I have lost a post. I know I did it but it is gone into cyberspace and I can’t retrieve it. I guess I will just have to start over. The post was about mixes. I have posted some before and this is a new batch. I do have a problem with one of the mixes and I hope someone out there will have a brilliant idea. I like anything that saves time, energy or money and mixes do all three. I can put up bulk batches of mixes into mason jars and pull them out for a “just add water” meal or side dish.

My girls really like hot chocolate and I have come up with a mix that they think is as good as the expensive packets. Mix together 7 1/2 cups powdered milk, 1 1/2 cups sugar, 1 cup cocoa and a teaspoon of salt. I put mine up in quart jars, keeping one in the pantry and the rest in my food storage. In the winter I sometimes double this as I have a lot of kids over for sledding parties and can go through a lot in no time. It takes a 1/2 cup mix to a cup of boiling water. I add a bit of vanilla and some cream for a richer taste. I serve it in tea cups as they are smaller and I don’t like the girls to overdo the calories.

I have made a basic biscuit mix for years. I mix up 9 cups of flour, 1/4 cup sugar 1 tablespoon salt and 3 tablespoons of baking powder with 2 cups of shortening. The problem is shortening. There are some things I don’t consider to be food. Cool Whip is one and shortening is another. Butter won’t keep so what’s a girl to do? I am trying a product called Nutiva Organic Coconut Oil. It’s supposed to be better than butter and shelf stable. I just hope it doesn’t taste like coconuts.

The next mix is for cheese sauce. Mac and cheese is a staple food for kids. This mix makes the cheese sauce. I pace four cups of noodles in a 1/2 gallon mason jar with a baggie of this mix. It is not any less expensive than the store brand boxes but it is less packaging and I do know what’s in it. It also uses my bulk foods. I think some people buy things in bulk and then don’t know what to do with it. 1 1/2 cups of dehydrated cheese, 2/3 cups powdered milk, 1/4 cup cornstarch, 1 tablespoon dried onion, 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper go into the bag. Mix this with 3 cups of water and simmer for a few minutes then pour over cooked noodles. The cheese sauce will dress up a lot of vegetables.

I got a lot of recipes from Peggy Layton’s Cookin’ With Home Storage. It’s one of those little books that is really useful if you plan to cook with bulk, dried foods. I get worried when people spend a lot of money on food they don’t generally use and don’t know how to prepare. That food too often ends up in the compost and the cook is too often discouraged to try again. Store what you use and use what you store.

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