food

All posts tagged food

By Theresa Crouse – SurvivoPedia

How self-sufficient are you? Do you grow any of your own foods, or at least cook your own meals from scratch?

If not, you’re dependent on the grocery store for survival and you’re eating foods that may be killing you.

And you’re definitely spending way more than you should be on food.

But how can you change all of that?

The following scenario probably describes many people’s day, at least part of the time:

They come home from work, drop their stuff on the couch, grab a bag of chips and a soda, and relax on the couch. Later, they have a microwaved TV dinner, then, before bed, a few Oreos and a glass of cold milk that you didn’t have to extract from the cow. As a matter of fact, they have no idea where that cow even lives.

Sounds familiar? Of course it does. I just described at least one day in many people’s life, if not an average day. None of that would have been possible before 1910, because that’s when food started being processed commercially. And they would have been healthier because of it.

Continue reading at SurvivoPedia: 5 Tips To Stop You From Wasting Your Budget At The Supermarket

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5 ‘Survival Insurance’ Trees Every Homesteader Should Plant

Image source: Pixabay.com

By Trent Rhode – Off The Grid News

There is an old saying that goes, “The best time to plant a tree is 10 years ago.” This holds especially true for trees that someday may save your life in the event of a crisis or disaster.

The next best time to plant a tree, of course, is right now.

But, what should you plant?

Below is a list of trees that are especially important for food and other survival uses, based on the amount of calories they can supply, how well they store, and how long they take to produce.

1. Hazelnut (Corylus species)

Uses: Nuts are one of the most nutrient-dense, long-term storage crops you can grow, and hazelnuts top the list of best nuts to plant. This is because of their exceptional nutritional value as well as their ability to produce quickly, within 4-5 years. Keep the nut shell on and store in a cool, dry place, and it should store for at least 12 months. An edible oil can be extracted from the seed.

Continue reading at Off The Grid News: 5 ‘Survival Insurance’ Trees Every Homesteader Should Plant

It's disgusting - but not surprising - that a federal code protects the corporations instead of the consumers. Here's what we know.:

By Daisy Luther – The Organic Prepper

You probably saw the article last week about the massive recall of Sargento products. As it turns out, the Sargento products are only a drop in the bucket – there are 130 more products out there and the FDA is under a gag order not to name them, according to the website Food Safety News.

Today, Sargento added more products to the list. (You can find them below.) I think that they should be applauded for being the most open about the potential listeria contamination in their products.

Unfortunately, there are many more products out there that have been recalled for potential contamination, but we have no idea what they are. That’s because there is a clause in the federal code that prohibits the FDA from telling us which companies purchased cheese to be branded under their labels from the plant that has been affected with listeria. According to this clause, the names of those companies would be considered “confidential corporate information.”

The plant, Deutsch Kase Haus LLC, is based in Middleburg, Tennessee.

Food Safety News has tracked down some of the products that may be affected. This recall applies only to cheese, so other products from these companies are unlikely to be tainted.

I’ll only list the brands here:

  • Sara Lee
  • Saputo
  • Dutch Valley
  • Guggisberg
  • Biery Cheese Co.
  • MDS (a distributor of pre-made sandwiches and deli salads)

Some store brands are also affected, and included in the recall could be prepared foods from the deli that contain the tainted  cheeses:

  • Albertsons
  • Meijer
  • H-E-B
  • Randalls

Source: Food Safety News

I’m disgusted – but not surprised – by the fact that a federal code protects the corporations instead of the consumers.

My advice? Only buy cheese from local sources until this has all been straightened out. DO NOT purchase the corporate cheese products because, with this gag order, you have no idea if they are safe or not. Consider throwing out products you have on hand or calling the manufacturer to see if the recall applies to them.

Here is the information about the Sargento recall from my previous article:

EDIT: The recall list has been updated to include these additional products:

  • Sargento Sliced Colby
  • Sargento Sliced Muenster
  • Sargento Sliced Tomato & Basil Jack
  • Sargento Shredded Reduced Fat Colby-Jack
  • Sargento Sliced Colby-Jack Cheese
  • Sargento Shredded Chef Blends 4 Cheese Pizzeria
  • Artisan Blends Double Cheddar Shredded Cheese
  • Ultra Thin Sliced Longhorn Colby
  • Chef Blends Shredded Nacho & Taco
  • Chef Blends Shredded Taco

Sargento has issued a massive recall on cheese due to possible contamination with listeria.

The affected products are:

  • Sargento Sliced Pepper Jack Cheese
  • Sargento Chef Blends Shredded Taco Cheese
  • Sargento Off The Block Shredded Fine Cut Colby-Jack Cheese
  • Sargento Off The Block Shredded Fine Cut Cheddar Jack Cheese

Listeria is a potentially deadly form of food poisoning that has become all-too-common in processed foods lately.

The Food Poison Journal says:

Listeria monocytogenes (Listeria) is a foodborne disease-causing bacteria; the disease is called listeriosis. Listeria can invade the body through a normal and intact gastrointestinal tract. Once in the body, Listeria can travel through the blood stream but the bacteria are often found inside cells. Listeria also produces toxins that damage cells. Listeria invades and grows best in the central nervous system among immune compromised persons, causing meningitis and/or encephalitis (brain infection). In pregnant women, the fetus can become infected, leading to spontaneous abortion, stillbirths, or sepsis (blood infection) in infancy.

Here’s the press release issued by the FDA:

Deutsch Kase Haus, LLC of Middlebury, Ind. has notified Sargento Foods Inc. that a specialty Longhorn Colby cheese they supplied to Sargento must be recalled due to a potential contamination of Listeriamonocytogenes. No illnesses have been reported.

The affected retail products are Sargento Ultra Thin Sliced Longhorn Colby, 6.84 oz., UPC 4610000228, with “Sell By” dates of “12APR17B” and “10MAY17B” and Sargento Chef Blends Shredded Nacho & Taco Cheese, 8 oz., UPC 4610040041, with “Sell By” dates of “H14JUN17” and “H12JUL17.” These products were packaged at the Sargento Plymouth, Wis. facility.

Out of an abundance of caution, Sargento is also recalling the following products because they were packaged on the same line as the affected cheese:

  • Sargento Sliced Colby-Jack Cheese, 12 oz., UPC 4610000109 with “Sell By” date of “11JUN17B”
  • Sargento Sliced Pepper Jack Cheese, 12 oz., UPC 4610000108 with “Sell By” dates of “12JUN17B”, “09JUL17B” and “10JUL17B”
  • Sargento Chef Blends Shredded Taco Cheese, 8 oz., UPC 4610040002 with “Sell By” dates of “H14JUN17”, “F28JUN17” and “D28JUN17”
  • Sargento Off The Block Shredded Fine Cut Colby-Jack Cheese, 8 oz., UPC 4610040014 with “Sell By” date of “F05JUL17”
  • Sargento Off The Block Shredded Fine Cut Cheddar Jack Cheese, 8 oz., UPC 4610040076 with “Sell By” date of “F05JUL17”

No other Sargento branded products are affected by this recall.

Consumers can check if their product is affected by the recall by visiting info.sargento.com and using the “Product Check” tool. This webpage will be updated with the latest information about the recall. Consumers can also call Sargento Consumer Affairs at 1-800-243-3737 between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. (Central Time), or submit questions to the “Contact Us” page at sargento.com.

Our unwavering commitment to safety is at the core of everything we do at Sargento. We are vigilantly monitoring this issue to ensure the situation is resolved in a timely manner, and are working in full cooperation with the Food and Drug Administration to rigorously investigate this issue.

This article first appeared at The Organic Prepper: Cheese Recall Affects 130 More Products … But The FDA Isn’t Allowed to Name Them

About the author:

Daisy is a coffee-swigging, gun-toting, homeschooling blogger who writes about current events, preparedness, frugality, and the pursuit of liberty on her websites, The Organic Prepper and DaisyLuther.com She is the author of 4 books and the co-founder of Preppers University, where she teaches intensive preparedness courses in a live online classroom setting. You can follow her on Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter,.

Cold Frames: The Easiest Way To Get A Jump On The Growing Season

By Jacki Andre – Off The Grid News

Are you as impatient as I am, waiting for the frost-free planting dates to arrive? As the days get longer and spring inches closer, it’s hard not to get itchy fingers for gardening. Still, at this time of year, many of us need to wait for several more weeks, or even months, before we can start planting outdoors. But what if you didn’t have to wait that long? What if you could start gardening about five weeks prior to your traditional frost-free date? You can do it with a cold frame.

A cold frame is basically just a low bottomless box with a translucent top. It protects plants from the elements and provides solar heat to keep them warm.

Creating a Cold Frame

Cold frames are easy to build with found or repurposed items, and unless you want to, there is no need to use tools. It’s true that they’re often built from lumber, with distinctive sloping tops that are covered with clear poly sheeting, polycarbonate sheets or glass. It’s easy to find plans for these kinds of cold frames, like   or  . If you are recycling windows or other material to use as the lid, you can certainly modify the plans to fit the dimensions of the cover.

Continue reading at Off The Grid News: Cold Frames: The Easiest Way To Get A Jump On The Growing Season

Even if there's snow on the ground, there are still some winter garden tasks you can do that will give you a jump start on spring.:

By Daisy Luther – The Organic Prepper

If you’re itching for gardening season to start, you’re in luck. You can start now with the clean hands, no backache part. Whether or not you’ve grown a garden before, there are plenty of tasks you can do during the colder months to get ready for spring. Not using this more barren time means that your planting will be delayed and your harvests will not be as good as they would have if you had been ready to go.

Planning your garden is a crucial step in getting a decent bounty at harvest time, but there’s a lot more to it than just allocating space in your veggie plot. As I discussed last fall in this interview, you need to work on becoming more self-sufficient NOW, regardless of where you live. You don’t have to have 30 acres in the country to produce at least some of your own food.

Here are a few things you can do during the winter.

Some of these things require that the snow already be melted, while others can be done even if it’s up to your knees.

1) Pick up any downed branches 

Chop them into the appropriate sizes and set them aside for firewood or kindling. They’ll need to dry out for a season or two, but it’s a good way to add to your wood stash for free.

Bundling sticks for a perfect fire

2) Rake the leaves.

If the snow has melted, rake your garden to get rid of smaller debris and leaves. (I like this rake because the head is expandable and can work for various nooks and crannies.) Either bag up the leaves so they turn into mulch or add them to the compost bin.

3) Kick the composting into high gear.

If you have a smaller space, rotating compost bins are ideal and make compost super fast. They are the perfect size for those who need small amounts of compost for container growing.

4) Dig up any perennial weeds that have survived the winter.

If the snow has melted and the ground isn’t still frozen rock hard, you can begin attacking those stubborn weeds before things get overgrown. Check every week for new arrivals poking through especially as we move toward warmer weather.

5) Decide what you are going to grow.

Having a garden that can supply the maximum nutrients to you family will be of prime importance if the time comes when you can’t get to the store to stock up.

6) Order your seeds.

Be sure to buy heirloom seeds so you can save them year after year, something that will be critical after a long-term disaster. Get a wide a variety of seeds for long term storage. And come on, who doesn’t love curling up in front of the fire with a pile of seed catalogs?

7) Check for restrictions in your neighborhood.

The laws and regulations targeting small growers could potentially make growing your own veggies illegal. Many HOAs make it difficult to be self-reliant. Check your local regulations – no one wants to deal with the “garden police.”

8) Get your greenhouse ready.

Greenhouses should be completely emptied. Remember that rodents love make a cozy home in greenhouses. If you have one of the plastic ones (like this), they should be cleaned top to bottom to ensure no mood, spores or moss that can affect your tender plants are present.

9) Get your pots ready.

Do you save the little pots from the nursery to use year after year? Be sure to clean them properly to ensure they are free of anything that might contaminate your new plants. Check them for leaks or cracks before planting in them.

10) Test your soil.

If your soil isn’t too hard to dig up a little, it’s a great idea to check the chemistry of your soil so that you can be sure your veggies will thrive. This will help you figure out what type of amendments you will need.

Here are a few more articles that you may find useful:

This article first appeared at The Organic Prepper: 10 Winter Garden Tasks for People Who Just Can’t Wait to Get Started

About the author:

Daisy is a coffee-swigging, gun-toting, homeschooling blogger who writes about current events, preparedness, frugality, and the pursuit of liberty on her websites, The Organic Prepper and DaisyLuther.com She is the author of 4 books and the co-founder of Preppers University, where she teaches intensive preparedness courses in a live online classroom setting. You can follow her on Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter,.

By  – The Prepper Journal

Stacking functions is a quick term for the concept of planning things (elements) and areas (space) to perform the most services for us with the least input. It’s reusing things as many times as possible to get the most out of our time and energy, and letting the spaces themselves do some of the work for us. Elements used in stacking ideally perform multiple services and functions to not only further increase the efficiency of a space, but also add to our resiliency by creating redundancies in our systems. Analyzing homestead elements for multi-functionality and redundancy were covered in the first article. This time we’ll look at combining them into multi-function spaces.

Companion Planting & Guilds

An example of a multi-function space use is companion planting. Companion planting is basically co-locating plants so that one or all partners provide something the others need. A guild is taking that to another level to create a long-sustainable system with few or no outside resources needed for its continued health.

For example, we can put chives and daylily around the base of our trees to prevent weed growth and limit our work or need for mulching that particular area, and they’ll soldier through the dense shade seasons. Around the verges of fruit, nut and resource trees we’d put shade-tolerant and part-sun or full-sun berries, depending on sunlight, or we might have berries and-or vines on the fence beside the trees.

Continue reading at The Prepper Journal: Stacking Functions: Increasing Efficiency with Multi-Function Spaces

how-to-preserve-potatoes

By Ken Jorgustin – Modern Survival Blog

So you’re in the grocery store being frugal and you notice that potatoes are on sale, but you know that if you buy too many – they will spoil before your household will eat all of them…

Or, you are growing potatoes in your garden, and during harvest you have LOTS of them…

If you don’t have your own root cellar and don’t want all those extra potatoes to spoil, here are a few ways to preserve them for long term food storage.
Note: Potatoes are one of the highest calorie-per-pound garden vegetables (about 400 calories per pound), and are a great choice for the ‘survival garden’ (among other things).

UPDATED: Additional method added (a sort of DIY root cellar)

Continue reading at Modern Survival Blog: How To Preserve Potatoes