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Monthly Archives: June 2010

  • Spice Makes Everything Nice

    Don’t forget those special seasonings to make your food storage sing!


    You are preparing your family’s favorite spaghetti sauce. You’ve added most of the glorious ingredients. But, you fail to add the delicious Italian seasonings. No big deal right? WRONG! What would your special sauce be without the seasonings? What would apple pie be without the cinnamon? How would your chili taste without the chili powder? You’ve got it now, you need some spice in your life!


    As you gather your various preparedness foods, take stock on which spices and seasoning would help make your food storage items the best they can be. For example, a wonderful can of tomato powder won’t quite make that special pizza sauce without some garlic, oregano, and other Italian spices. Think about making a soup from all those freeze dried meats and vegetables you ordered. Don’t you think you should have some stock on hand to add flavor to the broth?


    If you answered yes to the questions above, then you are ready to learn more about all the wonderful seasonings and spices available for your food storage pantry! Think about all the possibilities of ground beef if you have the proper seasonings. You can add taco seasoning for a Mexican flair. Add a pinch or two of sloppy joe seasoning for that beefy sandwich your family loves!


    Meat isn’t the only food that benefits from wonderful seasonings! Cinnamon sugar is a staple at our home to top toast or fruit. Onion powder, garlic powder, and chicken stock added to rice make a wonderful side dish. During the holiday season, I like to add cinnamon and allspice to some simmering sliced apples and oranges for the yummiest potpourri! The possibilities are endless! The great thing about many of these seasonings, is that not only are they wonderful for food storage, but they are helpful for your everyday meal planning too!


    So take a close look at those cans you have stored away. Could some of your foods benefit from a spicy kick? How many different meals can you prepare from one item, with just a quick switch of seasoning? You’ll be surprised how much flair and flavor you can add with a dash here or there…because spice makes everything nice!

  • Soul Soothing Sweets

    By Angie Sullivan

    Want to keep your family calm and happy during times of distress? Store some soul soothing sweets!

    On our journey to preparedness, we’ve discussed several different types of foods to store. We’ve learned about dehydrated, freeze-dried, and Meals Ready to Eat. All of these are wonderful options, and a good combination of all of them is ideal. But here is something you might not know. Each of these foods has something in common, something that I’m sure will tickle your fancy. Within each of these foods storage categories there are some items I would like you to consider…desserts!

    If you are like me, it won’t take much to convince you that having a few desserts or “comfort foods” stored is a good idea. But, if you aren’t sure that having cake or pudding for your family in an emergency is really necessary, think about these few facts: Did you know that studies show that foods high in sugar, or food associated with pleasant memories can cause the release of certain chemicals that affect how we feel? In short, desserts can act as a natural mood enhancer. During hard times, such as the aftermath of a natural disaster, extended unemployment, or food shortages, having desserts on hand for your family will help to comfort them. It can be a reminder, especially to children, that everything is alright and good times are ahead.

    Now that we have established that having food storage desserts on hand are a good idea (twist my arm!), let’s talk about the different varieties you can choose from. As I mentioned before, each of the types of food storage have delicious options available. MREs have a wonderful assortment of ready to eat cakes and cookies. Can’t imagine something in a brown military pouch can taste good? Think again! Want to make your own delicious desserts? You can purchase just add water dehydrated muffin and brownie mixes in #10 cans, along with puddings and even make your own homemade favorite peanut butter cookies or oatmeal cookies using dehydrated items such as peanut butter powder and oats. With the amazing technology of freeze dried foods, not even ice cream is out of the question!

    Whatever your sweet tooth craving, or whatever your family’s comfort foods are, you are sure to find something delicious to fit the bill. So consider spending a few of your food storage dollars giving your family some soul soothing sweets!

  • Ice Age

    By Angie Sullivan

    What does new age technology have to do with ice? Freeze-dried foods are the latest development in dehydration, and the result is more than just “cool”!

    Last week, our journey was spent learning about dehydrated foods. These are foods that are dehydrated in the standard way, through heat. This week, we are discussing a wonderful process for drying food that uses just the opposite method. Sound crazy? It’s a wonderful technology where food that is fresh or cooked is first flash frozen. Moisture is then removed in a vacuum chamber where a low level of heat is used to evaporate the ice crystals without returning it to a liquid form. Because the food remains frozen during this process, the food’s cell structures do not change. Therefore, much of the nutrition (including the vitamins), color, aroma, and freshness are retained.

    What are some of the advantages of freeze dried food? First of all, after rehydration, freeze dried foods look and taste much like the frozen foods you find in the grocery store. Freeze dried foods retain much of their original shape, texture, and appearance. Freeze dried foods rehydrate quickly, and most are reconstituted simply by adding warm water, waiting a few minutes, and draining the excess water out. After that, you simply use them just as you would any fresh food! Freeze dried foods are lightweight, which results in food that weights 75-90% less than the original food, which is what makes freeze dried foods a very smart choice for many emergency kit applications, camping and backpacking supplies when you need to store several days worth of food in a very small pack.

    As if all the reasons listed above weren’t enough, freeze dried foods offer a whole new dimension of variety to your standard dehydrated foods. With the help of freeze-dried meats, cheese, fruits, and vegetables, you can use your dehydrated basics to create family favorites like pizza, tacos, breakfast casseroles, desserts and so much more!

    How good can freeze dried foods be? I know that is what you are thinking, because the skeptic in me thought the exact same thing! I can tell you from personal experience how wonderful the products I’ve tried are. As a matter of fact, just this week I used freeze dried sausage crumbles to make omelets for my family. I simply added some warm water to the crumbles, and after a few minutes drained off the excess. I was shocked by what I found! They looked, smelled, and most importantly tasted, exactly like crumbled, cooked sausage…because that’s what they are! My children LOVED them! I can’t wait to try more freeze dried meats for my food storage pantry!

    One other benefit of freeze dried foods is that you can purchase not just single foods, but entire meals already freeze dried. They are cooked and then flash frozen and dehydrated so you just add warm water and you’ve got a tasty meal read to go! These meals are popular with backpackers and campers, but are an excellent choice for preparedness too.

    Now is the time to try out some freeze-dried foods! You will be pleasantly surprised by what technology delivers in this new version of the Ice Age!

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