Category Archives: preserving foods

The Problems of 30 Year Old Wheat and Mold.

wheatRecently I spoke with a friend who had been given some wheat that had been stored in metal cans and plastic buckets in the 1970’s. Luckily because of the age she was feeding this to her pigs. She found a black mold in the bottom few inches of several of the containers. The wheat looked good on top and she didn’t find the mold until most of a can had been feed to the pigs. The pigs did not suffer any ill effects from the mold.

This brings up the question, where did the mold come from and what type is it.…

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Water Bath Canning from Beginning to End

water bath canningHere is the list of items you will need for water bath canning.

Canner with insert.
Canning funnel for filling jars
Magnetic stick for removing lids from boiling water
Jar grabber for removing jars from water bath canner
Canning recipes.  I suggest the book So Easy to Preserve

Now just follow the simple instructions

1. Wash your jars and check for any chips or cracks around the rim and bottom of the jars

2. Put your jars in the water bath canning pan, making sure they are filled with water, so that they don’t float.…

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An update, Using a FoodSaver to Extend the Shelf Life of Food

Well, It’s been some time since we have written about the FoodSaver. I have had a lot of fun with mine and all the things you can seal. My goodness I think of all the food I could have saved if I had been in to food storage sooner. I can think back to when my grandma was canning and storing items for winter and never really thought about it being food storage.

FoodSavers are really handy for extending the shelf life of crackers, noodles of all kinds, candy, spices, cereals, dried fruit and vegetables, plus matches, medical items sterile, cotton balls, Q tips, toothbrushes (new), razors, medicine, storing oxygen absorbers and all kinds of others things you will need.…

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Mason Jars, 20 Different Ways to Use Them

mason jarMason jars are another one of those things that we take for granted.  They are easy to get and always seem to be available.  Yet they have so many uses I can’t think of them all.  So I have made a list of the ones that immediately pop into my mind.  After you start thinking about it I am sure you will add many ideas to this list

  1. Canning is the most obvious one. It is the reason that they were developed in the first place. Have lots of jars on hand and don’t forget the lids and screw rings.  Store lots of extras, they will always be good for trade.
Posted in food storage, preserving foods, Self sufficiency | Tagged | 2 Comments

A Recipe for Making Desiccated vegetable Rations

A while back I wrote a post on Desiccated vegetables as used During the Civil War.  Desiccated vegetables were used as rations by both side during the civil war. Ever since I have been meaning to try and make some.  Yesterday I received this comment with a recipe for desiccated vegetables. This recipe sounds like it is close to being authentic.  I haven’t told my wife yet, but I plan on trying to make it next week.  This will be a surprise for her.  This is a great comment and written with a lot of humor. Thank you


Civil War reenacting is a disease.…

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Free Canning Jars are Not Always a Good Deal

canning jarsRecently we were given a large number of free canning jars in various sizes about 10 cases.  My wife was happy to get them and thought that it was a great deal.  Unfortunately, there was a catch.  When you started using the jars, they worked fine when you used them in water bath canning.  When you tried to use them for pressure, canning the problem started.

The bottoms were failing and falling out of the jars.  This was only happening to the ones we got for free.  The break was similar to the ones you get from thermal shock with the break running around the base of the jar.  …

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An Easy Way to Dehydrate Fruits and Vegetables

dehydrateYesterday we had the opportunity to pick up some packages of frozen corn.  The price was right so we bought 36 packages.  Now what do you do with all this frozen food, there is not enough room in our freezer to fit it all in.  We just got our nine tray Excalibur Dehydrator out and dehydrate them. All the corn that wouldn’t fit in the freezer went right into the dehydrator.  We set it to 125 degrees and by morning, we will have a nice batch of dehydrated corn.

This is something we have been doing for some time.  A friend in Wyoming has been doing it for years and has vegetables that he dehydrated in this manner that are going on ten years old.  …

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Growing and Preserving Figs

figsWe have a large fig tree in our back yard.  For the amount of space and the limited care it takes, it produces way more fruit than any other fruit tree of which I am aware.  It will produce two crops every year. The first crop develops in the spring on last year’s shoot growth.  The main fig crop develops on the current year’s shoot growth and ripens in the late summer or fall. The main crop is generally superior in both quantity and quality to first crop.

Fig trees can be raised in many different parts of the world, depending on which variety you grow. …

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Home Canned Chicken is a Great Prep

My wife likes to can food of all types.  One thing that we have had good success with is canning meat.  One of her favorites is to can chicken.  It is one of the more inexpensive meats and yet one of the more versatile, when it comes time to cook.  She makes curries, Mexican foods and all kinds of casseroles and stir-fries from canned chicken.


Here is her recipe for canned chicken.

We like dark meat on chicken and turkey.  I get the skinless chicken thighs, if they are not too expensive or on sale.  I also get turkey thighs.…

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Using a FoodSaver Jar Sealer

Recently we were at a garage sale and bought a FoodSaver for ten dollars.  It worked fine, but my wife wasn’t to excited about it because of the cost of the bags.  Well the other day she got the attachments for it to vacuum seal mason jars.  It was like a kid with a new toy at Christmas.  She and a friend played with it most of the day.

It is simple to use.  You fill up a jar with the product you intend to store, put a canning lid on top of the jar.  You then put the FoodSaver jar sealer on top of the jar and activate it. …

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