My groceries were delivered this past Thursday. I am concentrating on food storage, so there were bags of sugar and flour and rice. There were some odds and ends of canned tomatoes and fruit to fill in some gaps on the shelves.
I ordered 4 lbs. of carrots thinking I would cube them and dehydrate. I keep much of my dehydrated food in freezer Ziploc bags stored in cardboard banker's boxes. When I checked the box of dry carrots, I found it was full to the brim, so I cut the carrots into chunks and canned 7 pints.
Next were 4 bunches of celery. I have never been able to successfully rehydrate celery. It doesn't seem to matter if I blanch it or not, I always wind up with rock hard bits. So now I just slice it and dehydrate. When dry, I run it through my small coffee grinder, turning those hard pieces into powder. I get the taste of celery without the unwanted rock hard crunch.
Next was 4 lbs. of pinto beans. I soaked them overnight, filled each pint jar about 2/3 full, added a teaspoon of onion flakes made from my home dried onions and a beef bouillon cube for flavor. This was topped off with a scant 1/3 cup of shredded ham. I added broth from cooking the ham and processed the jars for 75 minutes. I had one jar that didn't seal, so I used that for a taste test. I like it.
The first canner load held 16 pints of ham and beans. I had three pints leftover, so I sorted and washed 2 lbs. of Great Northern beans, put 1/2 cup of the dry beans in each pint jar along with the rest of the shredded ham and seasonings. I used water for the liquid and processed them as for the first load.
All totalled, I got 19 pints of pinto beans and ham and 14 pints of Great Northern beans and ham. Not exactly gourmet fare, but it will certainly fill empty stomachs!
I still have 10 lbs. of potatoes to dehydrate, but that will keep for another day.
Many of us grow gardens that provide us with vegetables and fruit to preserve. I love the pictures folks post and the articles they write about their gardening efforts. Takes me back to a time when I could do the same. But there are also many of us who are not in a place where we can garden. That doesn't mean we can not build up a deep pantry.
Some who were raised in the country like I was, tend to scoff at those who do not garden, home can and preserve. I'm pretty sure we would all prefer home grown, organic. But I'm here to tell you that in the end, it doesn't matter. If the only means available to store food is to buy extra cans of food at the grocery - do it. If your only source for meat is the grocery - buy it and freeze it.
Take a good, hard look around. See those meat processing plants shut down due to the virus? See those truckers who refuse to go into those areas where they do not have police protection? See those thugs who are burning and looting? What makes you think you will not be affected?
I don't care what the reason is for preparing. But prepare we must. For if this assault on our country continues to escalate, what you have on your shelves may be all there is.
Pray and prepare.
Monday Memes And Memories
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