Wednesday, November 30, 2011

I am sick, and the store is far away!

Like most people who do not live in cities, the grocery store is far away and my head hurts BAD! And, my stomach still expects to be fed! For that matter, my FAMILY expects to be fed, either by delivery pizza or.....

At times like this I enjoy being a prepper. I simply put a can of stew from the preps on to heat, and I mixed  Bisquick with some milk for biscuits. This will not give me flaky, country style biscuits but we will enjoy them while they are hot anyways!

I call such raids on the preps "Rotating the stores".

And, it cost the family $7 for the meal, while delivery pizza would have cost $25. Cha-ching!!!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Do NOT cook the radishes!

I have heard that radishes make good soup, and are often used in Oriental stir-fries, So, I decided to cook some.

I was dissapointed! The radishes still tasted like radishes, but were really not as good. And, as for the greens (which I had cooked very briefly), UGH!

Actually, the raw greens tasted fine, so I tore them up and I put them into the Thanksgiving salad, along with some grated radish.

Grated radish adds just a slight bite to the salad: if you enjoy putting pepper on your salad you might try grated radish as well. I dislike big slices of radish because it is just too much, but grated radish gives it a little bit of a nip and it is just FINE!!!!!!!!!!!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

The survival garden.

Survival gardening is a little different from the usual suburban garden. A modern suburban garden stresses both flavor and beauty: for the survival gardener this might be a bonus but it is not the POINT!

The ideal SURVIVAL garden puts emphasis on the calorie count of vegetables, the ease of storage, yeild, and has vegetables that can be harvested over as long a period of time as possible. If food is running low, it would be little consolation to have a big harvest in September when the gardener is hungry NOW! And, there are virtually no calories in celery, cucumbers, and other suburban garden favorites.

Below is a list of the higher calorie vegetables that I have grown in the garden: I have arranged them in order of the harvest, from the earliest to the latest.

In my climate a late harvest of radishes and turnips is possible, though many years an early hard frost kills the vegetables just before they are ready to bear.

Radishes -  23 calories per cup
turnips - 35 calories per cup
Fava bean -  187 calories per cup of cooked fava beans
Carrots - 45 calories per cup
peas - 134 calories per cup
potatos - about 100 calories for a medium potato
black-eyed peas - 160 calories per cup of cooked peas
tomatos - 50 calories per cup of cooked tomatos
sweet corn - 140 calories per cup of cooked corn
squash -  30 calories per cup of cooked squash
pumpkin - 50 calories per cup of cooked pumpkin
melons - about 40 calories per cup
sweet potatos - 216 calories per cup of cooked sweet potatos

In my opinion, carrots, potatos, and black eyed peas are perhaps the most important of the survival crops: the yield of all 3 can be very high, and they all store easily.

 Carrots have the added benefit of providing a very long harvest: They can be eaten early when they are bite-sized, or they can be left to grow large. In many climates the bed of carrots can be covered in the fall under a deep bed of mulch to prevent the ground from freezing, and then they can be harvested as needed all winter long. For maximim yeild I plant my carrots 2 inches apart in a grid pattern, so that every foot of the carrot bed has 36 carrots on it. And, I plant them BEFORE the last expected frost date: carrots actually germinate better if they get some frost!

Two OTHER vegetables (that I have never had much success with might) be considered: beets and sunflowers. Alas, I will give no advice concerning either, as I think that I am doing something wrong when I try to grow them! LOL!

Lastly, a garden does not have to be restricted to vegetables: a bee hive on one end can give you 30 pounds of honey per year. Now, I must confess that my hive has never done nearly that well: my hive is more likely to give me 6 pounds of honey instead of 30. But, the honey is far better tasting than what the stores offer, and the bees pollinate the garden and provide me with better yields as well!