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Posts Tagged ‘survival food’

PostHeaderIcon Some Future Projects Of The Off Grid Solar Camper

After the big move of the off grid camper to its new location, the projects will continue on. Here are some of the things you can watch for in the following months.

Solar:

I would like to continue expanding my solar power system in order to have a more normal life eventually. Here are some solar power projects in the works:

Solar sun tracker to follow the sun across the sky and increase solar panel output.
Make more solar panels to increase overall power output.
Purchase some solar panels and compare with homemade panels.
Set up either a homemade or a retail MPPT solar charge controller and gain about 30% more solar power.

Making various solar ovens and experiments with solar cooking.
Make a solar water distiller for water purification.

Expand the battery banks to increase maximum usable energy.
Have multiple battery banks that can be switched out. One will be charging while the other will be used to power the camper.

Water:

Improve water collection.
Go from hand carrying one gallon jugs each day to being able to actually have a shower.
Set up rain water collection system.
Have running water inside the camper.
Improve water collection system and increase maximum storage capacity.
Make a water filter to provide clean, pure drinking water.

Waste Disposal:

Build a composting toilet to compost waste
Eventual recycling of gray water for plants.

Gardening:

Provide food through an organic no till garden.
Provide enough food to last all year, no more grocery shopping.
Make a solar food dehydrator.
Experiment with various off grid food storage and preservation methods.

Cooling and Heating:

Work with passive solar heating for the camper in cold weather.
Put up skirting under the camper to improve heat retention.
Build a passive geothermal cooling system for the hot summer months.

Food Storage:

Get enough power to run a thermoelectric cooler. This is a 12 volt RV cooler.
Make a thermostat for the cooler to improve its efficiency.
Bury the cooler partially under ground and insulate it to improve its efficiency.
Set up the ability to use a normal home refrigerator.
Set up an underground long term food storage bunker to keep foods longer. Sort of a root cellar.

Electronics:

There will be many electronics experiments and projects in the coming months.

Keep following The Off Grid Project and The Do It Yourself World for more updates.

PostHeaderIcon The Best Backpacking Eat From The Pouch Survival Food

With only many years of experience eating Military style MREs, I have never tried any other type of eat from the pouch survival foods. But after trying Wise Foods, this stuff seems to be the best deal for your money. I got an eat-from-the-pouch backpacking meal to try out from Wise. It is the cheesy lasagna meal. Here are the results.


Wise Outdoor Freeze Dried Meal

Most trail foods and freeze dried survival foods are so expensive, I would rather take a piece of dried bread with me hiking than to go into debt and buy the pre-packaged trail foods. With prices ranging from $7 – 9 per meal, forget it. I have stuck with canned fish and crackers for most hiking trips. A can of nuts and raisins to top it off. So, after years of living like this on the trails, it is nice to find some good and affordable hiking food.

The meal I got is a cheesy lasagna cook in the pouch freeze dried meal from Wise. They have a whole range of ready made food for hiking and survival. And they taste better than MREs.

The package says to boil 2 cups of water and simply pour it into the pouch. You bring some water to boil. Tear off the top of the pouch and remove the desiccant pack. Then, when the water is hot, pour it into the pouch and zip the top closed with the built in zip lock seal. The package does not say this, but it is a good idea to insulate it by putting it inside your backpack or inside a folded blanket in order to keep the heat in. This is especially necessary in the winter cold.

This is exactly what I did. When the water was hot, I poured it into the pack and zipped it closed. Then I put it into my backpack and zipped that closed. If you do this, make sure that you do not place the hot package against any heat sensitive items in your bag. Or, as mentioned, use a blanket to insulate the pouch while it cooks.

Preparing Cook In The Pouch Wise Food
Preparing a cook in the pouch trail meal

After waiting 12 – 15 minutes you can remove the pouch from the insulation and open it up. Dinner is served.

The package shows a nice, cheesy lasagna fresh out of the oven, sitting on a plate. Well, I guess photos sell a product and it must look nice. The food inside did not look like the cover. It was a bit juicier than an oven baked lasagna, but it sure smelled good. And after hiking in the winter snow all day, it was time for a good, hot meal.

It had noodles with a spaghetti sauce and chunks of tomatoes with real meat and cheese. This was impressive for a freeze dried meal. Most of them do not have any sort of real food in them.

Wise Cheesy Lasagna Hiking Cook-in-Pouch Meal
Wise Cheesy Lasagna In The Pouch

The lasagna tasted exactly like a fresh oven baked lasagna though. I was pleasantly surprised and ate the whole package. It is two servings in a pouch, meant to share with two people, but I managed to eat the whole thing in a single sitting.

You could serve this with some side veggies or bread to make it go farther if you wanted to serve two people. That would be very good actually.

The bottom line is that this was a very good meal for the price.

One important note though with Wise Foods. The more you buy, the cheaper it is per serving. If you buy one package, which is two servings, you pay roughly about $6. That is about $3 per serving, which is way cheaper than any other survival food I have seen. But if you buy in bulk, it gets down to $1.40 or so per serving. Now that is a good deal.

This stuff is good for hiking, fishing, survival, camping, backpacking and long term storage. Because you can cook and eat right out of the pouch, it makes a perfect survival food. You have no mess, do not need any plates or cookware.

PostHeaderIcon Chocolate Candy Vacuum Sealed For Long Term Survival Food

After a SHTF situation or disaster occurs, we will all need to break out the survival supplies and food that we have stashed away for emergencies. People put away a variety of dried foods, grain and other items. But how many people think of putting away comfort items such as chocolate?

Having nice things put away in your long term food storage can really improve a survival situation. Chocolate has many benefits such as flavonoids and antioxidents, which are healthy for you. Chocolate also has some small amount of caffeine, which will be a nice treat in a survival situation. But chocolate also affects our brains in an interesting way. Chocolate gives our brains happy signals, making us feel good through the release of endorphins. Anything that boosts your feeling of well being and happiness in a survival situation is a plus in my book.

A survival situation or a disaster puts a lot of stress on our bodies and moral. Keeping candies and treats around for such a situation may very well save your life. Lower morale lowers the will to live and fight on.

Chocolate candies have a long shelf life already just left alone. Candy normally lasts a year with no problem. Brown chocolate slowly gets a white film on it as it ages. But it is still fine to eat even after a year. As a kid I often kept candy for two years with no problem, so I am talking from experience.

You can vacuum seal chocolate for long term storage to extend its shelf life indefinitely. Sealing off chocolate in vacuum sealer bags keeps out moisture and oxygen, both of which cause food to go bad. If you store your candy in vacuum sealed bags, in a cool, dark place, it should last many years.

Imagine, five or ten years from now, eating Christmas candies in a post apocalypse environment. Oh, what joy it will bring you. What memories it will bring up.

Chocolate candies can also be used in baking or cooking in a survival situation. When using chocolate candy for baking, you will need to reduce the amount of sugar used in the recipe due to the sugar content of the candy. Chocolate candy normally has a very high sugar content anyway.

You can often get chocolate candy at a deep discount right after the holidays. The next day they are normally dropped in price as much as 50 to 75 percent. This is the perfect time for bulking up on your survival food products.

PostHeaderIcon Wild Foraging Series – Garlic Mustard

Garlic mustard is an invasive weed. At least that is what gardeners and lawn care workers call it. It was once brought over from Europe to be used as a very healthy and nutritious herb. It grew with vigor and thrived here. Some time in the past, people forgot about its usefulness as a food herb and started treating it as a weed. But garlic mustard is very good for you.

Garlic Mustard A Wild Edible Food

Garlic mustard is an awesome addition to your list of survival foods because it is packed with vitamins and minerals and because it can be found in the winter. It loves to grow in forests and shady areas and disturbed roadside beds. Garlic mustard has a sort of natural, edible antifreeze that allows it to grow and thrive in winter. You can dig under the snow and find garlic mustard to eat when you are hungry.

Garlic mustard tastes just like its name implies. It tastes like a combination of garlic and mustard. The whole plant is edible from the root to the flowers in summer. The leaves can be eaten fresh or boiled like spinach. The roots make a sort of horseradish if you grind them up. The flavor is very pleasant to some, but they taste better to others when boiled. The young fresh leaves and flowers can be added to salads or served as a garnish with meals.

Garlic mustard can be used as a spice or seasoning for your meals as well.

Garlic mustard is also a powerhouse of vitamins. It contains vitamins A, C, B and many minerals. It also contains important Omega 3 fatty acids. Rumor has it that garlic mustard can help against cancer. A poultice can be used to treat insect bites and stings. It can also help against respiratory infections and asthma.

Garlic mustard is a biennial herb that produces short, now laying plants in the first year and long, tall (3 foot) plants the second year. In the second year it produces flowers in mid summer, which are very tasty. The seeds can be used like mustard seeds. The first year leaves are the best tasting fresh, but grazing off the smaller leaves on second year plants is also good.

How to Identify Garlic Mustard

Garlic mustard leaves are about 1 to 2 inches round, roughly heart or triangular (sometimes round) shaped and course toothed on the edges. In the second year they grow long stalks with alternating leaves on the stem. The second year they can grow up to 3 feet high. The flowers appear in mid summer and are small and white. The leaves have a distinct garlic smell when crushed.

The garlic mustard is a relative of the mustard family.

There are no known poisonous look alikes.

PostHeaderIcon Wild Foraging Series – Wild Garlic (also called chives or onion)

The wild garlic is a common herb found all over the US. It can be found in forests, fields and people’s yards. The wild garlic plant very much resembles the common form of onion in that it has long green tube like leaves and round bulbs. Wild garlic has many healthy benefits and can even help fight against cancer.

Note: Although many people identify these plants as wild onion, even in books, these are wild garlic. The big difference is in the hollow tube shaped leaves.

Finding wild garlic in the forest

The wild garlic is easy to identify. It normally looks the same green color as grass, but is usually taller than the grass in your lawn. It also seems to grow faster than grass when it has been cut. You can easily recognize the long hollow tube shape of the leaves. They grow in clumps, often with many tube leaves growing from every single bulb. When you break open a wild garlic leaf you get a very strong onion smell.

You can eat the whole plant. The leaves are great fresh or as a garnish for meals. Some wild garlic leaves are very strong flavored. The younger, shorter leaves always taste better. The bulb itself can be dug up and eaten just like an onion.

The Wild Garlic Bulb

Some call these chives, some call it wild garlic, while others call it onion. They are all related and in the Lily family.

Wild garlic grow best in cooler weather and can be found in abundance through the spring on into early summer. In late summer when it gets cooler they come out again and can often be found right into winter until it starts snowing heavily.

Wild garlic grows and spreads like weeds and are normally treated as weeds. This is a very healthy food that people try to eradicate from their lawns. I prefer to let them grow naturally wherever they want and keep them down by eating them by the handfuls as I walk through the yard and property.

Wild garlic has just about the same nutritional value as the common garlic. They are high in vitamins A and C as well as others. They contain zinc, copper, sulfer, iron and many other minerals.

Wild garlic has many similar medicinal benefits as normal garlic. They can be used to fight colds, cough and asthma. They have natural cancer fighting properties. They can help boost your immune system. Wild garlic is antibacterial and antimicrobial and can help your body fight invasion and infection. Onions are good for the heart and can help control blood pressure.

See the video:

These little herbs should be cultivated and eaten instead of poisoned and eradicated.