2009 Food Storage Challenge (March Update) - Page 4 - Mothering Forums
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#91 of 109 Old 03-01-2009, 02:07 PM
 
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i'm loving this thread!!

not much for me to add right now, i feel like such a beginner in this realm, i've consistently been trying to eat our pantry down to save money and really, we do have a little bit extra so why not stock up on things that won't go bad?

i'm getting some buckets and gamma lids next month and planning on a larger than normal azure order. i love azure standard!! whatever is on sale, canned tomatoes, veggie broth, pasture butter :...

i'm hoping to convince my mom to bring up a chest freezer for me when she comes up for a visit at the end of this month. it's free for her in exchange for some lamb she gave the owner of a restaurant so it would just need to be loaded in her truck or van and brought up here.

it would increase our storage a LOT! since out fridge is rather small.

i'm saving fir a grain mill by may and i think i'll stock up on grains after i get that. i'll probably start a new thread but i'm trying to decide between a family grain mill and the country life, any experiences either way??

eh. who needs a signature?
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#92 of 109 Old 03-01-2009, 04:26 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Jyotsna View Post
Okay, for March, I've got two challenges for you!

1. Begin gathering seeds if you haven't already. Let us know what seeds you have, and which seeds you need. What are your gardening plans for this spring? Can you do spring gardening where you live? What's the planting date in your area for your very first spring plantings?
For seeds we have: pole beans, green beans, yellow squash, zucchini squash, watermelons, cantelope (sp?), spinach, soy beans, corn, cucumbers, kale, onions, peas, sugar snap peas, peppers, roma tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, basil, catnip, cilantro and stevia.

In the ground now: broccoli, mixed leaf lettuce. The lettuce is producing tons but the broccoli is still growing.

In the ground since past years: strawberries, dwarf lemon tree, three blueberry trees, asian pears, apple tree, nectarine, green/red grapes and a ginormous artichoke.

I don't know planting dates. I pick the fruits/veggies and the man figures out the rest. I know the peas have to go in soon and that we have starters growing in kitchen window that are already sprouting.

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2. Second bulk storage purchase. Time to purchase your second bulk item for your storage. Do you eat rice? Do you have enough for the next 2 to 3 months? Or do you enjoy baking? If so, do you know where to buy wheat? Either way, scope out the place where you will buy your next bulk purchase. I'm focusing on wheat in March. Also cans of tomatoes, since we use SO MANY of them.
Bulk storage is my weak spot since I don't have tons of room in the house and (due to summer heat and the man's woodworking tools) not much can go in the garage. Basements are rare in my part of the country. I am trying to talk him into a chest freezer that would fit in the garage. I saw one at Costco for around $200. My uncle always buys whole cows and pigs and is always on the lookout for someone to take half.

I'm ok on canned goods but should probably pick up some more. As far as bulk food storage goes, my grandmother was the queen of bulk storage. Now that she's demented and recovering from a heart attack my mom (who takes care of her full-time) is using up her stash so the house can be sold. Grandma will be living with my aunt who has her own food storage. I'm taking as many of her bins, cans and whatnot as I can.

Once I figure out the container situation I'll make big purchases at both Costco and Winco (great bulk area).
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#93 of 109 Old 03-01-2009, 10:01 PM
 
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Hi there, we orderd most all of our seeds a couple months ago, so we're set for that. A couple weeks ago now my dad got his first batch of lettuce/greens/spinach started and they're all looking good. Then last weekend we got 2 flats (so 48 total) broccoli plants started, and they too are looking fantastic. I think out of 48 cells planted only 3 don't have anything coming up, and we can easily move a couple others around Once we get all this stuff either planted or in peat pots (depending on the weather) here in a few more weeks, we'll be starting our tomatoes & peppers and such

This month, I'm ordering long grain rice, as I'm nearly out (25#) and *attempting* sucanat *again*!!! One of these days that stuff just HAS to come in, right??? Oh, and more garlic granules (we're on our last 1# bag. I swear, we go through more bloody garlic granules than most people would believe was humanly possible!!)
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#94 of 109 Old 03-02-2009, 06:19 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Aubergine,

You are SO welcome. She is just the cutest grandma! (great grandma I think). And to be so clear at her age, in my opinion, is a sign of the way she ate. She said they ate in small quanities. I'm trying to listen to this. Also, perhaps having community may be the number one health aspect for her. She has talked about always having people around them. And now she has grandchildren and great grandchildren and all their friends. I think loneliness must be the worst thing for our health.

Hope you enjoy the videos. They are slow, since she is, but if you have a bulk amount of time, it would be worth it just to listen to her talk, and watch her cook.

And I definately check out the cardboard cold frame sites. Sounds like something doable!

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#95 of 109 Old 03-02-2009, 06:29 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Krankydiann,

I'm sorry I didn't mention earlier...very sorry to hear about your husbands job loss. I'm glad you have a good food storage, and that it will help you until he finds a job. Hang in there. I'm hoping your situation changes very soon.

Playmama, glad you can join us. What is your plan for your chest freezer should you lose electricity? Do you have a generator? Have you thought it might be a good idea to get the generator before filling up the freezer? I'd be very worried if I had it filled, and a weather situation or economic crash caused the electricy to go out, and I wasn't prepared. Just a thought. Good luck with your plans, and it sounds like you have some good ideas.

Not Now and Mamadelbosque,

Which planting regions do you live in? Our planting season for broccoli, spinach and lettuce is just starting. I haven't seen the farmers almanac to see if I can go ahead and plant yet, but we had 5 inches of snow yesterday, and I guess I plan to wait a little bit more before planting. Almost exactly a year ago we had the same type of snow, and then we had our last frost almost 4 weeks later.

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#96 of 109 Old 03-02-2009, 11:26 AM
 
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We're starting stuff inside atm, in our basement (my dads big xmas present to himself was a whole setup with a heat pad & 4 lights 4' lights for starting stuff inside). We're in zone 4/5 in NE Ohio, and yeah, we got that nasty big snowstorm last winter too. But my dad usually tries to get his first batch of greens outside by mid-late march and they're OK, and so I figure broccoli should be fine about the same time (all can take a frost, just not a super duper hard one).
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#97 of 109 Old 03-02-2009, 06:29 PM
 
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I've been working on this over the past few months. I always shop with a stockpile in mind anyway. I stock up on things that are on sale.

I'm working towards getting more proteins and canned fruits on the shelf.

How do you store your items?
My biggest thing I need to get moving on is water. What's your best suggestion?

I've been freezing some and putting it in empty spaces in the freezer. I just don't want to save all sorts of water and have it be slimy;0!
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#98 of 109 Old 03-02-2009, 06:32 PM - Thread Starter
 
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PJ'sMomma,

I'd be very interested to read the responses to your question about water. That is quite challenging.

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#99 of 109 Old 03-02-2009, 06:53 PM
 
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I have no idea what zone I'm in. I live in California's central valley so we can grow almost anything. The temp around here has been low 70's so lots of stuff is blooming.
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#100 of 109 Old 03-03-2009, 02:36 AM
 
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This has changed my food storage plans a lot! I just found it today and it's a goldmine of info. I am so looking into getting a dehydrator (will build a solar one as well, I hope) and doing this. I'll be able to store a whole lot more than I would if I froze/canned it all. http://www.youtube.com/user/Dehydrate2store

She uses a lot of plastic, but I think that's just her. I can't wait to store all the dehydrated foods. We don't eat 'raw' foods much (aka I steam/cook almost everything) so I think this will work with how we eat. I wish I knew how to dehydrate my own butter/milk/eggs/meat. She focuses on fruits & veggies.



As for the Depression Grandma, did you guys watch the newest video "poor man's feast?" Those meat strips were so thin!


Ami

Wife to dh, Mommy to my heavenly angel, J (06), and my earthly angels, S (07) and E (10)

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#101 of 109 Old 03-03-2009, 10:35 AM
 
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As for the Depression Grandma, did you guys watch the newest video "poor man's feast?" Those meat strips were so thin!


Ami
Thanks for the dehydration youtube, and yes I did see the meat was sooo thin. Also, unless I'm mistaken, I think she puts the cooked meat back into the same juice that the raw meat was marinating in.

Wife, 27, to DH, 33, and Mama to DS1 Josiah - 8/09, DS2 James - 3/11, 10 angel babies, 3 foster children, and one adorable ALMOST ADOPTED son - 5/05 

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#102 of 109 Old 03-03-2009, 06:30 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hi JTA Mom,

I tried to watch that video, but there were too many things going on at one time. I think it would be hard for me to watch the whole thing. : )

I'm very interested in drying food though, so if you find any more (simple) information, I'd be interested.

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#103 of 109 Old 03-04-2009, 06:06 AM
 
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Thanks for the dehydration youtube, and yes I did see the meat was sooo thin. Also, unless I'm mistaken, I think she puts the cooked meat back into the same juice that the raw meat was marinating in.
Yea, that last part kind of squigged me out. Putting cooked meat back into the same marinade it was soaking in while raw is a big no-no. Ah well, what doesn't kill ya....:

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Hi JTA Mom,

I tried to watch that video, but there were too many things going on at one time. I think it would be hard for me to watch the whole thing. : )

I'm very interested in drying food though, so if you find any more (simple) information, I'd be interested.
I just watched it to get an idea of what dehydrating food could be like & what using it would be like. The beginning ones are kind of hard to follow, but as you get further into the series it's really eye opening, especially when looking at how much actual food she's put by versus the space they take up. It is amazing to see the tiny dehydrated splinter sized baby carrots turn into full size, plump baby carrots in the stew. I use her more as a jumping off point, so I'm off to research a good dehydrating book and am saving up for an electric dehydrator. Hopefully I'll be able to make a solar one this summer.

Just for the visual effect, look at this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gOoTw...eature=related

All that food in the jars (which are quart jars) used to be 30lbs of food. And it will be 30lbs again when rehydrated. It really opens up storage possibilities since they are more compact and very lightweight.

I'm just starting out, so I don't know too much about it, but it's definitely piqued my interest.

ETA: Here's an interesting basic food drying site I just found.

Ami

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#104 of 109 Old 03-04-2009, 06:21 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for the second video. It definately is amazing how a person could store all that food, in such a small space. I want to check out drying potato. I'm vegetarian, so I know I won't be dealing with fish or meats, but it would be awesome to have 200lbs of veggies dryed and stored in my house. Maybe it would take too long. But little by little, it would be helpful.

I'll have to check out the dehydrators. I'm really interested in perhaps finding instructions on how to make a high quality non-electric dehydrator.

Thanks again.

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#105 of 109 Old 03-05-2009, 05:00 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Has anyone tried the Kimche recipe that I posted on here from the Food Storage class?

I've got the ingredients to make it, and I'm going to do it tonight. I'd just love any guidance from those who make this regularly. I really want to try some fermented foods, and the idea of fermenting as a way to store food, really appeals to me.

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#106 of 109 Old 03-10-2009, 06:14 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I hate to see this thread disappear, since so many of you have read it and posted too. So I'm bumping it up. Perhaps it could be earmarked somewhere?

I got some bad news from Whole Foods. The manager told me they couldn't give out any more of the food grade buckets, because the buckets had the "Whole Foods" name on them. Legal issue I guess. Too bad, because I was hoping to pick some up over time. They ARE recycling them, so at least they aren't going to waste. I'm disappointed however, as I have made some plans with some extra buckets I was hoping to pickup. Anyone have other suggestions?

After I put my 25lbs in the storage buckets I had, I realized that it wasn't very much. We depend on rice as a major food source...our major source of carbs. I need to buy another 25lb bag of rice.

J.

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#107 of 109 Old 03-11-2009, 12:12 AM
 
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I got some bad news from Whole Foods. The manager told me they couldn't give out any more of the food grade buckets, because the buckets had the "Whole Foods" name on them. Legal issue I guess. Too bad, because I was hoping to pick some up over time. They ARE recycling them, so at least they aren't going to waste. I'm disappointed however, as I have made some plans with some extra buckets I was hoping to pickup. Anyone have other suggestions?

J.
I'm sorry you can't get your buckets from them anymore. The whole legal excuse gets old with me. They have something they don't want, you want it. Should be simple enough.

I've been getting my buckets and lids from 2 local grocery stores' bakery departments. They're frosting buckets and while not the 5 gallon size, they do hold a considerable amount. One store's has rubber seals in the lids which I much prefer. I just keep checking back for more when I'm near. I have also heard that delis are a good place to pick up buckets though the pickle smell might hang around for a while.

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#108 of 109 Old 03-22-2009, 03:14 PM
 
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Has anyone tried the Kimche recipe that I posted on here from the Food Storage class?

I've got the ingredients to make it, and I'm going to do it tonight. I'd just love any guidance from those who make this regularly. I really want to try some fermented foods, and the idea of fermenting as a way to store food, really appeals to me.

Jyotsna
I have no idea how to make kimchee, but thanks for posting the recipe.

I actually went out and bought some kimchee, which I've only ever eaten in restaurants, and I am LOVING having it in my fridge.

My only experiment fermenting cabbage (for sauerkraut) went horribly wrong a few years back. I'd probably be looking for a good youtube tutorial.
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#109 of 109 Old 05-17-2009, 01:02 PM
 
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Wow! This is uch a great thread! I actually have a dehydrator, I need to dig it out and learn to use it. I also water bath can and just got 2 pressure canners. 1 needs a new gasket.
(I'll probably replace the other while I'm at it) and they need their gauges tested, but our extension lost their testing equipment, so I need to go over to next county over to get it tested. I'm a little nervous about explosions, though. Any words of advice? Is it like birth where you hear everyone's horror stories, but its basically no big deal?

Katie, mama to Katherine 19, Christian 17, Johannah 15, Nicholas 10, Genevieve 8, Matthew 5, Andrew 11/16/09 10#6oz home waterbirth and madly in love with  my husband, Scott

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