Whenever one of the kids is sick, I prepare the blandest possible food for them — something like unflavored oatmeal. They eat it because they’re hungry but they certainly don’t enjoy it!
What would it be like to eat bland food every day? It wouldn’t be fun, and it sure wouldn’t be enjoyable! But eating bland food for a while could happen to those ill-prepared for a disaster, especially if supplies were difficult to find.
And, because naturally bland foods like rice and beans top the list of so-called “survival” foods, it’s important to make sure your emergency food pantry contains spices, herbs, and other seasonings to brighten up those boring meals.
When you think about what kinds of spices, herbs, oils, and other staples are important to have on hand for cooking, here are a few that would be on my ‘must-have’ list.
- Kosher salt
- Sea salt (read this article for why it’s important)
- Herbes de Provence
- Ground black pepper or black peppercorns
- Ground cumin
- Ground chili powder
- Garlic powder
- Ground cinnamon
- Montreal Steak Seasoning
- Ground ginger
- Baking powder
- Baking soda
- Balsamic vinegar
- Soy sauce
- Onion powder
- Dried parsley
- Ground turmeric
- Dried onion flakes
- Granulated sugar
- Celery seed
- Celery salt
- Beef bouillon
- Chicken bouillon
- Extra virgin olive oil
- Canola oil (Read more about extending the shelf life of oils.)
- Corn Starch
- Brown sugar
- Hoisin Sauce
Now, you may wonder why you’d want such a vast array of spices and seasonings. The reason is it could get boring very quickly eating the same thing over and over.
Spices Like Fashion?
With spices and seasonings, you can mix and match, like with outfits. If you wear the same red shirt day in and out, you’ll soon tire of it (and so will others). But if you have a vest or blazer to wear over the red shirt, or a different color shirt, or different shoes, you’re creating a different look.
Variety is Key
We humans tire of eating the same thing day in and day out. You don’t want to eat pork roast all week. But if there’s a good sale on pork, you can have the roast with sweet potatoes one day, then serve it with brown rice, homemade applesauce, and brown gravy the next day, and mix it up by serving a pork and vegetable stir fry the following day. Even rice and beans can become something amazing with my recipe for Rice and Beans With a Bam! So, prep your pantry with some good ingredients and spices. Your family will be very grateful you did.
Remember in the olden days, when spices were very, very expensive? So pricey that only royalty and nobles could afford spices? Even salt was dear and hard to get. Yes, spices can get expensive. But, if you order in bulk and split the spices and shipping cost among spice-ordering friends, your wallet won’t hurt as much. These are things to think about when prepping for any kind of disaster; whether it’s a hurricane or worse.
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