We have had a couple of cold, rainy days so I got to a few things I wouldn’t have done when the sun was shining. I did some more inventory update. I am vowing to be better about keeping track of what we grow and consume. I know I did very well with tomato sauce. I will not run out before the next tomato run. I am however, nearly out of applesauce. We eat a lot of it and I usually cut the amount of oil in quick bread in half and replace it with an equal amount of applesauce. With the amount of quick bread we eat, the sauce goes very fast. I have too much jelly and jam and not enough canned berries. I did go too heavy on the spiced pears. I will end up giving some of them away. The peaches are finally winding down.
The other thing I did was to watch a video series on dehydrating. It was so inspiring that I am now inclined not to can any vegetables. My family really does not like them and they are very energy intensive to pressure can. They also use up a lot of jars which are pretty expensive. In a post oil world, we are going to have to preserve food using as little in the way of fossil fuels as possible. I can run a full dehydrator for a quarter a day and don’t have to babysit it the way I would a canner. I will still pressure can meat although I plan to give jerky a try.
I also cleaned out my cookbook collection and got a dedicated folder for the recipes I downloaded last year using foraged foods. I have a lot of fiddleheads, elderberries and mushrooms to use up. The recipes are useless if I can’t lay my hands on them. I advoacted the OAR system in my book and I have to sure to use my own advice.
My final job is to finish my freezer and fridge clean up. The girls are on spring break right now and I have put them to work. Right now, I have a break in the rain so I will put everything else aside and head out to the greenhouse to talk nicely to my seedlings for a bit.
I am going to order some oxygen absorber packets today. Combined with vacuum sealing, this provides a nearly oxygen free environment for dried foods. I should have no trouble keeping stored food for the year I want. There were some recipes for mixes in this video. When vacuum packed, they provide a just add water meal, a real help when the power is out.