Monday, February 28, 2011

Whole Wheat Buttermilk Pancakes

We had breakfast for dinner.  The pancakes were actually quite tasty and light.  DH even liked them.  I got the recipe from Wheat Cookin' Made Easy by Pam Crockett

Whole Wheat Buttermilk Pancakes
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1 Tbl. baking powder
3/4 tsp. salt
3 Tbl. brown sugar
2 egg yolks
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
3 Tbl. oil
2 egg whites, beaten
Combine in order given, folding in beaten egg whites last.  Bake on lightly greased hot griddle. Sugar can be omitted.
Notes: I forgot to put the oil in and didn't notice a difference.  I also used buttermilk powder and water in place of the milk. Make sure you fold in the egg whites, don't just stir them in.  They add a lot of volume and air to the recipe.

Week 46

Here are the specials to keep an eye out for in March.

Frozen foods

I'm teaching a class in March on using wheat.  So tonight I am going to try a recipe for Whole Wheat Buttermilk Pancakes. My DH is such a great sport, although he was the one to ask me to teach the class... 

Friday, February 25, 2011

When Life Gives You Tomatoes, Make Tomato Powder

What is the one thing that just about anyone can grow? Yes, the red fruit of the vine, the tomato. If your garden is anything like mine, all the tomatoes come on ripe in the same week.  Even the neighbors get tired of DH handing out bags of tomatoes.  That was why I think this is so brillant. I happen to come across a post that was talking about making tomato powder. You can use it to flavor soups, make paste, sauces, drinks, taco mix, etc...

The tomatoes are dehydrated and then powdered in a coffee grinder.  I don't drink coffee, but I may have to get a grinder.


Peel tomatoes by dipping in boiling water for 1 minute, (the skins will split a bit, I cut an x at the base of the tomato before blanching. ) then dip the tomato in cold water for 1 minute. Slip skins off and cut out cores. Cut into 1/8" slices or into 1/4" cubes. Drain well.

Dehydrator: Spread slices or cubes over trays so pieces are not overlapping. Dry 8 to 10 hours at 120 degrees F., then turn slices and continue drying for another 6 to 8 hours until brittle.

To Use: Refresh slices by placing on a shallow plate or platter and spraying with warm water. Let soak for 1 hour, spraying with water occasionally. Refresh smaller pieces by soaking in water to cover for 1 hour or more. Add dried slices or cubes without refreshing to salads, soups, and casseroles.

One cup dried yields about 1 1/2 cups refreshed tomatoes.

Rehydrating Tomato Powder
Tomato Paste – 1 tsp powder and 1 tsp water.
Tomato Sauce – l tsp powder and 3 tsp water.
Tomato Soup – 1 tsp powder, 1 tsp water and 2 tsp cream. (note)
Tomato Juice – 1 tsp powder and 1/2 tsp water or more. (note)

NOTE: Adjust amount of water to taste for soup and juice.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Using Rice

I attended a class today for using our food storage rice.  It was fun because we got to taste four different dishes made with rice.  One of the recipes was Chicken and Rice. It tasted like one of those comfort food recipes you want after having a bad day.


2 cans cream of chicken soup OR choice – cream of mushroom, cream of celery  OR – one of each kind of soup (for extra creamy, use 3 cans)
2 cups water
1 ½ cups uncooked rice
½ pkg Lipton onion soup mix OR seasonings of your choice

Combine above in 9 x13 glass casserole dish Place cut-up chicken on top of rice mixture (choose chicken of your choice: 4 boneless, skinless breasts or 6 thighs)
Sprinkle top with the other ½ pkg of soup mix and dry parsley leaves. Cover with foil and bake @ 350 for one hour. Remove foil and continue baking for 30 to 45 minutes.

I will post the other recipes on the Rice page.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Week 45

I will be opening more long term storage this week, so stay tuned.  I know you will be on the edge of your seat waiting...
What am I talking about today-Ricotta Cheese.  A fabulously versatile ingridient that can be used in dozens of recipes ranging from cannoli to lasagne.  Okay, you can buy it at nearly every store with cheese, but did you know you can make it yourself...from powdered milk? It's actually a simple process and uses your food storage non-instant powdered milk.  Here's what you need:
Homemade Ricotta Cheese
8 cups reconstituted non-instant powdered milk
1/2 tsp sea salt (if available)
3 Tbl white vinegar or lemon juice

In a heavy saucepan, heat the milk & salt to boiling over medium-high heat. Stir constatly to keep from scorching. When it boils, stir in vinegar or juice, cover and remove from heat.  Let it remain as is for five or six minutes.

With a slotted spoon, stir it gently as curds form and separate from the liquid mixture (whey). Add the curds to a mesh strainer lined with cheesecloth (yes, it has another use besides making halloween ghosts). Rinse the curds with cool water and use immediately or transfer to a clean bowl, cover and put in fridge for up to five days.  How simple is that?

Now that you have ricotta cheese, try this recipe:
Baked Ziti
1 lb. ziti pasta
2 cups ricotta cheese
1/4 cup grated Romano cheese
2 (8 oz.) cans tomato sauce (reserve 1/4 cup)
1/8 tsp. black pepper, or to taste
2 cups grated mozzarella cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spread reserved 1/4 cup tomato sauce on bottom of a 9 x 13 pan. Cook ziti until it is al dente, stirring often.  Drain, but don't rinse.  Combine ricotta, Romano and tomato sauce. Gently stir sauce into the cooked ziti. Add ziti mixture to 9 x 13 pan and top with mozzarella.  Cover loosely with foil and bake 20 minutes, or until cheese is melted.

Both these recipes can be found in the book Not your Mother's Food Storage, by Kathy Bray and Jan Barker.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

13-year-old Bisquick

Remember all the talk about Y2K?  That was when DH and I got serious about food storage.  We didn't know what might happen, so we played it safe and got more insurance.  By insurance I mean stocking up on food and essentials for however long.  That insurance is the reason I started this blog.  I have got to do something with it.  So, what to do on rainy Saturday?  Check out some 13-year-old Bisquick and 6-grain mix.  We canned these ourselves.  We were told that we couldn't can the Bisquick because of the leavening, but we used a gallon sized Ziploc and included an O2 packet.

DH used a hand can opener and went to work on both cans.  Since I have used the 6-grain mix in making granola, I knew there would be no problem with it.  I imagine it may have lost some nutritional value, but not enough to the point I would not eat it.  The flavor is good and mixed in with all the other granola ingredients, I don't notice any problems.

The Bisquick had a definite color difference.  It had turned darker and was harder than normal.  The smell didn't put us off, so on to a pancake. 
As you can see, the pancakes are actually rising.  This was where DH thought we would see the most problems.  He was sure the time had affected the leavening ingredients in the Bisquick.
The verdict? If we had to eat it we could. The texture was a bit off, kind of soggy, but that just could have been from cooking it too fast. As I was thinking about it, I believe it could still be rotated and used without much difference.  I mean after all, is anyone concerned about Bisquick losing nutrition?  My solution would be to take the old mix and pulverise it in a blender. Then mix half the old with new Bisquick.  I don't think you would really notice any difference in it.  That way we would not be wasteful and would not be sacrificing taste and texture.  That's experiment part 2, for a later day.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Quick Deal

Wholesome Choice in Anaheim has two 24-packs of bottled water for $5.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Cinnamon Raisin Bread

I thought I'd try a different bread recipe.  So, I looked for a cinnamon raisin bread recipe and found this one. If you go to the website, you can change the number of servings, thus cutting down on the amount of loaves. The following recipe is for three loaves.

Cinnamon Raisin Bread
1 1/2 cups milk
1 cup warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
2 (.25 ounce) packages active dry yeast
3 eggs
1/2 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup margarine, softened
1 cup raisins
8 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons milk
3/4 cup white sugar
2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons butter, melted

1.  Warm the milk in a small saucepan until it bubbles, then remove from heat. Let cool until lukewarm.
2.  Dissolve yeast in warm water, and set aside until yeast is frothy. Mix in eggs, sugar, butter or margarine, salt, and raisins. Stir in cooled milk. Add the flour gradually to make a stiff dough.
3.  Knead dough on a lightly floured surface for a few minutes. Place in a large, greased, mixing bowl, and turn to grease the surface of the dough. Cover with a damp cloth. Allow to rise until doubled.
4.  Roll out on a lightly floured surface into a large rectangle 1/2 inch thick. Moisten dough with 2 tablespoons milk. Mix together 3/4 cup sugar and 2 tablespoons cinnamon, and sprinkle mixture on top of the moistened dough. Roll up tightly; the roll should be about 3 inches in diameter. Cut into thirds, and tuck under ends. Place loaves into well greased 9 x 5 inch pans. Lightly grease tops of loaves. Let rise again for 1 hour.
5.  Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 45 minutes, or until loaves are lightly browned and sound hollow when knocked. Remove loaves from pans, and brush with melted butter or margarine. Let cool before slicing.

Monday, February 14, 2011

See KL's Photo Book in MyBookshelf! Free Software

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Week 44

Where did last week go?  I added to my jam stash and DH brought some unused cases of water home.  BTW, if you find the cases of water (24 or more bottles) for $2.99 or less, buy one it's a good deal.  You never know when you might need it.  We keep them in our garage by my car, so if I haven't got a bottle of h2o in my hand, I grab one from the case. Before anyone writes to tell me it isn't green to use bottled water, most of the time I use my own refillable bottle.  Helps to keep you hydrated, even in the winter. You also will want to keep a large canister of kool-aid, lemonade, etc. on hand.  If you need to use barreled water with bleach, it helps to mask the bleach flavor.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

I got a great deal on bluerries, so I made a batch of blueberry and blueberry jalapeno for DH.
I got blueberries 10
for ten dollars. I made blueberry jam and DH wanted blueberry jalapeno, so made a batch of that too.

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Thursday, February 10, 2011

Week 43

More News on Food Prices

U.S. corn reserves hit lowest level in 15 years
The Journal Gazette: February 9, 2011
Christopher Leonard and Sarah Skidmore

ST. LOUIS – U.S. reserves of corn have hit their lowest level in more than 15 years, reflecting tighter supplies that will lead to higher food prices in 2011. Increasing demand for corn from the ethanol industry is cited as a major reason for the decline.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture reported Wednesday that the ethanol industry's projected orders this year rose 8.4 percent, to 13.01 billion bushels, after record-high production in December and January.

That means the United States will have about 675 million bushels of corn left over at the end of year. That's roughly 5 percent of all corn that will be consumed, the lowest surplus level since 1996.

The USDA report, which measures global supply and demand for grains, oilseeds and other crops, said its projections for wheat and soybean stocks remained unchanged at historical low levels for reserves.

The price of corn affects most food products in supermarkets. It's used to feed the cattle, hogs and chickens that fill the meat case, and is the main ingredient in Cap'n Crunch in the cereal aisle and Doritos in the snack aisle. Turned into corn syrup, it sweetens most soft drinks.

The decline in reserves caused corn futures to surge, with prices rising 2.4 percent to $6.9025 during morning trading. Corn prices have already doubled in the last six months, rising from $3.50 a bushel to nearly $7 a bushel. Analysts expect the price increases to continue in coming months.

"I think we have a chance to test the all-time high" price of $7.65 a bushel, said Telvent DTN analyst John Sanow. The tight level of reserves leaves little margin for error if there are production problems this year, which could send prices higher quickly, he said.

Major food makers and some restaurants have already said they'll be raising prices this year because they're paying more for corn, wheat, sugar, coffee and chocolate, all of which are at historically high prices. Weather has affected many crops this year.

A severe drought in China, the world's largest wheat grower, could force prices even higher. The U.N.'s food agency has warned that the drought is driving up the country's wheat prices, and now the focus is on whether China will buy more from the global market, where prices have already risen about 35 percent since mid-November.

Some food makers already began selectively raising prices within the past few quarters.

Those higher prices have begun filtering into stores. Supermarkets have resisted price increases for some time, hoping to hold onto their cost-conscious customers in the tough economy. But chains such as Kroger now also say higher prices are coming.

Cereal maker Kellogg Co. said last week it plans to raise prices by 3 or 4 percentage points. Sara Lee Corp. said Tuesday that it will continue its price increases as it copes with higher commodity costs. The company said the price it pays for coffee beans alone is up 60 percent compared with last year.

And J.M. Smucker Co. said Tuesday that it would raise prices again on Folgers and Dunkin Donuts coffee for the third time this year, by 10 percent on average. A large can of Folgers is already going for around $12 at many markets.

It's not just playing out in the grocery store. McDonald's Corp. said last month that it may raise prices this year as its own food tab rises. The company already raised prices in some markets, including the United Kingdom.

Rising grain costs hit meat producers first. Tyson Foods, the nation's biggest meat company, says it is aiming to cut $200 million in operational costs to offset higher corn and soybean costs. CEO Donnie Smith calls that the "new normal" price range. Tyson said chicken, beef and pork prices are expect to rise, if only slightly, this year as producers seek to cover costs.

Shares of meat producers like Tyson, Smithfield Foods and Pilgrim's Pride opened lower Wednesday, falling less than 1 percent in early trading.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Rice and Sugar Prices

This post is from a food storage group on yahoo:

Hi all

I know living in a different country means that what affects me living in Australia may not have an impact on anybody living elsewhere but I feel impressed to tell you to think of stocking up on rice and sugar.

Because of the floods in South Eastern Australlia, the rice crops have been severely reduced. With the advent of Cyclone Yasi in Far North Queensland, nearly all the sugar crop has been destroyed.

This will mean that prices will rise sharply here in Australia.

If you're thinking this doesn't concern me because I am somewhere else, just think about what this does to the world wide crop estimates. Food shortages anywhere affect us all because of the commodities market. Buyers will start huge amounts of stocks because of fear or greed which then drives up the price world wide.

How is the adverse weather where ever you are, affecting the crops that are in the ground or waiting to be sown?

Something to think about.

Erin in Sydney, Australia

Another poster mentioned that the potato crop in Idaho was not as big as expected this year and the prices should be soon rising.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Timely Experiences

For those that are going through the storms back East, you're not the only ones. I pulled the following message off a canning forum I belong to.

I totally agree. I live in England and we are not use to bad weather but we all knew bad weather was coming and most people left it till it hit and were struggling and fighting over bread and milk in the stores. I took the children wrapped up well and headed down the street to show them how bad the weather was and how cold it was as they havent experience snow like we had before. we have only ever had a dusting. We had to walk on the roads as it was solid ice no cars were out, we were like this for two whole weeks. We lived off our home storage for two weeks and work was cancelled. Now we are re building our storage so to be rewady for the next storm, who know when it will come. But i know there will be another worse than the last. Water is my priority ready for the warm weather that we may or maynot get in the summer time. My thoughts and prayers are with you all who are going through the storm in the USA. And to all who are going through the storm in Australia. Be safe and hope to hear how you all got through it.

and from Missouri:
Same here! The only thing we purchased as the storm headed our way was one more gas can and filled it up. We had been wanting to do that anyways. We too stay stocked up. They said the stores were a mad house.Several years ago a freak storm came through here. The power was out for over a week. Those who were not prepared had to drive over 20 miles one way to eat. While they were gone looters came.
Icy in Missouri

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Potato Flake Ice Cream?

Here is an interesting tidbit I found while rooting around the Internet.

One of the most unique methods for preventing rapid melting of home made ice cream is to use instant potato flakes. Before you begin churning the homemade ice cream, either by hand or using an old fashioned hand crank ice cream freezer, dump one to one and one half cups of instant potato flakes into the base of the cream mixture. This helps the ice cream to form a creamier, semi-solid mixture during the churning process, and helps to keep the ice cream from melting too fast during the summer heat. Don't worry about the potato flakes adversely affecting the flavor of your ice cream. The potatoes will only give the ice cream a more solid form. Many ice cream shops use a potato flakes in their ice cream machines to give the ice cream a solid formation.

February 2, 2011

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Best Items to Buy in February

February Sale Items

Chocolate (post Valentine’s Day)
Steak (post Valentine’s Day)
Seafood (post Valentine’s Day)

Big screen TVs (before the Super Bowl)
Air conditioners