Pressure canning is the only safe method for canning meat, fish and poultry. It is the only way you can destroy the bacterium that causes food poisoning (clostridium botulinum). Be sure to process canned meats for the correct time at the correct temperature in a pressure canner. Canning low-acid foods, such as meats, in boiling-water canners is absolutely unsafe because the botulinum bacteria can survive this process. If clostridium botulinum survive and grow inside a sealed jar of food, they can produce a poisonous toxin. Even a taste of food containing this toxin can be fatal. Boil foods 10 minutes at altitudes below 1,000 feet to destroy this poison. Boil foods 11 minutes if you live above 1,000 feet.
Types of Nonfat Dry Milk
Regular and instant nonfat dry milk are made from skim milk that has been dried by spraying into hot air. Instant milk is regular milk which has been further processed causing it to clump together which results in a product that is easier to reconstitute with water than is regular nonfat dry milk. They both have the same nutrient composition. Regular nonfat dry milk is more compact and will require less storage space, however, it is harder to reconstitute. The most common type of dried milk to be found in grocery stores is instant nonfat dry milk. Dried whole milk may also be available, however because of the fat present, it will not store as well as nonfat dry milk. Dried buttermilk is available to be used in recipes calling for buttermilk. It will not keep quite as long as nonfat dried milk since is has a slightly higher fat level.
MREs (Meals Ready to Eat) were born on Earth, but grew up on Apollo flights to the moon, in Skylab floating workshops and on every U.S. Space Shuttle flight from Enterprise to Atlantis. In the 1970s retort pouches (the popular name for thermo stabilized, laminated food pouches named after the retort cooker) were put to their first real test by the U.S. Space Program. The Program was looking for delicious, easy to prepare, “normal” food that wouldn’t increase human stress the way that freezes dried food and “toothpaste tube food” did. More than any other technology, retort pouches have satisfied the Program’s needs. And so, over 20 years ago, retort pouches found a home at NASA, where all their unusual characteristics were much appreciated and they have been successfully feeding astronauts in flight and on the moon ever since.
One of the first types of livestock which many homesteaders undertake raising is the chicken. There is certainly no other species of animal more suited nor more beneficial to the homestead than the chicken. Meat, eggs, fertilizer, waste disposal, and pest control are among the qualities of the home flock. Chickens are generally grouped into three types: meat birds, layers, and dual purpose breeds. When we started out in the poultry business, so to speak, we knew that we wanted dual purpose breeds— ones that would be good eating birds and good layers of brown eggs. Selecting the types of chickens you are going to order is not as easy as it sounds. Out of all the feathered makes and models available, we settled on a dozen each of Silver-laced Wyandottes, Rhode Island Reds, and Buff Orpingtons. We knew that we wanted birds of the heavy breeds, for we were planning to butcher about two-thirds of them, then keep the rest as a small laying flock. We ordered straight run birds. That means that the birds are not sexed, but boxed and shipped just as they come from the incubators. Since we would be butchering most of the birds, anyway, we felt that there should be plenty of layers to pick from for the laying flock. They’re cheaper when ordered this way, too, You have a few other choices in acquiring your birds. In the spring, many feed mills or farmer’s co-ops offer low priced chicks when you buy 50 or 100 pounds of chick starter feed. The selection of breeds is generally somewhat limited with these offers, but they can be a good way to get your starter flock. Be sure, however, that before you take advantage of these deals to find out whether you are get- ting meat birds or laying breeds.
The luster of the waxing moon illuminated our winter playground like a baseball diamond under the lights. Dinner, which had been in the works since we pitched camp, could wait while we had fun. We poured the hot chocolate into a Thermos, wrapped the pot of cooked rice in fleece and stuffed it into a sleeping bag to stay warm, then grabbed our skis. As we showed off our best telemark turns, the main course defrosted in my pocket.
We returned to camp exhilarated and downright starving. Sips of the still-steaming hot chocolate melted the ice off my handlebar mustache while I finished making dinner. From the “oven”-my coat pocket-came a beautiful chunk of sushi-grade ahi tuna. I sliced it quickly and whipped up sushi rolls and instant hot-and-sour soup. A sushi bar in the middle of Washington’s Mt. Baker Wilderness-who’d have thought?
That’s what I love about winter camping. You can eat food, lots of food, that would spoil in summer. Think about it: You’re hiking in a big freezer, so take advantage of it. Pack in zesty ground beef to spice up bean burritos. Breakfast comes complete with sausage links. You can even carry along a smoked turkey breast, instant stuffing, and gravy that tastes as good as Thanksgiving dinner.
Actually, you need this variety so you’ll consume enough calories to power you through days of carrying a heavy pack in cold conditions. Here are some menu suggestions.
Hydroponic systems come in all shapes and sizes. You are really only limited by your imagination. Here are a few of the basic types of hydroponic systems to consider when you start thinking about using this method for your next garden
HYDROPONICS, THE BASICS
The most important thing for you is to realise is that Hydroponics should be easy. It is easier for the home grower to grow Hydroponically than in soil and that’s a fact! This is the reason for this booklet. In this booklet I hope to show you how easy, how inexpensive, and how satisfying Hydroponics is. Simply there is no easier way to grow, house plants, ornamental plants, vegetables such as tomatoes, lettuce, beans, fruit, root crops such as potatoes, carrots, onions, flowers such as roses and carnations, bulbs, vines, trees, orchids, herbs, anything in Hydroponics. To my knowledge, there is nothing that is grown that cannot be grown using hydroponic techniques. In Europe they call Hydroponics, “soil-less culture”. This is in fact, the best possible way to describe what we do. We take away the nutritional control of soil, by using a balanced liquid containing 99.9% water, and 0.1% of the Minerals found in soil. Instead of soil giving out some nutrient whenever it can, Hydroponics gives the right amount all the time. Hydroponic nutrient is totally organic (in terms of not artificial or synthetic compounds), except the minerals are mined from the ground and are then balanced to exact proportions, so your plant will get exactly what they need, nothing more, and certainly nothing less! In fact if we could take the perfect soil and dissolve it, we would have exactly what a nutrient solution is, totally natural, but under your control.
Preserving meat requires energy to be expended. Very simple concept. It is the method of using that energy that is of interest to us. The use of electrical energy via freezing is the most common form of meat preservation today — and the most fragile, as we can expect the electrical grid to go down at some point in the near future. So, what else can we do to preserve meat?
All other methods of preserving meat also require the use of energy — principally yours! Some methods are easier than others, but make up for that by using another energy source than electricity. Canning meats requires jars and lids and a heat source. Those are medium-technology items, however, and may not be available deep into a crisis.
The most primitive method of meat preservation — and the most dependable — requires a lot of human energy. These would be smoking, making jerky, and making pemmican.
October 18th FEMA will be conducting The Great Southeast Shakeout. This is an earthquake preparedness drill.
During National Preparedness Month, many people are looking for ways to get involved in preparedness. In addition to creating your family emergency plan and getting a kit, I encourage your family, office, and community to participate in the Great California ShakeOut earthquake drill, coming up on October 20 at 10:20 a.m. Pacific Time.
FEMA is hosting a webinar on the ShakeOut tomorrow at 2pm EST that will help participants understand what the ShakeOut is and how to participate. A recording of the webinar will be available in the webinar library.
The ShakeOut provides a tangible way to participate in preparedness by focusing on the potentially life-saving actions of “Drop, Cover, and Hold On” during and immediately after an earthquake. The recent earthquake on the East Coast shows that earthquakes can happen practically anytime, anywhere, so I encourage you to participate even if you don’t live in California.
To join, go to www.ShakeOut.org/register and pledge your family, school, business, or organization’s participation in the drill. It’s free to sign up, and registered participants will receive information on how to plan their drill and how to talk with others about earthquake preparedness.
I hope you will join us in making the 2011 ShakeOut drill the largest preparedness event in U.S. history and join the 7.6 million people that have already signed up to participate.
While the Great California ShakeOut is coming up in less than a month, planning for other ShakeOut events is already underway. You may remember the Great Central U.S. ShakeOut from earlier this year, where over 3 million people across 11 states practiced earthquake safety. Here’s a look at the upcoming ShakeOut events:
- October 20, 2011: California, Oregon, Nevada, Guam
- February 7, 2012: Central United States – Missouri, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Tennessee, Alabama, Mississippi, Arkansas
- April 17, 2012: Utah
If your state does not have its own ShakeOut, you can plan to drill on one of the dates above – anyone can participate!
MREs (Meals Ready to Eat) were born on Earth, but grew up on Apollo flights to the moon, in Skylab floating workshops and on every
U.S. Space Shuttle flight from Enterprise to Atlantis. In the
1970s retort pouches (the popular name for thermostabilized, laminated food pouches named after the retort cooker ) were put to their
first real test by the U.S. Space Program. The Program was looking for delicious, easy to prepare, “normal” food that wouldn’t
increase human stress the way that freeze dried food and “toothpaste tube food” did. More than any other technology, retort pouches
have satisfied the Program’s needs. And so, over 20 years ago,
retort pouches found a home at NASA, where all their unusual characteristics were much appreciated and they have been successfully feeding
astronauts in flight and on the moon ever since.
THE HISTORY OF THE MRE
In the 1980s the U.S. military research labs, which had hatched the pouch technology in the first place, took the lead in its
use and development. They enabled the U.S. Military to upgrade its entire field ration program to retort pouches, from the earlier, less workable technologies of canning and freeze drying. Over the past 10 years these high tech research labs have continually upgraded the taste and nutritional profile of the meals. Over
the past 10 years our military has depended on MREs for its field ration requirements. Tens of millions of MRE “full meals”
have been produced and eaten. They have gone to Grenada, to the war on drugs, to fight forest fires in Alaska, and to feed the troops in “Desert Shield” and Desert Storm.