Search this Blog

Monday, January 31, 2011

Emergency Preparedness -- Your Pantry, Part 1

 I found something that's revolutionizing our pantry here at HomePlace.  Making our own convenience mixes as preparedness planning takes a bit of time, but is well worth it. Why buy boxed and bagged dinners at steadily increasing prices when you can do your own and control your ingredients?

The idea took hold when I discovered Dinner's In the Jar by Kathy Clark. She explains how to create a 90 day supply of dinners stored in Mason jars. This book is not available at our library and Barnes and Noble doesn't carry it either. Drat!

What to do? I wanted to start immediately, not make an order to Amazon and wait. I searched further and found and which have extensive lists of convenience mixes. I began with making seasoning mixes.

Understand I can't leave well enough alone  and have to mess with recipes to suit our tastes. I read the ingredient lists and went to the local discount warehouse to stock up on onion powder, garlic powder, dried onion, chili powder, assorted boullions and parlsey in larger sizes. Other spices and herbs were in our spice box already, but I'd need to replenish them soon.

Secondly, you don't need to trot out and stock up on canning jars. Use what you have at home first! Chip dip jars, olive jars, salsa jars and the like are wide mouth jars with rubber where the jar meets the lid. Even freezer type baggies will do.

None of the following recipes contain sugar; if you want it, have at it!

Here's  two spice mix recipes I modified:

Creole Seasoning
2TBS + 1 tsp paprika          Mix and store in air-tight
2TBS  garlic powder           container. Use on seafood
2TBS  onion powder           chicken, fish, beans, or on rice.
1TBS  chicken boullion       Can be used in other mix recipes.
1TBS  Italian seasoning
1TBS  dried thyme
1TBS  cayenne pepper        ( HOT - may want to modify more)
1TBS  pepper

 Taco Seasoning Mix

1TBS   dried minced onion          Combine in air-tight container.
2TBS   chili powder
2 TBS   paprika                            
 41/2 tsp  cumin                            
3 tsp    onion powder                   
2 1/2 tsp garlic                              
1/8 tsp cayenne or red pepper 

Add 3 TBS to1# browned  ground beef,chicken or turkey. Add 1/2 c water or 1/2 c salsa for extra zip. Use in other convenience mixes to follow in future blogs.          
Stay tuned for more recipes and hints for preparing your emergency pantry supplies. 

I've made up 37 dinner mixes in jars and bags in two "sittings" of 1 to 2 hours each. The project will continue for some time, complete with culinary experiments. The rice pudding dessert mix recipe needs a lot of tweaking, for instance!

 Hope to live off these during the summer with the garden, home raised rabbits, venison,chickens, eggs and some purchased meat added in. Almost forgot the home cannned fruit and jams, too!     


  1. Interesting, it never occured to me these mixes could be made up at home. It makes sense, I just never thought of it.

    So this is where all the chip dip jars from my workshop went? I have to empty more.