Saturday, May 28, 2011

Cooking Without Power

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I thought living in Utah meant sunny days and warm weather, but I guess Mother Nature is in control and she hasn't received that message yet this year.  When I received my Sun Oven I thought I would be able to cook in it about 85% of the year.  Yeah...I think there is some kind of weird connection between the clouds coming out and me using my Sun Oven.  It was sunny all morning today and I decided to get out my Sun Oven to make some brownies.  Within minutes the clouds rolled in and the sun only peeked out every half hour or so.  I did leave the brownies in the oven and it did reach a temperature of 220 degrees, but the clouds are here to stay and so I'll finish the brownies inside.  

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I have been noting the sunny days lately and I would probably only have been able to cook my family a meal in the sun oven about 4 times in the last 3 weeks.  This got me thinking about how I would prepare food for my family if I couldn't solely use my sun oven.  I have been trying out some of my recipes with home canned chicken and American Beauty Quick Cook pasta. Guess what?  I can get a meal cooked and served in 10 minutes!!  Those quick cook noodles are a food storage addicts dream!  If you had to use a camp stove or propane stove, conserving  fuel will be a concern.  So I boil my water and cook the noodles in 3 minutes, open a bottle of chicken and throw a quick sauce together, dinner is done!

To add variety to my meals I would need to plan on baking quite a bit in my sun oven when the sun is actually out.  This way I could have muffins or bread for those days I couldn't use the sun oven.  It all takes a little planning but I can see how I would get a system down of baking and cooking with the sun oven and having bread for my weekly meals. 

My suggestion is to learn how to bottle your own meat. (I know you can buy it at Costco, but my kids think the chicken tastes like tuna)  It is a relatively simple process and if you can find a great deal on meat you are saving a TON of money.  Watch the video below for detailed instructions on how to can chicken.  The only change you will need to make is that we live above 5000 feet and you need to vent the canner for 10 minutes before placing the weight on.  PLEASE read the instructions for your canner!!

May is almost over!! Get those goals accomplished!  Click HERE to see the goals for May!

Check out the blog on Monday's for a new series of posts titled "Prepare Today Homemade"!!  Learn some fun, new recipes using your 3-month and long-term storage.

Enjoy the journey!
Enjoy the blessings!
Feel the peace!! 

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