Transition Brockville archive

Tag : Food storage (34)

Tips for buying kitchen staples in bulk

Mother Earth News / Eric Reuter / 14 July 2016

bulk food useBuying certain foods in bulk is a great way to save money, packaging, and shopping time, while opening up new opportunities to support good farmers. We raise much of our own food on our homestead farm, but still need to source kitchen staples like flour, sugar, salt, dried pasta, and nuts from the outside world.

Buying these items in bulk has allowed us to virtually eliminate normal shopping trips, reduce packaging waste, and ensure that more of our food dollars to go farmers instead of middlemen. While the bulk bins at many grocery stores are a good start, in this context we’re talking about direct-ordering large quantities of single items rather than choosing a few pounds from a store bin.

Here are some tips and considerations for buying and handling bulk foods in a homestead setting.

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Cut cost, not quality: How to afford better food

Mother Earth News / Tabitha Alterman / December 2011/January 2012

better-food-2There’s growing evidence which shows that industrial food just ain’t what it oughta be. Lucky for us, the path to super-nutritious food at affordable prices offers many entry points. Let us pilot you through the diverse options in this guide to shopping smart and eating better food.

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Off-grid food preservation methods

Mother Earth News / Leda Meredith / June/July 2016

zeer potBefore widespread refrigeration and electricity, people developed other food-preservation methods to slow down spoilage. Adopting some of these long-established ways to preserve food and relying less on modern ones will reduce your carbon footprint; increase your self-reliance; and cost less than canning, freezing, and other grid-dependent ways to preserve food.

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100 things you can do to get ready for peak oil

resilience.org / Sharon Astyk / 17 December 2006

These suggestions go far beyond the usual stale sustainability tips for consumers, and into the kind of adaptations which can reduce our energy usage not by percentage points, but by orders of magnitude. At the same time they offer rich challenges, good food, and meaningful family and community experiences. -AF

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Garden planning for food preservation

Mother Earth News / Deborah Niemann / February/March 2016

preservingOur vegetable gardens offer us beautiful, fresh bounty during the growing season — and they also have the potential to increase our food security the rest of the year. When you craft a plan to put up some of the crops you grow, you’re preparing for the future, simplifying winter meals, reducing waste, and saving money, too.

As you plan your garden with preservation in mind, consider what your family loves to eat versus what they merely tolerate. Talk with your household members about what you want your meals to look like for the following year. If you’re aiming for year-round veggie self-sufficiency, calculate how many times per week on average your family eats a particular crop, and multiply that figure by 52 (number of weeks in a year). Then, use our chart of crop yields in Garden Planning: Guidelines for Growing Vegetables to arrive at a rough calculation of how much of that crop to plant. Or, to start smaller, jump in with any of the following ideas, organized from the easiest to grow and preserve to the crops and storage methods that require more expertise or a longer-term commitment.

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Storing winter squash

Mother Earth News / Douglas Stevenson / 15 January 2015

stored squashConsider the flavorful and nutritious winter squash, a winter staple. It is important to know which types are the best keepers when choosing which varieties to grow. Butternuts are generally considered to have the best “shelf life” and I have successfully stored my favorites, the Seminole squash or pumpkin, for up to a full year, cooking up the last few to make room for the incoming harvest.

Ideally you want to leave your squash on the vine until they are fully mature, developing hard skins. When you press your thumbnail against the skin, it should not leave an impression or dent. However I have experienced success picking squash that were still slightly green on the eve of a frost and had them finish ripening in storage.

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The Transition Framework

Resilience is the ability of a system or community to withstand impacts from outside. An indicator is a good way of measuring that. Conventionally, the principal way of measuring a reducing carbon footprint is CO2 emissions. However, we firmly believe that cutting carbon while failing to build resilience is an insufficient response when you’re trying to address multiple shocks such as peak oil, climate change and the economic crisis together.

— Transition U.S.
TB Projects

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