Friday, January 6, 2017
Restocking the pantry
My lovely wife and I ended up with a couple of Amazon gift cards. Did we buy ourselves some new toys? Nope. We decided to use them to help restock the pantry. It's kinda weird to by food on-line, but with the gift cards and prime shipping, why not?
I'm trying some Bob's Red Mill TSP. (Textured Soy Protein) It's supposed to be healthier than TVP. (Textured Vegetable Protein) I've used TVP in the past to bulk out pasta and stir fry dishes. TSP is supposed to be easier to digest. We shall see.
I picked up some dehydrated vegetables. I'm making a chicken soup and will test them out to see how they do. If I like them I'll probably order more. My food storage tends towards proteins, carbs and some fats. Probably should add more veggies.
Also added to my old standby, small navy beans. I've got a really good recipe for New England baked beans. My vegetarian version is really cheap to make, but tasty and hearty -just the thing to stick with you on cold winter days.
We plan a trip to a discount store to round out a few odds and ends.
Shipping expense is a big downside for bulk food buying. I used to have the nice lady at a local health food store special order stuff for me. That way I could buy stuff like wheat berries, oats, and dry beans by the 50 pound bag. It's not what she normally carried in her small store, but I'd always pick it up right after the order came in so she didn't have to deal with storing it. Huge savings on shipping. Unfortunately, she closed her business to take a regular job.
A local coffee shop also used to let me order stuff from their suppliers. They carried soup and sandwiches so I got a lot of dried soup ingredients through them. They sold the business so I lost that connection too.
My food storage used to be almost all cheap items with good nutrition, long term storage, but took time to prepare. Lately I've been adding stuff that is much quicker to cook. In an emergency being able to put together a high energy healthy meal quickly has its advantages.
Another consideration is that I'm thinking about food for boat trips. Food that can be prepared with little cooking really stretches out the cooking fuel supply. Having good easy to make meals available will make it less tempting to dingy to shore to grab a burger.
I'm also drawing on my old backpacking days. Basic ingredients were rounded out with a good variety of spices. The same basic stuff could become Italian, Mexican or Oriental meals. It was easy and kept things from being boring. Just started ordering some good spices from Penzeys Spices. They have some interesting stuff I can't get off the shelf around here.
Food storage has always been important in snow country. It's going to be a long long time before anything comes out of our little garden.