Does this look familiar? Click on the comment link in any posting and leave us some feedback- we'd love to hear from you!

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Winter Stores

Winter is one of my favorite times of year. For farmers, it is the season of rest. I love the feeling of having brought in the harvest, having enough to feed us all, of having things buttoned up and snug, and being snowed in. One of the best ways to spend and evening is by the fire with a cup of coffee (or tea, or cocoa) and sewing while my darling reads. The long nights are also a fun time with the kids, playing board games or putting together puzzles.

This year we took the putting by a little further, both to save running around in the snow in our white elephant, and because of the mutation of the bird flu and that pamphlet we got about the pandemic. We hadn't really done a lot of stocking up before because we were waiting to do the addition, which includes a root cellar. We decided we could use the crawl space as a makeshift root cellar, so we invested in several Rubbermaid containers and some pine shavings to use for insulation (I found this idea in the Back to Basics book). If we keep them from the elements and none of the food rots and contaminates the bedding, we can use them over and over.

The squash are better off if they are touching one another as little as possible, so we put a layer of shavings, a layer of squash, a layer of shavings, etc. The potatoes we just put the insulation around the sides and bottom, then a finish layer on top. That way if it does get a little cold down there they are not in contact with the container.

We put our grains in food-grade 5 gallon pails that I got through the co-op. You need to mix in some diatamacious earth to keep bugs out.

I also dried more this year, and have still more to do. I generally don't can too many things, and now I am espceially wary because of what I read about botulism. Plus the jars are heavy and breakable and I just don't want to bother with them. I mostly use half-gallon canning jars and the vacuum sealer (on the hutch) for grains to keep out bugs. And it is so pretty to see everything in those glass jars.

So here is a list of what we have stored away for the winter:

50 lbs. wheat
75 lbs. oats
25 lbs. spelt
10 lbs. amaranth
50 lbs. rye
10 lbs. turbinado sugar
7 lbs. palm shortening
50 lbs. swany white wheat flour
100 lbs. potatoes
16 lbs. popcorn
30 lbs. brown rice
30 lbs. white rice
10 lbs. barley
2 bushel apples
3 bushel butternut squash
4 bushel aconr squash
2 bushel spaghetti squash
2 bushel sweet potatoes
2 bushel assorted squash (the ones that need used up first, of all the kinds listed above)
3 lbs. banana chipc
3 pounds dried stew vegetables
2 lbs. figs
8 lbs. almonds
10 lbs. onions
5 lbs. peanuts
6 lbs. sunflower seeds
15 lbs. peanut butter
40 lbs. assorted beans and legumes
20 lbs. pasta (left over that we have been trying to use for a while)
10 quarts green tomato relish
10 gallons spaghetti sauce
20 lbs. collard greens
5 gallons brussell sprouts
3 lbs. peppermint
10 lbs. raisins
3 lbs. cocoa
2 gallons maple syrup
1/2 gallon olive oil
20 lbs. hamburger/ground turkey mix
10 lbs. soup bones
40 cans sardines

What was misssing/will hopefully get here soon:
50 lbs. cracked corn
20 lbs. lentils
20 lbs. black turtle beans
1 case Earth Balance buttery spread
1 gallon olive oil
20 cans salmon

That's pretty much all of it, except for a few odd and ends, and it should be enough to get us through even if we can't get to the store. We like to make a meatloaf mix to bake in the acorn squash, but we can certainly eat them plain if we need to. We also like fresh vegetables for lunch, but we have enough canned and dried to get what we need nutritionally. Anything else would just be a matter of preference or want.

And all this AFTER we gave the firstfruits to the church. God has truly blessed us with an abundance!

1 comment:

a soldier's wife said...

Wow! That's wonderful :) and everything looks so pretty!