Monthly Archives: July 2009

  • Comfort Foods

    |2 COMMENT(S)

    In American culture, sweets and desserts are associated with good times and celebrations (birthday cakes, holiday pies, sweets, etc.) Studies have proven how our emotions can affect our bodies. Foods high in sugar or food associated with pleasant memories can cause the release of certain chemicals that affect how we feel.



    During hard times such as extended unemployment, food shortages, or during the aftermath of a natural disaster, sweets remind people of better times and give them a sense of normalcy and comfort. Normalcy should be a priority in preparing our families for an emergency.

    kids_cooking

    We recommend storing some “comfort foods.” Comfort foods include desserts, macaroni and cheese, chicken noodle soup, and peanut butter. A common adage is "store what you eat and eat what you store." Storing food that you eat on a regular basis and having a way of re-creating these meals in an emergency is wise. Food storage options are broadening to provide more of these comfort items in easy "Just add water" and "Ready to east straight from the package" form.

    beef_stroganoff

    Some of these "Just add water" and "Ready to eat straight from the package" foods include:

     

    Best Picture of FD Ice Cream copy

     

     

    • and many more...

     

    Spices are also a great addition so you can make your own favorite comfort foods.

    Posted In: Uncategorized Tagged With: food storage, freeze dried food

  • iStock_000023548113XSmall_Strawberry_Lemonade

     

    "The Freeze-Dried Strawberry Slices are great for making strawberry lemonade. Just drop a big handful into a pitcher of lemonade and give them a little bit of time to soften up. Yummy!"

    Bonnie, OREGON

    Posted In: Uncategorized Tagged With: food storage, recipes, freeze dried food

  • Honey White/Wheat Bread

    We just made some terrific Honey White/Wheat Bread the other day using ingredients from our food storage and wanted to share the recipe with everyone. This recipe calls for 2 cups of white flour and 1 cup of wheat flour, but you can use any combination you want. We used a bread machine, but this recipe also works great without one. It makes a 1½ pound loaf. Enjoy!

    Ingredients:

    1 cup + 3 Tbsp warm water

    1 cup wheat flour

    2 cups white flour

    1 Tbsp butter or margarine powder

    1 Tbsp powdered milk powder

    1¾ tsp salt

    1 Tbsp wheat gluten

    2 Tbsp honey

    2 tsp SAF instant yeast

    Directions:

    Place all ingredients into bread machine in the order listed. Set machine to 1½ pound loaf and light crust.

    Just out of the bread machine

    Ready to Eat!

    Posted In: Uncategorized Tagged With: food storage, wheat, recipe, bread

  • iStock_000007893322XSmall

    With the daily cost of living tugging at your pocketbook, you may wonder how in the world you can afford to add one more item to your budget. You may want to store food, but don’t see how your income can be stretched any further. The following tips may help you see how a food storage program can be put together without sacrificing money earmarked for existing bills:

    • Set aside a plot of land to grow specific "food storage" plants. Consider growing tomatoes, peppers, and cilantro and putting up some delicious salsa, as well as plain tomatoes, for a rainy day. Or grow other fruits or vegetables that your family enjoys and are easy to prepare for storage. If you live in a condo or apartment, you can grow plants in pots in a windowsill.

    Lot of seedlings in pots ecological farm

    • When the next urge to splurge on fast food or a pizza hits you, resist it! Take the $10 or $15 you would have spent and invest it in food storage.
    • Sprouting seeds cost pennies to purchase, yet yield big dividends in nutrition. Learn how to grow this economical source of greens. Sprouts are tasty additions to salads, sandwiches, soups, and stir-fry and can be grown in a matter of days. (Note: Never sprout seeds intended for planting in gardens.) For more information, review the Insight Article on Growing Your Own Food.

    iStock_000003414126XSmall_sprouts

    • How many times do you buy food at the store, and put it in the refrigerator--only to throw it out a week or two later because you forgot to use it? Plan a menu and stick to it. Cut the waste, and every time you go to the grocery store for your major shopping, set aside an extra $5 that you normally would have spent on perishable vegetables you usually end up discarding. Within a month, you will have enough savings to purchase a "favorite something" on your food storage list.
    • Come up with your own creative ways to save or make money, then use it to add to your food storage. Involve the whole family, perhaps a family paper route or other job will provide just what you need.

    Checklist on Clipboard

    • Store what you and your family will eat. Don't just arbitrarily put together a food storage list. Purchase the basics (honey, salt, wheat, powdered milk, grains, legumes, and garden seeds), and build upon that (don’t forget the non-food items as well). Sit down with family members and organize a personalized plan. Systematically develop your storage according to you and your family's food preferences.

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    • Remember that a short-term, as well as a long-term food storage program is the most sensible. If you cannot afford a year supply, work on a 72 hour supply, then a week supply, and so on.

    Storing extra food and other necessities is just as important as having money saved in the bank. Once you have some extra food, remember to keep it dry and cool. Also, learn to rotate it as much as possible so that it doesn't go to waste.

    When a crisis arrives, good people work together--so do your part to prepare and share. It is amazing how we can help each other.

    Posted In: Uncategorized Tagged With: food storage, Budget

  • FS-P SuperPail Illustration

    Six-gallon SuperPails hold an amount of food equal to about eight #10 cans. In addition to saving you money, the pails are stackable, so they save space in tight storage areas. Each item (except honey) is sealed in a metallized bag and has an oxygen absorber enclosed.

    Posted In: Uncategorized Tagged With: SuperPails

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    Yeast is a necessity when it comes to baking. It would make sense that any storage plan that includes grains would also include yeast.

    Active Instant Yeast has smaller granules with a high concentration of live cells compared to other forms of yeast. Instant yeast does not require re-hydration, it can be added to any dry dough mixture.

    We have always liked SAF Instant Yeast, and are excited to now carry SAF Instant Premium Yeast. SAF Instant Premium Yeast is a new and improved storage yeast. It provides larger volume, ferments faster and is more active than other dry yeasts. It can store up to 5 years in the freezer!

    If you are wondering if the yeast you have stored is still active, please follow these directions to find out: Mix 1 tsp. white sugar into ½ cup of warm water (around 110 degrees), mix in 2¼ tsp. of yeast. If the mixture has risen to the top of the container within 10 minutes, the yeast is active and does not need to be replaced. It is wise to test your yeast if you have any concerns regarding its quality.

    Yeast2blog

    ½ cup warm water, 1 tsp. sugar, 2¼ tsp. yeast

    Yeast3blog

    After 10 minutes (liquid and yeast have risen from ½ cup to 1 cup)

    Recent customer comment:

    "I love SAF yeast. It has a long shelf life. I like to use it with dough enhancer to make hearty whole wheat bread. Even with hard red wheat flour, the dough rises & makes a light & fluffy loaf of bread. My favorite feature is that the breads & goodies don't get that stale day-after taste if they sit on the counter for a few days."

    Jenna, SOUTH CAROLINA




    Posted In: Uncategorized

  • What is Textured Vegetable Protein? Textured Vegetable Protein made from soybeans. The oil is removed from the bean before it is ground into flour. After the flour is formed into the desired texture or size, it is flavored to become any number of imitation meat products, including bacon bits, meat granules, or even large pieces of sausage or chicken.
    When cooked, Textured Vegetable Protein  resembles ground beef or chicken. Most people have actually eaten Textured Vegetable Protein without knowing it. It is used to make or enrich vegetarian burgers, hot dogs, chicken patties, ground beef, chili, stew, sausage, and lunch meat. Many bacon bits that you use on salads and potatoes are made of Textured Vegetable Protein. It is also used by most convenience and fast food outlets as a meat extender.
    FS-M110 Chicken TVP copy
    Chicken Textured Vegetable Protein

    Here are some benefits to using Textured Vegetable Protein in place of meat:

    • Inexpensive
    • No animal fat
    • Good source of protein and fiber
    • Long shelf life, convenient, and quick to use
    • Good source of iron
    • Extends meat
    • Easier to digest than regular meats

     

    FS-M120 Taco Mix TVP copy
    Taco Textured Vegetable Protein

    After Textured Vegetable Protein has been hydrated, it can be added to any recipe that calls for meat. You can also use it as a meat extender. For example, if your recipe calls for 2 pounds of meat and you only have one, you can add Textured Vegetable Protein to make up the difference. Taco-flavored is great for burritos, tacos, and enchiladas. Sausage-flavored is great for quiche and casseroles. Beef-flavored works great in lasagna and casseroles. You can also add it to your spaghetti sauce.

    Textured Vegetable Protein is very easy to prepare - easier than real meat. In addition, it is a great meat substitute for those on a budget. Our Bacon Bits and Beef Flavored Textured Vegetable Proteins are other great selections! Don't miss this opportunity to add these items to your food storage.

    FS-M120-Taco-Mix-TVP---Taco

    Posted In: Uncategorized

  • The following 2 recipes (submitted by Lynn from Canada) are a great way to rotate and use your powdered milk:

    Yogurt with blackberries

    YOGURT BY THE GALLON

    Ingredients:

    4 Cups Dry Milk Powder

    4 Quarts Warm Water

    1 Cup Starter

    Optional compliments (freeze dried fruit, jam, vanilla, etc.)

    Preparation:

    Mix the milk powder with the water in a blender until smooth. Heat mixture to a scald over stove top in large pot or in a crock pot (not too hot or it will kill the yogurt's live culture). Watch so it doesn't burn if you are doing this on the stove top. Cool to room temperature (lukewarm to the touch with your finger in it counting to 10. Or if you have a thermometer...till it reads about 120 degrees F).

    Add the following and mix well: 1 Cup starter (plain yogurt or freeze dried yogurt starter or saved yogurt from your previous batch - this needs to be renewed after a month or the taste becomes sour).

    Put into a gallon glass jar with a lid and place in some kind of hotbox (wonder box or thermal box) in a warm room for 12- 14 hours until thickened. If you don't have a hotbox, leave it in your crockpot, unplugged, and wrapped in a large towel to keep warm. You can also put it in a cooler wrapped in warm towels.

    Once thickened: Refrigerate up to 12 hours. May need stirring before use. It does thicken more as it is refrigerated. You may add freeze dried fruit, jam, or a bit of vanilla for flavored yogurt. However, remember to set some plain aside first if you are going to use it as a starter for the next batch.

    Hint: Freeze your remaining purchased plain yogurt in ice cube trays to have on hand for the next batch's starter when needed. Good for 6 months in the freezer.

    Enjoy!

     

    HOMEMADE CREAM CHEESE

    You can also make homemade cream cheese from your own yogurt that you've made. Take one cup of yogurt and place it in the center of a clean TERRY face cloth or a CHEESE cloth (these are sold at your local food store) that is laid over a small bowl. This cloth will act as a "strainer" for your yogurt. Fold the cloth up. Then take a rubber band and wrap the rubber band around the cloth just up past the point where the yogurt comes to. At this point it will look like you've wrapped up a tennis ball in a cloth with a rubber band to hold the "present" closed. Then take a hanger and hook the rubber band onto the hook of the hanger. Hang the hanger up on your kitchen cupboard door knob or hang the hanger onto a large pot or something strong enough to let it hang. Place the small bowl under your wrapped hanging yogurt and let it just hang there to drip the liquids out for 4 hours.

    If you want to (and are home), you can just give it a gentle squeeze now and again to softly wring out some of the liquid. But that step is not necessary. You can just leave your yogurt hanging for 8 hours if you want to while you are gone to work, too. After this there will be liquid in your bowl. Open up the cloth.....you will find a round soft ball of plain CREAM CHEESE! It's THAT simple! Keep refrigerated once this is completed. You can always flavor it with a little bit of sea salt and dill or a little pepper or whatever favorite seasonings you like. You can use it on crackers, breads, toast, bagels or flavor it with fruit extracts instead of the seasonings.

    Enjoy!

    Thank you Lynn for these great recipes and tips!

    Bagel with cream cheese

    Posted In: Uncategorized Tagged With: food storage, skills, homemade, Food Storage Tips, DIY, homesteading

  • Our Freeze Dried Strawberry Slices are a tangy and delicious addition to your food storage. Keep them handy for a quick snack or for using in your favorite recipes. Here are some suggestions taken from customer reviews:

     

    "...We use the strawberries often on cereal or just straight out of the can. There are an amazing amount of strawberries in the can and they are large whole slices."

    Jill, WASHINGTON

     

    "These have become a favorite snack for my 3 year old. She'll eat them right out of the can. They are truly delicious. They also rehydrate quickly for use in smoothies and desserts. HIGHLY recommend them!!"

    Haylee, ARIZONA

    Cereal with dried strawberry slices

    Posted In: Uncategorized Tagged With: food storage, freeze-dried foods, Food Storage Tips, fruit, snacks