Do you have wheat stored, but haven't been able or willing to spend $250 on a grain mill?  Have you wondered if there's a way to make bread with it anyhow?  THERE IS!    This bread is moist, tender, with a good crumb and impressive natural gluten strength.   The overnight soak is the magic trick here:  as the mash sits, enzymes break down proteins and allow gluten to begin forming  on its own, enzymes break down starches into sugars for flavor and to feed the yeast you add the next day, and the soaking lets the little hard bits of wheat soften up, leaving no trace of grittiness or graininess. You will not need to add dough enhancer, Vitamin C, vinegar, vital wheat gluten, or any thing else to get great !

If you use the 2 1/2 c of wheat kernels, the bread ends up about 2/3 whole wheat;  if you use a high-speed blender (like BlendTec or Vitamix) , you can use 3 cups and end up with bread that is 85% whole wheat.


Blender Wheat Bread

2 1/3 cups (17 oz) wheat kernels (65% )  OR 3 cups- 22oz , if using a Vitamix 
2 1/2  cups water

Combine in blender; mix on high speed for two minutes.  If it seems too hard on your motor, add 2 Tbsp. water.  Let the mash soak, covered and at room temperature, 8 hours or overnight.   After soaking, add:

2 1/2  cups all-purpose flour (11 oz) 
1 ½ tsp. salt
2 Tbsp. oil
2 Tbsp. honey
4 ½ tsp. yeast (1 ½ Tbsp. or 2 envelopes)
1/4 c. hottest tap water (no hotter than 130 F)

Knead for five minutes, dough should be just thick enough to clean the bowl's sides.  Add flour if needed, but the dough should be tacky and very soft.  It’s had enough kneading  when it passes the windowpane test. (See slide show.)  Cover and let rest 20 minutes.  Coat two 8x4 loaf pans with nonstick cooking spray.  Pour ½ cup water on the oven floor (avoid the heating element!).  Turn the oven on 350 degrees for ONE MINUTE to warm it, then turn heat off.  Divide dough in half.  With wet hands, shape each loaf and place in a pan.  Place pans in the warmed oven.  When the top of the loaf has risen about ½” above the edge of the pan (around 30-40 minutes later), remove from oven and preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  When oven is hot and dough has risen to about ¾” above the rim, bake loaves for 20-25 minutes, until the sides are browned. Remove from pans; cool on a rack at least 20 minutes before slicing.

   If using a high -speed blender, use 3 cups of wheat kernels in the mash. When adding flour the next day, use 1 1/2 cups flour instead of the 2 1/2 cups. 

FAQ’s:

How long can a soaker sit?  It’s best right around 8-12 hours up to 24 hrs.  If you need to have it go longer, refrigerate it from the beginning to slow down enzyme activity.

How high does the ideal proof go? (3/4”)  Does the poke test work? Yes if you use a wet finger or have let it rise uncovered.

How smooth can I get the puree in a blender, and does it matter much? It doesn’t need to be super smooth with this method; soaking eliminates any hard bits.

How long does it take to rise without a warm oven? Depends on your kitchen temperature, but around 1 hour.

Is the 20 minute autolyze necessary for flavor or texture? It’s OK without it, but rises better and tastes a little nicer (sweeter) with it.

How many minutes does it need to rise in the oven?   About 30-40.

How long does it really take to bake at 400? This depends on whether your loaves are identical in size, where any hot spots are in your oven, and how accurate its thermometer is.    My evenly-sized loaves took 21 min.

 
 
Have you heard that you can bottle butter at home to store for later, without refrigeration?  

The first time I heard about it was from my aunt a few years ago.  Then I kept hearing about it, here and there and everywhere!

It sounded kind of strange.  And scary-- what about botulism?  So I did some research.

The FDA discourages canning butter, as do the USU Extension offices around the country, because of the risk of botulism growth in canned butter.  HOWEVER, it looks to me that this is a case of erring on the safe side.  They, as government entities, are very averse to any kind of risk.  Botulism has about a 10-17% death rate in those who get it, though with the low incidence of this kind of food poisoning, it translates to 2-4 deaths in the US per year. Lightening kills way more people (about 55-75/yr).

Botulism does not grow if the water "activity level" is below .94; salted butter has a water activity rate of .91-.93.  The added salt helps 'tie up' the water, making it unavailable.  That should be in the perfectly safe range, but is apparently too close to comfort for the FDA, who require a water activity rate of .85 in commercially-sold foods. I would not can unsalted butter; its water activity rate is .99 or higher. Another option is to make the butter into ghee before canning, well-made ghee has no water remaining in it. I wasn't able to find what the water activity rate of ghee is, but logic leads me to believe it is under even the FDA comfort range.  I've canned both salted butter and ghee.  I'm more comfortable with the ghee.


If you'd like to read more about it to decide if canning butter or ghee is okay with you, here are some of the sources I learned from:

http://www.ecolab.com/our-story/our-company/our-vision/safe-food/microbial-risks/c-botulinum    

http://books.google.com/books?id=ylWey_KBv7UC&pg=PA337&lpg=PA337&dq=%22water+activity%22+of+%22salted+butter%22&source=bl&ots=18uZLS840j&sig=W8RCozWeTS_FcDIa-MkuRJPJu6I&hl=en&sa=X&ei=jeYFUcTWEc6tygHixICQDA&ved=0CEQQ6AEwAQ#v=onepage&q=%22water%20activity%22%20of%20%22salted%20butter%22&f=false     

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK50952/ )


 
 
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If you live in or around Salt Lake City area, and would like to learn more about preparedness, you are welcome to attend an Emergency Preparedness Fair.  This fair is sponsored by an LDS stake in South Jordan and is this weekend (1/21).
 It's a free event and open to everyone!  This could be some great preparation for The Great Utah ShakeOut drill on April. 17 this year.

Time and location:
January 21, 2012 10am
LDS SunStone Building - 11543 Keystone Drive, South Jordan, Utah

Classes and Booths include:
First Aid
CPR - New Techniques
Emergency Planning
72 Hour Kits
Questar Gas
South Jordan City
Financial Planning
Water Storage
Water Reclamation and Rehydration
Sanitation
Grab & Run Ideas
Fire Safety
Storing basic foods, and cooking with them (see here for more)

For questions - contact Rich at 801-891-2710 or Rebecca at 801-859-6841
 
 
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 When else can you get another vegetable for under twenty cents a pound?


You may even get them for free if you ask a farmer, or grocer, right AFTER Halloween.  I was able to glean from two different farm fields last year!

I saw an interesting thing, as I was looking for pumpkins in good condition: one man was walking around with a hatchet and a bucket.  He wasn't after the pumpkins; he wanted the seeds!  It didn't matter if the pumpkin was shriveled or damaged; each pumpkin was chopped open and the seeds scooped out.

Most people look at pumpkins as merely decorations. They are great for giving your yard or home that homey, autumn feel.  But one cup of pumpkin (only 49 calories!) is also high in fiber (3 g) and beta-carotene (Vitamin A- 2650 IU), plus calcium (37mg), potassium (564mg), magnesium (22mg), along with smaller amounts of iron, zinc, selenium, Vitamin C, Niacin, folic acid, and Vitamin E. See University of Illinois Extension  or Nutritiondata .  That's just the pumpkin.  The seeds also provide exceptional nutrition. 

If you'd like to know how to turn that festive decoration into a form you can eat, it's simple.  Basically, you clean it, cook it, and mash or puree it.  I much prefer the flavor of fresh pumpkin to that from a can.  It can be frozen for later use, dried and powdered, pressure-canned in chunks, or stored whole in a cool (55-70 degrees), dark, dry location.  They can last the whole winter stored whole.  I stored a Hubbard squash last November; I finally cut into it in July this summer.  It was perfect.

For more detailed instructions for cooking it, along with a  few dozen  recipes, see The Great Pumpkin recipe book.   To get cooking instructions and just a few of my favorite recipes-
Pumpkin Chili, Pumpkin-Pecan Yeast Bread, Pumpkin Muffins, and Pumpkin Pie-

see the Pumpkin Class Handout.
 
 
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My teenaged son and I were talking about the crazy economic week the nation (world!) is having.  I mentioned that the DOW had lost a fourth of its value in a weekend, and gold had gone from $1400/oz to $1800/oz.  He stared at me, and said, "I told you we should have bought gold!" 

Nah, I'm not interested in it- if I pooled all available resouces, I'd be able to buy about one handful of gold.   Wheat, on the other hand, is two cents an ounce (already in a bucket for you at Macey's this week).  And I can eat that.  The line I've repeated to my older children over the last couple years is, "I can't afford gold, but I can afford wheat.  And I can eat wheat."

Are you feeling concerned about the future?  The Lord told us, "If ye are prepared, ye shall not fear."  (D&C 38:30).  More on that below.  The biggest part is being prepared spiritually- living with faith and trust in the Lord.  He will do what will help us become better, more righteous people.  Trials are essential to that.  Are you also prepared with food and supplies?  I do not advocate rushing out and going into debt to get everything; I do encourage you to pinch and scrape this month to get the most value out of your money, before the value changes again.  Buying the absolute basics- wheat, rice, oil, sugar, dry beans, salt, powdered milk-  will stretch your money the most.  Do you have an entertainment budget for the month?  A budget for dates?  Take that, just this month, and use it for food you can have on hand in your house.  Wheat has doubled in price since 2009; talk about a great investment!  I love eating at 2-years-ago prices. 

Here in Utah we enjoy a phenomenon called The Case Lot Sale.  As best I can tell, this is because of the high concentration of Mormons here and our unique buying habits; we have been taught since the church's early days (1800's) to have plenty of extra food and supplies at home.  The case lot sales are when the stores offer great prices on many items, usually the lowest prices of the year, and sometimes with an extra discount if you buy an entire case of something.  We enjoy the sales once or twice a year, depending on the store.  They are a big part of my budget shopping, along with the price book idea- I buy nearly all of my groceries only when on sale.  When canned green beans hit their best price, I buy enough for the coming year.  Then I don't buy any more for the rest of the year, when they're at least twice the price.  This makes for an expensive Case Lot month, but the months after are much cheaper as a result. 

This week Macey's and Fresh Market both have case lot sales.  See the Deals page for what the best prices are.  All of the long-term-storage foods I've listed there are close to, or cheaper than, the Home Storage Center prices.  The only exception is the Country Cream powdered milk, but it tastes better than the HSC's.  It's still a good deal, too.


The following excerpts from an article are from Ezra Taft Benson, then an Apostle, published in the Ensign magazine, January 1974, entitled “Prepare Ye”.  He repeats D&C 38:30 three times in it (“if ye are prepared, ye shall not fear”), and this talk has been extensively quoted.  It contains at least 12 segments I’ve quoted or heard quoted.  I recommend that you read through the whole talk, and see how many pieces of it you’ve heard before.

Here are some excerpts:

“In Matthew, chapter 24, we learn of “famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes. …” (Matt. 24:7.) The Lord declared that these and other calamities shall occur. These particular prophecies seem not to be conditional. The Lord, with his foreknowledge, knows that they will happen. Some will come about through man’s manipulations; others through the forces of nature and nature’s God, but that they will come seems certain. Prophecy is but history in reverse—a divine disclosure of future events.

Yet, through all of this, the Lord Jesus Christ has said: “… if ye are prepared ye shall not fear.” (D&C 38:30.)

…At the April 1937 general conference of the Church [of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints], President J. Reuben Clark, Jr., of the First Presidency, asked: “What may we as a people and as individuals do for ourselves to prepare to meet this oncoming disaster, which God in his wisdom may not turn aside from us?” President Clark then set forth these inspired basic principles of the Church welfare program:

“First, and above and beyond everything else, let us live righteously. … Let us avoid debt as we would avoid a plague; where we are now in debt, let us get out of debt; if not today, then tomorrow.  Let us straitly and strictly live within our incomes, and save a little.

Let every head of every household see to it that he has on hand enough food and clothing, and, where possible, fuel also, for at least a year ahead. You of small means put your money in foodstuffs and wearing apparel, not in stocks and bonds; you of large means will think you know how to care for yourselves, but I may venture to suggest that you do not speculate. Let every head of every household aim to own his own home, free from mortgage. Let every man who has a garden spot, garden it; every man who owns a farm, farm it.” (Conference Report, April 1937, p. 26.)

There are blessings in being close to the soil, in raising your own food, even if it is only a garden in your yard and/or a fruit tree or two. Man’s material wealth basically springs from the land and other natural resources. Combined with his human energy and multiplied by his tools, this wealth is assured and expanded through freedom and righteousness. Those families will be fortunate who, in the last days, have an adequate supply of each of these particulars.”

 Healthful foods, proper rest, adequate exercise, and a clean conscience can prepare us to tackle the trials that lie ahead.”

 
 
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Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are counseled to have three months’ worth of everyday food on hand, and then store more, longer-term storage foods, where possible.  This has typically been defined as a “Year’s Supply”, at least in the last couple generations.  Having food on hand is an invaluable part of being self-reliant.  It’s insurance, if you will, for times of unexpected illness, disability, unemployment, power outages, or for when a neighbor down the street needs a meal.  It’s also handy for sharing with a local food bank.  (Hint, hint: right now their supplies are very low!)

Once you get three months’ worth, how much will a year’s supply of food cost you?  When you look at your monthly grocery bill, is it overwhelming to think of buying more?  I looked an emergency supply store’s catalog; they advertise a basic year’s supply of food for ‘just’ $1,299.99.  For one person.  They list options of up to $3800 per person per year.  Is it really that much money to get a year’s supply?

Adding up all the 7 essentials, purchasing them mostly at the Home Storage Center, a month’s worth of food for one person is $25.31. This provides about 2200 calories a day; the catalog’s has 2000.

A year’s worth for one adult is $303.86. 

(It was $194.76 in 2010.  That’s an increase of 56%.  How’s that compare to your 401(k)? I’m quite sure food will go up more.  It is a great investment!  Wouldn’t you like to eat at last year’s prices?)

Figure in that you’re getting your year’s supply after building your three-month supply; that knocks it down to getting nine months’worth;

$227.90 per adult

 
SO, if you really want to spend $1299.99 plus tax, you could buy a year’s supply for not just one person, but for FOUR adults.  Yes, it’s different food than the ‘gourmet’ version ($3800), but here’s the counsel we’ve been given:          "We encourage members world-wide to prepare for adversity in life by having a basic supply of food and water and some money in savings.” “For longer-term needs….gradually build a supply of food that will last a long time  and that you can use to stay alive (from All is Safely Gathered In, First Presidency pamphlet)

 If you’re storing food for children, plan on 50% of the amount for age 3 and under, 70% for ages 3-6, 90% for ages 7-10, and 100% for ages 11 and up.  Or store as much as you would for an adult, and have enough to share. 

For great recipes using this stored food, see my Favorite Resources page, under "Cooking and Recipes". 
____________________________________
Here is the cost breakdown:

Grains, 300 lbs- if you get 100 lbs each of wheat , rice, and oats, at the Home Storage Centers they cost between $11.45 and $15.45 for 25 lbs. depending on if you get white or red wheat,  rice, quick- or regular- oats.  If you average this out, it will cost you $13.55  per person, per month.  $162.60 per year’s worth. This category doubled in price from early 2010.  Your daily allotted amount would be about 2 ½ cups of flour, or about the size of a loaf of bread.

Milk, 16 lbs is $1.89/lb at the cannery, which is $2.52 per month, $30.24 per year.  Daily amount is just under ¾ cup of reconstituted milk.  This is enough to cook with, not enough to drink very often.  For instance, making your loaf of bread would/could use up this entire amount.

Sugar, 60 lbs is $ .85/lb there, $4.23 per month, $50.76 per year.  Daily amount is just about 1/3 cup, but keep in mind you’ll probably want to use it to help bottle fruit or make jam, as well as for making your bread or breakfast oatmeal.

Oil, 10 qts –this isn’t sold at the cannery, but the last good sale price I found was $2.50 for 1 ½ quarts (48 oz.) At that price, after tax, it’s $1.43 per month, $17.17 per year.  It’s only $14.38 if you buy it at Sam’s Club ($6.98 + tax for 5 qts.)  .)  Daily amount: about 2 ½ teaspoons; will also be used in making bread. Fat is necessary to help you digest fiber, as well as to access the fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K.

Salt, 8 lbs- 4# box at Costco or Sam’s Club is a dollar; $ .16 per month, $2 per year.  Daily amount: about 2 tsp. It never hurts to store extra salt; it is an excellent preservative for meats and more.

Legumes, 60 lbs– the cannery sells black beans, pinto, and white, from $16.00 to $18.55 for 25 lbs.  Averaging the prices, it’s  $3.42 a month, $41.09 per year.  Daily amount: about ½ cup dry, or 1 ½ cups cooked.

In addition to the above, storing some water is an essential part of your home storage.  Plan on 1 gallon per person per day, for 2 weeks (14 days).  This is enough to drink, and not much else. 
Water, 14/gal/person-   You can store this for free by using 2- and 3- liter pop bottles, or juice containers (not milk jugs- they break down).  Or use the 5-gallons square jugs or big blue barrels; they’ll run you about $1 per gallon of storage. 

Total daily food allotment: 1 loaf of bread, 1/3 c. sugar for cooking or preserving, 1 ½ cups of beans, 2 ½ tsp. oil, a little salt, ¾ c. of milk.  You won’t get fat on this, but it will keep you alive.  It also stores in a fairly small amount of space.


When you’re done storing these items, you might decide to add a few ‘gourmet’ items- spices, flavorings,  and unsweetened cocoa are high on my list here, as are non-hybrid garden seeds.  Practice growing them now; you can save seeds from what you grow, for next year’s crop.

Notice that the costs were just for food, not containers to store them in. Most of my storage containers cost nothing.   You CAN get buckets for free, with a little effort- most bakeries give them away; all their frostings and fillings come in those buckets.  Plan on washing them at home.  There are two main sizes; 5 gallon and 2 ½  gallon.  I keep packages of dried fruit in the smaller buckets, also cornmeal or other things that I don’t use as much.  They are a great size for a pantry, too.  Some of the buckets have gaskets, some don’t.  The ones that don’t seal well are still good for storing sugar.

If you want all your wheat, powdered milk, sugar, and legumes in #10 cans from the cannery, it will cost you $86 more to get a full year’s worth, $65 to do 9 months.

I don’t can my wheat, sugar, or beans because we go through large quantities; one batch of bread would use a whole can.  It’s pretty silly storage for me.  Besides, it’s easier for me to find space for 10 buckets than 60 #10 cans; they hold about the same amount of food.

 
 
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Have you found good deals on strawberries?  Or are your plants starting to produce them?  We love to make and eat strawberry leather, though I often mix strawberry puree with applesauce or any other mashed fruit, to make the strawberries go farther.  For a simple way to make fruit leather, see http://www.theprovidenthomemaker.com/1/post/2010/11/what-to-do-now-in-the-garden-fruit-leather.html

___________________________ 

If you’re in the Salt Lake valley, I just learned about a lady who puts together group orders every month; she lives just a mile down the road from me.  The prices are great, and the food is good quality.  It comes from a Utah/Idaho farmers’ co-op; most of the items are even organic.  Her website is http://www.organicemily.com 

____________________________

The following excerpts from an article are from Ezra Taft Benson, published in the Ensign magazine, January 1974, entitled “Prepare Ye”.  He repeats D&C 38:30 three times in it (“if ye are prepared, ye shall not fear”), and this talk has been extensively quoted.  It contains at least 12 segments I’ve quoted or heard quoted.  Read through the talk, and see how many pieces of it you’ve heard before.


Here are some excerpts:

“In Matthew, chapter 24, we learn of “famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes. …” (Matt. 24:7.) The Lord declared that these and other calamities shall occur. These particular prophecies seem not to be conditional. The Lord, with his foreknowledge, knows that they will happen. Some will come about through man’s manipulations; others through the forces of nature and nature’s God, but that they will come seems certain. Prophecy is but history in reverse—a divine disclosure of future events.

Yet, through all of this, the Lord Jesus Christ has said: “… if ye are prepared ye shall not fear.” (D&C 38:30.)

…At the April 1937 general conference of the Church [of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints], President J. Reuben Clark, Jr., of the First Presidency, asked: “What may we as a people and as individuals do for ourselves to prepare to meet this oncoming disaster, which God in his wisdom may not turn aside from us?” President Clark then set forth these inspired basic principles of the Church welfare program:

“First, and above and beyond everything else, let us live righteously. … Let us avoid debt as we would avoid a plague; where we are now in debt, let us get out of debt; if not today, then tomorrow.  Let us straitly and strictly live within our incomes, and save a little.

Let every head of every household see to it that he has on hand enough food and clothing, and, where possible, fuel also, for at least a year ahead. You of small means put your money in foodstuffs and wearing apparel, not in stocks and bonds; you of large means will think you know how to care for yourselves, but I may venture to suggest that you do not speculate. Let every head of every household aim to own his own home, free from mortgage. Let every man who has a garden spot, garden it; every man who owns a farm, farm it.” (Conference Report, April 1937, p. 26.)

There are blessings in being close to the soil, in raising your own food, even if it is only a garden in your yard and/or a fruit tree or two. Man’s material wealth basically springs from the land and other natural resources. Combined with his human energy and multiplied by his tools, this wealth is assured and expanded through freedom and righteousness. Those families will be fortunate who, in the last days, have an adequate supply of each of these particulars.”

 Healthful foods, proper rest, adequate exercise, and a clean conscience can prepare us to tackle the trials that lie ahead.”

 
 
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Tiny Spicy Chicken is great over rice, with a little fruit to help balance out the heat.   Bok choy is great on the side.

Do you have children or grandchildren who are afraid of what’s lurking under their beds?  Here’s the perfect solution, found on Meridian magazine online a couple months ago:


The Monster Under the Bed
"I overheard my two young adult sons talking.  One asked, “Do kids really think there are monsters under their beds?”  The other one answered: 'I never did.  There was always so much food storage under there that I knew there was no room for a monster.'”


 So let's all chase out those monsters!  For a lot of suggestions on storing food when you have little space, see the Food Storage Made Easy page.

______________________________

This recipe came from a class at the Macey’s in Logan, back when I lived there.  “Tiny Spicy Chicken” was one of the entrees at Mandarin Gardens, a local Chinese restaurant.  Maybe it’s a Cache Valley specialty, because I haven’t run into anyone not  from there who has had this dish. 

 

Tiny Spicy Chicken

3 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken, cut into 1 ½ “ cubes
garlic salt
2 beaten eggs
1 cup cornstarch
¼ c. oil

            Sprinkle chicken with garlic salt, let sit for 1 hour in the fridge.  Heat oil in a large frying pan.  Dip chicken into eggs, then roll or shake in a bag with cornstarch.  Brown chicken pieces in the oil, until golden brown.  Put in a greased 9x13 pan.

Shortcut method: use 1- 1 ½ lbs. fully cooked chicken nuggets, frozen is OK.  (Don't use 3 lbs nuggets; they have too much breading that soaks up this sauce.)

 Sauce:
½ -1  tsp. chili paste*

1 c. sugar
½  c. ketchup
2 tsp. soy sauce
Dash of salt
½  c. chicken broth
¼  c. brown sugar
½ c. vinegar

 Sauce will be very runny.  Pour over chicken (if using chicken nuggets, mix the sauce in the 9x13 pan, then add the chicken) and stir to coat.  Bake at 425 degrees for 10-15 minutes, stirring once or twice during that time.  Serve over rice.

Alternate cooking methods: bake at 325 degrees for 1 hour, stirring a couple times, or put in a crockpot and cook on low for 5-8 hours.

*Sambal chili paste can be found in the Asian section at Macey's grocery store, it probably can be found at most other grocery stores.  If you don't have it, or can't find it, substitute red pepper flakes.  Start with 1/4 tsp., put it in the sauce, then taste to see if it's as hot/mild as you like.
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Chili paste is made from whole, hot chilies, ground up, and mixed with a little vinegar.  It includes the seeds, so it packs a punch.

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If you use raw chicken breasts, the recipe takes about 1 1/2 hours to make.  If you start with these, you can have it done in 20 minutes.

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Aren't cans and oxygen packets great?  I opened this can just yesterday.  And yes, 6-21-93 was when it was sealed.

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The chicken, coated with sauce, ready to bake.

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Baking it condenses the sauce and helps it soak into the coating on the chicken.  It's a little sweet, and a little zippy. 

 
 
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Right-click to save, it should come up full-sized once you do.  You can also find this in pdf format.  The song is on page 25.

(originally from 4/15/10

Now that the Three Month Challenge is over, the next step is finishing your year’s supply.  In agrarian cultures, it was very common to have a year’s supply, in case the next year’s harvest was insufficient- hailstorms, drought, fire, flood, damage from animals or bugs.  Since we don’t grow all our own food anymore, we sometimes become oblivious to the need to have backup.  In reality, our food situation is more precarious- it involves a large web of people, machinery, and transportation, as well as Nature, all doing their part.  If any one of these is messed with, the stores could be empty within a few days.  Food storage is great insurance and brings peace of mind.    I can’t afford to invest in gold, but I can afford wheat.  You can’t eat gold, anyway.  I’ll send a quote next week from Brigham Young about gold and wheat. 

A great article on what and how to store your long-term food is “Home Storage: Build on the Basics” from the Ensign magazine, June 1989.  Some highlights from it are:

We continue to encourage members to store sufficient food, clothing, and where possible fuel for at least one year. We have not laid down an exact formula for what should be stored. However, we suggest that members concentrate on essential foods that sustain life, such as grains, legumes, cooking oil, powdered milk, salt, sugar or honey, and water. Most families can achieve and maintain this basic level of preparedness. The decision to do more than this rests with the individual.

“We encourage you to follow this counsel with the assurance that a people prepared through obedience to the commandments of God need not fear.” (First Presidency letter to priesthood leaders, 24 June 1988.)

If families would think in terms of storing only foods basic to survival, or if they would supplement the food storage they already have with the basics to build it up to a year’s supply, the task would be simpler than they might think. They would then be prepared for food emergencies.

A year’s supply of food storage is beneficial in several ways:

1. It provides peace of mind as we obey the counsel to store.

2. It helps ensure survival in case of personal (including financial setbacks, health issues) or natural disaster.

3. It strengthens skills in preparing and using basic foods.

No single food storage plan will work for everyone. Each family’s needs differ, as does their financial ability to accumulate the storage items. But by working under the direction of the First Presidency “to concentrate on essential foods,” it can be done. President Ezra Taft Benson has said on at least three different occasions, “The revelation to produce and store food may be as essential to our temporal welfare today as boarding the ark was to the people in the days of Noah.” (Ensign, Nov. 1980, p. 33.)”


Noah didn’t build it in a week, and he didn’t take out a loan for it… but he worked at it until it was done.


Are you building your ark?

 
* * * * * * *
The
recipe this time around is for something fun to make and eat:

 Tootsie Rolls
2 Tbsp. butter
½ c. corn syrup
¼ c. unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp. vanilla
3 c. powdered sugar
¾ c. dry milk powder

 Combine in a bowl, mix as much as you can with a spoon, then knead by hand.  At first it will look like a big bunch of powdered sugar that won’t ever stick together….. but keep with it, and it will.  Once it all turns brown and holds together, roll into long ‘snakes’ and cut into bite-size pieces.

These are even better the next day, and if you want them chewier, let them sit out a few days.  (Remember how old the store’s Tootsie Rolls must be…)

Vanilla Tootsie Rolls
Instead of corn syrup, use sweetened condensed milk and omit the milk powder.  Increase vanilla to 1 Tbsp.  

 
 
 
 (originally from 4/25/10)
This great list was sent to me by one of my sisters-  enjoy!  It is written specifically for members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints; the information is good for everyone.

-Rhonda

Top 10 Food Storage Myths BustedBy Danielle Ellis, Desert Saints Magazine

A quick glance through any grocery store reveals that the average American food supply has come from far and wide. Produce from around the globe, grains from hundreds or thousands of miles away, canned goods from who-knows-where. A single calamity, whether man-made or an act of God, would leave those shelves empty, without much hope of a new supply.  For this reason, and many more, Latter-day Saints have long been counseled to have a year’s supply of food and basic supplies in their homes. Yet research has shown that never more than a small percentage of saints have complied with this vital instruction. We’ll bust some of the myths surrounding food storage that may be holding you back. Then make your plan and complete your year’s supply!

10  I Don’t Need Food Storage“There aren’t enough of us; my parents have mine; I don’t think I’ll ever need it.”  These are all ways of saying that you, for some reason, are exempt from prophetic counsel. You’re not. We have been told that our food storage will be as vital to us as boarding the ark was to Noah’s family. You need food storage!

9 There’s Food In The Bishop’s Storehouse“If something happens, I’ll go to the bishop’s storehouse.” Estimates are the bishop’s storehouse would be cleaned out in a matter of minutes. As President Monson advised over twenty years ago, “The best storehouse system that the Church could devise would be for every family to store a year’s supply of needed food, clothing, and, where possible, the other necessities of life.” Be your own storehouse.

8 I Don’t Have A Place To Store FoodIf you knew the lives of your family members depended on the food in your home, would you find a way to store it? Clear out some of your baggage (clutter) to provide for the future. You can find many places for storage. Make it a priority.

7 I Don’t Know What To Store Visit providentliving.org. If that’s too daunting, consider this: the Church advises storing 300 pounds of grains and 60 pounds of beans per adult per year. Break that up into breakfasts, lunches and dinners, and find some recipes. You know what you eat: store it.

6  I Don’t Know How To Store It If you’re confused by oxygen absorbers and gamma seals, don’t be. Get basic foods in your home and begin using them. Once you know how to use them, figure out how to store them for longer periods. You should be using and rotating your foods in an orderly plan, not keeping them for generations.

5  I Have Food Allergies You’re eating something now to stay alive. Figure out how to get a supply of that. If you want to store grains, try millet and oats. Millet is the least allergenic of all grains and oats contain no gluten. Quinoa is a totally different type of grain than wheat and is a nutritional powerhouse. Those with special dietary needs especially need food storage.

4  I Don’t Know How To Prepare It Brigham Young once said, “we need not ask God to feed us, nor follow us round with a loaf of bread begging of us to eat it. He will not do it….” It is our job, and nobody else’s, to figure out how to feed ourselves. There are many cookbooks created to use food storage ingredients. Find some and start using them.

3 The Food Will Go Bad The food will only go bad if you buy short-life products, then stick them under the bed and wait for “d-day.” Buy whole-food products, store them properly, use and rotate them and you’ll be in great shape.

2  I Hate Wheat Then find grains you like, or new recipes, or find different ways to use wheat. Sprouting wheat provides a new dimension of possibilities, as well as additional nutritional benefits- enzymes, extra vitamins and minerals. Try barley, buckwheat, bulgur, couscous, millet, oats, quinoa, rye. Or durum wheat for pasta. Whole grains have the longest storage life and great nutrition.

1It’s Too Expensive If you buy food you never use, you will never find “extra” money to purchase food storage or ways to use and enjoy it. I recently made a large purchase of grains. Including the cost of shipping them to my door, the grains ended up costing LESS THAN 35 CENTS/LB! Look at anything you buy from the grocery store- you are paying much more. Incorporating simpler, whole foods into your diet will improve your health and ease your pocketbook. Priceless.

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Menu suggestion- serve this soup with crunchy apple slices and 'Best Drop Biscuits'.  Turn on the oven first; it will be hot enough by the time you get the soup in the pot and the dough mixed.

Chicken Vegetable Noodle Soup 

2  ½   c.  water    (or use broth and omit the bouillon)
1 (8-oz). can  tomato sauce   
10-16 oz bag frozen mixed vegetables (or 2-3 cups fresh)   
A handful of noodles  or other pasta 
2   tsp. or 2 cubes  chicken bouillon   
2   c. cooked chicken (or turkey),  cut up

Combine water, noodles, sauce and veggies.  Bring to a boil, then simmer, stirring occasionally, 10 minutes.  Stir in chicken.  Bring to a boil, then simmer 5 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Makes about 6 cups. 
I frequently make this my clean-out-the-freezer soup; instead of adding a bag of mixed vegetables, I add all my frozen odds and ends