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Saturday, May 2, 2009

Eating to Help Prevent Swine Flu

I have complete confidence that you've heard about the possible swine flu pandemic that might have started in Mexico and as of this writing, has entered Canada, USA, Spain and more places. It has caused 86 deaths and many more people have caught it and survived.

But don't take a chance; read this article (http://colorado-preppers.blogspot.com/2009/04/swine-flu-pandemic-possibility.html). Then take charge of your life to minimize your chances of getting this swine flu. Supercharge your immune system by making some changes today!
  1. Healthful fresh foods and nutritional supplements.
  2. Sensible daily exercise.
  3. Stress reduction.
  4. Heartfelt daily prayers or meditations.
  5. Regular loving intimacies with your mate.

Let's concentrate on number 1: eating healthy foods and taking supplements. I've been reading, and based on independent research, many people believe that eating as close to Nature's Buffet will help boost your immune system. That means:

  • Take a multi-vitamin daily
  • Add to your supplements: echinacea, goldenseal, zinc, vitamin c, vitamin d, and peppermint
  • Eat lots of fresh fruits and vegetables, nuts and seeds, and beans
  • Don't overcook your food, eating as much raw as possible
  • Add lots of garlic to your diet - it helps to clean out your blood and boost your immune system
  • Eliminate all meats (animal products) and dairy products (cheese, yogurt, etc.) no matter how hard it is
  • Eliminate all sugar, white flour, and any and ALL processed foods, especially any with words that don't naturally occur (like maltodextrin, dyes, enriched anything, etc.)
  • Stock up on dehydrated (without sulphur) fruits and vegetables
  • Start your garden, if you haven't already. Even if you have only a little bit of space in a tiny apartment, you can have a grow light and couple of pots growing fresh greens, carrots, tomatoes and peppers
  • Grow and eat sprouts on a regular basis: beans, alfalfa, clover, etc.

We are pretty ready, considering VHTS (Very Hungry Tween Son) has adverse reactions to many foods, including corn, soybean, wheat, peanuts, seeds and nuts. We could have rice, millet or certified-gluten-free-oats daily, along with lots of rice crackers, homemade rice brownies. He also loves dried peas, blackberries, blueberries and mango so he could have those daily. We have lots of apples and pears - enough for a couple of weeks minimum. He loves canned baked beans so we have plenty of those. He will take fish oil in applesauce (to get more amino acids in him). He's a very picky eater, but I'm working on a flourless brownie that has lots of flax seeds (again, more amino acides) to hide certain bits of produce in it... like spinach, zucchini and carrots. I might be able to hide herbs in there too!

Our garden will soon produce carrots, radishes and greens/lettuce, although VHTS won't eat salads without ranch dressing. Our seedlings for tomatoes, eggplant, peppers, okra, etc. are comiing along well.

We have lots of herbs and medicines stocked up. Besides having lots of fresh fruits and veggies, nuts, seeds and beans, be sure to have lots of herbs and supplements too. Peppermint to settle stomachs. Echinacea and elderberry for lung health. Goldenseal. Zinc. Vitamins C (strawberries!) and D. Grow the garlic. Step out into the sun for 15 minutes a day (that includes your gardening time!).

As you may know, we are starting to prepare to sell our house. We rented a storage unit this past weekend and plan to pack and add to it weekly. Meanwhile, in doing this, I seem to have misplaced much of our prep items, including the night-time cold medicine and cough syrup. That means, I need to get more, dag-nab-it! At least I know where all of the food is!

I already have a cough but have had this for the past couple of weeks so I'm pretty sure it's not the swine flu. But today... besides getting more cough medicine (and celebrating my birthday), VHTS and I have lots to do today:
  • I just placed another order for dried fruits and veggies from my fav place (http://www.justtomatoes.com/)
  • Ordered more N-95 respirator masks - hope they still have some in stock!
  • Health food store for more herbs, rice crackers and puffed rice
  • Sam's Club for more honey, peeled garlic, dog food and socks
  • Wal-Mart for more water, chocolate chips, eggs
  • Dollar Store for disposable gloves, goggles and plain masks

Unbelievably, though, I awoke to 4 inches of very heavy wet snow on my car! What the heck? I can't drive in this stuff any more. Argh!

= = = = =


This website and specifically this article does not intend to replace professional assistance, either medical or legal. Please consult your physician for additional information.

Original: http://www.survival-cooking.com/2009/04/eating-to-help-prevent-for-swine-flu.html

Dehydrating Onions

Okay men, you can come back now. No more talk of feminine hygiene in this post, I promise. Only dehydrating onions.

I bought a sack of onions last fall because, well, they were cheap and I needed an onion and I thought I'd just store the sack in my food room and have an onion whenever I needed one which worked pretty well until this spring when they decided they were done being dormant and started growing. You know--you've probably had an onion or two start sprouting on you, haven't you?

Well, when an onion starts to grow, it uses itself to feed its new growth, so pretty soon the onion part is all soft and squishy and not appetizing any more, so I thought I'd better get busy and take care of these before they all used themselves up. (And before they took over the food room.)

I picked a warmish day with a good breeze and gathered my supplies: cutting board, sharp knife (really, get a sharp knife, not like the one I have in the picture--it was NOT sharp), something to hold onion bits, and if you're real sensitive some rubber gloves and sunglasses. You could also use some other means of cutting--whatever you like to cut your onions up with, but you don't want them pureed, so a food processor is probably not your best option.
Next, I took the whole operation outside. Believe me when I say that dehydrating onions is not an inside job--I know from experience. This is where the breeze comes in handy. I can chop onions outside and hardly even cry. By the time I had about a third of the sack chopped (all the growing ones plus any that felt softish) I was running out of time to get this project done for the day, so I stopped chopping and took my 9x13 pan full of onion bits to my dehydrator which was also outside. You can put your dehydrator in a garage, shed, porch, anywhere but in the house--trust me on this one. Some dehydrating things smell really good like herbs, jerky, fruit leathers . . . mmmmmm. Onions are not like that. They need to dry out of the house.
I spread the onions on the trays and dried for about 8 hours, then forgot about them and left the whole deal outside overnight and woke up the next morning sick and didn't bring them in until the following afternoon. Here they are in all their glory--dehydrated onions:
Don't look like much, do they? Well that whole 9x13 pan loosely filled two pint jars.

Lovely, aren't they? The onions are super dry, so no worries about them going bad. Store them in airtight containers like mason jars or buckets with good sealing lids, and you'll have onion when you need it whether you have an onion or not :)

Original: http://selfrelianceadventures.blogspot.com/2009/05/dehydrating-onions.html

Cooking with Basic Food Storage: Delicious soup using white beans

I sampled this soup at our stake preparedness fair last weekend. It was absolutely delicious and is a great way to use beans from your food storage.

Potato Bean Soup
1/2 C sliced celery
3 medium carrots, shredded
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tsp butter
1 onion, chopped
4 medium potatoes, unpeeled and cut
2 tsp dried dill or fresh
1 15 oz. can of white beans
1/2 c sour cream or plain nonfat yogurt
1 T flour
4-5 c chicken broth

Cook celery, carrots, onion and garlic in hot butter for 4 minutes. Stir in broth, potatoes and dill. Bring to a boil and simmer for 25 minutes. Lightly mash 1/2 of the potatoes. Add drained beans. In a small bowl, stir together sour cream, flour, with a little salt and pepper. When mixed together, stir into soup, continue stirring and cook until the soup thickens.

Original: http://preparednessmatters.blogspot.com/2009/05/cooking-with-basic-food-storage.html

Brine Cured Pork

I came across this the other day and thought it was good info it to have and the story at the end is great!

Brine Cured Pork

* 100 lbs pork
* 8 lbs salt (Note: 1 part salt to 48 parts water)
* 2 oz. salt peter
* 2 lbs brown sugar
* 5 gallons water

Mix salt, brown sugar and salt peter, add this to the water and bring the mixture to a boil. Stir to dissolve sugar. Skim off any scum that may form while boiling after everything is dissolved. Remove from heat and chill until quite cold.
Pack the pieces of meat into clean barrels or earthenware crocks, placing them as close together as possible. Now pour the cold brine over the meat making absolute certain the meat is completely covered. Put a board over the meat that just fits inside the container and place weights on it to make sure that the meat is emerged in the brine. When curing larger and smaller pieces of meat at the same time, place the larger pieces on the bottom and the smaller ones on top. This is so the smaller ones can be lifted out without disturbing the larger pieces. The small pieces do not take as long to cure as the bigger ones.
The meat should be cured in a temperature that is just above freezing. If the meat is cured at a warmer temperature the brine may show signs of souring. If this should happen, remove the meat and soak it in lukewarm water for an hour or so. Wash the meat in fresh cold water and be sure to throw out the soured brine. Clean out the container, repack the meat and make a fresh brine in original proportions.

* Bacon sides and loins require 2 days per pound in this brine.
* Shoulders will take 3 days per pound.
* Hams will take 4 days per pound.

After the meat is cured the pieces should be soaked in warm water and then washed in cold water or even scrubbed with a brush to remove any scum that may have accumulated during the curing process.
Hang the meat by very heavy cords in the smoke house and allow to drain 24 hours before starting the smoking.
Hard wood is the best to use for smoking and the temperature in the smoke house should be 100-120 degrees F. The ventilators should be left open at first to allow any moisture to escape. Smoke until desired flavor and color is arrived at.
The Way We Did It...

As told by Glenn Adamson (born 1915)

We never had electricity or an ice house on the farm. Since we had no way of keeping meat refrigerated, we only killed animals as fast as we ate them. ...Pork was our main staple. It seemed there was always a pig just the right size to butcher. We ate more meat out on our farm than the typical family eats now. In the summer, what pork we didn't eat immediately was preserved. When we butchered a pig, Dad filled a wooden 45 gallon barrel with salt brine. We cut up the pig into maybe eight pieces and put it in the brine barrel. The pork soaked in the barrel for several days, then the meat was taken out, and the water was thrown away. We sacked a shoulder, a side of bacon, or the ham, which was the rear leg, in a gunny sack or flour sack to keep the flies off. It was then hung up in the coal house to dry. Quite often we had a ham drying, hanging on the shady side of the house. In the hot summer days after they had dried, they were put in the root cellar to keep them cool. The meat was good for eating two or three months this way. We didn't have a smoke house like some people had. But what we had worked just fine. In the winter time when we killed something we didn't have to cure it. We'd hang it outside the house or somewhere else where it was cold and it kept just fine. (We're talking Canada, here, where it gets really cold.)

My Uncle George Ovard told me the following story when I was just a kid: He had put a pig in the brine barrel and when he went to take it out several days later he only found half of his meat. This puzzled him somewhat, but he never said anything about it. A couple of days later, one of his neighbors happened to stop by and mentioned, "I hear someone took some of your pork out of your brine barrel."

Uncle George said, "Yes, but I didn't tell anyone about it." The guy had trapped himself right there.

Original: http://www.wilderness-survival.net/forums/showthread.php?t=6796