Archive for the ‘Food Storage’ Category


Fruits of my Labors

   Posted by: John

Yesterday I had gone to Caldwell to do some work. When I was done I decided to drive down to some of the orchards and see if they had fruit ready to pick.  Most of the U-pick places were not open yet, but I did find a fruit stand that had some peaches that were picked that morning.  I bought a half bushel and this morning I got them prepped for the freezer.  I like peach cobbler.  But peaches are nearly always too expensive and canned peaches just don’t cut it.  Each bag has 6 peaches and 1/2 cup of sugar.  Here they are ready for the freezer. 

Peachy keen!


Homemade frozen dinners part 2…Spaghetti

   Posted by: John

I decided today to try making some frozen dinners.  Spaghetti is quick and easy to make, so it makes sense from a getting started standpoint.  Since these are fixed size meals, I also decided to include a couple of sides.  For the sake of ease, I opted for mashed potatoes and corn.  The spaghetti sauce consists of a can of mushroom spaghetti sauce, 1 pound of cooked and rinsed ground beef and 1/2 chopped onion.  I used whole wheat noodles.

After getting the sauce ready and cooking the noodles, I mixed together enough of each to make 3 pounds of spaghetti.  Using a small scale, I weighed out the spaghetti in 8 ounce portions, for a total of 6 plates.  I made enough mashed potatoes to put about 3 ounces on each plate.  1 can of drained corn made for about 2 ounces each. 

Loaded Plates

After loading the plates, I put them in the freezer, uncovered, for about 2 hours.  Then, I wrote “Spaghetti” on 6 bags, along with the date, put the plates in the bags and replaced them in the freezer. 

Finished meal

I had a serving of sauce left, and extra noodles.  Ate the remaining sauce an some noodles, then put the rest of the noodles in a vacuum sealed bag in the freezer for use in something else later on.


Deal of the day

   Posted by: John

I don’t know if the same sale is on where you live, but the Meridian Albertson’s has Mission White Corn Tortillas on sale for $1 for 30.  That’s a pretty good deal.  Of course, it is difficult to use 30 of them before the date is up.  According to the Mission web site, they can be frozen for future use, and recommended a vacuum sealer to do it.  I happen to have one.  When you are ready to use them defrost them in the fridge for a day or two and you are ready to go!  I happened to do 10 per package.

Corn tortillas ready for the freezer


Bean Recipe

   Posted by: John

Mmmm…had these for dinner tonight. This recipe is well suited for food storage items, except for the meat, which is not really needed. I used dry beans and black-eyed peas. I put all of them in the pressure cooker for 15 minutes. You could soak them overnight and cook them the next day. If you use canned beans, put the juice from the can in the crock pot and don’t add water. This makes about four 1-cup servings. Weight Watchers points: 4 per 1/2 cup

  • ½ cup black beans
  • ½ cup kidney beans
  • ½ cup great northern or white beans
  • ½ cup black-eyed peas
  • 1 medium onion, minced (could use dried onions)
  • 1 cloves minced garlic
  • 2 tbsp prepared mustard
  • ¼ cup ketchup
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp vinegar
  • 1 – 1 ½ cups water


  • 8 oz finely cubed ham, or
  • 8 oz cooked ground beef

Cook beans by either pressure cooking or soaking overnight and cooking the next day on the stove.

Place cooked (or canned) beans and all other ingredients in crock pot. Stir well and cook on low for 6 hours, stirring once every other hour.

You may need to adjust brown sugar amounts to taste.


Bread Recipe

   Posted by: John

Here’s a recipe for homemade Wheat Bread that I have refined pretty well. This makes 2 loaves and works very well in the Kitchen Aid mixer. If you don’t have a mixer, you can mix it up and knead it by hand. It will turn out just as well. Weight Watchers points: 1 per 1/2″ slice.

  • 4 cups whole wheat flour
  • 2 cups white flour
  • 4 tablespoons gluten
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups warm water
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 4 ½ teaspoons yeast
  • ¼ cup melted butter
  • ¼ cup milk
  • 4 tablespoons honey (or molasses)

Mix warm water, sugar and yeast in a glass container (I use a 1 quart glass measuring bowl). Stir occasionally. Let sit until water starts to become foamy.

Meanwhile, place wheat and white flour, gluten and salt in the mixing bowl. Attach bread hook and run mixer slowly for a minute to mix the flour mixture.

Melt butter in microwave. Add milk to the butter.

When the yeast mixture is ready, pour it and the butter/milk mixture into the mixer bowl. Add the honey.

Run mixer on slow (about 3 to 4 on the lever). You may need to use a spatula to push down the flour on the sides of the bowl. Run mixer for about 10 minutes. The bread dough will mix and soon become a glob being pushed around. Add small amounts of flour if the mixture looks too wet, or water a teaspoon at a time if too dry. I like my bread dough to be slightly on the wet side. Monitor the mixer to be sure the motor does not overheat. This is hard work for it.

After 10 minutes or so, turn mixer off, remove hook from dough, remove bowl from base and place it in a warm, quiet location. Cover with a dishtowel. Allow to rise for 45 – 60 minutes, until top of dough is level with the top of the bowl. Remove towel, punch down, lift and move around until dough is compacted. Cover with towel again and allow to rise until level with bowl top again, about 45 minutes.

Punch dough. Spray hands lightly with cooking spray and rub well. Remove dough and place on a cutting board. Carefully cut into two even sizes. Shape each piece into a rectangular shape and place in a prepared bread pan. Cover pans with towel and allow to rise until dough is about 1/2” over the pan size. Heat oven to 350 degrees. When oven is hot, carefully place pans in oven and bake for 30 minutes. When done, remove pans, and coat top with butter. Allow to cool in pan for 10 minutes. Shake bread out of pans onto a large clean towel. Wrap loaves carefully, covering all surfaces. Allow bread to cool completely. Remove from towel and store in a bread bad or ziplock bag. Ready to slice and eat!