Saturday, June 28, 2008

Poll

For those of you who read my blog on some kind of reader, you haven't realized that we have a poll going on about what kinds of foods/things you think are most important to have in your food storage. So, if you haven't voted, please hurry - only two days left!

You'll have to click to open the blog and then the poll will be at the upper right of all the context. You can click on as many items as you wish and then click to vote.

I would love to see what you all think.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Food Storage and Emergency Preparedness?

Come one, come all - I came across this food storage blog today. Whoever writes it, does a great job and has some great preparedness ideas. Stumble through it and see what you learn.

Here it is: http://www.shelfreliance.com/blog/

I learned a few things about having my primary supply and how long to store things like wheat, meats, grains, milk, dairy products, and more, and then I also learned a few extra reasons to have my emergency supply kit in order and with me - in the office, at home, in the car, or all of the above. Who knows where I will be when I might need something essential, like food, water, light, protection from the elements.

Again, here is the link, I highly recommend reading. (Besides the person is an interesting writer. I liked reading it.) http://www.shelfreliance.com/blog/

Really, check it out. You can come back and read more here later, I'll find something really good to write on.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Water, Water

I know a lot of the midwest is under water. We worry about you who live there.

We, in Idaho, jumped from winter to summer (seriously, snow to 80 degrees) within 10 days time. The temperatures continue to rise and we struggle to keep our crops watered. So, if you don't hear from me for a few days, there is a good chance it is due to water.

I get a lot of questions asking what else we grow besides spelt and wheat. So, here is getting to know us better.

We also grow potatoes (by the way, potatoes really are healthy for you. It is the butter and sour cream that isn't so healthy for you.), seed peas, alfalfa hay, grass hay, hard red wheat, soft white wheat, and sweet corn, and a few cows.

The sweet corn is only about 3 acres that we pick by hand each harvest and sell locally. It usually turns out to be the best sweet corn I've ever had.
Everything else is grown in lots of 20-200 acres. (That is a very rough estimate)

So, there you have it... now you know!

Talk to you again soon.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

American Economy in Distress

I know, you've heard about this a lot lately. The economy is in trouble, and our politicians are going off the deep end heading towards socialism. I am NOT looking forward to November and choosing between those running for office. Since this is not a political blog, that is all I will say about that.

Now, my friend sent this video in my email and I thought it was really interesting - enough to share with you here.

After watching this video, I decided I had better not procrastinate my food storage much more. And not that I'm procrastinating, but I sure don't have everything I need. There is always more to do. Be prepared... and watch with an open mind. I'd love to hear your feedback.

video

p.s. Disclaimer: I don't know where this video originated, I do know the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints produced it. This is not a religious sermon.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Grain & Flour for Food Storage

I have many conversations about how to store grains in food storage, how much grain should you (we) store, and what are the best methods, so I wanted to share a few ideas about storing grain in a long term food storage situation.

First, grains means more than just what you might have pictured in your brain. Read on to see what I mean:

300 pounds of grains total

Clarification: When planning your food storage, it is suggested that you (adults and children over 7 years old) plan to have a total of 300 pounds of grains per person. Children (0-6 yrs) need a total of 148 pounds of grains per person.

Here is the breakdown:

GRAINS - IN BERRY FORM (i.e. Spelt, Hard Red Wheat, Hard White Wheat)
Adults: 150 pounds
Children: 75 pounds
FLOUR
Adults need 25 lbs
Children need 14 lb
CORN MEAL
Adults: 25 pounds
Children: 14 pounds
OATS
Adults: 25 pounds
Children: 14 pounds
PASTA
Adults: 25 pounds
Children: 14 pounds RICE
Adults: 50 pounds
Children: 25 pounds

That comes to a total of 300 lbs per person for adults (or people over 7 years old) and for children under 7, a total of 148 pounds.

How to Store Your Grains

I prefer to use 5 or 6 gallon buckets to store my grains. I have macaroni noodles, rice, and wheat in my buckets. I know you can use oxygen absorber packets to make the grain last longer. And if at all possible, you should keep your grains in a dark, cool, clean location. Preferably one without rodents. If rodents are present, you will definitely want to use buckets or tin cans or even old metal garbage cans to store your wheat - so the rodents don't think you are doing them a favor by providing them some food storage.

Spelt Flour Sale

In case you are an avid spelt user, there is a great sale on flour going on right now. You can find 25 or 50 lb bags of spelt flour at www.histakes-spelt.com/spelt.php
Enjoy and keep that food storage going!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Food Storage Location Basics

This may seem overwhelming to some, but I wanted to get personal with you today. I'm going to show you MY food storage room. I don't show this to boast. (Although, I do love this room.) *Side note: I also love that I lined the shelves with wallpaper. It feels cleaner.

I show this room to give you an idea of an awesome food storage room. Thanks to the wonderful people who built my house, we have the best fruit/food storage room around.

I understand many people have many different circumstances and living locations and abilities - do what you can with what you have.

The important thing is to have some food storage and to keep your food storage in a dark and cool area in your house or apartment. If at all possible.

If you are building a new home, you probably won't need a room this big, but it is always a good idea, if you have a basement, to have a non-insulated basement (underground) room with no windows. Don't leave this room out. Food storage is so important - and so is having space to store things - many things.

I'm going to tell you about a few things we have stored- as you can see in the pictures:
First, you will see lots of bottles, can and buckets. We store the stuff we like to eat: green beans, pickles, tomatoes, ketchup to start. Applesauce, apple pie filling, pears to name a few more.

The buckets are full of macaroni noodles, rice spelt, and wheat.

The garbage cans hold flour and popcorn.
























Notice the bleach containers on the floor? Those store water (like for flushing toilets and washing things.) Drinking water is mostly stored on the top shelf - purchased from the store.

Sugar is of the floor. We have milk from Gossners - the Ultra Heat Treated, Shelf stable stuff. (Tastes great!!) That is in the blue boxes.

Then I have lots of empty bottles/jars. I inherited a lot of them from mother, mother-in-law, aunts... I just never knew how many I needed, so I kept collecting. I think I have enough for a while.

Canning is not a lost art - not yet, anyway.















And last I wanted to show this cool roller shelf thing. It was built by my husband's uncle, and we inherited it. It worked pretty good and holds lots of cans. So many, that we don't even have it filled yet.


So there are some ideas on what to store and maybe how to store them.

Good luck - I love your feedback!

Monday, June 9, 2008

Gardening Counts as Food Storage in Progress

Hi. I wanted to share a little bit of what we have been up to. We FINALLY got a garden in. We have had uncommonly cool weather and lots of rain this year, so it hasn't been easy to get it in. It hasn't been easy to mow the yard, either, but once in a while we get that done.
Now we just get to wait and watch things grow. I love watching things grow. It is fascinating to me.



Hopefully, this garden will produce so we can add peas, beans, corn, tomatoes, potatoes and cucumbers to our eating habits as well as to our food storage. I love the harvest season and feeling productive growing my own food in my own little way. Even though we farm, this ends up being "my very own" little contribution to our family food situation. I think it often tastes better when you grow it yourself, as opposed to getting produce from the store. (Any thoughts?)


By the way, you don't need to have a garden like mine (smaller or bigger). You can always grow some kind of vegetable in a pot in your house. It is very possible and productive. My sister used to grow tomatoes in a pot when she lived in an apartment at college. My niece loves to grow anything she can get her hands on. Currently, she has onions, avacado (yes the tree), squash, and something else in pots growing by her back door. She loves to get seeds and see what she can do with them.
You can do it!

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Bread Day

Today is bread making day. Everybody loves when I have a bread day. My little boys love to help add flour and even shape loaves. They are such good helpers!
I will probably make bread a lot this summer - every 6-10 days. We go through a lot of bread for sandwiches in summer. I promise that I won't tell you every time I make bread this summer. Just every once in a while. ;)
I just want to report that it turned out beautifully. The dough was a little sticky as I shaped loaves, but it turned out okay in the end. Hooray for small successes. I dare say that my recipe is almost fail proof. Is that possible?

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Spelt Cinnamon Rolls


I posted a few days ago about making some AMAZING cinnamon rolls made with spelt bread dough. I wanted to finally post the picture that I took. They were soft and perfect and one of my best attempts, yet. Sometimes I wonder how they can get better. I love the challenge to make my treats better or at least as good as the last time.

Doesn't this make you drool?

You can find the recipe here: www.histakes-spelt.com/recipes.php
It is the first recipe - the 100% whole wheat bread dough recipe.
I made scones, 5 loaves of bread, and cinnamon rolls out of that batch of dough.

Spelt Growth

People ask me all the time if there really is a shortage of grain in the world. It is true. Hate to say it, but it is true - at least for now, until we see what this year's crop produces. So, what you hear on the news is true.

We, too, are experiencing a shortage with our spelt inventory. Our supply of spelt is almost gone. If you really are thinking of getting some, you might want to do it sooner than later. (The spelt berries are going quickly... and if you wanted 25 lb bags, they are already gone until harvest.) Go here to order: www.histakes-spelt.com/spelt.php

By the way, harvest is in August/September.

I also want to mention some good news on this front: this years crop is on schedule and looking good. Here is a picture we took a few days ago of the spelt field. (We get to watch it grow - the field is across the road from where I live. Cool, huh?)



There is hope, but we just might have to wait for a little while...

Monday, June 2, 2008

Moving from there to here

Welcome to the new and improved blog for HiStakes. We will continue to talk about food storage. For references on past posts, please visit: http://histakes-spelt.com/infoblog/
We have had good discussion and ideas on the last blog. We are moving here because we will have increased versatility. One main reason: we will be able to show you more pictures (which I have been struggling with a lot on the previous blog). So please enjoy reading and I always love to hear great comments from fellow readers and food storage supporters and activists. (Not sure activists is the right description, but I couldn't come up with another word.)
Talk to you again soon...

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