Early “survival” books told to store four items; wheat, dry milk, salt and honey. For a productive gardener, this might make sense since these are not items you produce. Soon, pinto beans, white rice and sugar were added to the “must have” list. Now, beans do increase protein which is important but expanding variety in the diet is critical and beans and rice are not enough.
We have all experienced some appetite fatigue after working through the Thanksgiving leftovers but imagine months of nothing but pinto beans and white rice. Don’t get me wrong here, there’s a lot you can do with beans – like Pinto Pie and Black Bean Brownies. The point is VARIETY. You are better off with six months of choices than a year of the same old thing.
Instead of six buckets of wheat, have:
- 2 buckets of wheat
- 2 buckets of rolled oats
- 1 bucket of cornmeal
- 1 bucket of 9 grain cereal, containing hard red wheat, soft white wheat, barley, oats, corn, millet, flax, buckwheat, and rye.
Instead of six buckets of rice, have:
- 1 bucket of rice
- 1 bucket of barley
- 1 bucket of ABC soup mix
- 2 buckets of potato dices
- 1 bucket of elbow pasta
Instead of six buckets of pinto beans, have:
- 1 bucket of pinto beans
- 1 bucket of black turtle beans
- 1 bucket of red kidney beans
- 1 bucket of small white navy beans
- 1 bucket of lentils
- 1 bucket of 16 bean mix
The recommendation for salt is 10 pounds for any person over 10 years old. Today’s processed food has a very high sodium content so a switch to eating from your home storage would drastically change that component of the diet. Naturally occurring sodium is found in many vegetables but not in adequate quantities. Salt is required to maintain proper pH levels in the body, lack of salt can lead to dehydration, there is a connection between low salt intake and insulin resistance AND salt enhances the flavor of food.
In addition to salt you can make a difference with:
- Beef bouillon
- Chicken bouillon
- Dried onions
- Cheese sauce
- Tomato powder
- Ground black pepper
- Granulated garlic
- Your own favorite herbs and spices
- Worcestershire, teriyaki and/ or soy sauce
The most glaring failure I’ve seen in the old “survival” manuals was the lack of cooking oils and leavening agents. You cannot make even the most basic recipes without these items:
- Cooking oil
- Baking powder
- Baking soda
- Powdered eggs
Dry Bean Measurement:
One pound of dry beans = 2 cups of dry beans = 5 to 6 cups of cooked beans.