24 Food Items To Hoard

Fergus Mason
By Fergus Mason December 1, 2017 10:18

24 Food Items To Hoard

The classic prepper way to build up a long-term food source is to stockpile bulk staples like rice, pasta and dried beans. This is cost-effective and works well, but it can leave you facing a pretty boring diet. That’s not good for morale, and while well-chosen staples should minimize the risk of malnutrition you’ll quickly find there are things you miss.

Now for some good news: There’s a whole range of things you can easily add to your stockpile to make it more interesting, tasty and nutritious. Unlike buying rice in 50 pound sacks, you can also build up an emergency reserve by just picking up a couple of extra items every week when you do your regular grocery shopping. Here’s our list of the top 24 foods to hoard:

#1 – Meat

Fresh meat is a non-starter for emergency supplies, because it can’t be stored long-term without a freezer – and you can’t rely on your freezer surviving the apocalypse. It’s worth looking for alternatives though, because meat is the best source of protein. Canned fish and meat will last for years, is easy to prepare – in an emergency you can eat it straight out of the tin – and makes pasta or rice dishes a lot more interesting. Jerky is also good – it can be soaked and added to meals, or eaten as a snack.

#2 – Eggs

Eggs are another great source of protein, and they’re very versatile. The trouble is, they’re perishable. In fact you can preserve eggs for between nine months and a year, by coating them in a thin layer of beeswax or baby oil then storing them in a cool, dark place, but there are also some processed egg products that will safely last for years. Freeze-dried egg powders can replace fresh eggs for most uses – baking or scrambled eggs, for example.

Related: How to Keep Eggs Fresh for a Year with Isinglass

Protein-Powder-24 Food Items To Hoard#3 – Whey powder

Cheese makers separate curdled milk into curds – the thick part that ends up as cheese – and whey. Fresh whey is a cloudy, watery liquid that’s low in fat but rich in proteins. In fact whey is the base of most protein supplements. Add powdered whey to your food store; it dissolves easily and can be used to make protein-rich drinks, soups and sauces.

#4 –Cheese

If you like cheese, it’s one of those foods you’re really going to miss when it’s gone. Luckily, there are ways to store cheese long-term without refrigeration. Canned processed cheese has a shelf life of at least two years, and usually much longer. Wax-coated cheese will also stay good for years if properly stored – parmesan can last 25 years or more!

#5 – Fats

If you’re following our survival food advice you’ve already stored plenty of oil, to add a basic source of fats to your diet. Supplementing that with some other fats will let you vary tastes and add more energy. Try canned butter, ghee, lard – yes, that turns out to be healthy – and Crisco. Olive oil is good too, but it only lasts a couple of years before going rancid.

#6 – Breakfast cereal

Even in the worst of times, a bowl of your favorite breakfast cereal will get the day off to a familiar, reassuring start. Cereal can also be surprisingly nutritious. Wholegrain-based ones like shredded wheat have a lot of fiber; even popular sugary ones are a great source of energy. Hot oatmeal is a real boost in cold weather.

Related: What is Your Favorite Food to Stockpile?

#7 – Dried milk

You can’t have cereal without milk, so stock up on powdered milk too. It can be stored for several years, and has lots of uses. You’ll usually get the best shelf life – and the best value for money – if you buy #10 cans.

#8 – Potato flakes

If you have potato flakes and hot water, you can make mashed potatoes. These aren’t just a tasty addition to a meal – they’re also a great source of carbs (which means energy). You can also add potato flakes to stews and soups to add some extra body.

Related: How To Make Potato Flakes With 5 Years Shelf Life (without refrigeration)

#9 – Potato flour

More potatoes! But then, why not? Potato flour is made from whole potatoes (skin and all), so it’s quite nutritious. It makes a great thickener and you can bake with it, too. Potato flour is also useful if you’re gluten intolerant.

cornbread 24 Food Items To Hoard#10 – Cornmeal

Corn has more energy than wheat and more protein than rice. Cornmeal can be stored for two years or more, and you can turn it into cornbread, pancakes, grits or polenta.

Related: My Famine Food Storage Menu

#11 – Cider vinegar

Vinegar is practically a magic potion – it has a whole range of uses around the home and in an emergency. Apple cider vinegar tastes great, too; mixed with oil and seasonings it’s a good simple dressing, and it make a huge difference to sauces.

#12 – Chocolate

Compact, long-lasting, loaded with healthy antioxidants and energy dense, dark chocolate is a perfect survival food supplement. It also tastes amazing, which doesn’t hurt. Buy quality chocolate; avoid cheaper brands that contain hydrogenated vegetable oil, which is bad for your heart.

 #13 – Baking soda

If you have flour in your stores, or you manage to get some crops coming in and grind your own, you’ll need leavening agents to make bread rise. Baking soda lasts longer than yeast, because it’s a chemical and not a living organism.

Related: Baking Soda – 112 Uses (WWII Series)

#14 – Honey

You probably already have sugar in your stores, but add some honey too. It lasts practically forever, tastes great and contains natural antibiotics – in an emergency you can put it on a would to prevent infection. Cover it with a dressing to stop dirt sticking to it.

Molasses-24 Food Items To Hoard#15 – Molasses

Like honey, molasses is packed with energy. You can use it for baking, or add a big spoonful to chili or stews.

#16 – Pickling salt

Normal iodized table salt isn’t suitable for canning or pickling – it has too many added chemicals to fortify it or keep it flowing freely. If you plan on preserving your own produce, store the right salt.

#17 – Dried fruit

Raisins, fruit strips and other dried fruit products have most of the nutrients and energy of fresh fruit, but they last for years and don’t take up much space. Avoid over-processed products and stick with all-natural ones. Best of all, if you have a dehydrator and vacuum sealer you can make your own.

#18 – Jelly and jam

If you’re making bread, you’ll want something to put on it. You can also use jelly to make simple puddings – stir a spoonful into a bowl of cooked, sweetened cornmeal for a quick and tasty option.

#19 – Peanut butter

This is also great on bread, with or without jelly, but it can make some great sauces too. You can make a basic satay sauce with peanut butter, sugar and soy sauce; it goes well with chicken.

coconut milk 24 Food Items To Hoard#20 – Coconut milk

If you like Indian or Thai food, coconut milk is a big help in creating tasty sauces. It has lots of energy, is a good source of healthy fats, and contains several essential nutrients. Like most canned goods, it should last at least two years but is generally fine as long as the can isn’t leaking, rusted or swollen.

#21 – Powdered drink mixes

Staying hydrated is the top survival priority – but drinking plain water for weeks on end gets dull, and some people get nauseated by it. Add variety with hot and cold drink mixes. Hot chocolate and bouillon are excellent in cold weather; Tang or Gatorade are good for cold drinks.

#22 – Seltzer water

Canned seltzer water lasts pretty much forever and adds variety to your drinking routine. It can also help treat constipation.

#23 – Protein bars

If you need to bug out in a hurry you’ll need compact, high-energy food to take with you. Grab your chocolate, but some protein bars are good, too. They’ll make your diet a bit more balanced, and keep your stamina up.

Related: How to Make 2400 Calorie Emergency Ration Bars Designed to Feed You for a Full Day

#24 – Seasonings

Whatever you’re eating, the right seasonings will make it a lot more pleasant – and that makes a difference. Weeks of eating bland food is depressing. You should already have salt stockpiled; as well as pepper add some of your favorite herbs and spices – garlic powder, ground paprika, cayenne pepper, chili powder, dried oregano and even a bottle of soy sauce.

Any food that can be safely stored will make a useful addition to your reserves, so keep a lookout for special offers that could have a place on your store shelves. If you have any other suggestions for foods that should be hoarded, join in the comments below!

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Fergus Mason
By Fergus Mason December 1, 2017 10:18
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  1. Pj December 1, 15:51

    Thanks for this great information.

    Reply to this comment
  2. Rowanwood December 1, 15:54

    This article mentions honey and molasses and not sorghum? Sorghum syrup is a sweetener with actual nutritional value. In the past sorghum was used as a daily multi vitamin! Not only does it have a long shelf life but it will grow almost anywhere with a warm growing season. Easy to grow and the seed head can be used as grain and ground for flour. Honey is great. I wouldn’t waste shelf space on molasses. But I wouldn’t think I was prepared at all without sorghum!

    Reply to this comment
    • Sheena December 1, 20:37

      I thought of sorghum as well when I read the sections about honey & molasses

      Reply to this comment
    • Miss Lou December 2, 05:10

      I thought sorghum WAS molasses

      Reply to this comment
      • Aubrey October 9, 04:13

        Molasses is made from sugar cane or sugar beet juice. Sorghum is made from a plant that resembles corn. There is also blackstrsap molasses which is further processed molasses and is darker. It contains calcium and magnesium.

        Reply to this comment
        • Arctic Fox January 24, 18:16

          Molasses can also be made from sorghum, pomegranate, carob, and dates. Google it. The most common forms of molasses are made from either sugar cane or sugar beet juice which is boiled down to a syrup. Sugar crystals are extracted from the syrup, and the remaining dark liquid is molasses.

          Reply to this comment
          • Janet December 17, 06:34

            Two additional tidbits:
            To store eggs, you can freeze them! You do have to scramble them so the yolks are mixed into the whites very well or they get gummy, but it works! (Just used my last two today…)
            Another use for coconut milk is to cook your rice in it (preferably a pearl rice like Arborio, but in a pinch you can use any rice) with a little sugar, and vanilla at the end. It is like a rice pudding with a wonderful coconut flavor.

            Reply to this comment
            • Lisa January 29, 22:06

              Eggs can be dehydrated. Need to start doing that. Then they are shelf safe My source says she gets 48 eggs in a quart ball jar. Great for omelets, and baking.

              Reply to this comment
      • madashell April 17, 22:02

        The third cut…………….all the nutrients…………………….

        Reply to this comment
    • Arlene December 2, 15:17

      How do you process the sorghum to get the syrup? Where do I find the seed.? (Organic preferred, heirloom if possible)

      Reply to this comment
    • Trevor December 2, 22:27

      Molasses is great for brown sugar as well. 1 Tablespoon molasses to a cup of white granulated sugar is equal to 1 cup packed light brown sugar. 2 tablespoons for dark

      Reply to this comment
    • Old Nick April 4, 10:44

      Molasses is full of minerals. They are the minerals separated from refined sugar during the production process.

      Reply to this comment
    • E. Denis January 30, 06:04

      Unfortunately your top five need to be updated in a crucial way. Medically speaking they are the top five that will cause much harm to your body especially under stress.
      Dried beef, pork, ox and a few others are not your best source of protein. These are ACIDIC foods which causes many debilitating diseases today example arthritis, bursitis, digestive issues, Heart disease,These ACIDIC meats DRY UP the SYNOVIAL fluid (the knuckle popping youthful sound from your joints are Now very painful and non-fluid viscosity is with our joints, it’s now more sticky like jello drying) in EVERY joint in our bodies from our Spine to our Knuckles, Toes,
      Knees etc.


      Few of you want to hear this especially the BEEF and DAIRY BOARDS, The CATTLEMAN’S ASSOCIATION, they know these facts.

      These meat-milk products also contribute negatively and heavily towards Not warding off and fighting Cancer ♋

      Any of you ever wondered why you LOVE CHEESE so much? It’s not difficult,The Dairy Board keep it an OPEN SECRET, the CASEIN that’s an integral part of milk and cheese process is as ADDICTIVE as HEROIN for Some CONSUMERS of CHEESE. RESEARCHERS Show recently. It’s not New, it’s 80-year Old RESEARCHERS brought anew.

      2. Cheese has similar effects It fattens you quickly, it loads your arteries and circulatory system along with damaging circulatory connections in your brain and other major organs.
      If you’re lactose intolerance or intolerant to milk and cheese you’ll have a problem that’s NEVER going to go away unless you quit. Cow’s milk or Cheese is not a panacea to enriching and fortifying your body. It’s the primary opposite.

      Hoofed animal Red Meat is a POOR means of transferring USABLE protein and nutrients to the human body. That is FACT. EAT IT SPARINGLY OR GO COLD-TURKEY and and enjoy a healthy PAIN FREE almost near DOCTOR FREE rest of your life….. So you can bug-out with Healthy PREPPERS.

      THE MOST EFFECTIVE and Bio-available nutrition for the body with USABLE and HEALTHIER life
      supportive PROTEIN and Best nutrients COME FROM All PLANT SOURCES: YOUR Dried or Fresh VEGETABLES, FRUITS, Nuts, SEEDS and Higher PROTEIN Grains like QUINOA, ASIAN BLACK RICE, BASMATI Brown and White Rices. They are widely available today, big box Member Warehouse Stores They are PROTEIN Rich, fortified with vitamins and minerals.

      (Eating in this manner more than likely you’ll have little need of regular physician unless you break, burned or damaged your body. That’s REAL Prepping. Stay safe, take Care

      Reply to this comment
  3. vbofmj December 1, 17:16

    I must say, your advice makes more sense than 99% of all the other prep sights I have subscribed to. Keep giving useful, real life, down to earth, honest advice on what we really need in a crisis situation and I will keep coming back for more. After all, lives are at stake. Good advice is essential. Thank you!

    Reply to this comment
  4. akl December 1, 17:27

    ACV also good for marinade/tenderizing meats. Cornmeal goes rancid after a year or so — BUT store popcorn (which is non-GMO!!!) and grind for cornmeal as needed. Very delicious. Popcorn will last indefinitely!!

    Reply to this comment
    • barry December 2, 14:47

      what is acv?

      Reply to this comment
    • Arlene December 2, 15:20

      Cornmeal will keep longer if it is stored in the freezer for as long as we have use of freezers. I have also stored it in sealed buckets successfully. ( more than ten years)

      Reply to this comment
      • Homesteader December 14, 09:30

        Like akl, I highly recommend storing popcorn. It can be ground into cornmeal or used it for popcorn. That way there’s no worry about the need for refrigeration of any kind. One other good thing about popcorn is that it’s non-GMO. When they tried to genetically modify it, it wouldn’t pop so all they had was just more GMO corn. I know there’s going to those who say there’s no difference between GMO and non, but that’s OK, that’s their opinion. I just happen to think differently.

        Reply to this comment
      • cliffhanger April 2, 17:15

        Cornmeal will keep for a long period of time if vacuum sealed.

        Reply to this comment
    • WieBsingers January 15, 21:34

      I have colorful heirloom corn that I grow and dry so when it comes down to it I can just grind it up and it lasts a really long time

      Reply to this comment
    • Peteygirl29 February 13, 05:09

      You will need a good manual grain meal to make your own cornmeal and for grinding other grains , one of the things I think is essential for a shtf situation.

      Reply to this comment
      • Homesteader February 14, 21:43

        I recommend the Country Living Grain Mill, though they are pricey but worth it. They retail for about $450, on average. It can be used manually or attached to a small motor or even a bicycle. My son fixed up an old stationary bike to mount our grinder on. I’ve had mine about 10 years now and cannot recommend them highly enough.

        Reply to this comment
  5. Marilee December 1, 18:20

    Fergus, Thank you this is an excellent article. I did not know about using Whey or beeswax/oil for eggs. I am wondering if you have tried any other Freeze Dried foods? I am an independent consultant for Thrive Life Foods and use some FD foods everyday in my cooking at home. A survival situation is not the time to learn how to use food you are unfamiliar with. Thrive has an awesome line of meats, fruits & veggies, baking items, even 5 kinds of FD Cheese that just need some water to refresh. Open cans last up to 1 year on the shelf with no refrigeration required, making them perfect for camping or a survival situation. When making spaghetti sauce or a stew I just scoop out some beef, sausage or chicken, add it to my recipe and put it back on the shelf. Unopened the cans last up to 25 years. They have a motto of “Store what you Eat and Eat what you Store.” I would love to send you some samples to try if you aren’t familiar with this company. My website is mlonsber.thrivelife.com They are not the “Patch” weight loss company.

    Reply to this comment
    • Marilee December 1, 18:23

      The website above is incorrect, it should be: mlonsberg.thrivelife.com

      Reply to this comment
    • Terressa December 1, 19:51

      Another good food source is 4 Patriots. They have variety of levels you can choose from from 72 hour for people who want to try it, to 1 year storage packages.

      The one I will not recommend is Wise. The packages I got were punctuated; they were not packaged in Mylar bags, or at least not very reliable ones, it was extremely bland, and loaded with salt.

      Reply to this comment
      • Sheena December 1, 20:49

        Another website I really like is Emergency Essentials (beprepared.com.) They not only have entrees & sides but individual ingredients as well.

        I totally agree with you regarding Wise food. The sample I received from them wasn’t hustle bland but tasted so bad not even the dog would eat it.

        Reply to this comment
      • Armin December 2, 05:15

        And for Canadians interested in getting the exact same products go to totalprepare.ca. It’s basically the Canadian version of food4patriots. And they accept PayPal. I find their products expensive but if you want a food supply that is supposed to last for 25 years it may be the choice of last resort to pull your butt out of the fire if someone’s finger lingers over the button too long. Remember an effective way to defend that food supply. Nothing more dangerous than starving people. Loose lips sink ships.

        Reply to this comment
        • Marilee December 2, 08:52

          Thrive Life Foods is also very big in Canada too. I’ve noticed a lot of sodium and preservatives are added to the Food4Patriots & the Mtn Home products at EE. Thrive has no GMO’s, no preservatives or additives…They also have reward points for your future orders and business opportunities.

          Reply to this comment
          • Homesteader December 3, 00:52

            We bought some Thrive products when we first started prepping. We were greatly disappointed when we opened the cans. They were only 1/4 to 1/3 full and these were #10 cans. We were so glad we decided to try them before storing them away. We used what we had bought of that stuff. Since we had opened the cans, we couldn’t return them even though they were nearly empty. Now we stick with Emergency Essentials and Mountain House, or can and dry our own. At least with EE and MH, we don’t have to worry about getting cans full of air.

            Reply to this comment
            • Armin December 3, 03:24

              The equivalent Canadian company doesn’t use cans. It uses sealed mylar packaging and it is quite full. I tried their white bean chili and basically it tasted like crap. You definitely have to add your own seasoning and maybe throw in some extra items to spice it up. Wouldn’t want to eat it for the long term unless I absolutely had to. It definitely is survival food until you can get a garden going and hone your hunting skills.

              Reply to this comment
              • Homesteader December 3, 04:18

                If you don’t know how to garden and if you don’t already have one going by the time an SHTF event comes around, you’re going to be out of luck. The same goes for hunting. The time to hone those skills is now.

                Reply to this comment
                • BJ January 4, 17:53

                  I agree…rations for years? Learn how to grow your own, hunt and forage…Im headed for the woods anyhow if SHTF bad enough..I know I can survive there

                  Reply to this comment
                  • Armin February 14, 03:46

                    Just out of curiosity, BJ, have you ever tried to survive in the woods alone with minimal tools, the very least amount of store bought food? Basically just the very minimal survival gear. And at least for six months? Many people think it would be romantic and lovely and all the wood smoke. Watching the beautiful sunsets. But the reality is that it’s one heck of a lot of work to survive and thrive in the woods. Not only do you have all the wildlife to contend with but I’m sure there will be others that have exactly the same idea as you. So what it will come down to is if the others in the woods want to co-operate to survive together or everyone for themselves and last person standing wins. And the last person standing will be the biggest loser.

                    Reply to this comment
            • Marilee December 5, 06:27

              Sorry to hear about that. personally I have never experienced that. Did you contact customer service? They are really good about making orders correct and have a satisfaction guarantee.

              Reply to this comment
              • Homesteader December 5, 14:04

                Even though they had only a little in them since we had opened the cans, we were told nothing could be done. We’ve even talked to Thrive reps at gun shows. They didn’t seem one bit surprised at what we found when we opened the cans so we figured that it was a common practice for Thrive. Now we simply stay away from Thrive products, don’t recommend them, and warn others about what we found.

                Reply to this comment
                • Homesteader December 11, 05:40

                  They probably had to improve their customer service or go out of business. Either way, they lost a customer that they will never get back.

                  Reply to this comment
      • Armin December 2, 05:18

        The Canadian equivalent to food4patriots is totalprepare.ca and they also accept PayPal.

        Reply to this comment
      • MikeyW January 9, 19:34

        Be careful with Food 4 Patriots. I got what was supposed to be a 72-hour supply. It came in four envelopes, each was supposed to contain 4 servings. Mixed with water as directed (1 cup was one serving) calories per serving were about 300. For three meals a day, that’s 900-1000 calories. None contained any meat: even the “Chicken with Rice” did not have any chicken. I would not recommend them.

        Reply to this comment
    • narvo December 10, 05:53

      nice comment

      Reply to this comment
    • scott September 25, 20:14

      Please send me some of the samples you mentioned in your comments. Send to: Scott Michaels, PO Box 277, Alpharetta, GA 30009-0277.


      Reply to this comment
    • WhiteWolf February 2, 14:10

      Hi Merilee . I try to have a group taste testing with many FD products from different producers . I have tested Auguson Farms . MH , Legacy , Wise , Brigford Sandwiches , and some other small brands from Amish makers. I can tell you with tasting parties over a dozen people at a time , Auguson Farms came in 1st every time for flavor , MH was always 2nd , and most of the time certain Legacy meals were 3rd. Nobody could ever eat more than 2 bites of Wise brand , and even the smaller , no name brands beat them. I would never pay for their meals . Maybe vegies or dry milk , but never meals . Also , Brigford Sandwiches scored high with us, and I keep them in my jeep , and my coat pocket for an emergency . hot or cold , 3-5 year shelf stable . hope this kelps , and I am going to try your website for some Thrive . hope this helps.WW

      Reply to this comment
  6. Alan December 1, 18:43

    To enrich powdered milk, add Coffee Mate and it tastes more like regular milk

    Reply to this comment
  7. linda December 1, 18:55

    .I never received the world war water plans.I share my Po.box775 with my daughter holly sanders Is that why? I am truly disappointed,you still have the money.

    Reply to this comment
  8. Chuck December 1, 21:27

    In my opinion, the BEST oil you can have is Coconut Oil. It comes in a 56 Fl. Ounce clear plastic (PETE) container. You can cook with it and it’s is a really good skin care product and can be used in the hair. It is gluten-Free and non-hydrogenated. It will keep for more than two years if unopened. It is a solid under 76°F and a liquid over that temperature.

    Reply to this comment
    • Armin January 10, 23:48

      Hi, Chuck. You’re not the only one that has mentioned coconut oil on this page. I don’t know what to make of the comments. I have heard so many good AND bad things about coconut oil. I have heard that it is one of the worst oils to put in your diet. I would love to hear from someone that really knows their stuff about all these oils. And if the “you know what” impacts the ventilator there’s not much chance of harvesting a lot of coconuts up here in the GWN. And it has really been that for the last few weeks. It’s been like living in Siberia. I’m a big fan of sunflower oil which is SUPPPOSED to be one of the best oils for you and if worst comes to worst we can replenish our supplies by growing and pressing our own sunflower oil. Love coconuts in macaroons but as it is not something that naturally grows here and I didn’t grow up with it I’ll stick with a known quantity. Don’t mind the taste of sunflower oil and if you run out of butter you can dribble a little sunflower oil on bread. Quite delicious. Also use it in salads. I’m not only thinking about supplies on hand but a little further and how to replenish dwindling supplies if the potential “event” lasts years instead of months. If I had my way I would use peanut oil instead of sunflower but PO deathly expensive and I don’t know how well they grow in a cold climate. I’m thinking not that great as I know peanuts are typically grown in the southern states. But there really is nothing better than potato pancakes fried in peanut oil. Have to figure out a way to get some potatoes going up here. Very heavy clay soil in my back yard. I may experiment with growing potatoes in containers in a more friable soil. Something to consider for the coming spring. Or vertical gardening for small spaces. So much to do. So little time.

      Reply to this comment
      • Teddy January 11, 00:42

        Dear Armin and Claude,
        Please check to be sure the coconut oil says it is not hydrogenated. The only kind I purchase is virgin organic, preferably cold-pressed. Hydrogenation of oils is done to make them more shelf stable, but that process also stiffens the oils and they in turn stiffen our cell membranes so they do not flex properly for the intake and output of nutrients and waste. Basically, hydrogenating oils makes them rancid. We do not want to eat rancid oils.
        Now for the coconut oil. It has a lot of MCT, medium chain triglycerides, which are important for proper brain and neurological function. Armin, what is GWN? Yes, there is a lot of misinformation about oils. Way too long to get into here. I have been health coaching for a long time. I use coconut oil daily, and feed it to my four-legged kids, who love it. I use it on my skin as a lotion, occasionally on my hair as a conditioner (small amount or you’ll feel you’re back in high school), cook with it, eat it, use it to heal scraped skin and things faster, use it as a lip balm, etc. There is an excellent article which can be Googled about 300 uses for coconut oil. It’s quite good. As far as I am able to tell at this point, our best oils are natural oils. Bacon grease, butter, coconut and olive are my top favorites for many reasons. I use all to cook, depending on what I am cooking. I use toasted sesame seed oil in Chinese dishes 🙂 The best consistent pricing I have found on virgin organic coconut oil is at Costco. I am trying to grow coconut palms. They are a bit tricky and I need to pay more attention to them. Hurricane Irma did not help that effort at all. If you are in the Great North West, something to try for your potatoes might be to plant your potatoes in wheeled tubs called Patio Pickers or something similar, because you can have them out when it’s warm enough and move them to a more sheltered location when you need to. Peanuts grow farther south because they need the warmth due to originating in subtropical/tropical areas. But, why couldn’t you try a few inside, in one of those Patio Pickers? So good luck! And your latest pickled egg recipe sounds yummy!

        Reply to this comment
      • Moejoe February 14, 01:14

        for clay soil put sand and sawdust and wood shavings and if you can start a worm farm for the castings, nothing better for fertalizerit can take a couple years but it will get better each year. our garden was clay and my Mother told me how to fix it and it worked.

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      • Old Nick April 4, 11:17

        You won’t need coconuts in th.e GWN. Your diet should be adapted to the climate you live in. The Eskimo (or Inuit) always thrived on a diet of meat and fish which also had plenty of vitamin D and they even had ways of getting vitamin C.

        Reply to this comment
      • Kelly October 9, 07:03

        Dr. Mercola refuted the recent slam against coconut oil. Check his article revealing the sources slandering it:

        Reply to this comment
    • c j February 13, 03:33

      I agree about the coconut oil, but don’t forget the avocado oil too. It can handle a higher heat (if you are cooking over an open fire), and can be used for a multitude of things. I stock both!

      Reply to this comment
  9. Drake Savage December 1, 21:55

    Instant coffee (unopened) stored in the freezer will keep indefinitely. I know it’s not a food item, but in a survival situation, do you really want to be going through caffeine withdrawal? You will probably have armed sentry’s patrolling or at static posts. I would personally see to it that every “shooter”, man or woman is offered hot coffee, because we all know “friendly fire… isn’t”

    Reply to this comment
    • Armin December 14, 02:38

      That’s not a bad idea, Drake. A cup of hot coffee goes a long way in a survival situation. Also with things like coffee and chocolate you need barter items. A person may have 1000 ounces of gold stashed away but it’s difficult to digest so you need things to barter with. Chocolate, coffee, sugar, tobacco, etc. All the things that don’t grow naturally in a colder climate. Remember barter items.

      Reply to this comment
      • Nitasmoke February 13, 00:49

        I thought freeze dried instant coffee would last indefinitely, unless it got moisture in it. I bought some. 15 years ago for my father in law and he had opened and used it.. had some the other day. It was fine. Stockpiling tobacco and alcohol is a good idea for trade. I store items in plastic coffee containers. Lids are tight and they stack nice.

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  10. GLBScruffy66 December 1, 22:09


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  11. DanJSX December 2, 00:20

    Meets and poultry can be pressure canned and put on the shelf. We minimize what we keep in the freezer.

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    • DanJSX December 2, 00:21

      Meats – sorry – challenged typing this out on cell phone. Really good list and helps get the thought process going.

      Reply to this comment
    • nrsmarsha December 5, 17:34

      I pressure can most meats…they last a year maybe longer …we just use them in that time….makes really quick meals. and easy to do…also counts as heat in the house on cool fall mornings…

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  12. Armin December 2, 04:47

    Good ideas, Fergus. You mentioned eggs. I just thought of kind of an unusual method to store eggs but I don’t know much about it. What about pickling a bunch of eggs? Storing them in large mason jars and whenever you want a tasty snack just fish one or two out. Vinegar is supposed to be good for you also. The problem is I don’t know how long they last like that. A month or two ago I pickled about a dozen eggs as an experiment, Used vinegar and leftover pickle juice. They are much more tasty than the ones at a bar and they haven’t made me sick yet. So far the experiment is a success. Fingers crossed. I suggest we all try to make friends with the farmers in our area. If the proverbial SHTF scenario happens I’m sure we could trade the farmer something he might need for one or two hens and then get eggs that way. Eggs are problematic at the best of times but they’re soooo good. Let me know. Thanks again.

    Reply to this comment
    • Lucy December 4, 23:35

      Pickled eggs, yum! If you do the experiment again, will you keep us posted on how long they lasted? If you can keep them long enough to know, that is!

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      • Armin December 5, 05:52

        For sure, Lucy. Was checking the internet for some pickled egg recipes and there are more ways to do pickled eggs than Carter has little liver pills. I found one on you tube that claims to make the best bar-style pickled eggs. For my taste he seemed to be putting in too much salt. I’m basically on the right track. I also added pickling spices to the vinegar besides using some pickle juice instead of pure white vinegar. I just bought a whole whack of ACV and for the next experiment I’ll be using that. Should give a wonderful interesting taste. I’ll reduce the salt and add some sugar to counter the tartness so almost end up with something like sweet/sour eggs. To me that sends like a bit of heaven. Mum always used to make sweet/sour stuff especially with red cabbage. As far as I understand, if you cover the eggs completely with the vinegar mixture and keep them in the fridge they should last forever. Once you put them in the jar they’re ready to eat in about 2 weeks. My next project. Even this first batch that I made are quite yummy and I really didn’t know what I was doing. It was just an experiment. I really don’t think you can do much to mess them up. I think I got myself hooked on pickled eggs. Only used to get them at a bar when I was younger and I’m not willing to do that anymore if I can make them myself at home. Will keep you apprised. 🙂

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      • Armin December 14, 02:47

        I’ve almost finished them and they caused me no problems whatsoever. I don’t think you can go far wrong pickling eggs. Eggs, vinegar, little salt, pickling spices and whatever other spices you want to put in there. The video I saw on youtube, Lucy, it looked like the guy put in waaaayyyy too much salt. A little salt goes a long ways. So my next batch I’ll cut down on the salt (I do my own cooking so I know how powerful salt is) and add some sugar to taste. Sugar is also a preservative so it will end up being sweet/sour eggs and to me that sounds really yummy. My mum used to make all kinds of sweet/sour stuff. Especially when she made red cabbage. Plus a couple of cloves thrown in. Absolutely delicious.

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        • Old Nick April 4, 11:33

          This is of course just my opinion, but I don’t think you have to be afraid of using too much salt. Too little salt will not help in preserving those eggs, and you are not going to drink that brine, are you? You just fish the eggs out of the jar and you wash them for a second with just a little bit of water and they’re ready to eat.

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      • Softballumpire February 12, 17:19

        In using the term pickled eggs, I noticed no mention of the source of brine. My wife was an avid consumer of green olives, so after I had introduced her to dill pickle brine we started saving bring green olive w/pimento peppers jars. We did notice that after about a week in the bring, some of the brine must be poured off and fresh bring added. Just how much depended upon how tightly we packed the eggs and whether we used green olives to fill space between eggs. We pickled in half gallon jars and kept in refrigerator for several weeks. I think we could water bath can them if we could ever find a recipe for green olive brine; but you’re absolutely right, none would last long enough to find out.

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        • Armin February 13, 01:22

          Hi, Ump! So glad people are taking an interest in pickled eggs. They are absolutely delicious. Made (3) 2 litre mason jars of them. One was a test jar where the eggs didn’t peel very well. Nothing wrong with them they just don’t look that great. Still taste the same though. Yum. Yum. Yum. Didn’t use brine because I think even by definition when you say pickle it means vinegar. But everyone can do it the way they want. I don’t think there’s a “wrong” way to do it. I used ACV and for every 2 cups of the ACV I added 4 tablespoons of sugar to make it sort of sweet/sour pickled eggs to help cut the harshness of the vinegar and also to help preserve the eggs as I know that sugar is almost as good a preservative as salt. They turned out very well and I’m almost through my sample jar. I’m TRYING to save the other two jars for my friends and neighbours. I want to do a proper test and not touch the other two jars for at least 2 months which will be coming up at the end of February. Hope I can wait that long. As far as I know you can keep the eggs in a sealed jar full of vinegar almost indefinitely. I keep dipping into the sample jar and I’m still hale and hearty. No problems whatsoever. For me, personally, the only thing I would use a brine solution for is to MAKE my own sauerkraut. Another thing I love. I know how to do it and it’s surprisingly simple but in that case you do use salt instead of sugar. Now that I’m starting to think about it might be worth it to see what would happen if you added a bit of sugar to the salt when you’re making your own sauerkraut. My maternal grandparents used to make their own sauerkraut and of course they only used salt in the process. Nobody would dare to even think about adding a little sugar to the mix. For one thing it was too expensive back then and it would be sacrilege to even contemplate such a breech of etiquette. When my mum used to make red cabbage she added a bit of sugar to the vinegar and it turned out wonderful every time. A wonderful complement to have at the holidays if you’re having something oily like duck. If anyone wants to try and make the sweet/sour red cabbage just remember to throw in a couple of cloves. Without cloves tastes like nothing.

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          • Mama Bear August 15, 21:49

            In the beginning of your post, you said you had trouble peeling a batch of your hard cooked eggs. Next time don’t use freshly bought eggs. Let them sit for about 5 days to a week. It takes a bit of time for the eggs to get a bit of air between the shell and the “skin.” Fresh eggs should only be used for things like a souffle (spelling?). There may be a few other things where fresh eggs are necessary, but never boiled eggs.

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      • Armin December 16, 02:23

        Hi, Lucy. Quick update on the pickled eggs experiment. It worked just fine and it’s been almost a year since I threw them into the jars. Just took one out the other day and it was still firm and tasty and yummy. So they will keep for at least a year like this if not indefinitely. The only thing that I would do differently is use white vinegar next time instead of ACV. ACV adds a bit of a strange flavor and because I’m like 120 years old my stomach apparently doesn’t like ACV very much anymore. Other than that I consider the experiment a success and I still have most of the eggs left. Dip into the jars every once in a while if I want a treat.:)

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  13. AmericanPatriot55.. December 2, 05:29

    No. 25 should be beef bullion and chicken bullion cubes. No.26 should be beef and chicken ramen noodles. All of which would also be good additions to a bug out bag (BOB). OF course bugging out is the absolute last thing you should do unless it’s a flight-or loss-of-life situation.

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    • Kelly October 9, 07:09

      Most bullion is just monosodium glutamate (MSG). It tastes good, but it’s an excitotoxin and actually kills brain cells. It’s very bad for your central nervous system in general, and can cause mood swings and errors in judgment which could get you killed in a SHTF scenario.

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  14. Armin December 2, 05:34

    Canned fish and meat are also an excellent idea as a good source of protein and still available at your local Walmart for a reasonable price. I’ve tried both and frankly canned meat makes me gag but it’s your personal preference. Canned salmon is quite delicious and very versatile.

    Reply to this comment
    • Wannabe December 2, 20:42

      If you ever get a chance one summer to go to Alaska, fish on the river that salmon come up and get a couple coolers, bring them home and pressure can them yourself. You will have about two thousand dollars worth of fresh salmon. I guarantee you will not want to return to the store bought salmon.

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      • Armin December 5, 06:16

        I understand that completely. There is nothing quite so good as either fresh veggies out of your own garden or freshly caught fish that you prepare as soon as you pull them out of the water. Getting to Alaska might be problematic. That is one long walk for me. LOL! Right now, as a retired senior, my focus is on making as much extra cash as I can and then buying a piece of land so that I can get out of Dodge just in case the proverbial S does HTF. I don’t think it’s a done deal yet. I think that unless someone is VERY careless or stupid a little thing called survival instinct and self-preservation comes into play. We all know it’s a big game being played with both sides in on the action. But from a practical standpoint I’d still like to have that piece of property as soon as I can. Two points everyone needs to know, especially us Canadians, which may well turn out to be game changers. Firstly, at current consumption rates, there is about 150 years worth of known recoverable reserves of oil left in the ground and while there is, the oil companies will not so easily give up their positions. Secondly, and this is more germane to Canadians. In Canada, at current consumption rates, we have; at the most, about 20 years worth of known natural gas reserves left. Right now we here in Canada are living in the golden age of natural gas. Once those reserves start running out I would think that natural gas prices would start to spike sharply because then Canada would become a net importer of natural gas. Nobody is saying much about it and natural gas appliances are still flying off the shelves at record rates. Hence my desire for a piece of property, WITH A WOOD LOT, just in case the SHTF. I want to end up as far away from the big population centres as is practical. I’m sorry to have gotten so far off topic but this is important stuff. Freshly caught fish, in pristine waters. Yummy!

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  15. Clergylady December 2, 07:39

    We Like canned tuna, corned beef, canned chili, and cannot salmon. Something family members like sardines but I cant stand them. Canned chicken might be edable but I really don’t like it. Still there are a lot of good choices available compared to just a few years ago.
    I grow corn and grind my own meal. Dry corn will keep a long time compared to ground cornmeal. Also since it is heirloom corn the dry corn is also seed corn. I grow several old family favorites and save seeds from year to year. I even grow triticale from WW II era saved seeds my critters love the greens from sprouts to dry hay and I use the seed as seed and flour for baking. Some hay even keeps strawberry plants over winter.
    I grow steavia for sweetening to supplement honey and molasses. I try to keep pots of herbs on a window sill most winters but that is just saved plants from my garden and I also have lots of dried herbs, teas, and mixtures.

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    • Armin December 2, 22:55

      You’re a smart person, ClergyLady. I have to be in the mood for sardines. How do you grind your own meal? You’re very lucky with the triticale. All this GMO stuff is killing us or at the very least making us more sick. We haven’t gotten to the point yet where we’re smart enough to intelligently and responsibly manipulate DNA. I’ve never heard of steavia. Will have to look that one up. If I had a choice I would have bee hives going. Herbs from the garden overwintering on the widow sills is also a good idea. Once I get the garden a little more organized and the fruit trees put in then I’ll have to save a couple of small plots for herbs or just grow them around the outside of the garden. If I do the latter will help to keep those pesky rabbits away. If they’re not careful they’ll end up in my stew pot. The best place for rabbits. LOL!

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      • Clergylady December 5, 16:18

        I have old family heirloom hand cranked meat grinders and a flour grinder. I also have a new one of each. Craigslist is a source. The dent corn and triticale are soft enough to grind in a blender half a cup at a time.

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    • Lucy December 4, 23:23

      Oh! Clergylady, your post mentions that your critters love the greens from sprouts, which reminded me of another super addition to our storage: Mung beans for sprouting! Sprouting adds vitamins and minerals to our diet, not to mention their delicious fresh crunchiness for a little salad in the middle of dark winter with some onion or garlic and soy sauce. And — I admit this with some embarrassment — they keep for YEARS in a dry, dark, cool place. I found a 20-ounce jar of them from 1997 in the back of a bunch of spices in my cool cellar, and tried sprouting them, just to see if anything would happen. I soaked them overnight, as we do for normal sprouting, then put them in a jar with a perforated lid as usual, and rinsed them with warm-ish water (a little cooler than my wrist) twice a day, kept under the sink in the dark. Their germination was slow and sporadic, maybe 15%, but that any at all sprouted after so long was amazing. Fresh anything might be hard to come by in tough times.

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    • Lucy December 4, 23:28

      Love your ideas. One caution: The aftertaste of stevia is really unpleasant to some people, so you might want to buy a small bottle or packet before you invest the time and energy to grow it. It is supposed to be 200 times sweeter than sugar, so a little goes a long way. I like it a lot, and dried, it takes up almost no space.

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    • Marcia February 12, 22:38

      Do you know a source for triticale that can be grown from year to year? The triticale seeds available to us will grow 1 year but its seeds will not grow–2nd gen hybrids, I guess.

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      • Armin February 14, 20:14

        That’s a REALLY good question, Marcia. There must be some left that Monsanto hasn’t gotten their hands on yet. Just to find it. I looked around a little in the area where I am and didn’t come up with much. I thought of TSC because they cater to farmers but it doesn’t look like they have any according to their website. The only other thing I can think of is some kind of real farm supply store. But I’m sure you’ve thought of that also already. I live in a highly agricultural area and they have a farm co-op here. I’m not a member and don’t have much to do with them so I don’t know. The only other thing I can think of is that if you have a farmer near you somewhere you may just want to talk to them. At least get you closer to the source even though they may not be growing wheat per se. Other than that, sorry. Not much help. 🙁 And if you do manage to get your hands on some seeds watch out for the tribbles. Once they get in those bins they’ll eat you out of house and home. LOL!

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    • Aubrey October 9, 14:37

      You have lots of experience in several areas. How long do corn seeds last? Do you sell or exchange your heirloom corn seeds? Is it difficult to grow stevia? Diabetics would really benefit from this information.

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      • Clergylady October 12, 13:43

        I don’t grow enough to exchange. But seedsavers and other groups are preserving heirloom seed. They grow and sell. A bit expensive but it is something you can save seed from year to year.
        You might also try Google for heirloom seeds. Seed savers, or farms and groups selling heirloom seeds. Once you’re growing you can save seed from year to year.

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  16. Lucy December 4, 23:40

    Somewhere I heard the expression: “We stockpile in times of plenty; hoarding is done in times of scarcity.” Hoarding implies being a hog. Another saying: “Pigs get fat; hogs get butchered.”

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    • Armin December 5, 06:25

      So what you’re trying to say, Lucy, is that we’re all stockpiling. In the West the good times just keep rolling on. For those with the money to buy. In other parts of the world not so much. We in North America are living in a prosperity bubble of unprecedented proportions. Worldwide there are almost a billion people without even access to clean drinking water. We here should consider all of us very fortunate and very blessed and give thanks every day for all that we have and never, ever take it for granted. Life can change either way in an instant.

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      • Lucy February 14, 17:22

        Amen to all that, Armin! Your comment is deeply thoughtful. I especially needed that today.

        Reply to this comment
        • Armin February 14, 20:04

          You’re very welcome, Lucy. I appreciate your positivity. Right now my computers are driving me crazy. They’re doing strange and wonderful things and they’re really stressing me out. They’re just a machine when all is said and done but a programmable machine and that opens a whole Pandora’s box of problems. I need your positive comment also. Things like that help to make my day brighter. 🙂

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  17. Lucy December 5, 00:03

    This is an EXCELLENT article, Fergus! It keeps bubbling on the back burner of my brain, and makes me keep thinking of more additions. Really well written, too.

    One thing I have a different experience with, and that’s olive oil. Two years and it goes rancid? I wonder why we have such different experiences. Maybe it’s the difference in climate? I keep my bottles, and once in a while a big can, of it in my cool cellar, which is about 54 degrees. They come from Spain, Italy, Greece, Turkey, Lebanon, and California. I always use the oldest one; as of now the older ones were bought in 2010. I love olive oil, and don’t do rancid. Rancid doesn’t just taste bad, it’s seriously bad for us! Lets loose the free radicals.

    So, what do you suppose the difference is? Temperature? Light? Origin?

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    • Teddy December 14, 00:34

      I agree with you, Lucy. I have olive oil which is about 10 to 12 years old. It’s fine. I live in a humid, subtropical climate. We have air conditioning. Because of water tables close to the surface, basements, root cellars and the like are not doable hers, unless you want to create a tall dirt pad first. My food stuffs go in the pantry or on a shelf, and the olive oil is keeping fine so far. I accidentally overstocked and using it up.

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    • Teddy December 14, 00:39

      I agree with you, Lucy. I have olive oil which is about 10 to 12 years old. It’s fine. I live in a humid, subtropical climate. We have air conditioning. Because of water tables close to the surface, basements, root cellars and the like are not doable here, unless you want to create a tall dirt pad first. My food stuffs go in the pantry or on a shelf, and the olive oil is keeping fine so far. I accidentally overstocked and am using it up.

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  18. narvo December 10, 05:56

    Thank you for being so generous with your info.! May God give more customers this year then the last 2 years,Amen.

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  19. Lorraine December 13, 19:40

    My friend started me on some Thrive Freeze Dried Food and I couldn’t believe how good it is. So I ordered a bunch and just started prepping. My husband and I use the Thrive everyday so I am learning how to make scrumptious meals. Now, so many of my friends, like me, who never thought of prepping are interested in it when they saw how I am using it for most of our meals. I signed up about two weeks ago to be a consultant. I get 5% return on everything I buy, and plus, a % on anything my family or friends buy. This company is incredible! You should check out their web site and youtube cooking video’s. So Cool!!

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  20. Teddy December 14, 00:48

    Love everyone’s suggestions! Some terrific ideas, which I intend to utilize. Some items were reminders, like sprouting seeds. I always preferred alfalfa sprouts to much bean sprouts. Just make sure to get human consumption alfalfa seeds so there is no chemical treatment for planting the seeds.
    I was given a jar of pickled eggs. Thanks to Armin’s and Lucy’s comments, I am almost brave enough to try one lol.
    Many thanks to everyone for contributing.

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    • Armin December 14, 03:02

      Just take one out, Teddy, and have a little nibble of it if you want to be cautious. You can’t really go wrong with pickled eggs. I wouldn’t know how to screw them up. Other than putting in the wrong spices but that wouldn’t hurt you. Just take one out. Give it a sniff and just take a little tiny bite of it. Your taste buds will tell you if it’s good or not and if you think they’ve gone “bad” for some reason then just spit it out. Rinse your mouth. Then just tell your friend that gave you the jar thank you very much but that they just don’t agree with you. Which would basically be the truth without hurting that person’s feelings. But mine were awesome! Next time with apple cider vinegar and now I have an idea how long to cook them so they’re not overdone. Because you don’t just make one or two at a time. You make a whole batch. Next time I’ll make (3) of the 18 egg cartons worth. Whenever they come on special again. Aaaarrrrgghh! LOL!

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      • Teddy December 14, 04:52

        Armin, honestly, I am more concerned about how the eggs taste. You and Lucy are the only people I know who really like pickled eggs. If I like them when I try them, I will try your ideas for pickling them as they sound delicious! Thank you!

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        • Clergylady June 23, 19:04

          When I was decades younger my husband and I’d go to a little neighborhood bar to shoot pool and he’d drink a few. They always had pickled eggs and pickled pigs feet. The guys seemed to really enjoy them.

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        • Clergylady June 23, 19:37

          I sort of double up and salt and dehydrate chicken and rabbit for stews.
          My teenaged neighbors favorite is dehydrated bell pepper, onions, potatoes diced 1/4″ or flakes, Creole seasoning to taste. A handful of dehydrated meat. Pour boiling water on to rehydrate then more water as needed to make a thick stew when finished.
          My favorite is dehydrated rabbit or chicken, potato diced or flakes, diced roasted green chili, dried cilantro to taste, garlic granuals, a bit of dry creamer dehydrated added near end of cooking time is optional. A simple soup great with a fresh warm flour tortilla. Cubed fresh potatoes are best but dehydrated still good also.
          I am ultimately a fan of fresh food.

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  21. Teddy December 14, 01:01

    Also, I am working on multiple oils for consumption. They are necessary for proper brain and neurological function, and help our skin, hair and nails. My favorites are coconut and olive oils. I love butter, and would love to acquire that in a long-term container. In my experience, Crisco lasts maybe a year if I am lucky once the container is opened. Since I seldom use it, I don’t plan to purchase any.

    Reply to this comment
    • Armin December 14, 03:26

      You’re talking about multiple oils for proper brain function. You may be overthinking it, Teddy. I’m just a simple fool and I like to keep things simple and abide by the KISS principle. Peanut butter will provide you with all the oil and nutrients to keep your noggin limber. And it lasts forever in a sealed container if you keep it out of direct sun and reasonably cool. And while I remember I think it was Drake talking about storing instant coffee in a freezer. That may be overkill. I have a little instant coffee and it comes vacuum packed from the store. Every once in a while I’ll open one up and you hear that satisfying pop letting you know that the seal is intact and there’s nothing wrong with it. Some of it is more than ten years old. Back to your oil concerns. I also like butter, especially for making scrambled eggs. Nothing quite like the taste of eggs fried in butter. H’mm. H’mm. Yummy. There is such a thing as canned butter and it would last almost forever. You may be able to get it at Walmart or you may have to look around a bit. At this moment I don’t know. Crisco isn’t one of my favourite things unless you’re making a lot of pies. I haven’t quite got the knack of pie making yet. Every one I talk to says it’s sooooooo simple. Thanks. But you should keep a couple of tins of Crisco around and some candle wicks. In an emergency you can make candles out of Crisco or maybe even use it as a fire starter with the cotton balls and the petroleum jelly that I’ve heard some people use. You might be able to use Crisco and cotton balls as a fire starter. I don’t know. I haven’t tried it yet. If it comes down to it and we are stuck with a SHTF situation then we have to be very smart and creative to survive. I pray to god it never comes to that. It might take us a thousand years to recover depending upon how bad it potentially could be.

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      • Teddy December 14, 05:22

        Armin, one of the reasons I mentioned what oils are important for is that many people do not know this and they think they are helping themselves be healthy with little oil. I agree, eggs cooked in butter is yummm, and also cooked in bacon grease! I’m not too keen on peanut butter, but almond butter is a different story 🙂 Different oils have different advantages for us. I must remember to look for canned butter. I’ve found ghee in jars, but it is pricey. Better to make n can one’s own.
        Agreed on pie making. The filing is easy. Crust is not, but I think that a good scratch pie crust is a gift.
        I like the idea of Crisco candles. That would be worth buying a small can to try it out. Before wicks were commercially available, people used string or cord or whatever they had. I’ve made candles, it’s fun. Occasionally, I run across beeswax in blocks. I agree with your last comments too. May next year be better for us all!

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        • Clergylady June 23, 19:51

          I use the string feed sacks have been sewn with for emergency of camping candles. I brade it and stiffen it by melting crayons onto it so it will insert into crisco easily. Without the crayon it could be just as easily used in an oil candle. My neighbor adds disolved saltpeter to her homemade wicks. Then uses them when dry.
          I have an abundance of old crayons so using what I have.

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    • Homesteader December 14, 09:54

      Red Feather is one brand of canned butter. There are others. Emergency Essentials (beprepared.com) has some, I think. You can do a search for canned butter to find several sources. Also, ghee, or clarified butter, comes canned. The only problem I have found with them is very little flavor, but then I’m used to fresh butter, so they’re going to taste different.

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    • c j February 13, 03:59

      If you are trying different oils, make sure you try the avocado oil! It is so yummy, can handle higher heat (like if you are cooking over an open fire) or just frying something. Make sure you get the 100% pure avocado oil since they do make a combination oil too.

      Reply to this comment
  22. Armin December 14, 03:32

    While I remember and it looks like things are just going to get busier from here on in I sincerely wish you all a great Christmas and a very happy and safe New Year! I pray that the world leaders come to their senses before they travel down a path from which there is no turning back. MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE!

    Reply to this comment
    • Clergylady October 12, 14:39

      Sounds like a lot here are seriously learning and peeping. Learning and doing will get you better prepared.
      I enjoy reading the comments and input here. The article is good. Each of us can use or adapt things in this article and benefit from it.
      My late husband was a big fan of pickled eggs and sweet pickled cooked beets. Sometimes as we used up the beets he’d add boiled eggs to sweet pickle and turn bright pink from the beet juice. They were pretty in a chef’s salad.
      My kids loved the “pink eggs”.
      I like Stevia but in things like the sweet pickles I don’t think it would work as well. So I do have white sugar in my pantry. Real sugars each have a place and a reason they are used in cooking. Stevia does make a blend with sugar for baking. I like Stevie in my tea. One leaf of a couple of drops of the liquid work for me.
      I love sprouts as salads or on sandwhiches in winter. I save lambsquarter seeds, alfalfa, Ming beans, wheat, and more. The sprouts are nutritious and tasty.
      Once spring lettuce is up I don’t do so much sprouting. I gather fresh growing tips of alfalfa, clover and more to add to lettuce salads. I make alfalfa tea from the tender fresh tips or clover blossoms till fall rose hip tea.
      I gather wild and garden greens for pot herbs. I try to eat something green most days, cooked greens or salads. I add greens to many soups or cajin stews.
      My teas are pure enjoyment but I suppose are good for me as well. I gather coata tea here. It make good hot or iced tea. Natives then Spanish settler families have used it for centuries. When the monsoon rains come each summer, the coata quickly grows up and is harvested from when it can be identified till it goes to seed. I leave most of the seed heads on the little bundles of tea set to dry. They add to the depth of flavor. Then I scatter seeds where I hope to get it growing on my land or nearby. So far I think the ants have won by gathering the seeds for their use.

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  23. Crsully December 26, 16:50

    Wow! Such great info and comments. I’m new at this and am overwhelmed. (I have canned with pressure canner in the past. That’s about it. ). Does anyone have a ” how to begin ….” Type site like for dummies? Thank you.

    Reply to this comment
    • Armin December 26, 17:09

      A place to start may be something like YouTube, Crsully. I think Claude even has his own YouTube channel. Might be worth checking out. You never know where it might lead you from there.

      Reply to this comment
    • Lisa October 9, 17:46

      A place to start – What do you eat, That is what you learn to store. I can meat, since it is the most item I eat. You be suprised what can be pressure canned. I do meat, will learn to make ghee this winter. On the oils,, my orchard will include olive trees. Then I’ll learn to press the oil. Do what you can, learn from there.

      Reply to this comment
      • Armin December 16, 03:35

        Just as a silly question, Lisa, do you can raw meat or cooked meat or both?

        Reply to this comment
        • Lisa December 16, 18:35

          Both. Larger pieces are “raw canned”. That means put in clean jars, add a little broth/water, or not as you prefer. The meat on the bone that’s hard to get at; crock pot the bones, pull off the meat. Now can that, add a little of the broth then process. The idea is not to waste any. BTW, the bones should be simmered a day or so, add some veggies, then can the broth. The grocery store charges a lot for “bone broth”. All that is is simmered bones in water with ACV to help leach the nutrients out of the bones. Homemade bone broth is wonderful as a base for soups or gravy. An old remedy for hurting joints was bone broth. Save the bones til you have enough, add the wilted veggies, simmer a day or so. Great stuff.

          Reply to this comment
  24. Armin January 4, 18:11

    Just a quick update on my pickled eggs “experiment”. Pickled some eggs for New Years. Wanted them to turn out sweet/sour as opposed to so much sour. Used ACV. 2 cups ACV with 4 Tbls sugar and a pinch of salt. 1 teaspoon pickling spices to every 2 litre mason jar. You can not believe how long it takes to peel 48 boiled eggs especially when some of them fight back. After a couple of days took one egg out to try it and it was pretty good. With the ACV and the sugar the mixture has a very “delicate” flavor. Will leave them for about a month and then see what they taste like. Hope everyone had a great New Year’s eve with friends and family or even just close family.

    Reply to this comment
    • Lucy January 10, 19:21

      You peeled 48 hard boiled eggs! What a hardy soul you are! Thanks for the update. Remember to share what happens to their taste after a month!

      Reply to this comment
      • Armin January 11, 00:09

        Just plain nuts, Lucy. LOL! Didn’t realize there was THAT much work involved in such a simple task as peeling eggs. Literally took me hours and my big clumsy man fingers don’t help. Also some of the eggs were “fighting” back and just didn’t want to be peeled. Maybe they were shy. LOL! Ended up with three 2-litre mason jars full of pickled eggs. Every few days will raid the jar with the eggs that didn’t peel so well as a friend of mine asked for some after they are well and truly pickled. The eggs not my friend. LOL! I just can’t stay away from them. The eggs. LOL! The taste seems to be turning out to be very “delicate” for want of a better word. I used 4 tablespoons of sugar to every two cups of ACV and for me that seems to be the perfect ratio and the flavor is not so “harsh” as it would be if you used just straight vinegar. And they’re also developing a noticeable “blush” from the colour of the ACV which I find quite appealing. I like how they’re turning out and the vinegar is actually quite drinkable because of the sugar.

        Reply to this comment
    • Val April 27, 01:34

      If you learn to hard boil eggs in an Instant Pot you will have very little problem with peeling.

      Reply to this comment
      • Armin April 17, 19:23

        Funny you should say that, Val. Just took the plunge and bought myself one of them fancy gadgets. Don’t know why I didn’t do it before. They’re not that expensive. LOVE my instant pot. Pressure cooking is SO much better.

        Reply to this comment
  25. Clergylady January 4, 19:12

    I like pickled eggs with other things like bell pepper slices and celery or carrot sticks for a quick lunch. Some times we have deviled eggs for a lunch. I do like eggs.
    I have saved unwashed fresh eggs in a basket for a few weeks or coated with olive oil for 3-4 months at room temperature. My grandmother had a spring house and kept eggs through most of a Pennsylvania winter in water glass in the cool, damp springhouse.

    Reply to this comment
    • Lucy February 14, 18:24

      For those who want to hard boil and then peel a bunch of eggs, a tidbit: Older eggs are way easier to peel (without them fighting back!) than fresh eggs. Don’t know why, but the shell hangs onto fresh eggs for all they’re with when you try to peel them.

      Reply to this comment
      • Armin February 14, 20:25

        Thanks for that, Lucy. Didn’t know and don’t know why. Maybe the moisture level of fresh eggs makes that membrane cling tighter to the egg?? They were fresh eggs and I was surprised how difficult it was to peel some of them. I did the cold water and all the rest of it but still some of them just didn’t peel without taking chunks of egg with it. So many helpful hints. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

        Reply to this comment
        • mimi@sbtx January 25, 00:02

          have you tried taking a pin and poking a hole in the raw egg and then boiling? lets a little air in between the egg and shell. peels pretty easily.

          Reply to this comment
      • Toni April 24, 04:53

        If you put a half-to-a-full -teaspoon of salt in the water the eggs will peel beautifully no matter how old they are.

        Reply to this comment
  26. Clergylady January 4, 19:16

    I’ve heard negative comments on the flavor of powdered eggs but for baking no one would guess. For scrambled eggs I like to add a bit of finely fixed onion or onion powder and we enjoyed them.
    I’d live to have a bunch to stash away.

    Reply to this comment
    • Lisa June 23, 18:26

      When I have my own chickens, will be dehydrating raw eggs. My “recipe” says 4 dozen fit in a quart canning jar. To rehydrate is 1 to 1. Lightly scramble 4; spread them on a fruit leather tray about 1/8 ” thick. Low heat. you know they are done when an edge lifts clean. Break it up, or grind to powder place in a jar. The fruit leather trays can be made with wax paper with a lip edge.

      Reply to this comment
  27. Clergylady January 10, 21:30

    I wonder if the pickle eggs could be canned? I’ve canned pickled vegetables but crab apples and beats are favorites. Tiny yellow and red tomatoes are wonderful pickled.

    Reply to this comment
    • Armin January 11, 00:34

      Hi, Clergylady. Basically what I’m doing IS canning eggs. When you can jam or something like that you boil the fruit, add sugar and certo and put it boiling hot into mason jars. Basically what I did except didn’t put the eggs boiling hot into the jars. And because the eggs are going into vinegar anyways they shouldn’t need to go boiling hot into the jars. It’s not possible anyways as the eggs have to be peeled and cooled before they’re peeled because if you don’t they don’t peel worth a darn. And I don’t see why they shouldn’t basically last forever in the pickling solution if they’re kept in a cool dark place in a sealed container. To me they’re turning out very nicely but I have to stop “raiding” the one jar. I need to be patient enough to see what they’re like after enough time to pickle properly. But they are soooooo good. 🙂 And as for canned crab apples there really is nothing better but sooooo much work because they’re so darn small. Have actually made crab apple jelly. Now that was work but oh my goodness is it ever good. Nothing you can get from the store will EVER compare. Crab apples are so underrated. Many people have at least one crab apple tree in their back yard and they look at it as something undesirable. A lot of the time the little crab apples are quite sour on their own but one year I was picking crab apples off the one tree and they were so good I just could not stop eating them while I was picking them.They made some fabulous crab apple jam. Soooooo good with crepes! Or cream of wheat. (Another thing to have on hand if times become tough) Or potato pancakes. The list just goes on and on. And apparently your own jam made from your own crab apples is supposed to be one of the best things for you.

      Reply to this comment
      • Lucy February 14, 17:52

        Does “hunde arbeit” translate to “dog work,” Armin? If so, someone knows different dogs than I do! LOL. Say, I have bought pickled eggs canned in jars. One company’s is just made with hard boiled eggs, water, vinegar, and salt. The other’s is made with hard boiled eggs, citric acid, sodium benzoate, packed in vinegar, salt, artificial color (F.D.& C. red 40), beet juice, and sodium erythrobate. So it can be done for longer storage, apparently.

        Reply to this comment
        • Armin February 14, 20:56

          This website did it again and too much work to repost. I was starting to trust the website but looks like I will have to copy every post on this page just in case. Short answer. Yes, it does. That’s the literal translation. Doesn’t sound so good in English. The closest English phrase would be something like “grunt work” but that’s not really close. When you’re doing “hunde arbeit” you’re doing something so tedious it drives you up completely the wall.

          Reply to this comment
  28. Armin January 11, 14:30

    I tried to reply to your post, Teddy, but this idiot website came back with the message that I’m posting too quickly and I should slow down. I hope my post hasn’t been all deleted. It was a couple of hours of work and I’m not doing it all over again. Thanks for all your info. GWN means Great White North. Alternate name for Canada. Take care. Right now I’m just really pissed because all that work could be gone.

    Reply to this comment
    • Teddy January 11, 14:42

      Good morning, Armin! Thank you for responding. O have just gone back over the comments and it looks as if the web ate your long post 🙁 tech is great when it works well, and such a pain when it doesn’t. Thanks for telling me what GWN stands for 🙂 I like reading your posts. Stay warm and have a wonderful day 🙂

      Reply to this comment
    • Lucy February 14, 17:56

      I have gotten that “posting too quickly” message before, too, Armin. It must have meant something else, because my second post was more than two hours later. Now I copy whatever I had labored over before I hit “Send.” Condolences.

      Reply to this comment
  29. Teddy January 11, 15:50

    Armin, you are so sensible in your posts and have good information. I suspect you speak from experience with a lot of your posting. I also appreciate your refusal to add to fear mongering. And I am so sad for you that your reply was whisked out to the ether! Are you supposed to get more of the cold weather coming through? We chill down again later tomorrow again.

    Reply to this comment
    • Clergylady January 11, 16:35

      We canned the crab apples in a sweet / sour, cinnamon, pickle. Just done to taste. Family favorite was whole picked crab apples served with pork chops and fried potatoes.
      I bet the eggs are good and getting better.

      Reply to this comment
      • Armin February 13, 03:36

        YUP! 🙂 🙂

        Reply to this comment
      • Armin February 13, 04:00

        That sounds sooooooo good, CL. You’re making my mouth water just reading your post. So many people don’t realize how good crab apples really are and throw them away. They just take a little extra work but it’s worth it. When my mum was still alive I used to help her process the crab apples we had from our own trees in the back yard. And the jams turned out so nicely. Beats ANYTHING you can get in the store and the best part no chemicals. One year I helped her make crab apple jelly. What a job that was. Just about died but it turned out so lovely. In my native language it’s called “hunde arbeit”. Such a sweet delicate taste. Store bought can’t duplicate it. I’d take crab apple in my own back yard over cultivated any time but wouldn’t mind a couple of cultivars just for variety. Just don’t have the space right now. Working towards it though. I WILL have my “hundred acre wood” a la Winnie the Poo. LOL!

        Reply to this comment
    • Armin February 13, 03:45

      Yes, I do, Teddy. I’m officially an old geezer with a twisted sense of humour. Suffice to say that I love George Carlin’s sense of humour. I can’t say that my life has been boring. It’s almost in this life as if I’ve come down here to get all my stupid mistakes out of the way at once. But the way I look at it, Teddy, is that if you don’t make mistakes you never learn anything and this time around I’ve learned one HECK of a lot! LOL! As for the weather here in southern Ontario it has been DARN cold this year. We got spoiled the last few years and now mother nature has taken off the gloves.

      Reply to this comment
  30. gumbi February 12, 18:27

    Bear Creek Soups are great, but only about 2 to 3 yrs shelf life. You just add to boiling water, some times with a can of tomato sauce or paste and cook for a few minutes. WalMart carries them and I believe even Sam’s Club and Costco. We keep them on hand here in Wisconsin and use them all the time. Their “Darn Good Chili” really is Darned Good!!

    Reply to this comment
    • Armin February 13, 04:10

      Hey, Gumbi. Nice to “see” you on here. Chili is one of my favourite things and every once in a while I go to the trouble of making my own. You can get almost anything in cans. It’s too bad BCS only have such a short shelf life. Must mean you have gotten very good at rotating stock. Every one should be at least a little prepared for the little “surprises” life can throw our way. Even if it’s only the power out for a week or so. The American people are so resilient. I keep hearing about things like floods, fire, tornados south of the border. You guys are amazing. One tough bunch.

      Reply to this comment
  31. GreatNorthernPreppette February 12, 18:53

    I have heard that you can make eggs last for years if you store them in salt. Carefully place raw eggs into a container filled with salt. I would imagine you’d want the container to be shallow, and you’d want the salt all over each egg. So pour some salt in first, then place the eggs in a single layer, and cover the remainder in salt. Close the box or container. Use as necessary.

    The good news is, if you have chickens and you’re successful at raising them and having them procreate, you should have eggs forever and not have to store them. Just barter for something you do need.

    I personally want to get Guinea Fowl instead of chickens. They stay together in a group, are less likely to be picked off by a predator, and take care of the tick problems, which is going to be real important in a SHTF situation. If medical assistance is scarce or non-existent, I certainly don’t want to contract Lyme Disease.

    Reply to this comment
    • Homesteader February 12, 19:52

      Guineas are fine birds to have around and I love watching them and listening to them fuss if I got too close. They won’t destroy a garden like chickens will. Chickens will eat the plants and the bugs whereas Guineas will just eat the bugs. However, coyotes can and will take Guineas just as fast as they’ll take chickens. If you don’t think you’ve got coyotes around, just put some birds in your yard. I’ve got two neighbors who’ve had Guineas and have lost nearly all of them to coyotes. Also, if you have nearby neighbors, they may not like the noise Guineas make. What the coyotes didn’t take, the disgruntled neighbors shot. Just letting you know what I’ve personally witnessed about my neighbor’s Guineas.

      Reply to this comment
    • Armin February 13, 04:52

      Hi, GNP! Thanks for that great info. I have never heard that before. Will have to look that up. Don’t know if it would work. Interesting. I like your idea about guinea fowl. The only thing is if you did have those wouldn’t you have itty bitty tiny eggs? LOL! If I’m serious about being more or less independent then guineas sound like a good choice for meat and personally I’d want something like Rhode Island Reds for meat and eggs beside the guineas. Also geese. They’re noisy. I’d also want rabbits going. GOOD sized rabbits. Go big or go home. I’d also want a medium sized aquaculture setup on the go for fish. And fish not only for food but also for fertilizer. As strange as it sounds. And then tie it all together so that the waste water from the fish waters the fields and the rabbit poop is used for vermiculture. There have to be a couple of cattle in there for proper meat. I need my beef. Many years. MANY, MANY years ago I heard a program on CBC and they were talking about this man who had a very revolutionary idea and it seemed to be working very well for him. And I still remember it 50 years later. A rock crusher comes in handy for this. His idea was to use whatever excess fish he had. Make a fish slurry out of it and dump it in the fields to fertilize the crops. I’m assuming you would use it the same as manure in the fall. You wouldn’t spread it in the fields while the crops were growing. The stink would be horrible and you’d have cats in their glory between your crops. And while I’m thinking of it, remember dogs and cats for your homestead. The second part of this guy’s idea was to use rock dust from something like granite and also spread that in the fields along with the fish slurry. Apparently he saw a phenomenal increase in crop yield and it makes perfect sense. The minerals in the rock dust would help to renew the soil. Any kind of a manure-like product is taken “up” LOL! by the worms in the soil and dragged underground to also help the soil. If you have healthy worms in the soil then you have a productive farm no matter how big or how small. I am also thinking about an anaerobic composter for the grey/waste water including the poop water. Apparently once it goes through something like an anaerobic composter and all the bacteria do their job then it IS ok to use in your fields. Otherwise no. Raw human waste is NOT good for your garden. And then tie it all together so that it works synergistically and is efficient and very little waste. Use everything that you have and produce for a purpose. Waste nothing. Want nothing. And lastly to address the noise issue brought up by Homesteader I would want to be far enough away from my neighbours so that I could walk around in the buff all day if I so chose. Just hanging’ out on my property, so to speak. RAOTFLMLBO. Hee! Hee!

      Reply to this comment
    • Lucy February 14, 18:56

      Ah! Guinea fowl! GNC, maybe there are different traits to different strains of them, so keep that in mind re: my experience.

      I got Lyme disease 5 times when we lived near the Hudson River. [We humans don’t mount an immune response adequate to fight it off, so can get it again.] I read that some of the parks in Long Island had imported flocks of guinea fowl to eat the ticks that carry Lyme disease, and thought, okay.

      Got a couple of dozen, built them a nice pen to keep them safe from raccoons, foxes, etc. at night, and let them out every morning to scour for the bugs they love. Scour they did — somewhere else. They took off in all directions every morning, and came back at night to feed and go into their shelter. A couple of times when I wasn’t there to open the door at bedtime, they all flew about 25′ up in the white pines nearby. That was some work toting them back down in the dark!

      I was told by the Department of Environmental Conservation that they have a territory of about 25 MILES in diameter from their home roost.

      So, I don’t know the good answer to keep the Lyme ticks at bay WHERE YOU LIVE. Clip the guinea fowl’s wings? Then they couldn’t escape predators. Have so many that some of them feed nearer home? They were good breeders. Better not have neighbors close by! They are RAUCOUS! A friend had built their pen against the bedroom side of his house, and their racket made him so crazy he grabbed his shotgun one night when they were settling in and put them out of his misery. I liked having the early-warning noise, like geese. They seemed personable and funny to me. My grandmother said that guinea fowl was her all-time favorite meat, although I never ate one of them.

      Keep us posted!

      Reply to this comment
      • Armin February 14, 21:20

        Now you guys are really making me curious about Guinea Fowl. Something I would never have thought of on my own. And they are probably small enough that one of them would be meal for one person. I like chicken but if I get a full grown chicken it lasts me for 4 days and then I’m getting sick of it. You are one tough cookie, Lucy. Lyme disease 5 times. Holy manoley! For most people once is enough. You don’t do anything small, do you. A couple dozen? My goodness! It is so hard to believe that those little buggers have a territory THAT big. Whether you believe it or not that’s approx. 450 SQUARE MILES! WOW! A silly question. Couldn’t you just wait until the morning for them to come back down out of the trees? We have a Sobey’s grocery store near here and I think they might just stock guinea fowl. Will have to check them out and see what they taste like. No use contemplating getting some if I can’t stand the taste. Thanks for all your good ideas. 🙂

        Reply to this comment
  32. Nitasmoke February 13, 00:52

    Has anyone used the freeze drying machine that is advertised on Facebook? They are about 3,000 and I wondered if it would be worth the investment.

    Reply to this comment
    • Homesteader February 13, 01:56

      I do know that they take a dedicated 220 line, like your clothes dryer is on. So you would have to have an electrician come in the install the line – an added expense. Plus they have to run for about 24 hours to freeze dry a load. That really runs up the electric bill. And from what I’ve heard, they’re noisy with the fan running. Don’t know how the costs associated with the dryer compares to just buying food that is already freeze dried. Does anyone else have any more information? Sorry I couldn’t be of more help.

      Reply to this comment
    • Lucy February 14, 19:09

      Yikes! $3000 would buy a lot of freeze dried food Nitasmoke! However, if you have that kind of money, commitment and time, you could make the kind of food that you and yours like, without all the chemicals and additives that are in the stuff you buy. Especially it would be nice if anyone in your group have a gluten sensitivity, or food allergies, or defined food preferences.

      A few months ago I did an in-depth search for food for my preparations, and was dismayed to learn how little was out there, either in freeze dried or any other form, that I could eat. Years of intense antibiotic use left me with allergies to chicken, cows’ milk, unprocessed soy, spinach, almonds, and a few other foods. (Allergy=antibody production, which lowers immune response)

      What would you want to do with the freeze drying machine? For how long?

      Reply to this comment
      • Armin February 14, 21:31

        That sucks, Lucy. 🙁 I’m not a big fan of antibiotics but my cardiologist insists that I take them before having ANY dental work done. Even “just” a cleaning. I know it’s precautionary and I could probably do without but I also know that slowly but surely that antibiotic use is ruining my stomach. Antibiotics don’t discriminate and kill both the good and bad flora in your stomach. Every time I go to the dentist I make sure to get 3 or 4 tubs of probiotic yogurt just so that I can re-populate my stomach with the right kind of flora. I know it’s probably not exactly the same as the original in my stomach but what choice do I have? I don’t know any other way to get the right kind of flora back into my gut.

        Reply to this comment
        • Lucy February 15, 07:19

          Yogurt is good! Any kind of unpasteurized cultured food like fresh sauerkraut (or beets, or carrots processed the same way), kim chee, and probably other vegetables I don’t know about, and kefir, which tastes mildly yogurt-y to me, and even sourdough bread and soft cheese, I just read, are all good to replenish and balance the bacteria in our gut. We also need prebiotics, which are foods that we don’t digest (lots of fiber) that nourish the probiotics in our guts. And vinegar is great!

          You’re probably taking good care of your digestive tract with the yogurt, from all I just read!

          Reply to this comment
  33. Ellen February 13, 07:56

    I want to grow sesame, flax,sunflowers and peanuts to make my own oil.

    Reply to this comment
    • Armin February 14, 22:10

      That sounds like a really good idea, Ellen. How are you going to press your own oil? Linseed oil is one of the best things for your cognitive brain function. Sesame will grow almost under any conditions. It’s called a survivor crop. Does like it warm though and is sensitive to the photoperiod. Sunflowers are pretty hardy and again will grow almost anywhere. A field of sunflowers rearing their little (not always. LOL!) heads in the sunshine is so pretty. I use nothing but sunflower oil to cook with. I know so many people like olive oil but I just gag on the taste. Peanuts also like it warm and because it’s classified as a legume it fixes nitrogen from the air. A bonus for the soil. Peanut oil is wonderful. I love it! But too expensive here to use for every day cooking. Peanuts like a light sandy loam and LOTS of water. If you have a fairly big piece of property you’ll have to be very careful where you plant what to get the maximum yield. Flax is another wonderful plant. So pretty with their little blue flowers. But flax likes it cool and moist so we get some of the best linen from Ireland. Irish linen is world renowned. Linseed oil is very healthy for you and of course you remind me that you can also use flax for fibers.You can make your own linen from flax but it IS very labour intensive. And that’s another thing your post reminds me of Ellen. Another tool for the homestead. Looms. To weave your own cloth. And that brings me to sheep and wool. Oy vey! I AM going to need a big piece of property. LOL! But as I say, Ellen, and as you’re probably aware anyways; all these plants need slightly different conditions to flourish so be careful what type of soil you plant each of these disparate crops in. I wish you the best of luck. 🙂

      Reply to this comment
    • Clergylady June 23, 19:17

      We have wild flax here. Not great enough numbers to press oil but they are an attractive wild flower.

      Reply to this comment
    • Lisa June 23, 21:50

      I’ll looking at Avocado. Good fruit, want to learn to press oil.

      Reply to this comment
  34. Old Nick April 4, 10:29

    Don’t forget dates as dried fruit. They are delicious and very nutritious

    Reply to this comment
    • Clergylady June 23, 19:23

      Mmmmm.dates. great eating as is., pitted with an almond inside and wonderful rolled in coconut.
      Chunks work as sugar in some applications ie baking or a milkshake. Good in a trail mix.
      Husband loves to carry a date or two in a sandwich bag.

      Reply to this comment
  35. EddieW July 12, 22:29

    I spent about an hour reading all this, but what great reading!! I loaded up on really great information!! And info I could have found nowhere else!! LOVE IT!!!

    Reply to this comment
  36. Clergylady July 12, 22:46

    Glad you came by and enoyed the site. Regulars here continue to comment and enjoy reading here.

    Reply to this comment
  37. Clergylady October 12, 14:48

    Yes Old Nick. I love dates and. It up dried dates are wonderful to add to hot cereals and baking. Also good in homemade trail mix.
    A friend here has been experimenting, making chocolate bars with instant coffee granuals or crystals added. Wow are they good. The only problem with that is chocolate doesn’t handle the heat too well. It melts and changes color after melting. If left too long, it powers and is not so good.

    Reply to this comment
    • Teddy October 13, 03:21

      Sounds as if your friend is using milk chocolate. Dark will work better. Also the cooking temperature will make a difference in the final product. Milk chocolate melts at a lower temp than dark, because of the milk. I love dates as an after-dinner dessert. Usually one makes me happy 🙂

      Reply to this comment
    • Armin December 16, 02:12

      Hi, Clergylady. I’ve messed around with chocolate a fair bit and while I’m not ANY kind of expert I have learned a few things by trial and error. Sometimes the best way to learn but you use more product in the process. When I’m making a chocolate cake I melt my own chocolate over medium heat. And always add instant coffee to it at the end to give it that extra “zing”. And as strange as it sounds it’s sort of like melting ice cubes. I know it sounds weird but bear with me. Obviously you can’t turn the heat up when working with chocolate because as we all know the melting point of chocolate is pretty close to normal human body temp. Hold some chocolate in your hands for a few minutes and you will prove my point. You end up licking the chocolate off your hand. Not the best way to eat it unless you like runny chocolate. The BIGGEST secret to working with chocolate is to always keep it moving. Always. You have to stay with the pot and you can’t let the chocolate rest for even one second. The instant the last chunk of chocolate melts into the mix, THE INSTANT; timing is everything, you IMMEDIATELY take the chocolate off the heat and then do whatever you want with it while it’s still hot and manageable. It cools very quickly. You cannot even go 10 seconds past this point because then the chocolate will start to burn and you can see it and taste it. Chocolate is VERY delicate. I’ve learned this from hard experience. If you do it like this and watch the heat you don’t have to bother with double boilers and all that other stuff. But there are hard and fast rules with chocolate and if you don’t follow them you ruin the chocolate. Doesn’t take much. Just don’t be afraid of working with chocolate. As long as you keep it at a reasonable heat and keep it moving and follow the rules your chocolate will turn out perfect every time. Hope this helps. 🙂

      Reply to this comment
  38. Clergylady October 13, 07:11

    One date is a great ending to a good meal. They keep well. If dried out they are still good chopped and used in trail mix or baking. When I was a kid my mother loved a date milkshake.

    Reply to this comment
  39. laura December 16, 01:29

    Cisco is not good for you

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    • Armin December 16, 03:28

      Hi, Laura! I’m not trying to be a smartass but you probably mean “Crisco” shortening. If you had the Cisco Kid after you then that DEFINITELY wouldn’t be a good thing. LOL! Why do you say Crisco shortening is not good for you? It basically works the same way as real lard rendered from pig meat. And you have to use lard when making a good pie crust. Which I haven’t mastered yet. It was first introduced by Proctor and Gamble in 1911. It’s been around for a long time. It was the first shortening to be made of cottonseed oil. Now it’s made by Smuckers. Is cottonseed oil so bad for you? If I had my choice I would take vegetable oil shortening over real lard every time. Just the thought of real lard wants to make me hurl as it’s pig meat rendered down. Because of my pension I sometimes even pick up pork sausages when they have a real good sale on but not my first choice of what I want to eat. And when I cook those sausages in a frying pan it produces a very dense fat which I know is not all that good for me. And I don’t like the way it coats my tongue. And when you cook those sausages like that you’re further rendering them down because of the dense fat that’s produced in the pan. That fat remains solid at room temp. so if you eat a lot of it you ARE clogging up your arteries. I try and not eat them too much or too often and when I do, I use plenty of mustard, ketchup and relish. And after the meal I have 2 shots of pretty strong booze to help cut the fat. Helps to keep my arteries clean. 🙂 I wouldn’t use Crisco in place of butter or margarine on my sandwiches but I would have no problems in using it as a lard-like shortening product. I did a little more research on cottonseed oil and I can see why you might not like it. But you don’t put it on your sandwiches or your salads. Of all the edible oils listed cotton seed oil has the highest score when it comes to containing saturated fatty acids at 93.6%. Second is palm oil at 88.2% and no surprise, no. 3 is coconut oil at 82.5%. Again, if I had my druthers I would rather use Crisco as a SHORTENING instead of real lard. YUCK! And in an emergency you can use Crisco as a fire starter (cotton balls) or a makeshift candle. Remember your candle wicks. Another experiment I have to try. For cooking and in salads I prefer sunflower oil. A beautiful, fantastic, light oil coming in at around 10% and that’s as a percent by weight of total fat. Safflower oil is better but can’t find it and you’d probably have to go to a specialty store to find it and then probably really expensive. Sunflower good enough for me and sunflowers grow really well even up here in the arctic. LOL! Feels like it sometimes. Canola is even better at 7.4% saturated fatty acids but I can’t stand the taste of canola. I’ll stick with my sunflower even though it’s a bit more expensive than canola. And if I run out of margarine I can always dribble a little sunflower oil on my sandwich. And it goes GREAT in salads. Hope this has helped you. Take care. 🙂 P.S. Everyone keeps talking about how great olive oil is but another oil that I can’t stand the taste of. 🙂

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    • JETHRO PAUL RAYMER May 27, 14:07

      Can you please send me a list of the foods that you can store for ever, can you please sign me up for yo

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  40. Shelda May 5, 01:46

    I actually made a batch of bread and butter pickles using honey and ACV. They were a bit different, but I thought they were great!

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  41. Val April 17, 17:56

    Armin, why would you use margarine for anything? So bad for you.

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    • Armin April 19, 13:54

      So kind of you to say that, Val, and I do understand where you’re coming from. Margarine is NOT the best thing for us. I’ve been eating margarine for most of my life, even as a small child, so I figure my body is pretty well used to it by now. I do try my best and get margarine with the least amount of hydrogenated oil in it. If it’s fairly soft at room temperature then it’s not THE worst for us. The occasional time I spread butter on a piece of bread I actually find the butter too “heavy”. If that makes any sense. Do like making scrambled eggs with butter. Gives them a really nice taste. And just recently I was talking with one of my friends and they mentioned that lard is better for you than butter. Couldn’t believe it but was willing to give them the benefit of the doubt. Still had to look it up anyways and, by golly, they were right. Very surprised. Never knew. I try and stay away from as many pork products as I can. Especially bacon. Tastes great but one of the worst things for you. For some reason just not keen on them. Though would have something like Crisco on hand as an emergency fuel source. Candles/cotton balls. Very much appreciate your concern for others, Val. You’re a good person. Thank you.

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