Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Last Trip to the Grocery Store

I grocery shop every Wednesday. Today is Wednesday December 30, 2009 so it is officially my last trip to the grocery store for the next year. Can't say that I'm sad about that! Anyway, I'm taking "last meal" requests from my family. Everyone gets one last meal of their favorite dish. So this week we are having:

Chicken Enchiladas
French Dip
Stuffed Shells
Chicken Adobo

This is going to be one whopping grocery bill - LOL. I'm going to have to avoid the temptation to stock up at the grocery store. It's going to be hard. I'm starting to feel overwhelmed by this whole project already.

On a related note, I got a Bosch for Christmas!! I'm SO excited! I had a KitchenAid that has been my trusted companion for the last 10 years but I can only make 2-3 loaves of bread at a time which means baking bread twice a week for my large family. With this Bosch I can make up to 8 loaves at once ~ Woo Hoo!! Now I can keep the extra loaves in the freezer until I need them.

Next Sunday I will post my official rules for the coming year....

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Costco Trip

So I made my monthly trip to Costco this week. Definitely didn't buy the usual though since I was buying in anticipation of going full food storage in January. That means no meat or other non-food storage items that we wouldn't have time to eat before January.

I did buy their 5 gallon bucket of powdered milk. I already have all my powdered milk but theirs was SO cheap ~ only $27! It makes 52 gallons of milk so that is like 51 cents per gallon! Can't beat that. Unfortunately it not real powdered milk, it's milk substitute, so while it tastes good, it lacks some of the nutrients. It will be great to use in baking though, and drinking occasionally.

I also bought some spices, chicken boullion in particular. I have realized already that I don't have enough spices stored. With such a limited number of ingredients to cook with, and most of them very bland, spices will be all that stands between us and food fatigue. Especially when I have little ones who would rather just not eat if they don't like it.

On a related note, I FINALLY got my kids to eat a 13 bean soup recipe. I've been experimenting with different recipes and my kids have hated them all so far. This week I decided to keep it simple so I just put 2 cups of my dry mix of 13 beans in my crockpot with 6 cups chicken broth and turned it on low for 6-8 hours. When the beans were soft, I served the soup with a sprinkle of garlic salt on it. It was a HUGE hit! My 5 and 7 year old literally licked the bowl clean and asked for more. My older kids just said, "Finally mom, a bean soup recipe that isn't gross." :) Apparently less is more. I should have just tried chicken broth to begin with instead of a bunch of complicated spices. Lesson learned.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Did you know?

Only 3 more weeks until the big experiment begins and I'm getting pretty excited! My husband is grumbling less about it which is nice and I have found a lot of recipes, and a couple of cookbooks that are going to be very helpful. They are called "Cookin' With Home Storage" and "Country Beans" Both of them have lots of recipes that contain only food storage items, and lots of other helpful info. Like, did you know that you can mix some bean flour in with your regular wheat flour when making bread and it makes a complete protein? I've also run some pinto beans through my wheat grinder to make bean flour and made YUMMY refried beans with it, plus you can use bean flour to thicken sauces, and as a soup base. In fact I'm using bean flour tonight to make gravy for my pot roast. Very cool.

I also found an older Make a Mix book that is going to help solve one of my biggest obstacles to living off food storage - the time factor. I just don't have all day to be cooking meals. However, I have found TONS of recipes that you just make the dry mix ahead of time and then you can use the mix to throw dinner together at the last minute. Think soup mixes, bread mixes, and even seasoning mixes like taco seasoning, soup seasoning etc. Oh, and get THIS - did you know you can make almost everything from scratch? I have recipes for yeast, mayonnaise, cream of anything soup, dried onion soup mix.... Seriously. EVERYTHING. And (here's the best part) they require only the ingredients I have in my food storage! I know that you are all dying to know more. I will post recipes and stuff of these items as I use them. And of course, I'll let you know how they taste! OK, have to get going as I have maxed out my available allotment of exclamation points for one post.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Hope we don't get sick

Ok I found lots of recipes and a few books that I think I can use this upcoming year. Looking over what I can actually make with just food storage though is pretty dismal. We hopefully will still be alive but I don't think we'll be particularly healthy, and I'm positive we won't be very happy. It just reinforces for me why I want to do this though. If I see that it is totally unliveable to eat this stuff then I know I need to store different things.

I am legitimately concerned about what might happen to suddenly change our diets so drastically. I mean, we eat wheat, in the bread that I make every week, but even that is a 50/50 recipe with white flour so we don't eat a lot of whole grains. I'm worried that we all might get sick with a sudden drastic change of diet. But again, this is why I'm doing this. If I ever have to live off food storage, it's likely to be a sudden event where we would have to go to food storage cold turkey. This experience will help me plan for that. Hopefully there won't be any tummy aches but if there are I will know that is one more thing I need to make sure is planned for with what I store.

BTW, my husband is SO not on board with my little plan. My kids are excited but I think it's because they don't really realize how their lives are about to change :) Last night we had Little Caesars. I can never eat convenient fast food now without thinking "What am I going to do next year in this situation?" So basically it was pizza with a side of guilt.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Feeling Better

Ok, I'm a little less overwhelmed today. I did some research online and found several cookbooks that I think are going to help me with recipes and cooking the food I have stored. I also talked to my friend Megan and she gave me some recipes and some ideas. I plan to have a nice "cookbook" together by January so I will at least know what I am going to make out of this food!

I also need to figure out how I am going to rotate it. Right now I have food stored everywhere. In the garage, in closets, under beds.... seriously.... everywhere. Have you ever actually seen a years worth of food for 8 people? It's a LOT of food! Half the challenge is going to be figuring out how to get to it and rotate it. I think I have a plan though for some can dispensers my husband can build for me in the garage that will make it a lot easier. He doesn't know he's building them yet. Gonna have to wait for just the right moment to spring that on him. Preferably after he finishes the bathroom re-model he is right in the middle of. :)

Friday, November 20, 2009

Getting a little worried.

Ok I'm starting to panic a little bit. I'm doing research and trying to find recipes that use just basic food storage items. They are few and far between. Most recipes just incorporate food storage items into your regular recipes. Yikes! My family may mutiny on me. LOL I have a few more things to get to complete my years supply so I'm trying to get that done before January. I need 400 lbs more of wheat, 70 lbs of white beans, 200 lbs of sugar, and some misc items. And I would REALLY like to purchase a Bosch Universal Mixer before January. I have a KitchenAid but I don't think it's up to the kind of abuse it's about to get in the next year.....

Sunday, November 15, 2009

In the beginning....

First off let me just put a disclaimer. I hate blogs. Love Facebook. Hate blogs. Don't have them - don't follow them. However, I realized there might be some people intersted in the journey I am about to embark on so I'm breaking my own vow to never have a blog :)

First a little about myself. Born and raised in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. I tell you that because I happily define my life by my religion. Not surprisingly then I went to BYU, went on a mission, married a very handsome returned missionary, and am the mother of 6 rambunctious and opinionated children ranging in ages from 3 - 14.

I also have a years worth of food stored in my 1,900 square foot house. I would tell you how we manage that but it would require a whole other blog :) After gathering it all together - I even rotate most of it in with our regular cooking - I realized that if I ever had to truly live off of just my food storage, I would have NO idea what to do. Not good. I can't think of any happy circumstance that would cause me to have to live off food storage so I will most likely be dealing with a devastating circumstance AND trying to figure out how to feed my family on the food I have stored. How to solve this problem? Well why not practice living off of it for a year?

I know what you are thinking because I've already heard it from friends and family but people that know me will tell you that this is the kind of person I am. All or nothing. And very self reliant. I'm the last person wanting to have to ask for help so I figure one year of experience is going to make me way more than one year wiser.

My goal is three-fold. 1. Learn what I am not storing that I should be. 2. Learn what I am storing that I don't need to be. 3. Learn how to actually cook and live off what I have stored. I'm not trying to torture my family, this is a learning experience only. I'm going to set out the ground rules on this experiment in a later blog. Right now I have to go make dinner - roasted chicken, fresh green beans, and homemade rolls with cinnamon butter. Not even a hint of food storage in there! lol