Not much blog worthy going on here lately. Just the normal cleaning, laundry, etc. You know - exciting stuff! However, yesterday was grocery delivery day and I am back to working on my food storage.
I know that the way I do things is a bit unconventional. Most of the folks whose blogs I read regularly have gardens, or raise their own meat chickens or goats or other meat animals. But as an apartment dweller, I don't have those options. I have the best landlord in the universe, but I'm pretty sure he would be unhappy if he found a goat or two living with me. And there are no community gardens in my neighborhood, so I have to rely on other resources for some of my food storage.
I prefer home canned foods to commercially canned. Mostly because I was raised on home canned food and because I have, over the years, continued preserving food this way, first for my family and now for myself. I buy frozen vegetables when they are on sale. This week it was 32 oz. packages of green beans and mixed vegetables. I bought 6 bags of each. Yesterday afternoon I canned up the green beans and got 24 pints. Later today I'll run the mixed vegetables through my pressure canner.
There wasn't much for meat on sale this week, but there were apples for 99 cents a pound, which is good for my area. I bought 12 pounds. This morning I peeled and sliced the apples and they are cooking down for applesauce. I prefer chunks of apple in my applesauce and by making it myself I can have it just the way I like it. I can also control the amount of sugar by adding just enough brown sugar to taste good. I'll water bath can the applesauce as soon as it has cooked down enough.
I like to have fruit juice on hand. But if I buy the frozen concentrate, chances are good that I won't drink a whole can before it goes bad. Same with the half gallon jugs. Juice is sugary so those of us with blood sugar issues need to drink it sparingly. I get around the problem this way. Half gallon jugs of cranberry juice and cranberry-apple juice were on sale for $1 each. I bought 6 bottles of each flavor. When I finish with the applesauce and vegetables, I will pour the juice into a large pot, heat it to near boiling, fill hot pint jars with the juice and water bath can it for 15 minutes. By canning it in pint jars I can still have a glass of juice from time to time without messing up my blood sugar, as I can drink half a pint one day and the rest another. And it is a good thing to have on hand should my blood sugar get low. And I won't have to throw any away because it has sat in the fridge too long, as has happened before I started canning it in smaller containers.
I guess I write about the way I do things so that maybe somebody else in my position will be encouraged to at least give it a try. I hear excuses from some of my vintage for not having any food storage at all. They say that they can't have a garden. They tell me that they have no room to store anything. They say they just want to buy what they need each week. This last excuse I just don't understand. People get sick - particularly within my age group. I am the perfect example of that. If I didn't have food put back and if I lived in an area that didn't have a grocery delivery service, I would have been screwed. I am lucky to have adult children living close by, but many of my peers don't. The point is not that a person has to do things the way I do. The point is that no matter if you like to can your own food or whether you buy it already canned or packaged at the grocery store, there are ways to have enough food on hand for emergencies.
It is all about taking care of yourself. In the end, nobody is going to come knocking at your door to deliver food and water during a crisis. Think Katrina and Sandy. And then get busy.