage TVP and my kids love it! I make pizza with it and stick it in eggs or sauce for noodles. It has a great flavor and is really good for you." --Lisa



    "I like to use our potato pearls and mashed potato flakes to thicken soups, since using flour or cornstarch generally doesn't work for me. The extra flavor is nice, especially for potato or vegetable soups. I have also used it in tuna corn chowder and thought it tasted pretty good." --VeronicaCreamy soup 

    We would like to give everyone the opportunity to share their own personal tips, ideas, and experiences relating to food storage rotation. Please feel free to share your thoughts in the comments!

    Posted In: Uncategorized Tagged With: food storage, Food Storage Tips

  • Peanut Butter Powder

    "...For those dieters out there, the reconstituted peanut butter has a third of the calories and fat of normal peanut butter -- and no added anything! You can even control the sodium, which is wonderful. As far as taste, it is very peanutty, and is best when reconstituted with milk instead of water, for a little more flavor. And it's great in baking! Gives baked goods a delightfully peanut taste without all the sugar..."

                                   Kumie, CALIFORNIA

    "... I use a TBSP or two mixed in with a protein shake to add a little extra protein and to add the peanut butter flavor. Good stuff."

                                            Jim, WYOMING

    Posted In: Uncategorized Tagged With: food storage, peanut butter, #10 cans

  • Grains in white bowls

    There are a few factors that determine how long food will last after it is opened. They include the following:

    • The quality of the food at the time it is opened
    • The degree to which food is exposed to oxygen and moisture
    • The degree to which food is exposed to heat and light

     

    The quality of the food at the time it is opened:

    The older food storage gets and the more it is subjected to fluctuating temperatures (meaning below freezing and above 80 degrees), the more deterioration has probably occurred to the food inside the container.

    The degree to which food is exposed to oxygen and moisture:

    The moment the container is opened, the food is exposed to air. Air contains both oxygen and moisture. Many organisms require oxygen to survive. The higher the humidity (moisture content) of the air, the faster the product quality (nutrition and taste) deteriorates.

    The degree to which food is exposed to heat and light:

    Temperature greatly affects the speed at which food deteriorates. The higher the temperature is, the faster the quality (nutrition and taste) deteriorates and the shorter the time that food stays edible and safe. Since many organisms require light to grow, exposure to light also causes deterioration.

     

    Recommendation:

    Once you have opened your food storage, you can prolong its shelf life by eliminating the adverse affects listed above. Store your food in the coolest, darkest and most airtight environment possible.

    Consider the following options to extend the life of food, once the container has been opened.

    • Pour what has not been used into a zip-top freezer bag and seal the bag. Place the bagged food back into the can and replace the lid (to eliminate light).
    • Pour the remaining food into Snapware® containers, which offer an airtight seal.
    • Commercially available sealers can create an airtight environment. Put the food back into the can with the plastic lid secured.
    • Generally speaking, refrigeration or frozen storage can extend the life of food. If you do not have much refrigeration or frozen storage space, use a pantry, cupboard, etc.

    As a general rule, food stored in a #10 can or a bucket, depending on the above factors, may stay good up to one year after opening. Use your best judgment in deciding which food items to use. One way to determine if food is still of acceptable quality is to verify that it smells normal. Another way is to taste it or cook with it. If the quality of the finished product is satisfactory, continue to use it. Although food will lose nutritive value over time, old food retains some caloric and mineral value. It may have some life sustaining nutrients remaining.

    The information above are general guidelines intended to help make an educated decision. Each situation is unique due to many contributing factors.

    Posted In: Uncategorized Tagged With: airtight bucket, Food Storage Tips, Shelf Life, #10 cans

  • This week's featured product is Yoder's Canned Bacon. Have delicious bacon with these easy-to-store cans. We've taste tested it and loved it! Yoder's Canned Bacon will make a great addition to your food storage.

    • Heat pasteurized in a sealed can
    • 100% USDA Bacon, Packed in the U.S.
    • No refrigeration before opening
    • 2-year manufacturer shelf life guarantee. Up to a 10-year shelf life
    • Compact and lightweight (only 4.5" high by 3" wide and weighs only 9 oz)
    • Approximately 50 slices per can
    • Great for emergency storage and camping or backpacking

    FS-B050 Yoders Bacon

     

    Recent Customer Reviews:

    Best bacon ever!!! "I ordered a case of this bacon for emergencies. HOWEVER, I was too curious so I made the mistake of opening a can. This bacon is so wonderful for ANYTHING!! But we especially love throwing it in the microwave and making BLT sandwiches. So much for emergencies! So I'm ordering more!!! I never want to run out."

    Dianne, MISSISSIPPI

    AWESOME! ...I bought one can to try it... SURELY they could not put a quality product of approximately 50 pieces of bacon in a can the size of a can of soup! Opened the can to try it and had to call my husband into the room to show him as well. We were shocked at the packaging! We immediately warmed some up in the microwave and had a bacon sandwich for breakfast. YUM! Will definitely order more. For some who have an active food storage program, do not let the price scare you. It is well worth it when you think that you can have fresh bacon and do not have to refrigerate or freeze it. We may not always be guaranteed of having electricity BUT we can rest assured if we only have a can opener!

    Patricia, NORTH CAROLINA

    Let everyone know what you think about Yoder's Bacon. Just click below on COMMENTS to leave a comment, idea, question, etc. about this product.

    Scrambled eggs and bacon

    Posted In: Uncategorized Tagged With: food storage, Customer Reviews, bacon, canned meats, taste test

  • ... Bread machine recipes often call for powdered milk, so I substitute sour cream powder. This is because it adds a nice tang to the dough and the acidity helps the yeast to function. I have tried some other brands of sour cream powder, but none can hold a candle to this one... Provident Pantry Sour Cream Powder had a nice, tart taste that sour cream ought to have. And, because it is more sour, my doughs rise like crazy!! My breads and pizzas have never been this good. (And they were pretty good.) You can also mix it into sauces or reconstitute it...

    Sara, New York

    Sour Cream Powder is available in #10 (pictured) and MyChoice cans. Sour Cream Powder is available in #10 (pictured) and MyChoice cans.

    Posted In: Uncategorized Tagged With: food storage, Food Storage Tips, Customer Reviews

  • Sweeteners like sugar and honey are food storage necessities for several reasons. As carbohydrates they provide fuel for the body. Simple carbohydrates like sweeteners provide quick, but short lived bouts of energy. They also enhance flavor, texture and color in any baked good. Sugar assists yeast in adding volume to breads, counter balances acid in tomatoes and is even used as a food preservative.

    White Sugar

    Honey is a great food storage basic. Unlike many food storage items, honey does not need to be dried in any way. There is no need for an oxygen absorber in a #10 can or a bucket of honey because it stores well due to its nature. With only a few ingredients, including honey, you can have a delicious whole wheat bread. Here is one of our favorite wheat bread recipes using honey as the sweetener.

    Honey Whole Wheat Bread

    6 C warm water

    3 T Yeast

    2 C Whole Wheat Flour

    Mix, let rise 15 minutes

    2/3 C Honey

    2/3 C Vegetable Oil

    3 T Dough Enhancer

    1 1.2 T Salt

    12-14 C Flour Whole Wheat (add more if dough is too sticky)

    Knead until dough can be stretched and not break easy.

    Let rise in a bowl for 20 minutes. Divide into 6 sections and mold into loaves. Bake at 350 degrees until lightly browned, about 45 minutes. Enjoy!

    Honey is an excellent natural sweetener.

    Posted In: Uncategorized Tagged With: recipes, honey, sugar, sweetener, bread

  • We were craving some good Italian food last night so I decided to make a casserole using our freeze-dried Italian meatballs. Yes, that’s right, freeze-dried Italian meatballs in a #10 can.



    Here’s what you need: 1 lb (4 cups) pasta (You can use whatever you have – I always like to use a couple of different kinds for variety), 1-½ cup freeze-dried Italian meatballs, 1 can or jar of spaghetti sauce (about 2 cups), 3 cups freeze-dried mozzarella cheese (I was out so I used regular this time around), 1 cup freeze-dried vegetables (use whatever you have, I had zucchini and asparagusgreen beans, etc. would work), salt, pepper and Italian seasoning.



    Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cook the pasta. While it’s cooking, reconstitute the meatballs and veggies. I like to “stir” the freeze-dried products halfway through this process. Otherwise, the food on top doesn't really get enough of the water. Also, the meatballs will turn out better if you drain some of the water after about 5 minutes and replace it with some additional hot water. The pasta should be about ready. Drain the pasta and the freeze-dried food.

     



    Lightly grease the bottom of a casserole dish. Now layer half the ingredients in this order: pasta, meatballs, veggies, sauce and cheese. Repeat. Now put salt, pepper, and seasonings on top. Bake in oven for about 35-40 minutes. It really turned out well, and I accompanied it with some great tasting powdered milk. Enjoy.

    Posted In: Uncategorized Tagged With: food storage, recipe, meatballs, pasta, casserole

  • FN-E500(2)
    We want to take this opportunity to share with you why we like Mountain House’s products so much. Here are some advantages of Mountain House foods:

    Trusted name – Mountain House's reputation has been growing for nearly 40 years. It is no wonder they have award-winning meals.

    Flavor – We love the taste of Mountain House entrees. They offer 22 of the most popular home-style dishes, including Beef Stroganoff, Spaghetti, Chicken a la King, and Beef Stew. You can read some customer reviews at the bottom of this post, or on our website BePrepared.com.

    Storage benefits – Due to the freeze-drying process, the cans are lightweight and last 25 years (when properly stored).

    Ease of preparation – Simply add hot water, wait 10 minutes, and enjoy. The meals have already been prepared, so they just need to be re-hydrated and warmed up.

    Beef Stew FN-B510
    We decided to prepare a few selections here at Emergency Essentials. We were impressed with the convenience of preparation, vibrant color, mouth-watering aroma, and of course, the delicious taste!

    Here are some comments that have been posted on our website about these great Mountain House foods:



    "This stew (
    Beef Stew) makes great leftovers. It tastes homemade. We ladled this over egg noodles and feasted for days." Richard, OHIO

    "I recently attended a meeting about Emergency Preparedness/Food storage... I brought a few different cans of Mountain House freeze-dried products to show and try. No one there had tried the freeze-dried products before... I made one can of the Chicken a la King and brought it into the room... Everyone was surprised at how good it was and how easy it was to make... This is a great product and you need to try this one. It will make a believer out of you." Kevin, CONNECTICUT

    "This stuff (Beef Stroganoff with Noodles) is really pretty good. I was sorting my emergency food recently and had some pouches of this. I decided to try one, had never tried any of the MH cans I have. I ate the whole 2 person pouch it was so good... Very happy." Mia, TEXAS

    "I have been stocking foods for emergency situations and trying some as I go. Granola and Blueberries with Milk is a great buy! I usually heat it up and eat it for a breakfast that really can't be beat! Taste great - no lie!!" Ron, OHIO

    IMG_1446(enhanced)

    Posted In: Uncategorized Tagged With: mountain house, freeze dried food, just add water meals

  • One of our customers, Walt, shared his experience with sprouting 10 year old sprouting seeds. We thought you might be interested to hear how it went.

    “(I) purchased (sprouting seeds) in 1999 just in case Y2K took a dive. I opened the alfalfa seeds to see if they were still good after ten years and had more sprouts then I needed. To sprout the seeds I soaked them for 8 hours - then used the kitchen sprouter (3/4 of a pound of seeds) in two trays on the counter top. I found out when they sprouted it was too much - had more then I could handle, the rest went into a friends garden and they sprouted. I would say about 90% to 95% of the seeds sprouted. As far as storage, that varied over the ten years; put in a box marked food storage with the temperature from 40 degrees to 90 degrees.”

    Remember to store seeds in as cool a location as possible (even the refrigerator or freezer if possible). This can greatly increase the shelf life.

    We love to hear success stories like this one! Send your experience to blog@beprepared.com, so we can share it with everyone else (don’t forget photos if you have any).

    Posted In: Uncategorized Tagged With: food storage, gardening, Sprouts, Sprouting, Shelf Life

  • Getting Started

    |11 COMMENT(S)

    Many people ask, “Where do I begin when it comes to Emergency Preparedness?

    We'd answer that question by saying that the first thing you should do is to get information first. Information is the most valuable tool to have in an emergency. We have a large collection of Emergency Preparedness Insight Articles that can help you to obtain this vital preparedness information.

    Get Started on your Prepping by reading Emergency Essentials Insight Articles

    Insight Article Topics:

    Take a look at some of these articles to start or refresh your prepper education. These articles will help get yourself and your family invested in emergency preparedness. There are over 90 articles to choose from within 13 different categories. Insight Categories include:

     

    Preparedness Checklists and Downloads

    Another great way to get started (with no cost involved) is to develop a personal or family emergency preparedness plan. Check out our Preparedness Checklist page to start creating an emergency plan or to build your emergency kit today. You can print these plans directly from our website. Here are the checklists we have to offer:

     

    A Few More Tips for Getting Started

    Here are a few ideas and tips to get you started with your preparedness plan after you have your Family Evacuation Plan in place:

    • Establish a modest preparedness budget. Make it a priority and work at it the best you can. Start with a few items, such as: water (both portable and permanent), an emergency kit, emergency candles, a sleeping bag, and a first-aid kit or an emergency bag.
    • Get your information from reliable sources. Don’t let anyone scare you into thinking that it has to be done all at once or that you must incur heavy debt to achieve your goals.
    • Use short-term storage as a guide for long-term needs. The items required to sustain life for three days can easily be multiplied for planning long-term storage needs.
    • Be consistent. Within a short time you will have the necessary supplies and equipment to take care of yourself, family members, and others.
    • Think investment, not expense. Take care of what you purchase and learn not to waste.

    Remember that babies, small children, the elderly, pets, and those with special medical needs require special consideration when planning for an emergency. We offer some great information to help you with these groups.

    For those of you wondering how and where to begin, we hope this post will be helpful. For others who have already started, we welcome your input to help and assist those who are just beginning. An inner confidence results as one strives to do their best to become prepared.

    Posted In: Uncategorized Tagged With: pets, Emergency plan, family, water, First Aid, children, water storage, getting started, emergency kit checklist, Preparedness Checklist, special needs

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