Be Prepared – Part 5
A big problem for my family – and I’m sure others as well – is the thought of running out of fresh food during an emergency and not being able to get to the store to replenish our supply. We would be fine drinking just water, but families who want milk might need to have dried milk on hand, just in case. However, make sure your family will actually drink it before you store it.
For our family, running out of fresh produce and bread would be a problem. If you have a garden, even a small one, you could get by for a while if your emergency occurred during the summer months. But during the winter, unless you have a greenhouse (we don’t – yet!), you might be out of luck. We usually have sprouts growing year round so we always have some fresh greens.
We generally use our sprouts on sandwiches in place of lettuce, and on salads; but I also eat them on crackers or with bread. They are extremely easy to grow and take up very little space on my kitchen counter (and I have a SMALL kitchen). They are also packed with nutrients. Our sprouts are a combination of broccoli, alfalfa, radish, clover, and fenugreek. You can generally buy sprouting seeds at a nutrition store or on-line. I use the “jar on the counter” method, using a wide mouthed quart jar with cheesecloth covering the top (held down by two large rubber bands). I rinse them twice a day, and in about 5 days or so I have a batch of sprouts ready to eat. I have used several other sprouting jars/methods, but this one works best for me.
If you start sprouting, be sure to wash your hands prior to dealing with the sprouts, and rinse with fresh water and be sure to drain the water out well each time you rinse. When my sprouts are ready I rinse them several times in a bowl to remove the seed hulls, and then store them in the refrigerator. I’m glad to know we can have some fresh foods even when we can’t make it to the store.
I also bake bread for my family. I don’t make all our bread yet – I still usually buy sandwich bread; but I do buy wheat berries in bulk and grind them into flour to make all our other baked goods. I have both an electric grain mill and a hand crank grain mill, so I’m set if the power goes out for long.
We are just thawing out from the snow/ice mess that hit the Southeast, and I saw several people being interviewed on the news saying they needed to get out and get bread and milk, but couldn’t make it due to the weather. The weather forecast was rather accurate for our area, yet they did without rather than prepare prior to the storm. Having the 50 pound containers of wheat is actually quite reassuring for me; I know even if I can’t get to the store we can still have bread, muffins, pancakes, etc. If your family cannot do without bread and other baked items, you might want to have extra ingredients handy so you can make bread at home rather than do without.