One good reason to stockpile food is because global food prices are on the rise. Gasoline is predicted to reach an all time high of $5 per gallon. As the price of gasoline goes up, so does the cost of food.
The strange weather patterns are causing some of the shortages as well. Get ready to pay double or even triple the price for fresh produce after the worst freeze in 60 years damaged or wiped out entire crops in Northern Mexico and the Southwestern United States. Farmers experienced terrible crop losses.
It not only devastated the farmers, but now it is hitting us in the pocketbook. We need to stock up on staples such as bulk dry goods while we can, before the prices rise even higher on these items.
Following last week’s earthquake, the people in Japan have had to stand in line for five hours at the grocery store. They are limited to only five items per person. Fuel, water and food are in great demand and there are shortages of everything.
Are you prepared for a natural disaster like that one? If you are the one prepared you can help your friends and family if they are driven from their homes. I personally would much rather be the one handing out my food reserves than the one begging for food.
Water, Water, Everywhere And Not A Drop To Drink
The earthquake and tsunami in Japan demolished entire towns. There was water everywhere except in the grocery stores.
Without potable water, your dehydrated food will be no good. So store enough good drinking water for a minimum of three months; which is 90 gallons per person. You can purchase water tanks that hold 250 gallons of water and stand 87 inches tall and 30 inches in circumference.
I keep mine in the corner of my garage and keep it full of drinking water at all times. I suggest a product called ION water treatment. It is a stabilized oxygen product. One bottle for $15.50 will treat 110 gallons of water and keep it safe from harmful bacteria for up to five years. These products are available on my website
The Best Investment For Your Money Is Food
The key to storing food for emergencies is to keep it simple. What I tell people is to plan one week of menus that your family will eat. Make sure that you plan this out very carefully. Write a list of your favorite recipes: seven breakfasts, seven lunches and seven dinners.
All the menus should contain ingredients that can be stored for two-plus years either in wet pack cans or dehydrated. For a three-month emergency food storage plan you take all the ingredients in your recipes for one week and multiply them by 12. This gives you an accurate accounting of what you need to purchase.
When you have stockpiled all the necessary ingredients, you can start over with new recipes for more of a variety. Then proceed to purchase another three months worth of food, using this method until you have a one-year supply. If you keep it simple and plan it out, you will be able to accomplish the goal fairly easily. A one-year supply of food turns into a six-month supply for two people or a three-month supply with four people. You better figure that if times are tough enough to use the food reserves, you will most likely be feeding other family members or friends.
Simple breakfast menus can consist of foods like oatmeal, cracked whole-wheat cereal, farina, cream of wheat, six-grain rolled cereal or rice cereal. You will need some sort of sweetener like honey, white or brown sugar, dried or canned fruit, maple syrup, stevia, agave or other something else if you prefer. Cinnamon is good on hot cereal.
Powdered milk is always a good substitute for fresh milk and can be used on cereal as well. You could eat hot cereal every day for breakfast and you would be just fine. Babies and children will do fine on oatmeal, millet, cream of wheat and rice cereal. These grains are easier on their delicate digestive systems.
Dried whole eggs or dried egg mix can be rehydrated and scrambled just like fresh eggs. Any egg dish can be made with dried eggs. The secret is to reconstitute the whole egg powder with one tablespoon of water to one tablespoon of dried egg powder. This is a substitute for any fresh egg called for in any recipe. On my website you can purchase my book, Cookin’ With Dried Eggs. It has more than 100 recipes for egg dishes using dried egg powder.
The best way to plan lunch meals is to store everything to make soup. These food items include dried and canned vegetables and bouillon for flavoring the soup. Grains and legumes like barley, rice, beans, lentils and split peas are always good and make hearty in soups.
I suggest that you have in your pantry everything you will need to make simple soups. There is a great variety of dried vegetables on the market. I keep in my pantry, dried vegetables like onions, peas, corn, broccoli, stew blend, carrots, celery, peppers and potatoes. There are premade soup mixes on the market that you just add water to. I like to store a creamy soup base that I can make into chowders and cream soups as well as sauces for pasta and rice.
Simple breads go well with soup. Dumplings are good in soup because they puff up when dropped into the hot soup. They are filling and taste great.
Other breads that work well with soup are cornbread muffins, flatbreads (like tortillas), bread sticks, rolls, scones and biscuits. These are all easy to make and require simple ingredients to make like flour, sweetener, salt, baking powder, yeast and water.
If you have these simple ingredients in your pantry you can make soup and bread. The pioneers lived on soup and bread. They always had a pot of stew or soup cooking on the wood stove. They added leftover scraps of meat, vegetables and grains to the pot.
When the men came in from working hard in the fields they enjoyed a warm and delicious bowl of soup. I have a philosophy that we can live on soup and bread, just like the pioneers did.
Simple entrees like pasta with sauce, spaghetti, macaroni and cheese sauce, casseroles, one-pot meals, stews, chowders, rice and beans, potato dishes, rehydrated vegetables are great choices for dinner. Simple breads go well with entrees also.
Again I need to emphasize that all ingredients to make these simple meals needs to be something that can be stored. If we encounter a crisis it is almost certain that we will not have access to any fresh or frozen fruits, vegetables, dairy products or produce of any kind. The rule of thumb for canned food items is that they will last on the shelf for about two years. Dehydrated or dried, as well as freeze dried products will last 15+ years. That is why it is a good idea to stock up on dried foods.
Simple breads can be included in the dinner meals. It is best to store whole grains, like wheat, for grinding into fresh flour for breads.
For the serious bread maker this requires a wheat grinder. Without a wheat grinder you will need to store flour as well as other baking items, like yeast, baking powder, soda and salt. Freshly ground wheat and other grains are much more nutritious when ground just before using. If you are gluten intolerant, you will need to store other grains that have no gluten. These include rice and rye.
Desserts And Other Comfort Foods
I am sure if we are in a crisis we will want things like sweets and comfort foods. I store popcorn for that reason. It is easy to make and I really like it. Store your favorite comfort foods: things such as puddings, cake mixes, gelatin, drink mixes, condiments, hot chocolate mix etc…
Beans and rice might get old after a while and you will be very happy for something different. I store a large variety of herbal teas. To me, a glass of warm tea is very comforting.
A Three-Month, Six-Month And One-Year Supply Of Dried Foods Is Available
These units are designed to give you a variety of dried vegetables, fruits, legumes, dairy products, sweeteners, fats, bread baking items, grains for hot cereal and breads, beans and legumes, meat substitutes, cooking items like bouillon, creamy soup base, salt, soda and baking powder. This unit comes with a can opener and a free copy of my book, Cookin’ With Home Storage.
It would be wise to add to these units things like spices, sauce mixes, gravies and any other foods that your family likes and could not live without. These units are designed to give you peace of mind knowing that you have these storable items that can be rehydrated and used for meals. These units are available on my website.
Simple, Easy Meals: Just Add Water, Cook And It’s Done
eFoods is one of the best ways I have found to stockpile easy, simple meals that are ready to go. You just add water, cook for 15 minutes and the meal is done. This way of cooking is for the new generation. I encourage people to get a three month emergency supply of premade meals.
Some of the features of eFoods Global are:
- Dehydrated from premium-grade, fresh raw fruits, vegetables, dairy products, grains, beans and legumes.
- Complete meals with everything in them. All you do is add water.
- Can be used every day for fast, convenient and healthy food.
- Contain no genetically modified (GMOs) foods.
- Contain no added monosodium glutamate (MSG).
- Contain no imports from countries using illegal fertilizers and insecticides.
- Contain no hydrogenated oils.
- Packaged for long-term storage in Mylar® pouches.
Another great feature: The company lets you try before you buy.
I like to store them in the heavy-duty boxes they come in. However, another good way to store these meals is in a five-gallon bucket with a tight-fitting lid.
The packages include soups like cheddar broccoli, Italian chicken, vegetable beef, tortilla, corn chowder, minestrone, chicken noodle, chili and potato cheddar. Entrée and other baking items include chicken pasta Alfredo, cheesy chicken rice casserole, beef stroganoff, au gratin potatoes, instant seasoned potatoes, pancake mix, corn muffin mix, cornmeal dumplings, granola, powdered milk, wheat bread mix and buttermilk biscuit mix. Simply go here, click on TRY IT to receive three meals with 12 servings of sample food.
Each meal will feed two to four people per package. All you do is pay $9.95 for shipping. If you have any questions I can be reached at 435-835-0311 or (cell) 435-851-0777 in Utah.
I have written seven different books on the subject of food storage. Many of them are cookbooks and my most popular cookbook is Cookin’ With Home Storage. It contains more than 550 recipes for using basic food storage items mentioned in this article.
Also included in this book are historic facts about how the pioneers actually survived on weeds, wild animals and herbs, how they dug homes called dugouts into the mountainside, how they lived without electricity, how they raised chickens, goats and cattle and how they survived by banding together and forming co-ops in which they bartered and shared food.
If you would like to see what dehydrated foods are available for purchase or to check out the books and cookbooks mentioned in this article, go to my website, www.peggylayton.com.