Prepping for TEOTWAWKI, economic collapse, or simply short-term challenges is something everyone should consider. After all, there’s no harm in having a few things set aside for an emergency. In Indiana, for example, winter storms and sudden ice storms have forced individuals to stay at home for an extended period of time, especially in rural areas. Here is a list of cabinet staples that no prepared home should ever be without. Please note, not all of these foods are Kosher, so please read all labels prior making the decision to stock up.
Macaroni and cheese is a family favorite, but if the power went out, milk and butter would quickly go bad. An alternative is to keep canned milk available, but a cheaper and easier alternative is to purchase cheese sauce in a jar and bagged pasta. Bagged pasta is often preferable to boxed, because the glue in a boxed pasta can attract pests. Two to three year old bagged wheat pasta is just fine for consumption though egg pasta can go rancid. Jar cheese depends on the manufacturer. Add a can of Tuna or chicken for a boost.
Dried beans can last years when stored away from moisture, and they are a prepping favorite, but surrendering to the blandness of beans can be pretty discouraging in a prepping situation. Consider the ingredients for Super Soup. Rice, a variety of different beans, lentils, whole oats, dried onion, and bullion or canned stock make for a hearty meal. Pouch cornbread mixes are a great addition, as cooking oil can be substituted by applesauce to make for a delicious side.
When only fried will do, consider fried tuna. If you’ve stocked your preps with tuna in oil, you have a stable emergency supply of quick cooking oil for this delicious dish, which can be made with either mackerel or salmon as well. No eggs available? Be sure to stock up on mayonnaise, preferably in packets. You will need a tablespoon of mayo for every drained can of tuna you use. Use the oil to cook in. Simply add crackers and a bit of season salt as well as the mayo to tuna. Mix vigorously until you can mold the tuna into a ball or patty and fry.
Dried beef can be made into an incredible gravy to pour over biscuits. Gently cut the beef into small bite-sized pieces and place in a pan. Add oil, margarine, or a tiny bit of water and place over medium heat, adding pepper to taste. In a small bowl, put very cold water and two tablespoons of corn starch, stirring until the corn starch is totally dissolved. Pour over cooking meat. Add water and taste. If it’s too salty, add a tiny bit of sugar until the salt is weaker. Add pepper. The result should be a nice gravy that goes well on toast.
Peanut butter is a great staple for any pantry, but adding it to drained canned chicken breast along with a can of drained mushrooms and dried onions makes for a rich addition to noodles, even the ramen type. Adding a 1/2c oil and chicken broth brings out the flavor in the dish, and it is also advisable to use pepper and garlic to season it.
Though the prospect of long-term food storage may be daunting, having emergency supplies is a good way to hedge against having to scrape by should disaster hit. Most cereals have a long shelf life, so if all else fails, learning how to incorporate these into meals may make a big difference. Though an individual may never need a stored supply of food, having a few ideas to break up the monotony just in case may be a good plan. If nothing else, they are great cheap non-emergency meal plans as well.