The Survival Mom » Food http://thesurvivalmom.com Helping moms worry less & enjoy life! Mon, 27 Apr 2015 15:25:41 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2 Sprouting Seeds – An Essential Part of Your Food Storage Plan http://thesurvivalmom.com/get-started-sprouting-seeds/ http://thesurvivalmom.com/get-started-sprouting-seeds/#comments Sat, 18 Apr 2015 23:26:51 +0000 http://thesurvivalmom.com/?p=22571 Do you like sprouts? I had only ever eaten plain, long white mung bean sprouts from the grocery store and didn’t really care for them. Then I discovered home sprouting and the wide variety of seeds, beans, lentils and nuts Read More

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Get started sprouting seedsDo you like sprouts? I had only ever eaten plain, long white mung bean sprouts from the grocery store and didn’t really care for them. Then I discovered home sprouting and the wide variety of seeds, beans, lentils and nuts that could be sprouted. My family now eats them on salads and sandwiches and sometimes even just straight from the sprouter!

Beside the fact that sprouts are healthy for everyday eating and should be added to your diet for nutritional reasons, sprouting is an excellent prepping skill to have.

Top 5 Reasons Preppers Should Sprout

1. Nutrition

Certain seed mixes combine not only for great taste, but for high nutrition. Some seeds provide every amino acid, a long list of vitamins and minerals, and many are high in protein. Access to a fresh, non-meat/dairy source of protein during hard times is highly desirable. Broccoli sprouts are one of the most nutritious… eating one ounce of broccoli sprouts gives you as many antioxidants as 3 pounds of mature broccoli! Check out this link for a list of nutritional content for the most popular sprouts.

2. Garden Indoors All Year

If you live in an extreme climates that limit your outside growing months, you can grow a variety of fresh greens year around. No dirt under the nails, no back breaking work, no worries about early frost.

3. Security

If you have a security reason for not gardening outside, you can still have fresh greens by sprouting indoors. In fact, you can hide them even more if needed by putting your spouters inside a cabinet, under a bed, etc. Sprouts do not need any light for growth. Exposure to sunlight at the end of growing will activate the chlorophyll and green up the sprouts, but it is not a requirement for taste or nutrition.

4. Portability

You can sprout on the go by taking your sprouter in the car or even by putting it inside a backpack. In a bug-out situation, you can carry a great deal of food in very little space. (See #5.)

5. Shelf Life and Compact Storage

Sprouting seeds have a shelf life of 1 to 5 years depending on the variety. Refrigerating can double the lifespan while freezing can extend it 4 to 5 times. See a full list here. Most sprouting seeds are very small, but grow exponentially. A single pound of alfalfa sprouting seeds can produce 7 pounds of edible food!

Get started sprouting seedsThe only potential “downside” with sprouting during emergency situations is the amount of water needed. Sprouts need to be initially soaked and then rinsed twice a day. If access to safe water is an issue, it could be difficult to impossible to grow the sprouts. However, sprout water does not need to be discarded. In fact, the water used for the initial soak is full of nutrients that could be consumed as is, used as soup stock, or as needed to reconstitute dehydrated or freeze dried foods.

My Favorite Sprouters

Sprouting is so easy, a child can do it. If you can measure and rinse seeds, you can sprout! All you need is the right sprouter.

Four Tray Sprouter – The trays of this sprouter allow you to either sprout a variety of different seeds and beans in one compact footprint, or enable you to stagger your growth by starting the trays a couple days apart so you have fresh sprouts constantly at the ready. Watch this video to see how this sprouter works.

The Easy Sprout Sprouter – Simple, compact and likely the most popular sprouter of all. This one is a must if you want to sprout on the go. Here’s an instructional video to show you just how easy it is!

Get started sprouting seedsIt’s surprising how quickly sprouts can begin to go bad, so both these sprouters allow you to make relatively small amounts of sprouts so they can be eaten within just a couple of days.

My Favorite Sprouts

There are dozens and dozens of seeds, bean, lentils and nuts you can sprout on their own, but mixing them together for a gourmet treat is what I like best. Here are three of my favorites, but be bold and be sure to try a wide variety to find your own favorites. The best way to do that is to find variety samplers like this one or this one.

French Garden – Put this on your sandwich (if you have any left over after eating it straight from the sprouter!). Healthy, high protein and so good.

Nick’s Hot Sprout Salad Mix – Spicy and fragrant and 35% protein.

Pea Carnival – A mix of different peas. I was surprised at how much I liked this one. Yum!

 

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Berry, Berry Delicious: 21 Berry Desserts to Make Your Mouth Water! http://thesurvivalmom.com/berry-dessert-recipes/ http://thesurvivalmom.com/berry-dessert-recipes/#comments Tue, 14 Apr 2015 13:27:00 +0000 http://thesurvivalmom.com/?p=22443 Everyone loves dessert. If you love berries, too, this is the post for you! These are all tasty and far healthier than many other desserts. Several are even gluten free. The first two recipes are from Emergency Essentials and include Read More

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berry dessert recipesEveryone loves dessert. If you love berries, too, this is the post for you! These are all tasty and far healthier than many other desserts. Several are even gluten free.

The first two recipes are from Emergency Essentials and include ingredients that are shelf stable, meaning they can be stored at room temperature for long periods of time. If your family loves berries of all kinds, you should check out the freeze-dried versions. They’re nearly as nutritious as the fresh versions and they are super easy to incorporate in recipes. I use them frequently in my breakfast smoothis.

Be sure to learn about the 6 enemies of food storage so your food will remain nutritious and tasty, long term.

Sweet Strawberry Cake with Strawberry Buttercream Frosting

Add ½ cup Strawberry Powder  to a white cake mix or batter, along with ½ cup extra water. Bake according to directions for your altitude.
Strawberry Buttercream Frosting:

INGREDIENTS:

3-4 cup Powdered sugar

1/3 cup Strawberry powder 

1 cup softened (but not melted) butter

1/2 tsp salt, if you used unsalted butter. If you use salted butter, omit this salt

2 tsp vanilla extract (optional)

Milk or cream to achieve desired consistency (more than plain frosting, as the strawberry powder tends to thicken)

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Using an electric mixer, beat the butter on medium speed to be sure it’s all soft and creamy.
  2. Mix strawberry powder with powdered sugar.
  3. Gradually add 3 cups of the powdered sugar mixture, beating on low speed. Once it’s mixed, increase speed to medium and add vanilla if desired.
  4. Add milk or cream to achieve the consistency you want in your frosting.

Blackberry Cobbler Delight

INGREDIENTS:

1/2 cup butter or margarine

3/4 cup sugar

3/4 cup dehydrated fat-free milk

2 tsp  baking powder

1 cup flour

4 cup Freeze dried blackberries with juice

DIRECTIONS:

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  2. Melt butter in a 9″ x 13″ cake pan.
  3. Mix next 4 ingredients into a smooth batter.
  4. Pour melted butter into flour mixture without scraping pan. Stir until blended.
  5. Pour blackberries with juice over batter.
  6. Bake for approximately 1 hour.

And now for 19 more berry dessert recipes!

You’ll find all these and more on my Pinterest dessert board!

Sweets

Blackberry Sorbet

Coconut Berry Bars

Cottage Berry Whip

Frozen Berries with Hot Chocolate

Fruit Jellies

Pretzel Berry Desserts

Recipes in a Jar: Cherry Cheesecake

Sparkling Berry Gelatin Cups

Superfood Triple Berry Chia Pudding

Baked Goods

Angel Berry Trifle

Berry Layered Angel Food Cake

Berry Medley Oatmeal Crumb Bars

Berry Parfait

Blueberry Crumble Bars

Double Berry Swirl Greek Yogurt Cake

Glazed Mix Berry Scones

Gluten Free Brownie and Berries Dessert Pizza

Soft and Fluffy Strawberry Banana Cake

Vanilla Bourbon Cherry-Blueberry Pie

 

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Build your Food Storage from Scratch: Homemade Strawberry Jam http://thesurvivalmom.com/homemade-strawberry-jam/ http://thesurvivalmom.com/homemade-strawberry-jam/#comments Mon, 13 Apr 2015 07:00:24 +0000 http://thesurvivalmom.com/?p=22512 Strawberries…….the “first fruits” of canning season (I can year round, but strawberry jam seems to me, to “begin” the real seasonal canning blitz!) and there is nothing like real, fresh strawberry jam! BONUS ? It is SO very simple to Read More

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homemade strawberry jam

Strawberries…….the “first fruits” of canning season (I can year round, but strawberry jam seems to me, to “begin” the real seasonal canning blitz!) and there is nothing like real, fresh strawberry jam! BONUS ? It is SO very simple to make and can up!

Homestead Strawberry Jam

8 cups of fresh strawberries, stemmed, cut and washed up

2 Packages of All Natural No Sugar Pectin

2 cups of real grape juice

1 cup of organic sugar

Just dump your stemmed, washed and sliced strawberries in a big enamel or stainless steel pot, turn your burner on medium to medium high, mash them up quickly with a potato masher!

 

strawberry jam

 

Then, add in 2 packages of Sugar Free Pectin, 2 cups of grape juice, sugar and stir.

Strawberry-Jam2

Last year I was making a batch and found I was out of grape juice (the horror!) and so I just omitted it and dumped in a half cup of water. My family declared that batch to be their new favorite!  So, just note this recipe, is very forgiving.

Bring this to a rolling boil for 5 – 7 minutes, stirring all the while so it doesn’t stick. Turn off your burner and remove from heat.

This is where a good canner has her canning jars, lids and equipment all ready to go! Or you have wonderful children who gather it all together and prepare it for you! Canning is a ‘must have’ skill at our homestead, so I involve the children and we all work together!

Ladle your hot jam mixture into your prepared jars, leave 1 inch head space, and wipe the rims of your jars down good with a clean damp cloth. Jar rims must be clean. If not, food on the rims can prohibit a proper seal. ALWAYS wipe down your jar rims.

Now, put on your lid/ring (tighten just slightly—do not wrench down on them) and set all your jars in your canner rack. Lower your rack into the boiling water, making sure the jars are covered with water. Once your water gets to a rolling boil, start your timer.

Check your Ball Blue Book for times related to the size of jar you are using and your elevation. I like to use pint jars or smaller, primarily, for jams. For me, at my elevation that means I am going to process my jam (“process” = keep jars in the full rolling boil water) for 20 minutes. Once time is up, I turn off my burner, and let the pot just sit for a few minutes prior to removing my jars.

Once I start removing my jars, I place them on the towel I have set out on my counter or tabletop (a place out of direct sun, drafts and that your jars will not be disturbed for 24 hours) and let them sit. If I don’t have more jam to process I clean up and get my canning equipment put away, so it’s easy to be ready for the next canning session.

This recipe makes PERFECT Jam! You can omit the sugar if you want, it is DElicious jam, a tiny bit tart with no sugar–but we like it that way, too! If you want to add the one cup of organic sugar, it sweetens it just perfectly! There is no need for those overkill, “10 cups of white sugar” recipes, unless that is what you want to make. Not only is this version cheaper, it is SO much better for you and, we think, it tastes better, too!

I did this entire batch (with help from my children cutting and washing berries & getting together canning equipment) from start to finish in less than an hour. In season, local produce (from your garden is the cheapest and freshest way to go!) is the time to stock the pantry! Plan ahead this year to line your pantry shelves with home canned food–it doesn’t get any better!

Happy Canning!

Helpful resources

The post Build your Food Storage from Scratch: Homemade Strawberry Jam by Lisa Barthuly appeared first on The Survival Mom. Be sure to check it out!

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3 Things To Make With Wheat Besides Bread http://thesurvivalmom.com/3-things-make-wheat-besides-bread/ http://thesurvivalmom.com/3-things-make-wheat-besides-bread/#comments Tue, 07 Apr 2015 15:41:21 +0000 http://thesurvivalmom.com/?p=22468 Lots of us like to store wheat. It has a long shelf life, it’s nutritious, and you can use it to make that beloved staple of Western Civilization: bread. In fact, in Medieval Europe, all other foods – meat and Read More

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Things to make with wheat, besides bread.Lots of us like to store wheat. It has a long shelf life, it’s nutritious, and you can use it to make that beloved staple of Western Civilization: bread. In fact, in Medieval Europe, all other foods – meat and vegetables – were considered, “stuff you eat with bread.” However, the ovens the Medieval Europeans used to make this bread were huge, required enormous amounts of fuel, and took most the day to heat up.

We are certainly spoiled with our nice little electric ovens that come up to temperature in less than twenty minutes, but without modern conveniences, how would you bake that bread? Most of us don’t have Medieval bread ovens out in the backyard. And even if you did, what would you use for fuel? It would be a shame to let all that wheat go to waste.

Fortunately, bread is not the only thing wheat is good for. If you have a grill, or at least a cast iron frying pan, a manual wheat grinder, and just a few extra ingredients, you can make a wide variety of meals. I’m not even going to mention cracked wheat cereal, which brings to mind thin, sad faces and Little Orphan Annie. I mean meals that you would actually want to eat, like pancakes and biscuits.

Even without a modern oven or range, you can place a frying pan over your outdoor grill or over a campfire. This method is perfect for making things like pancakes and tortillas, and can also be used for other quick breads like biscuits (you will have to flip them).

Knowing alternative ways to cook, and having the tools to do so, is important for short-term power losses and even a long-term failure of the power grid.

Pancakes

Any pancake recipe can be converted into a whole wheat pancake recipe simply by substituting whole wheat flour for white flour. For very best results, use buttermilk. If you don’t have buttermilk, you can use reconstituted powdered milk and add a tablespoon of plain yogurt. Here is my children’s favorite recipe:


2 Eggs

1/4 cup vegetable oil

1 1/5 cup milk or buttermilk

2 cup whole wheat flour

2 Tbsp brown sugar

4 tsp baking powder

1 tsp salt

Combine all ingredients, cook as you would any other pancake recipe. Makes 6-8 pancakes, depending on size.

Tortillas

We eat a lot of tortillas at our house in the form of fajitas, enchiladas, soft tacos, burritos, et cetera. I went through a lot of tortilla recipes trying to find one I like, and this one is pretty fool-proof. I usually double it for my family of five:

2 cup whole wheat flour

1/2 tsp salt

3/4 cup water

3 Tbsp olive oil

Combine all ingredients and mix by hand until it forms a ball. If the dough is too sticky, add more flour a little at a time until the desired texture is reached. Let the dough rest for about twenty minutes, then divide into six portions. Roll out each ball and cook about a minute on each side. Makes 6 tortillas.

Biscuits

This recipe is adapted from a recipe book that used to belong to my great grandmother.

2 cup whole wheat flour

4 tsp baking powder

1 tsp salt

4 Tbsp shortening (the amount can be decreased to 2 Tbsp, but I prefer the flakier texture that comes with more fat)

3/4 cup buttermilk

Mix the dry ingredients together, cut in the shortening. When adding the buttermilk, do not overmix. Instead of rolling out the dough, save time and form the dough into a log, then cut the log into biscuit-shaped slices. Allow 4-5 minutes per side on medium heat, taking care not to let them burn. For best results, cover the pan. Makes 12 biscuits.

 

You’ll notice that none of these three recipes require more than two cups of flour . That is because I assume that if you don’t have your electric stove, you probably don’t have your electric wheat grinder, either. Have you ever tried to grind six cups of flour at once with an ordinary hand-powered grain mill? It’s incredibly tedious. You’ll be having flashbacks from Laura Ingalls Wilder’s The Long Winter for days. Two cups at a time, however, is entirely doable. You’ll be able to finish in less than a half hour.

I hope you will be inspired to test out these recipes. I was skeptical about the idea of skillet biscuits on the grill, but was pleasantly surprised by how they turned out. What are some other non-bread ways you have used wheat in your home?

Helpful resources for you

The post 3 Things To Make With Wheat Besides Bread by Beth Buck appeared first on The Survival Mom. Be sure to check it out!

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Is your food storage plan missing these six essential pieces? http://thesurvivalmom.com/food-storage-plan-missing-six-essential-pieces/ http://thesurvivalmom.com/food-storage-plan-missing-six-essential-pieces/#comments Mon, 06 Apr 2015 11:35:51 +0000 http://thesurvivalmom.com/?p=22452 Ask any “food storage expert” what they recommend in a basic food storage plan and they will likely recommend the same types of things: wheat, rice, dry milk, salt, beans, sugar / honey, oil, pasta etc. The Survival Mom recommends Read More

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food storage planAsk any “food storage expert” what they recommend in a basic food storage plan and they will likely recommend the same types of things: wheat, rice, dry milk, salt, beans, sugar / honey, oil, pasta etc. The Survival Mom recommends many of these important items on her list of top 10 foods for stocking up.

But with all their similarities, sometimes these lists include an item here or there that I hadn’t thought of before…something useful that I suddenly see as essential to my food storage plan. I thought I’d share a few of these with you today. Some you may have, or plan to have eventually. Others may be new to you. Or, you may have something to add to the list!

Don’t forget the vinegar!

Vinegar has many many uses: just look at all the uses for it you can find on pinterest!

Some of my favorites include prolonging the life of flowers in a vase, keeping ants away, getting rust off of things, sterilizing laundry (instead of bleach), removing perspiration stains and more.

The uses in the kitchen are just as varied: use it to make fluffier rice, use it to make buttermilk, wash fresh vegetables and fruits (especially berries) in it to make them last 2-3 times as long, use it to tenderize meat, make salad dressing or pickle anything.  I also use it to get rid of onion or garlic smell on my fingers..

Vinegar is truly versatile!


In addition, vinegar is inexpensive, readily available and stores very well.

Are seeds a part of your food storage plan?

The ability to grow your own food is essential for true self-reliance. Storing heirloom seeds is simply smart. You will need to rotate them every couple years or so, but seed packets are inexpensive so this shouldn’t be too difficult.

Vitamins

Often, many “basic” food storage plans lack variety. They include items that provide a lot of calories, are inexpensive and easy to store for a long time. Unfortunately, this doesn’t always mean they provide a wide variety of nutrients and vitamins.

This is often true even if you buy a pre-made food storage package. Often, they are heavy on nutrient-weak calories such as sugar and drink mixes. There are many reasons I don’t recommend pre-made food storage packages, but this is one. People invest in these packages thinking they are getting a certain number of calories. I feel it is a bit deceiving when a heavy number of those calories are nutrient-less.

However, not everyone can afford to go out and buy nutrient dense freeze dried fruits and veggies as part of their food storage plan: especially right at first. They may be able to invest in some canned produce, but even these are lacking in nutrients compared to their fresh counterparts.

A diet full of calories, but not balanced nutrients will not be likely to give you the energy and mental acuity you will likely need in a disaster situation.

While fresh is always best, storing vitamins can help combat this issue until you reach a point when you can invest in more nutrient dense foods.

Nuts can be stored, long-term

Nuts are a great protein and fat source, are less expensive than freeze dried meats, and tastier and healthier than TVP. They can be eaten for breakfast, lunch or dinner and are available in a large variety.

But nuts have one issue: they are tough to store long term because of the oil in them. Jane from Mom with a Prep solved this problem with one amazing post: Awww Nuts! A Guide to nuts and their long term storage benefits.

Spice / Herbs / Bouillon

A diet full of items recommended in many food storage plans: rice, pasta, bread, milk and beans would become pretty boring very quickly without some flavor!

Spice it up a little! Bouillon can be used to make soups and flavor rice. Spices can add an incredible variety to basic staples. If you are adventurous, you can dry your own or if that is too overwhelming simply buy a few extra of the spices and herbs you use most often now so that you can easily rotate through them.

Cookbooks

How many of you have the majority of your family’s favorite recipes stored electronically (on your computer or online somewhere)? What would you do if you couldn’t access those electronics? Do you have recipes specific to the food you have stored?

Make sure you have recipes for the food you have stored in a non-digital format so that you can access and use them anytime you need to. The more recipes you gather, the more variety you will have in your meals. Old cookbooks can be especially valuable for many reasons!

 

That’s it! Which of these items were new to you? What would you add to the list?

Food Storage Plan missing essentials2

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A Short Guide To The Proper Storage of Cookie Ingredients http://thesurvivalmom.com/storing-cookie-ingredients/ http://thesurvivalmom.com/storing-cookie-ingredients/#comments Thu, 02 Apr 2015 07:00:19 +0000 http://thesurvivalmom.com/?p=22361 If the #1 rule to purchasing a home is, “Location, Location, Location,” then the #1 rule of food storage is, “rotation, rotation, rotation.” I mention it because some thirty-year-old brown sugar and chocolate chips recently came into my possession, and Read More

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Storing cookie ingredients. If the #1 rule to purchasing a home is, “Location, Location, Location,” then the #1 rule of food storage is, “rotation, rotation, rotation.” I mention it because some thirty-year-old brown sugar and chocolate chips recently came into my possession, and it probably would have been good if it had been rotated out a few decades ago, but no one gave a thought to storing cookie ingredients.

Because I am an intrepid prepper, and also slightly reckless, I decided to make some chocolate chip cookies with it, as an experiment.

Before I tell you how they turned out, I’ll relate some useful information I discovered about storing cookie ingredients — precious ingredients crucial to making our favorite treats.

Storing cookie ingredients the right way

A lot of people store chocolate as an important part of their emergency preparedness. Even though something like chocolate cannot be considered a necessity, the availability of your most beloved dessert can do wonders for morale during a crisis. Let us discuss the humble chocolate chip cookie as an example.

The main ingredients of this treat include butter, sugar (white and brown), white flour, vanilla extract, and chocolate chips. Some of these are trickier to store than others, but with good planning and efficient rotation, you can always be confident that you can have cookies within your grasp at a moment’s notice.

Properly storing the key ingredients

Butter

The zoning laws in my town prohibit me from keeping a dairy animal in my (very small) back yard, so I have had to make do with keeping a stash of butter in the freezer. I’ve never needed to keep any single package of butter in the freezer for more than a couple months – not nearly enough time for it to go bad.

Commercially canned butter is also available, and it has a guaranteed shelf life of at least two years, according to the manufacturer. This option is much pricier, but may prove a godsend if you are without electricity, and by extension, refrigeration. Other manufacturers also offer powdered butter. Powdered butter is useful in recipes, including baking, and when mixed with water, it produces a nice spread for bread and rolls.


Sugar

White sugar is exceedingly shelf-stable and can practically withstand a nuclear blast. Brown sugar, however, has a tendency to become rock-hard over time. One suggestion is to nix brown sugar entirely, and store white sugar and molasses, instead. Add a small amount of molasses to the white sugar, and voila! Messy, but effective. Molasses has a shelf life of 18 months to two years.

Before you throw out all your old brown sugar, though, know that it can easily be softened by storing it with a piece of bread or another moist food item. I was able to soften some brown sugar that was at least thirty years old. Once it had regained some of its moisture, it looked and tasted completely untouched by time.

White Flour

So much digital ink has been spilled discussing the pros and cons of storing white flour, I don’t feel the need to further expand upon it. In short: white flour is not something that can be stored for long periods of time, but with proper rotation it can be a very good thing to have. Around the holidays, prime baking season when prices are quite low, stock up on a year’s worth of flour and store it in the freezer for longest shelf life.

Vanilla Extract

Vanilla and other flavoring extracts are alcohol-based and if stored improperly have a tendency to quietly evaporate away. Stored in a dark place in a tightly sealed container, however, vanilla extract can have a very long and happy shelf life.

Chocolate

Alas, chocolate is temperamental. Chocolate in bar and chip form contains a lot of fat solids, and these can bloom or go rancid. Some people recommend storing chocolate in the freezer in its original packaging, taking care not to allow condensation to appear upon the surface of the chocolate, and also ensuring that it does not change temperature too rapidly.

Chocolate manufacturers suggest that under ideal conditions, chocolate will remain in its pristine condition for up to two years, though it will still be edible for some time after that. Another thing to consider is that chocolate can absorb the flavors of other foods – flavor transfer can occur through plastic packaging.

An option that works quite well for a lot of food storage experts is storing chocolate in canning jars, and using a jar sealer to vacuum out the air and damaging oxygen.

To summarize, while some of these ingredients can be stored for several decades with no ill effects, others will benefit from a good system of rotation. Successfully storing cookie ingredients is possible.

So what about those chocolate-chip cookies made with thirty-year-old chocolate chips? Before baking, the chocolate chips tasted decidedly “off,” though in a way that is difficult to describe. One taste-tester suggested that they had absorbed some flavor from the brown sugar with which it was stored.

After baking, the chocolate chips failed to melt in the usual way to which I have become accustomed. I thought the cookies tasted fine so I served them to several people who noticed no difference in taste – including some picky toddlers I happen to know. My husband, however, was aware that the chocolate chips were put into storage during the Iran Hostage Crisis and did not appreciate being fed poison. He said, “I feel like I just got hit with something weird.” That was definitely the chocolate chips.

Rotation, rotation, rotation.

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31 Delicious Apple Recipes for Every Day of the Month! http://thesurvivalmom.com/31-delicious-apple-recipes-for-every-day-of-the-month/ http://thesurvivalmom.com/31-delicious-apple-recipes-for-every-day-of-the-month/#comments Mon, 30 Mar 2015 18:25:00 +0000 http://thesurvivalmom.com/?p=22426 One of the most popular blog posts here on The Survival Mom blog is, 27 Things You Can Do With Apples. What’s funny, is that I just threw that list together on a whim, based on my own search for Read More

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Delicious apple recipesOne of the most popular blog posts here on The Survival Mom blog is, 27 Things You Can Do With Apples. What’s funny, is that I just threw that list together on a whim, based on my own search for delicious apple recipes. Apparently, I’m not the only apple-lover out there!

I love fresh apples and buy them almost weekly for snacking, but I also have plenty of dehydrated and freeze dried apples for baking and other recipes. They’re handy, year round, and when I’m in an apple-baking mood, they’re ready to go. Here are 2 delicious recipes from Augason Farms using dehydrated apple slices. Try the cobbler in a Dutch oven!!

Augason Farms Apple Cobbler

Crust
1/2 cup butter
1 cup Quick Rolled Oats
2 cups flour
1/3 cup white granulated sugar
1 cup finely chopped walnuts

Apple Filling

4 cups Augason Farms Dehydrated Apple Slices
5-6 cups Augason Farms Apple Delight Drink Mix
3/4 cup white granulated sugar
1/2 cup raisins
1-2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon orange rind – optional

Vanilla Sauce

2 cups Augason Farms Country Fresh Milk, prepared
3/4 cup white granulated sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 egg yolks
2 tablespoons cornstarch

To make the crust, melt butter in a medium-sized saucepan. Add sugar and stir. Mix in oats. Add flour and walnuts, mix together until crumbly. Put half of crumbs in bottom of a 9×13” baking pan.

Place apple slices and  juice in a large saucepan and bring to a low boil, simmer 15 minutes. Add sugar, raisins, cinnamon, and orange rind. Spoon onto crust, sprinkle with remaining crumbs. Bake at 350˚F for 40 minutes.

Get the vanilla sauce ready by placing milk, sugar, and vanilla in a medium saucepan. Heat on low – do not boil. Add cornstarch and stir well. Beat egg yolks, take about 1/2 cup hot milk mixture and add egg yolks, mix well. Add to pan, stirring constantly until sauce thickens slightly. Pour over cobbler and bake 20 minutes longer. Serve warm or at room temperature, with or without ice cream.

Apple Cinnamon Upside Down Cake

Cake

3 1/4 cups apple cinnamon muffin mix
2/3 cup cold water
1/2 cup butter or margarine
1/2 cup pecans
1/4 cup whipping cream
1 cup Augason Farms Brown Sugar
2 cups Augason Farms Dehydrated Apple Slices – rehydrated

Topping

2/3 cup white frosting
1/2 cup whipped topping (thawed)
Caramel topping if desired

In 1-quart heavy sauce pan, cook butter, whipping cream and brown sugar over low heat, stirring occasionally, just until butter melts.  Pour into a 9×13” pan.  Sprinkle with pecans; top with softened apple slices (fresh apple slices may be used).

In large bowl, beat muffin mix on low speed until moistened, then on medium speed 2 minutes.  Carefully spoon batter over apple mixture.

Bake at 350˚F for 40 to 45 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.  Cool in pan 10 minutes.  Loosen sides of cake from pan.  Place serving platter upside down on pan; carefully turn platter and pan over and let rest about 1 minute before removing pan.  In a small bowl, mix frosting and whipped topping.  Frost cake and drizzle with caramel topping.

How to substitute dehydrated apples for fresh

If your recipe calls for fresh apples, you can plan on substituting 1 pound of dehydrated apples for 4 pounds of fresh or figure that the dehydrated version will be about 25-30% of the fresh. Keep in mind that when measuring out the dehydrated fruit, it packs a lot more loosely in a measuring cup, so either use a “heaping” measurement or pack the dried fruit into the measuring cup to get a more accurate amount for your recipe.

The dried fruit will need to be reconstituted in water before adding to the recipe. In a small bowl, place your dried fruit and twice the measurement of warm water. Example: 1 cup of dried apples to 2 cups warm water.

Allow the fruit to absorb the water for about 20 minutes. Before adding to the recipe, drain the fruit well.

Here are 29 more delicious apple recipes for you to try! One for every day of the month!

You’ll find all these, and a lot more, on my Desserts Pinterest board!

 

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Why You Should Include Junk Food in Your Food Storage Pantry http://thesurvivalmom.com/junk-food-storage/ http://thesurvivalmom.com/junk-food-storage/#comments Wed, 25 Mar 2015 14:40:12 +0000 http://thesurvivalmom.com/?p=21932 Disasters are stressful, no question about it. The power goes out, maybe the water and heat along with it. The kids are whining and probably at least a little scared. You and your spouse are edgy, perhaps getting more than Read More

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Add junk food storage to your food storage pantry.Disasters are stressful, no question about it. The power goes out, maybe the water and heat along with it. The kids are whining and probably at least a little scared. You and your spouse are edgy, perhaps getting more than a little short with each other. You’re all stuck at home, either because the roads are terrible or because there’s just no place to go, no stores or restaurants are open.

This is just the time to break into your junk food storage to bring a bit of comfort.

Comfort food is just that, food that provides psychological, if not physical, comfort. It does so not because it is chock full of nutritious goodness but, in many cases at least, because it doesn’t do a damn thing for you but taste good. Much of the time, comfort foods are what we call “junk food”.

Junk food is a guilty pleasure. We know we shouldn’t eat very much of it. We know that fruits and vegetables are a far better, healthier choice for snacking. But, y’know what? Sometimes a body just needs salt, grease, and chocolate!

Now, I’m not suggesting you abandon your food storage plans and get rid of the home canned veggies, the soups, the stews, and all that good stuff. What I am suggesting, though, is you add to your storage at least a few selections from the shady side of the food pyramid.

Popcorn is a great choice, but go for the bagged, already popped, corn. Keep in mind that in an emergency, your ability to cook, whether with a microwave or stove top, may be limited. While yes, it is great fun to make popcorn the old fashioned way, with oil and a pan over a flame, that just might not be feasible depending upon the nature of the crisis. Some movie theaters sell gigantic bags of pre-popped popcorn already salted and ready to eat.

Chips are usually a hit as well. Many varieties will stay fresh a while as long as the bags are sealed. My own preference is for nacho cheese Doritos. Seriously, Doritos ranks rather high on my list of things I’m going to miss should the world come crashing down around my ears.

Of course, candy and chocolate deserve to be included on our list of comfort foods. Ideally, you already have a nice cool, dark spot in your house where you’re storing much of your disaster supplies. A few chocolate bars, maybe a few boxes of theater candy, and an assortment of other sugary goodies would be a great addition to the home emergency kit.

Most junk food isn’t packaged in a way that is intended for long-term food storage. Cookies, candy, crackers, and even smaller chips like Fritos will need to be repackaged if you plan on having junk food storage.

Now, I will readily admit that I’m a fiend for soda and I drink far more of it than is healthy for anyone. That said, I do actually drink less now than I did when I was younger, so that’s a step in the right direction. If you have a similar fixation on carbonated beverages, you might consider packing a few cans or bottles in with the other comfort foods. Keep in mind, though, that most of these fizzy drinks don’t have a very long shelf life. A bottle of soda I bought today at a convenience store is showing an expiration date about ten weeks from now. I can tell you from experience that, unlike the expiration dates you’ll find on other food products, the ones listed on Mountain Dew bottles are pretty factual. I tried a bottle once that was about two months out of date. That, um, did not go well.

I strongly suggest that any food items be stored in some sort of pest-proof container. A small Rubbermaid tote would work well, as would any other container made from heavy plastic that has a tight lid. It wouldn’t be very comforting to open up your box of goodies only to find that mice have made a nice home out of the now-empty chip bags. Keep in mind the enemies of food storage, rotate your junk food (that probably won’t be a problem!), and keep a stash for those stressful post-crisis days.

The post Why You Should Include Junk Food in Your Food Storage Pantry by Jim Cobb appeared first on The Survival Mom. Be sure to check it out!

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My secret ingredient: Buttermilk! http://thesurvivalmom.com/buttermilk/ http://thesurvivalmom.com/buttermilk/#comments Mon, 23 Mar 2015 13:53:58 +0000 http://thesurvivalmom.com/?p=21642 About two years ago, I decided to stop buying pre-made baking mixes and start making pancakes, muffins, waffles and biscuits from scratch. They tasted great, and I was glad I made the switch from store-bought to homemade. And then I discovered Read More

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Use buttermilk in your recipes for a better, richer flavor.About two years ago, I decided to stop buying pre-made baking mixes and start making pancakes, muffins, waffles and biscuits from scratch. They tasted great, and I was glad I made the switch from store-bought to homemade.

And then I discovered what buttermilk could do.

I had some leftover buttermilk in my refrigerator from making Irish soda bread for St. Patrick’s Day and decided to use it to make pancakes. One bite was all it took to convince the whole family that we would only make buttermilk pancakes from then on. Out of curiosity, I added buttermilk to homemade muffins and biscuits, and the verdict was the same – delicious!

Buttermilk adds flavor

Buttermilk really is like a secret ingredient when it comes to making baked goods from scratch. It is also key if you make your own Ranch dressing. There is a significant taste difference to the dressing if you use buttermilk instead of milk. It just tastes better and fresher and adds a deeper, richer flavor than milk in many recipes.

What is buttermilk?

What is buttermilk? It is the slightly sour liquid left over after butter has been churned. If you haven’t tried to make your own butter, there is a very simple process, and you can see for yourself what buttermilk is. This is a fun project for kids, as a way to teach them where their food comes from and how it’s made.

The good news is that you don’t have to make homemade butter first. You can just buy it at the store. But, even better news is that you don’t even have to go buy it – you can make it with two ingredients you probably already have in your refrigerator. If you have milk and lemons or lemon juice on hand, you can make your own buttermilk and it will only take you a few extra minutes.

How to make buttermilk

Start with 1 cup of milk and add 1 Tablespoon of lemon juice. Let the mixture sit for 5 to 10 minutes. Voila! Buttermilk!

If you don’t have lemon juice, you can also use 1 Tablespoon of white vinegar, and you can substitute heavy cream for the milk. Each variation has its own taste, but they all add more flavor than milk alone.

You can freeze it!

If you buy a whole quart of buttermilk, it’s unlikely you’ll use it all up in just a few days. Stored in the fridge, it will remain fresh for at least 2 weeks after the printed date on the carton.

You can also freeze it if you have any left over. If you want small portions, freeze it in an ice cube tray and then transfer the frozen buttermilk cubes to a container once they’re frozen. To thaw, put the frozen cubes in the refrigerator or heat it on a low setting. The buttermilk will need to be whisked or blended once it’s thawed, as the freezing process may separate the solids and whey.

Start using buttermilk in old and new recipes!

Read over your recipes and see if there might already be a variation for using this secret ingredient. If there isn’t one and you want to substitute buttermilk for milk, add ½ teaspoon baking soda per cup for baked goods. Try it just once and you’ll never go back.

Here are a few new recipes for you to try.

Peach Buttermilk Muffins

Honey Whole Wheat Buttermilk Sandwich Bread

Buttermilk fried chicken

Blackberry buttermilk ice cream

Buttermilk biscuits

Buttermilk pancakes

 

 

 

 

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7 Reasons to Buy Old Cookbooks http://thesurvivalmom.com/5-reasons-buy-old-cookbooks/ http://thesurvivalmom.com/5-reasons-buy-old-cookbooks/#comments Tue, 17 Mar 2015 07:00:43 +0000 http://thesurvivalmom.com/?p=21792 I keep my eye out for old cookbooks when I go to thrift stores or garage sales. They are part of the books we keep on hand for reference material and I like to buy old cookbooks for many reasons. Read More

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buy old cookbooksI keep my eye out for old cookbooks when I go to thrift stores or garage sales. They are part of the books we keep on hand for reference material and I like to buy old cookbooks for many reasons.

By “old,” I mean cookbooks from the early 1980’s or earlier.

7 Reasons to buy old cookbooks

1. Cooking without a microwave

Microwaves didn’t become household items until the mid-1970s, according to the IEEE Global History Network. If the power ever goes out for any amount of time, the microwave will not be an option. We will be cooking on the grill, over a fire, on a rocket stove, a solar oven, or on a handmade stove.

While I do know what recipes I can make out of my food storage, my husband and children might need to figure things out if something happens to me. Or, if we get bored with the meals out of storage, we can find new recipes for variety. Older cookbooks rarely, if ever, have you use the microwave as part of the recipe. This makes it easier to convert the recipe to another cooking method.

2. Fewer convenience ingredients

How many of the recipes that you use contain baking mix or canned beans as ingredients? What happens when the Bisquick runs out and you only have dry beans? Older cookbooks have you use the ingredients that you would probably have in your food storage because there weren’t as many convenience products to buy in the stores, which also means fewer processed foods, with their GMO ingredients and additives.  That’s a win-win, all the way around.

3. More real ingredients for healthier eating

This ties to fewer convenience ingredients, but older cookbooks usually use more “real food” ingredients. You need to have the basics on hand – flour, sugar, salt, beans, seasonings, butter, etc. They won’t call for Hershey’s syrup or pre-mixed seasonings. This can be helpful not only for cooking from the food pantry but also if you want to move more towards a real food diet. For example, the older cookbook I have has six versions of a basic fruit cobbler (7-10 ingredients), while the new one only has a version that uses quick-cooking polenta mix or cornmeal (about 10 ingredients).

4. Calls for using fewer kitchen gadgets

Electric mixers, food processors, blenders are all part of most people’s kitchen and cooking routines. However, if there’s no power, there’s no way to use those gadgets. An EMP, as featured in One Second After, could eliminate every electric appliance in your kitchen.

Do you know how to knead bread without your mixer? Do you have a way to blend ingredients without the blender? Good knives and the right non-electric tools would come in handy. Older cookbooks have tips on how to make recipes using these types of tools instead of electric kitchen gadgets.

For example, I found a 1989 Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook (I’m still looking for an older one). While it does say how to proof yeast in a microwave, it also explains how to alter a recipe if using a hand mixer instead of an electric mixer.

5. More variations for recipes

I noticed more recipes with cornmeal in older cookbooks, like corn waffles and fried mush. There are recipes for sauces and salad dressings. If you want to make anything from scratch, you can usually find a recipe for it in an older cookbook. The older the cookbook, the more it will use basic ingredients and have more variations on the recipes with fewer ingredients. (Think of depression era recipes). The older cookbook I have has recipes for rabbit and spiced tongue. Whenever I can, I buy old cookbooks!

6. They’re inexpensive

A new cookbook with glossy photos can easily cost $20 and more. Especially when purchased at a bookstore. Old cookbooks can cost fifty cents, or less, in second hand bookstores, thrift stores, yard sales, and similar places. You can easily buy several for less than ten bucks.

7. They bring back memories of old favorites

Thumbing through an old cookbook, you will probably come across recipes that you remember from your childhood, your grandma’s kitchen, and potlucks from past holidays and church events. It’s a little bit like going on a treasure hunt — you never know what you’ll find!

Don’t forget the new …

I’ve found some great “new” cookbooks that provide all these features, too.

Have you found any hidden gems in old cookbooks? Do you think they are worth looking for and adding to your reference library?

Helpful resources mentioned in this article:

 

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