Sunday, February 26, 2017

Friday, February 24, 2017

HOW CAN YOU TELL WHEN CANNED FOOD HAS GONE BAD?


There are several ways harmful bacteria can contaminate canned food. In the United States, over 100 cases of botulism are reported each year. A person can’t see or smell if a can is contaminated with botulism spores, however, there are other contaminates that can be seen and smelled. The good news is that most of the signs of spoilage are fairly easy to recognize once you know what to look for.

  • A lid the bulges (moves up & down when pushing on it)
  • Food projecting or exploding when the can is opened
  • Rusting or corrosion of the can
  • Leaking
  • Dents--cans that are dented on the top or bottom, or near seams, are particularly susceptible. If the can is dented alone the side, it is probably safe to eat as long as it doesn't have any of the other signs of spoilage.
  • If the can is dented along the side it will probably be safe to eat the food inside
  • Acrid smell
  • Rising bubbles or unnatural looking colors
  • A loud hissing sound when opened (most cans make a very small hissing sound when opened, but a loud hiss is a sign of spoiled food)
  • No sounds of liquid inside the can when shaken

If your canned food has any of these problems, DON'T taste it and handle with care. Contact with a botulinum toxin can be fatal whether it is ingested or enters through the skin. Avoid contact with suspect foods or liquids and carefully dispose of them.


For more information on preventing botulism with home canned/bottled foods, click HERE.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

WE'VE GOT A NEW FEATURE!

We've added something new to the blog! It's a monthly shopping list.


If you want to get started with storing food but need a little direction, check out the list in the right-hand column of the blog. Each month, we'll change the list to help you remember to purchase something different. There's no right or wrong way to get started, just do it!

For more information on food storage, click HERE.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

NO-KNEAD, OVERNIGHT BREAD

We've had a lot of requests for this recipe lately, so here you go! Baking your own bread is a great way to save money and use your food storage. Did you know that baking your own loaf of bread will cost you about $.32? That's a huge savings! If you've never made bread but want to give it a try, this is the easiest recipe on the planet! The sky is the limit with this bread because there are so many things you can add to it to make it unique and delicious.


Start by deciding whether you want to do a single or double batch. I always do a double batch because I just can’t resist a slice(or a whole loaf) straight out of the oven, and it’s so beautiful that I just have to share it with someone else!


To make this delicious bread, find a medium-sized bowl and add 3 c. flour, 1 tsp. yeast, 1 tsp. salt, and 1 1/2 c. very warm water. Stir it up. The dough will look a little rough or "shaggy." This is normal.  Cover the bowl with a lid or some plastic wrap, and set it in a warm location. Before covering, feel free to stir in any mix-ins you like, such as cranberries, orange zest, cinnamon, sugar, cheese, rosemary, jalapeƱos, etc. You can also add mix-ins after the rise time. If you don’t have a warm location, wrap a towel around the bowl to try to insulate it the best you can. When the dough is ready, it will have doubled in size and look very sticky and bubbly.


In 4-18 hours, preheat your oven to 425 degrees with a Dutch oven inside. Add 1/2 tsp. coconut oil to the bottom of the Dutch oven before preheating. Sprinkle your countertop with about 1/4 cup flour. Scrape the dough out of the bowl and into the center of the flour. Using a scraper (because the dough will be WAY too sticky to use your hands), fold the edges of the dough inward to the center of the dough until you've formed a nice disc-shaped ball of dough.


Gently place the dough into a HOT Dutch oven and bake for 25 minutes with the lid ON. After 25 minutes, remove the lid and continue to bake 5-10 more minutes until to top is a lovely golden brown color. Remove the bread from the Dutch oven to cool completely before slicing and devouring.


Why the Dutch oven? It creates moisture, which gives the crust that chewy, crispy texture. If you don’t have a Dutch oven, but want to try to imitate the conditions that create the moisture, use a glass baking dish with a lid, or place some water in a pan at the bottom of the oven while baking to increase the moisture in your oven. Although using a pan of water in your oven will provide the desired chewy, crispy texture, it will not give your bread that flaky, crispy look.

Never store this kind of bread in a plastic bag or tupperware. It’s best just left out in the open or wrapped in a kitchen towel. If stored in plastic, the bread becomes too moist and loses it’s great texture. Also, never cut into a loaf of bread until it has cooled completely(unless you're prepared to eat the whole thing in one sitting), or you risk ruining the inside of your loaf by making it gummy.


For a PDF of this recipe, it's instructions and all of the variations in flavors that we've tried, click here. For a great video tutorial, click here

Photo credit: girlversusdough.com

Monday, February 13, 2017

YE SHALL NOT FEAR


This month's Ensign contains an article entitled, "Ye Shall Not Fear." The article relates the stories of three families who were affected by natural disasters. Each family made valuable preparations before disaster struck, which gave them peace during their difficult trials.

The article highlights the importance of temporal, mental and spiritual preparedness.
"...Sometimes it doesn't just rain--it pours. The scriptures teach us that in the latter days, 'there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places'. But when Church members heed the counsel of the prophets to be prepared temporally, mentally, and spiritually, they 'shall not fear'... 
"The sure foundation of the gospel of Jesus Christ prepares Church members for the storms of life. Because physical storms come, those who are prepared for a disaster can find peace of mind in good times and can be self-reliant in difficult times. As these families learned, when we are prepared, we indeed shall not fear."
For a link to the article, click HERE.

Sunday, February 5, 2017

Make The Sabbath The Lord's Day


"Every Sunday we have the opportunity to partake of the sacrament and remember the atoning sacrifice of Christ. As the world gets worse, the observance of this commandment will make all the difference in our families and in our community. 
 
"The Church will not give you a list of things to do and not do on the Sabbath. We must each think how to make the Sabbath a delight. We must build traditions that strengthen Sabbath day observance in our families. This will bring peace and love to your families," Quentin L. Cook.

If you're looking for activities to help keep you busy while observing the Sabbath, click HERE. We know that as we keep the Sabbath day holy, we will be able to find protection and peace.