Sunday, May 29, 2011

Living on Less and Having More~Food

Living on less I'm a great advocate of having more with Dehydrating. You may not get fat unless your into junk foods, which to me is not only an unnecessary expense but consists of unhealthy snacks, fast food, prepared foods, fats, sugars, and chemicals, but you can have more in many ways. For a start chemicals which all store bought prepared foods are laced with to preserve them according to government standards are harmful. Preservatives aren't necessary if you prepare, store and cook food properly. Our grandmothers and great grandmothers did this for centuries and lived to produce our dumbed down society that believes the government when it says we need preservative. For this reason raising my family I gardened organic and provided the better portion of our food. In the past few years I've gone back to it on a very small scale, as we can find many larger grocery's now stocking organic. However it's the smaller local sources I seek except out of season, but even then here in the U.S. we can get local greenhouse organic. More costly but my body is worth not having it process unknown chemicals which serve to do their damage before elimination. Won't go into this here, but we never know what the government has mandated to lace our food with and not tell us. (not a conspiracy theorist but I'm aware we're being tampered with behind our backs) However, here we're being able to live on less and hare more through food storage during hard times or when we find shortages, or when natural Earth disasters create situations with no electric for freezing and glass canning jars get broken. The only way is to Dehydrated fresh foods in air tight meal size bags. Less work, less expense, less weight to carry and last forever. Drying your own using a small dehydrator and a Seal-a-Meal or the plastic air extractor bags which for long periods must be taped over the hole and zipend; I use these bags only for herbs as the surest way to air tight is the seal-a-meal heated closure. Last time I checked Seal-a-Meal cost about $50+. the bags are heavier and costly but thicker and make your hard work worth it with less puncture chance.

Presently the garden is just starting to sprout, but herbs are ready so the present supply goes in jars, and then storage packs to reopen later for added to all-i-one bag meals dried for stews soup and roasts with peas carrots mushrooms potatoes. Meats dry well, but must be put in
separate packs by themselves. Ran into a sale on White Button Mushrooms 1/3 of the normal price, I suggest you look for sales or shop farmers market buying bulk for real savings. This year I'm hoping to put up 50+ all-in-one bags that will make crock pot stews for one meal a week. Then do some singles with mushrooms and individual vegetables packs for other meals. The best things are that which go into sauces and gravy, as reconstituted are never crip and have the stewed over cooked texture, but are great for emergency and better than nothing. I'm finding I can do much more with gravy and tomato sauce by using these dried additions and they make healthier well rounded meals. Dried tomatoes and peppers are also great along with other vegetables for stir fry with sauces and stewed dishes. Dried tomatoes powdered are a great emergency food but it takes a lot of tomatoes to make one pot of sauce.

Dehydrating is an art in itself, costing less than other forms of food preservation. It's the oldest form and takes far less storage space, suffers less chance of damage or spoilage than canned
or frozen. In times past they preserved and dried with salt, which today we know is not good in quantity. You need a dehydrator ranging from $20 to $200 I use two units one at either end of the scale and honestly the more expensive works no better it only takes larger amounts and you can regulate the temperature. You can do even more saving with a Solar Dryer you make yourself. All information is on line for the search, and you'll find nearly any and everything can be dried. Some things require preparations like soaking others can be made into leathers or stored in trail type mixes for snaking. Personally I stay with survival foods. I'd rather spend time on basic meals (including strip dried meats) instead of the snack. There is a knack to it but it's easy safe and great security and best is more for less.

Comments and discussion are welcome .. it's how we share our wisdom

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