Thursday, July 2, 2015

Kayak Towed with a Bicycle

A couple days ago I came across this photo of a bike towing a Kayak, something I never thought to do with my bike. I'm sure the same method would also work for a canoe. Myself, I live a stones throw from the ocean, the Intracoastal Waterway and many clean ponds and using a bike to get there is quite easy.

A bike with a cargo trailer and now being able to tow a light weight Kayak or canoe makes a lot of sense because I surf fish, shore fish or small pond fish for food and for the small ponds these boats work very well. Most of these spots are no more than 2 miles away so a bike is a credible mode of transportation. Using a little ingenuity you could fabricate and inexpensive strap-on-boat set of wheels or your existing bike cargo trailer to strap the Kayak or canoe onto. A simple home made tow/hitch boom fastened to the bikes frame will do the job (see photo).

I’m a fan of using a bicycle whenever possible and most definitely if we should find ourselves in a deeply depressed economy or disaster event such as a grid down for an indefinite time period when gas stations are closed because they can't pump fuel.



Saturday, June 27, 2015

Garden Rice Salad

I made this to night and gave a big bowl of it to my neighbor. They ate it non-stop. It's like a macaroni salad but with rice, rice should be in your long term food stocks and home garden grown veggies. This Garden Salad is very good, like a comfort food it's very cheap and easy to make.


Ingredients:
2 cups white rice (uncooked)
3/4 cup mayo
2 stalks chopped celery
1 large tomato chopped
1/2 cucumber chopped
1 cup onion chopped
2 tsp parsley
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/4 cup chopped peanuts (optional)

Directions:
Cook the rice 15 minutes (2 cups rice & 4 1/2 cups water) and let cool in a refrigerator if possible.

Put the rice in a large bowl and blend in 2-3 tbs of olive oil to separate the grains.
Then add and blend together all the other ingredients.


Serve chilled if possible.

(Original recipe shown was modified from Penzey Spice)

Thursday, June 25, 2015

How to Clean, Fillet, Debone and Skin an Alligator

This is probably not much use for you who don't live in the deep Southeast but thought I'd pass it along if you're ever find yourselves in the Florida swamps. It's not quite like dressing a deer just more work and knowledge of the animal.


This is a 9 foot alligator that when dressed yields 50 lbs of meat that wholesales for about $8.00 a pound.

Whenever I'm in a restaurant that has gator on the menu I order it. No, it doesn't taste like chicken, but a tough pork however still an interesting meal. It's generally served breaded and deep fried.


Friday, June 12, 2015

Dry Bulk Food Storage Quantities Simplified

I created the list below while I was adding foods to my own long term Dry bulk Foods. I thought I would share this information and hope you will find it helpful with your own long term food storage.


Before I'd purchase bulk foods I needed to know how many meals/servings can be prepared from the purchase and how much storage space it will take up. This is called planning. Knowing the amounts in advance will prevent you from purchasing and stocking out of balance or to much of one item and not enough of another. The following information also helps planning for items like spices, cooking oil, yeast and other ingredients needed to turn your bulk storage into everyday meals.

What’s the point in having 50 pounds of flour which is enough to bake 60 loaves of bread and only enough yeast to make 6 loaves of bread? The same applies to all stored foods, like pasta and how much sauce to match the number of meals from the pasta you’ve stored!

The list below shows how many pounds of basic bulk dry food are in a Gallon, (one gallon is my favorite food storage size) and 5 Gallon Buckets. The following information below will help you convert those pounds into gallons and then into cups and then into the number of meals/servings that can be prepared from your stored dry bulk food.

The meal size I use for my basic planning is 2 Cups of Prepared Food per person, per meal. I find that 2 cups is a good amount of food for a meal. Test it for yourself and see. If it’s not enough for you change the 2 cup amount to 3 cups or 1½ cups or whatever suits you. Just be sure to adjust the meals per Gallon or per Pound on the following chart to have an accurate count of meals that are available in your food storage plan. Note the key words here “Prepared Food”. Let’s take rice for example; One cup of raw rice turns into about 3 cups cooked or prepared. So to make 2 cups of prepared rice you only need 2/3 cup of raw rice for one 2 cup meal. This is what you need to understand when stocking for a planned amount of meals from your long term stored foods; how many meals can be prepared from your bulk food storage or how long can you live on your storage?


Some of the common dry bulk foods I store:

Rice
7.4     Pounds dry per Gallon
37.0    Pounds dry per Five Gallon Bucket

16      Cups dry per Gallon
80      Cups dry per 5 Gallons

Prepared Food Yield:
24      2 Cup meals per Gallon
120     2 Cup meals per 5 Gallon Bucket

Single Serving Size Ratio:
1/3     Cup of dry to make 1 Cup of prepared
2/3     Cup of dry to make 2 Cups of prepared


Beans, Great Northern
6.7     Pounds per Gallon
33.5    Pounds per Five Gallon Bucket

16      Cups dry per Gallon
80      Cups dry per 5 Gallons

Prepared Food Yield:
32      2 Cup meals per Gallon
160     2 Cup meals per 5 Gallon Bucket

Single Serving Size Ratio:
1/2     Cup of dry to make 1 Cup of prepared
1        Cup of dry to make 2 Cups of prepared


Beans, Pinto
6.4     Pounds per Gallon
32.0    Pounds per Five Gallon Bucket

16      Cups dry per Gallon
80      Cups dry per 5 Gallons

Prepared Food Yield:
32      2 Cup meals per Gallon
160     2 Cup meals per 5 Gallon Bucket

Single Serving Size Ratio:
1/2     Cup of dry to make 1 Cup of prepared
1        Cup of dry to make 2 Cups of prepared


Beans, Red Kidney
6.4     Pounds per Gallon
32.0    Pounds per Five Gallon Bucket

16      Cups dry per Gallon
80      Cups dry per 5 Gallons

Prepared Food Yield:
32      2 Cup meals per Gallon
160     2 Cup meals per 5 Gallon Bucket

Single Serving Size Ratio:
1/2     Cup of dry to make 1 Cup of prepared
1        Cup of dry to make 2 Cups of prepared


Lentils
6.8     Pounds per Gallon
34.0    Pounds per Five Gallon Bucket

16      Cups dry per Gallon
80      Cups dry per 5 Gallons

Prepared Food Yield:
24      2 Cup meals per Gallon
120     2 Cup meals per 5 Gallon Bucket

Single Serving Size Ratio:
1/3     Cup of dry to make 1 Cup of prepared
2/3     Cup of dry to make 2 Cups of prepared


Grits
6.0     Pounds per Gallon
30.0    Pounds per Five Gallon Bucket

16      Cups dry per Gallon
80      Cups dry per 5 Gallons

Prepared Food Yield:
32      2 Cup meals per Gallon
160     2 Cup meals per 5 Gallon Bucket

Single Serving Size Ratio:
1/4     Cup of dry to make 1 Cup of prepared
1/2     Cup of dry to make 2 Cups of prepared


Rolled Oats (Oatmeal)
3.3     Pounds per Gallon
16.5    Pounds per Five Gallon Bucket

16      Cups dry per Gallon
80      Cups dry per 5 Gallons

Prepared Food Yield:
16      2 Cup meals per Gallon
80      2 Cup meals per 5 Gallon Bucket

Single Serving Size Ratio:
1/2     Cup of dry to make 1 Cup of prepared
1        Cup of dry to make 2 Cups of prepared


Barley, Pearled
7.0     Pounds per Gallon
35.0    Pounds per Five Gallon Bucket

16      Cups dry per Gallon
80      Cups dry per 5 Gallons

Prepared Food Yield:
16      2 Cup meals per Gallon
80      2 Cup meals per 5 Gallon Bucket

Single Serving Size Ratio:
 1/2    Cup of dry to make 1 Cup of prepared
 1       Cup of dry to make 2 Cups of prepared


Pasta, Elbow
5.0     Pounds per Gallon
25.0    Pounds per Five Gallon Bucket

16      Cups dry per Gallon
80      Cups dry per 5 Gallons

Prepared Food Yield:
16      2 Cup meals per Gallon
80      2 Cup meals per 5 Gallon Bucket

Single Serving Size Ratio:
1/2     Cup of dry to make 1 Cup of prepared
 1       Cup of dry to make 2 Cups of prepared


Pasta, Rotini
3.0     Pounds per Gallon
15.0    Pounds per Five Gallon Bucket

16      Cups dry per Gallon
80      Cups dry per 5 Gallons

Prepared Food Yield:
11      2 Cup meals per Gallon
55      2 Cup meals per 5 Gallon Bucket

Single Serving Size Ratio:
3/4     Cup of dry to make 1 Cup of prepared
1½    Cups of dry to make 2 Cups of prepared


Pasta, Penne
3.6     Pounds per Gallon
18.0    Pounds per Five Gallon Bucket

16      Cups dry per Gallon
80      Cups dry per 5 Gallons

Prepared Food Yield:
13      2 Cup meals per Gallon
65      2 Cup meals per 5 Gallon Bucket

Single Serving Size Ratio:
2/3     Cup of dry to make 1 Cup of prepared
1¼     Cups of dry to make 2 Cups of prepared


Pasta, Orzo
7.0     Pounds per Gallon
35.0    Pounds per Five Gallon Bucket

16      Cups dry per Gallon
80      Cups dry per 5 Gallons

Prepared Food Yield:
21      2 Cup meals per Gallon
105     2 Cup meals per 5 Gallon Bucket

Single Serving Size Ratio:
1/3     Cup of dry to make 1 Cup of prepared
3/4     Cup of dry to make 2 Cups of prepared


Pasta, Spaghetti
I recommend you use a spaghetti gauge for accurate portion control.
6        Pounds per Gallon
30      Pounds per Five Gallon Bucket

16      Cups dry per Gallon
80      Cups dry per 5 Gallons

Prepared Food Yield:
16      2 Cup meals per Gallon
80      2 Cup meals per 5 Gallon Bucket

7/8     inch bundle makes 1 Cup of prepared
1 3/16 inch bundle makes 2 Cups of prepared

Single Serving Size Ratio:
3.0     ounces per 1 Cup (7/8 inch bundle)
6.0     ounces per 2 Cups (1 3/16 inch bundle)


Potatoes, Instant Mashed
2.6     Pounds per Gallon
13.0    Pounds per Five Gallon Bucket

16      Cups dry per Gallon
80      Cups dry per 5 Gallons

Prepared Food Yield:
12      2 Cup meals per Gallon
60      2 Cup meals per 5 Gallon Bucket

Single Serving Size Ratio:
2/3     Cup of dry to make 1 Cup of prepared
1 1/3   Cups of dry to make 2 Cups of prepared


Milk, Instant Non-Fat Dry
3.4     Pounds per Gallon
17.0    Pounds per Five Gallon Bucket

16      Cups dry per Gallon
80      Cups dry per 5 Gallons

Prepared Food Yield:
64      Cups per Gallon
320     Cups per 5 Gallon Bucket

Single Serving Size Ratio:
1/4     Cup of dry to make 1 Cup of prepared
         

Flour, All Purpose White
5.2     Pounds per Gallon
26.0    Pounds per Five Gallon Bucket

16      Cups dry per Gallon
80      Cups dry per 5 Gallons

3.6     Cups per pound
18      cups per 5 pound bag

Prepared Food Yield:
6        Loaves of bread per Gallon.
30      Loaves of bread per Five Gallon Bucket

6        Loaves of bread per 5 pounds
60      Loaves of bread per 50 lb. sack


Cornmeal
6.4     Pounds per Gallon
32.0    Pounds per Five Gallon Bucket

16      Cups dry per Gallon
80      Cups dry per 5 Gallons

Prepared Food Yield:
 8       9 inch pans of Cornbread per Gallon
          (Also needs 1 cup milled flour per pan)
40      9 inch pans of Cornbread per 5 Gallon Bucket
          (Also needs 1 cup milled flour per pan)

         
Wheat, Hard White or Hard Red
7.0     Pounds kernels per Gallon
35.0    Pounds per Five Gallon Bucket

16      Cups dry per Gallon
80      Cups dry per 5 Gallons

Prepared Food Yield:
8        Loaves of bread per Gallon.
40      Loaves of bread per Five Gallon Bucket

57      Loaves of bread per 50 lb. sack


Sugar
7.6     Pounds per Gallon
38.0    Pounds per Five Gallon Bucket
                  

Salt
10.9    Pounds per Gallon
54.5    Pounds per Five Gallon Bucket


Monday, June 8, 2015

Van Camping

My van has many uses; Inside there is a full width 4 feet by 6.5 feet long platform I built to store all my bug-out gear and sleep on and it's for camping and everyday transportation. Recently I added mounts to the roof to tie one side of the tarp/canopy onto it and using a single adjustable painters pole for the center support.

Below is my first campout with the new canopy and it work great! It did rain in the morning after setup but I simply sat in the chair, drank some coffee and waited for the rain to pass. What I did discover was I needed a second support pole or one at each corner. The reason is with a pole at each corner would give me more square feet of rain and sun protection (I'm in Florida and the sun is brutal) and in a bug-out situation will allow me to lower the adjustable poles creating a downward canopy slope with a slight valley to easily collect rain water that in a bad situation could be life sustaining!

I had a great time camping at the shore of the St Johns River and the Atlantic Ocean watching the cargo ships pass by. I was amazed at how large and quiet those ships are.