Sunday, November 29, 2009

Oct. 2009 Emergency Prep. Meet. on Earthquake Preparedness

Several years ago when the tsumani hit halfway around the world, I began reading about earthquakes and the effects of earthquakes. Knowing that eventually I would be moving to Logan, Utah, I wanted to know if this was a prime area for an earthquake. What I discovered was that Cache Valley has daily earthquakes of a small magnitude that don't impact on our daily lives. Still, when President Hinckley was building the Conference Center in Salt Lake City, he questioned the architects after they submitted the building plans to him about how earthquake proof the building was. When they assured him that building code had been followed (and probably strengthened), he told the architects to increase the earthquake proofing of the building by four-fold, if memory serves me correctly.

I take President Hinckley's example seriously. When it came time to insure my house in Nibley, I made sure I paid the extra premium amount for earthquake insurance. When presented with an opportunity last year to attend a meeting in Logan on earthquakes, I learned a great deal.

Then I met Diane and Norm Edler at one of the emergency preparedness meetings I held at the Nibley 6 Ward. They shared some of the circumstances that they lived through while residing in California. They have lived through TWO earthquakes themselves and have the pictures to prove it. They graciously accepted my invitation to speak at our October emergency preparedness meeting. What follows is some of the information that they shared.

There are two kinds of earthquakes: rolling and thrusting. Each one is different from the other and has a different impact on the kind of damage that it does both in the community and in your own home. Some details on impact will be similar no matter which kind of earthquake one is experiencing.

One of the most important things that any of us can do is to keep shoes and clothes right next to our beds. Earthquakes can occur in the middle of the night. When they do, furniture is toppled, mirrors and glass picture frames shatter and fall to the floor, and items fly out of cabinets and off shelves. When you need to evacuate, you will need something on your feet to avoid injuries to the bottoms of bare feet while having to walk, perhaps in the dark of night because there may be a disruption in electic, to safety outside of your home. Keep a flashlight next to your bed that is ALWAYS operable. I keep a wind-up flashlight that I know I can rely on. Thirty seconds of winding gets me several minutes of good light.

During one of the earthquakes Norm was sleeping in bed while Diane was in another part of the house. Their very large headboard fell on Norm during the earthquake and kept him pinned there until Diane could get to him to help remove it. An aftershock hit, and the headboard fell again. Diane made a good point when she said that furniture topples and can prevent you from easily getting to where you want to go or from getting there at all. You will want to secure heavy items that can topple over.

Pictures were shown of the contents of their home. Their kitchen cupboard doors flew open and dishes, glassware, etc. was everywhere on the floor. Pictures of their dining room showed much of the same thing with the contents of their furniture being spilled onto the floor, most of it broken beyone repair.

Norm covered hot water heaters and showed a hot water kit that can be purchased from a Home Depot type store that will secure your hot water heater from toppling over during the earthquake. It is a metal band or two that secures to the studs surrounding it. He also stated that we needed to keep an extra flexible hose in an accessible area because that hose (found on the top of the hot water heater) often breaks during an earthquake. It is only a few dollars to purchase, but absolutetly essential to being able to use the hot water heater. Remember that during a disaster that stores will run out of things like this in an hour because so many hot water heaters will be impacted. Do not turn your gas valve off outside unless you smell gas or see it leaking outside as once the gas is turned off, you cannot turn it back on without a representative from the gas company doing it. This could take days. Also, keep a wrench accessible to turn off the gas if you have to and have a water key accessible if you need to turn the water off so that your place doesn't get flooded if the water pipes are broken.

Norm and Diane also mentioned that supermarket shelves were emptied in 3 hours. They were the only ones in their large neighborhood with home storage and graciously shared it with those in need. They also quoted a statistic about LDS families and homestorage: Less than 8% of LDS families have any home storage program at all. So, look around your neighborhood and try to imagine how many folks are prepared or who are not prepared to any degree. Remember that when the supermarket shelves are emptied, they will not be restocked any time soon because roadways will be disrupted, bridges will be out, mountain passes may not exist anymore, the power may not be on to even open the store, put the refrigeration on, etc. They also stated from having just completed a mission working at the Bishop's Storehouse in Logan that the Storehouse could theoretically be emptied in one day. So, for those you know who say that the Church will take care of us in time of need, you need to quote this statistic.

In addition to having a good flashlight next to your bed, you also need accessibility to a good knife to help you with whatever you will be facing and a good battery-powered radio. You will get reports from the radio on the earthquake itself, its impact and the availability of medical or physical support, road conditions, power supply repairs, etc.

I took a CERT (Community Emergency Response Team) course a year ago in Logan. It is one of the best things I have ever done. The Logan firemen ran it, and I learned tons of useful information for both myself and my immediate neighbors on disaster training, first aid, flooding, earthquakes, etc. One of the greatest points the firemen made was that there are approximately 90,000 people in Logan at any given time and 7 response vehicles. They said it would be at least 3 days before they could get to any emergenices outside of Logan due to the need in Logan and the condition of the roads, flooding, lack of power, etc. Families are going to need medical supplies and know many first aid techniques.

Diane made a good point when she stated that she has learned to keep home storage in various parts of her house and outside of her house as many rooms were not accessible. The garage was not accessible. So for those of us who store our home storage in the basement and in the garage, it may be that we will not be able to use it. For these reasons Diane now stores home storage necessities in most rooms of the house. I have decide to put together bedding, a way to start a fire and cook, some food and some water in my shed so that I will have something if I can't get to my home storage in the house.

Check with your homeowner's insurance company and your policy on earthquake coverage. It is a separate rider in your insurance package. You are NOT automatically covered if an earthquake occurs here, which means that if your house is destroyed or there is damage of any sort that you are on your own to get it repaired or replaced. Norm shared that their home's foundation was cracked and damaged to the point of needing repair. The cost was $60,000. If you have no insurance, then you pay the whole $60,000 yourself. I have an earthquake rider on my insurance policy because of the fact that there are daily earthquakes in Cache County. There is a fault line up on the bench along Rt. 165 leading to Macey's, another one out by first and second dams in Logan Canyon and a huge one along the Rt. 15 corridor leading from Brigham City to at least Salt Lake City. So, please don't put off calling your insurance company to check on this. In my opinion it is money well spent. I don't know of anyone with savings enough to pay for the kinds and amounts of repairs that may be needed after the earthquake hits.

Norm and Diane spoke for an entire hour. One member who was present at that meeting last month commented that he could have listened to them for another hour. The pictures they shared were priceless because they showed the amount of destruction both in their home and in their neighborhood. Whole houses were demolished and completely gone in a matter of seconds. Ihave not listed all of what was said in that hour, but have hit on the high points. You can Google earthquakes and learn even more.

Remember that there are often aftershocks after the first earthquake hits, so don't think it is over after the initial shaking and bouncing. Get prepared now because you do not know what tomorrow will bring. We have been warned. Remember to warn your neighbors and family.

Monday, May 25, 2009

May 21, 2009 Emergency Preparedness monthly class on Beans

On May 21, 2009 Shawna Johnson from Nibley 8th Ward presented a wonderful lesson on beans and covered the nutritional aspects, preparing and using beans, some information on canning beans, using bean purees, bean recipes for desserts, candy, side dishes and main dishes. She also included a way to use vegetable purees in foods normally eaten by children or those who don't especially eat certain vegetables. Several of the sisters from the Nibley 6th ward graciously made many of the recipes so that those present could taste them. So many times we collect recipes and never try them. I felt that by actually tasting all of them, then there would be a greater chance that they would be incorporated into our repertoire of recipes we use on a regular basis. Shawna pointed out that she makes at least one recipe calling for beans each week.

This concept of trying to incorporate foods that are nutritious, store long-term and cost less than prepared or canned foods is important in gaining a year's supply of food. On Friday night my middle son and his wife called at a prearranged time to go over starting a home storage plan. I went over the particulars of a three month supply of foods they usually eat as opposed to long-term storage.

As we constructed a menu for a week, it was determined that the entire family enjoys eating oatmeal for breakfast. They only use the instant variety which is presweetened. It was determined that for the three of them that they would need 104 packets based on the amount of times eaten and number of packets eaten by each family member for the three month's supply. The cost for 13 boxes (104 servings )of this instant cereal would be in round figures $19.50 if a box cost $1.50. If rolled oats were purchaed from the cannery at a cost of $9.80 for 25 pounds of oatmeal, then there would be 266 servings of hot oatmeal for half the cost of purchasing the instant kind. Granted, they would have to factor in the cost of the brown sugar to add to the longer cook kind of oatmeal so that they would have the same taste as the instant variety they enjoy eating, but the cost would be minimal. The storage of 13 boxes of presweetened instant oatmeal would take about the same amount of room to store as the 25 pound bag of oatmeal, but they could be saving almost half of what the prepackaged product would cost and would also be gaining 161 extra servings of oatmeal for the half the price. Just to carry this out one step further: If my son purchased 2 and 1/2 bags of oatmeal for a cost of $24.50, they would then have a year's supply of oatmeal which they eat twice weekly. So for five dollars more than buying a 3 month supply of prepackaged presweetened oatmeal, they could have a year's supply of this breakfast item. If they purchased a year's supply of the prepackaged stuff, it would cost $78.00. By purchasing the bag of oatmeal, they would have an extra $50 to spend on other home storage items. It makes so much more sense to begin forcing yourself to find ways to incorporate long-term storage foods into your diet. You see the cost savings.

In my last post I elaborated on the information I have received regarding the canning of butter. Please be sure to read the warnings from the food safety expert that contacted me. It is extremely important. As a result, I have pulled the information on canning butter and cheese as a safety precaution. This just goes to show you that you can't always trust what is in print even though it has been carried out by others for years. I did not get my information from the internet or from a trusted friends, but from published sources. So please, always trust your first reaction or instincts or the promptings you receive when given any information.

The following is the hand-out emailed to those who attended the class on beans or to any requesting it:

Bean Nutrition
A serving of beans and legumes is considered to be 1 cup cooked. They are high in fiber, low in fat, and a good source of protein, carbohydrates, folate, and many trace minerals.

Beans will double to triple in size during soaking and cooking. In other words, 1 cup dry beans will produce 2-3 cups of cooked beans. The slower the beans are cooked the easier they are to digest. Slow cooker cooking on low for 6-10 hours is perfect.

SOAKING BEANS for Canning (helps dissolve some of the gas-causing substances)
QUICK SOAK METHOD: Cover beans with twice as much water as beans, bring to a boil and boil 2 minutes, remove from heat and allow soaking at least 1 hour or up to 4 hours. Discard the soaking liquid.

TRADITIONAL OVERNIGHT SOAK METHOD: Cover with twice as much water as beans and soak 8-18 hours in a cool place. Discard soaking water.
Do not salt soaking liquid. It will toughen the beans. It is not necessary to soak split peas and lentils.

(USDA Complete Guide to Home Canning, Bulletin #359)
Approximately 1¼ cups (dry measure) per quart. (5 lbs. will produce 7 quart jars, 3¼ lbs. for 9 pint jars)
1. Wash and sort beans.
2. Hydrate by soak method of your choice. Drain water.
3. Cover beans soaked by either method with fresh water. Boil 30 minutes.
4. Fill warm jars with beans and cooking liquid, leaving 1-inch head space. Top 1 inch should be cooking liquid.
5. Add ½ tsp of salt per pint or 1 tsp. per quart jar if desired for flavor.
6. Adjust lids and bands and process in pressure canner for 90 minutes for quarts or 75 minutes for pints at 13 lbs of pressure. If pressure canner has a weight only, process at 15 lbs. of pressure.

**This can be substituted for shortening or oil in baking recipes and can also be added to cream soups, gravies or any recipe you desire.
1 cup cooked beans
¼ to ½ c water or liquid from canned beans if possible
Puree in blender until very smooth. Add water as needed for desired consistency. Not adding enough water can burn up your blender.

Ginger Snaps
1/2 c. oil or alternative ½ c. molasses 2 tsp. soda 1 tsp. ginger
1 c. white bean puree 2 eggs 2 tsp. cinnamon 1 tsp. salt
2 c. sugar 5 ½ c. flour 1 tsp. cloves
Cream oil, beans and sugar. Add molasses and eggs. Mix flour and spices in a separate container and then add to the first mixture. Roll into 1-inch balls. Roll balls in sugar. Place on greased cookie sheet. Bake at 350 degrees for 10-12 minutes.

Black Bean Salsa
2 cans black beans, drained and rinsed 1 avocado chopped
1 can black-eyed peas (or fresh), drained and rinsed Cilantro
1 can white or yellow corn Olives
5 Roma tomatos, chopped ¼ to ½ c. Italian Dressing
1 green pepper, chopped few drops Tabasco Sauce
¼ red onion, chopped
Mix all ingredients together and serve with tortilla chips

Southwestern Chicken-Bean Salad
2 green onions, chopped ½ medium red pepper, chopped
½ medium green pepper, chopped 1 15-oz. can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 c. corn or 2 cobbs corn, kernels removed 2 Tbsp. lime juice
2 Tbls. olive oil 8 oz. chicken breast, cooked and diced
2 Tbsp. taco seasoning, about half a packet 4 Tbsp. cilantro (optional)
Combine green onions, peppers, beans and corn ina large bowl. Toss until well mixed. Add lime juice and oil to bean mixture; toss to coat. Add chicken, taco seasoning and cilantro. Toss and serve. Makes 4-1 ½ c servings.

White Chili
1 Tbsp. canola oil 1 lg. onion
2 cloves of garlic finely chopped 3 c. chicken broth
½ tsp. ground coriander 2 Tbsp. lime juice
1 tsp. cumin ½ tsp. dried oregano
2 cans (16oz) great northern beans 2 c. chopped cooked chicken breast
Heat oil in a 4 quart pan over medium heat. Cook onion and garlic in oil, stirring constantly until onion is tender. Stir in remaining ingredients except chicken. Heat to boiling, reduce heat and simmer uncovered or 20 minutes. Stir in chicken and simmer until hot.

Summer Chili
Brown 1 lb. ground turkey or hamburger. Then add:
1 can corn drained 2 cans black beans drained and rinsed
½ cup salsa 1 cup uncooked rice (or more if desired)
1 ½ tsp. garlic salt ½ tsp. salt
½ tsp. pepper
3 cans chicken broth (14 oz.) or 5 cups broth (use chicken bouillon cubes)
Cook about 1 hour or until rice is done. Add 1-2 quarts water to make sure the rice gets cooked. Can eat as soup or thicken for a chip dip.

Quick Chili
1 lb. ground beef ½ c. chopped onion
½ cup chopped green pepper (opt.)
1-28 ounce can tomatoes (stewed, whole or diced) 1-15 oz. can tomato sauce
4 cups prepared pinto beans (1 ½-2 c. dry)
1 to 2 1.25 oz package chili seasoning mix.
Brown hamburger with green pepper and onion, drain and add all but beans. Simmer 20 minutes. Add beans and simmer 10 more minutes.

Chili Seasoning Mix
3 Tbl. Flour 1 tsp. salt ½ tsp. sugar
2 Tbl. dried onion 1 ½ tsp. chili powder ½ tsp. ground cumin
¼ tsp. garlic powder ½ dried red pepper (opt.)

Taco Seasoning Mix
2 tsp. instant minced onion 1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. chili powder ½ tsp. cornstarch
½ tsp. crushed dried red pepper ½ tsp. minced garlic (powder)
¼ tsp. dried oregano ½ tsp. ground cumin

Sloppy Joe Seasoning Mix
1 Tbl. Minced onion 1 tsp. green pepper flakes
1 tsp. salt 1 tsp. cornstarch
½ tsp. minced garlic ½ tsp. dry mustard
¼ tsp. celery seed ¼ tsp. chili powder

Spaghetti Seasoning Mix
1 Tbl. minced onion 1 tsp. green pepper flakes
1 tsp. cornstarch ½ tsp. minced garlic
1 tsp. sugar 1 ½ tsp. salt
1 Tbl. parsley flakes ¾ tsp. Italian Seasoning

Baked White Beans
2 cups white beans 1 tsp. salt
1 onion chopped 1/8 lb. bacon (ham also works)
¾ c brown sugar ¼ c. catsup
1 tsp. dry mustard 1 tbl. soy sauce
Cover beans with cold water and add salt. Soak overnight. Drain and add beans to crock-pot barely covering with water. Add remaining ingredients. Top with bacon strips. Cook all day in crock-pot on low.

Pioneer Stew
½ pound dried pinto or kidney beans 1 tsp. salt
3 c. cold water ½ c. chopped onion
*1/2 to 1 lb. ground beef ½ c. finely diced green pepper (opt.)
1 can (16 oz.) whole kernel corn, undrained ½ cup shredded cheese
1 can (16 oz.) tomatoes, undrained ½ tsp. chili powder
In large saucepan place washed and drained beans, cold water, and salt. Bring to a boil. Cover and simmer 2 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand for 1 hour. Return to heat and simmer 1 hour and 15 minutes. (this can also be done in a crock-pot on low during the day) In skillet cook ground beef, chopped onion, and green pepper until meat is browned and vegetables are tender. Drain off fat. Add meat mixture, corn, tomatoes, chili powder and salt to taste to beans. Simmer 20 minutes. Combine 1 tbl. flour and 2 tbl. water. Stir into stew. Cook and stir until thickened and bubbly. Stir in cheese. *1 can of chunk turkey or beef can be used.

A great way to add nutrition to your food without compromising flavor!!!
Veggies to puree
butternut squash zucchini (peeled) Broccoli
Cauliflower spinach yellow squash
Carrots peas sweet potatoes
Pumpkin white beans applesauce
To puree your veggies, steam (preferred) or boil them, place in a food processor or blender until smooth. Sometimes you will need to add a few tablespoons of water. Freeze purees or keep in fridge for up to 1 week.

*any puree can be a fat replacer; you can substitute purees for ½ of the fat (butter, oil, etc.) in anything baked.
*For any baked food that calls for white flour, replace two thirds with an equal mixture of wheat germ and whole wheat flour.
*Try to match colors of puree with the color of your food.
*Add a puree to each dish you make. Especially favorites like: pancakes, Alfredo, Spanish rice, spaghetti, cakes and cookies.

1 c. flour 1 T. sugar 1 tsp. b. powder
½ tsp. b. soda ¼ tsp. salt 1 egg
1 c. buttermilk 1 T. oil ½ c. butternut squash puree
½ c. blueberries (opt)
Mix flour, sugar, b. powder, soda, salt and set aside. In smaller bowl, mix egg, buttermilk, oil, and puree. Add to dry ingredients. Gently fold in blueberries.

“Buttered” Noodles (Deceptively Delicious)
8 oz. pasta cooked noodles ½ c. yellow squash or butternut squash puree
2 T. butter ¼ c. milk
2 T. parmesan cheese ¼ t. salt
Cook noodles according to package. Drain and return to pot. Stir in puree (make sure it is creamy), milk, butter, cheese and salt. Heat through and enjoy.

Peanut Butter and Jelly Muffins
½ c. peanut butter ½ c. carrot puree ½ c. packed br. sugar
2 T. butter or marg. ½ c. plain yogurt 1 large egg
1 c. flour 1 tsp. b powder 1 tsp. soda
½ tsp. salt ½ c. jam or jelly any flavor Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat muffin tin with spray or use baking cups. In a large bowl, beat peanut butter, carrot puree, sugar and butter until well blended. Stir in yogurt and egg. Add flour, b. powder, soda and salt. Stir until just combined, but do not over mix. Batter should be lumpy. Divide batter among muffin cups; drop a spoonful of jam on top of each. Bake 20-25 minutes or until tops of muffins are golden and a toothpick comes out clean.

Nutritional Facts from the Idaho Bean Commission
• Each half-cup serving of dry beans provides six to seven grams of protein, meets at least 10% of the Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) for protein, yet costs about 20 cents per serving.
• A single half-cup serving of cooked dry beans counts as one, one-ounce serving of lean meat in the USDA Food Pyramid Meat and Beans group, and as a full serving of vegetables in the Vegetables group.
• The quality and digestibility of beans can be improved by consuming them with cereal grains. Beans are a rich source in lysine, but a poor source of methionine. Cereal grains are a poor source of lysine, but high in methionine and other sulfur amino acids. When beans and grains are served together in dishes like beans and rice, or tortillas and refried beans, they provide a complimentary protein profile.
• There are only 100 to 120 kcalories in a half-cup serving of beans. However, Kcalories and other nutrients are diluted in canned beans because the moisture content is higher.
• Beans contain an average of 25 grams of carbohydrates per serving. The carbohydrates in cooked beans are mainly starch, a complex carbohydrate, and less than 1% of simple sugars, mostly Sucrose.
• Discarding the soaking and cooking water helps remove oligosaccharides and reduces flatulence. Hot soaking removes about 50% of these sugars. Extended soaking removes more, but reduces vitamins and minerals. Canned beans may contain up to 4% sucrose as a flavor enhancer.
• A half-cup serving of cooked dry beans provides about 25-30% of the Daily Value of dietary fiber. About 75% of the fiber is insoluble which may reduce the risk of colon cancer. The remaining 25% of the fiber is soluble fiber which may reduce blood cholesterol. Studies have confirmed that beans are effective hypochoesterolemic agents when added to the diet.
• Consumption of beans produces a moderate increase in blood glucose and insulin levels which may be helpful in the metabolic control of diabetes. The American Diabetes Association and the American Dietetic Association include beans in the exchange system.
• The slower release of glucose and the increased satiety from beans may also to enhance the effectiveness of weight-reducing diets.
• A half-cup serving of beans contains less than 0.5 grams of mostly polyunsaturated fat and no cholesterol. Pinto bean lipid is 84% polyunsaturated fatty acids. Most of this fatty acid is linoleic acid.
Vitamins & Folacin
• Although some B vitamins are lost in preparation, cooked dry beans retain more than 70% of these vitamins after hot soaking and cooking. Extended cooking times will result in greater B vitamin losses. One half-cup serving of beans provides 36% of the Recommended Daily Intake (RDI) of 400 micrograms of folacin and 11% of the RDI for thiamin.
• One half-cup serving of cooked dry beans contains large amounts of iron, phosphorous, magnesium, manganese, potassium, copper, calcium, and zinc.
• The iron and calcium content can increase slightly when hard water is used for home preparation. Canned beans sometimes contain added calcium to increase firmness.
• The bioavailability of these minerals is somewhat lower due to the presence of fiber, phenolic compounds and phytic acid, which decreases their absorption. The absorption of the nonheme form of iron in beans can be increased by consuming beans with a source of vitamin C, or with small amounts of meat.
• One half-cup serving of cooked, unsalted dry beans contains 500 mg of potassium and small amounts of sodium. The level of potassium may be useful in a hypertensive diet.
• One half-cup serving of salted beans provides nearly 20% of the Daily Value for sodium on a 2,000-calorie diet. Most commercially prepared canned and dried beans contain added sodium for flavor. Check the label to determine sodium content.
How do I cook old dry beans?The longer dry beans are stored, the longer they may take to cook. First, sort and rinse the beans. For each cup of beans, bring 3 cups of water to boil, add the beans to the boiling water, and boil for two minutes. Next, add 3/8 teaspoon of baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) for each cup of beans, cover, and soak for 1 hour or more. More baking soda may be required for older beans. Next, drain and rinse the beans thoroughly, cover with water, bring to boil, then reduce heat and simmer 1-2 hours or until tender. Do not add salt or other ingredients until the beans have softened adequately. See All Is Safely Gathered In: Family Home Storage Basic Recipes for additional information.

Bean Vegetable Lasagna – Serves 12
3 cups cooked Great Northern Beans ½ teaspoon
2 tablespoons butter or margarine ¼ tsp. pepper
2 tablespoons flour 1 Tablespoon minced parsley
1 quart skim milk, divided ¼ cup grated parmesan cheese
1 cup frozen mixed vegetables, thawed 1 and ½ cups ricotta cheese
3 cups shredded low fat mozarella cheese 12 ounces lasagna noodles, uncooked

Preparation: Melt butter in saucepan; stir in flour, add 2 cups milk. Cook and stir over medium heat until thick. Combine beans, vegetables, remaining 2 cups milk, white sauce, parsley, thyme, salt, pepper; mix well. Cover bottom of greased 13x8x2-inch pan with 1/4 of the noodles and 1/4 each of bean mixture, ricotta, and mozarella cheese. Repeat layers 3 times. Sprinkle Parmesan cheese on top. Cover pan and bake at 375 degrees F., 1 to 1-1/4 hours, or until noodles are tender. Remove cover; bake 10 minutes or until top browns. Let stand 15 min.
Notes: Canned beans may be used. Noodles may be cooked before assembling lasagna. Bake 350 F. oven 30-45 minutes or until heated. Prepared marinara sauce may be served with lasagna.
Idaho’s Pinto Bean Pie – Serves 8
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar
2 eggs, beaten
1 heaping cup of mashed Pinto Beans*
1 3/4 cups whole pecans 9 inch, unbaked pie shell
Preparation: Beat butter until creamy; add sugar, brown sugar and beaten eggs, beating well after each addition. Add pinto beans and blend well. Pour into 9 inch, unbaked pie shell. Decorate top with whole pecans. Bake at 375 degrees F. for 20 minutes, then at 350 degrees F. for an additional 25 minutes or until a knife inserted into the center comes out clean. Notes: *1 1/2 cup cooked beans equals about 1 cup of mashed beans.

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies – makes 4 dozen cookies
1/2 cup butter
1 can (15-ounce) Great Northern beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon salt
2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups quick-cooking oatmeal
6 ounces chocolate chips
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 cup chopped nuts (optional)
Preparation: Preheat oven to 375 F. Puree beans in food processor or mixer with 1/4 cup water until smooth.
Cream beans, butter and sugars in mixer. Add eggs, baking powder, baking soda, vanilla, salt, flour, cinnamon, and oatmeal; mix thoroughly.
Mix in chocolate chips and nuts. Drop dough by rounded teaspoon onto a greased cookie sheet. Bake for 9 to 10 minutes or until golden. Cool on cookie sheet for one minute. Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

Amount Per Serving
Cals: 147.3 From Fat: 32.5
Total Fat: 5.4g
Cholesterol: 12mg
Sodium: 48mg
Total Carb: 23.2
Dietary Fiber: 1.7g
Sugars: na
Protein: 2,1g

1 cup cooked Idaho Pinto beans
3/4 cup milk
2 egg whites ¾ cup milk
1/4 cup vegetable oil 1 cup cooked pinto beans
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour (or 3/4 cup each whole wheat flour and all-purpose flour)
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon cloves
1/2 cup raisins
Preparation: Puree beans with milk in blender or food processor until smooth; transfer to bowl. Beat in egg whites, oil, and brown sugar. Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and raisins. Fold into bean mixture, mixing just until dry ingredients are moistened. Spoon into greased or paper-lined muffin cups. Bake in preheated 400 degree F. oven for 15 to 18 minutes or until golden brown. Raisin Bean Muffins

Amount Per Serving
Cals: na From Fat: na
Total Fat: na
Cholesterol: na
Sodium: na
Total Carb: na
Dietary Fiber: na
Sugars: na
Protein: na

Beananza BarsIngredients:
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
2/3 cup packed light brown sugar
2/3 cup quick-cooking oats
1 cup natural wheat and barley cereal (Grape Nuts)
1 can (15 ounces each) Pinto or Great Northern beans or 1 1/2 cups cooked dry-packaged Pinto or Great Northern beans, rinsed, well drained, coarsely chopped
3/4 cup dark raisins
3/4 cup chopped dates
1 cup flaked coconut
1/2 cup chopped walnuts or almonds
7 tablespoons melted margarine
1/2 cup honey
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon salt Preparation: Combine flour, brown sugar, oats, cereal, beans, raisins, dates, coconut, and walnuts in large bowl. Add remaining ingredients, mixing well. Press mixture evenly into greased 13x9-inch baking pan. Bake at 350ยบ F. until bars are browned and firm to touch in center, 20 to 25 minutes. Cool completely before cutting.

Taco Soup1 can (15 oz.) corn, undrained
2 cans kidney beans, undrained
1 can pork and beans
1 small can green chiles
1 large onion, diced
1 envelope Taco seasoning
1 and ½ cups water
1 can (14 oz.) tomatoes (diced or other)
1 can (16 oz.) tomato sauce
I can refried beans
1 pound hamburger, lightly browned
Combine all ingredients and simmer 15 to 20 minutes
Serve with crumbled tortilla chips and with shredded cheese

Pinto Bean Fudge

1 can (15 oz.) pinto beans, rinsed and drained 1 cup baking cocoa
3/4 cup melted butter or margarine 7-1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 tbsp. vanilla 1 cup chopped nuts
Mash beans with fork until smooth. Cover and heat in microwave for 1-1/2 minutes until warmed. Add cocoa, melted butter and vanilla (it will be thick). Slowly mix in sugar; add nuts. Spray 8x8-inch pan and press mixture in into pan. Cover and refrigerate until firm. Cut into 1-inch pieces.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

WARNING on Canning Butter-May 21, 2009

Dear friends, followers of the blog, and family,
I received the information below regarding the canning of butter from Brian Nummer, Food Safety Expert, at USU. Please read it carefully. In his initial email to me he cautioned against canning unsalted butter. I emailed him back and asked about salted butter. You are reading the information he sent regarding canning any butter:

I am the USU Extension Food Safety Specialist. One of my responsibilities is food preservation and storage. I am new to Utah (2005), but have been here long enough now to understand the food storage concept.

The Cooperative Extension System only recommends preservation and storage processes that have been researched and proven safe. In the case of butter, no one has done this research. There are many people who claim canning butter is okay, but they are simply making a statement. It is a long explanation to delve into the science, but botulism can survive inside a water bubble, inside a fat (butter). The question is then, does salt inhibit it? BYU is working on that answer. But, when you look at the internet and passed along canning recipes for butter, none mentions that canning unsalted butter is outright risky. Another common “reputable” preservation is to cover raw eggs in mineral oil. Unless the eggs are then placed in refrigeration, nothing stops pathogens (bad bugs) from growing.

Here are some USU sites I am working on to assist preservers and storage folks: (If you or anyone would like to contribute as a section author to this site, it can be arranged).

A recommended site (not mine – I used to work there, though):

Brian A. Nummer, Ph.D.
Extension Food Safety Specialist
Director, Retail Food Safety Consortium
8700 Old Main Hill

Utah State University
Logan, UT 84322-8700


From: []
Sent: Thursday, May 21, 2009 8:15 AM
To: Brian Nummer
Subject: Re: butter at a low price

Dear Linda:

There are no safe, research-based (studied) canning procedures
for butter. The internet methods out there are all untested. BYU is currently
studying the safety of canning salted butter. Canning unsalted butter is a very
high risk for botulism food borne illness.

Please tell people if they choose to can butter, it is not recommended by USU

Brian A Nummer, Ph.D.
Extension Food Safety Specialist / Asst. Professor
Dept. Nutrition and Food Sciences
Utah State University

Saturday, May 2, 2009

May 3 Relief Society spotlight updates

Most Sundays I am given some time to give a tip or review something already covered so I can see how the work is progressing. I will update the information I have given as I get the time.

The first miniclass I taught had to do with looking at storage from the point of view of thinking "meals" instead of "pounds". I have given this class in the Nibley 6th Ward and two other Wards within our Stake. I have been asked by another Ward in the Stake to give it in their Ward in June. As soon as the date is firmed up, it will be noted here in the blog. Many folks have inventoried their home storage and even created a week's worth of menu items. Some seem a little "stuck" with writing out the recipes and calculating the amounts of ingredients to make the recipe once, then multiplying that by 13 weeks if it is going to be served once. It would be multiplied by the number of times served by 13 weeks, if it was served more than once in the week.

Another area of "stuckness" is the difficulty with prioritizing what is to be purchased first. Think of it this way: if the meal you are going to serve contains the following - hot cereal, milk, toast, jam, butter and a drink - which is the most important food in the list? You would probably say it is the hot cereal. Then this is the item you should purchase first. If you had to, you could eat just the hot cereal and live. If you purchase the jam, butter or drink, you may have real problems in feeling like you've had enough to eat, with energy and with overall health. Only you can decide which one is a priority and what you are going to spend your money on first. If you are having difficulty with writing the recipes and doing the calculations so you can fill out your food grid, call me 363-0091. It will take us less than 30 minutes to complete that part of your home storage plan. It will be 30 minutes well spent. You will leave with a home storage list of foods that you have and the amounts you still need to get. You will know where you are in the process every step of the way. Remember that you only do this part of the process once until you get additional funds, and then you can modify your home storage plan.

Two Sundays ago I brought in my can opener from home and displayed it as part of my Spotlight in Relief Society. The point was that if you are going to store your food in number 10 cans from the cannery and/or any cans from the supermarket, you are going to want to have more than one can opener in your possession. What if the first one breaks or gets very dull? You are stuck unless you have a spare or TWO!

One of the web pages that comes up as part of Netscape sometimes has some really good "frugal" ideas. One was to purchase a gallon of windshield washer fluid, which normally sells for less than $2.00 when on sale. In fact I purchased mine for $1.79 at the end of winter. I also went to the Dollar Store and purchaed 2 empty spray bottles for $1 each. I used a permanent Magic Marker and labelled each of the bottles and then filled them with the solution. I now use this to clean all of my windows and mirrors. It is less than half the cost of Windex and cleans faster with less streaking or need to clean the same spot again. Please note the warning on the bottle of windshield washer fluid that this contains chemical that are highly poisonous. If you have children that are curious and may ingest any of this, then don't do it now. Wait until they are older or on their own.

Don't forget to have Post-It Notes on the insides of your cabinet doors so that you can mark the date you began using a new tube of roll of whatever. Once you finish with the tube or roll (of toilet paper, for instance), then you note the end date and calculate how long that product last before you needed to begin using another one. This will help you estimate how many rolls of toilet paper, tubes of toothpaste, containers of deordorant, bottles of shampoo, bags of flour or sugar, bottles of oil, etc. you use and how much you will need to buy for either 3 months or 1 year.

Please, please, please start gardening even if it is only in a flower pot on your porch or on your windowsill. Growing even some of your own food is imperative now while gardening supplies are available. It is important to try this to see what happens and what kind of help you may need. There are always neighbors or people in your ward you can turn to for help or to get answers to your questions.

Challenge for this Sunday: see how little shampoo you actually need to use to get your hair clean. You may be really surprised at how much shampoo you have been using that you didn't need to use. Do the same with the toothpaste.

When your bar of soap becomes a sliver and you get the next one out to use, wet the sliver and the bar of new soap and push them together leaving them to dry that way. I do this in the shower while the new soap is really wet and full of lather. The sliver then adheres really well and whe used in subsequent showers ultimately gets completely used up. Don't forget to unwrap new bars of soap as soon as you purchase them so they dry out. They will last longer in this drier state.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Cheese Making

The April 23, 2009 monthly miniclass addressed recipes and uses of powdered milk. Those present saw how yogurt cheese was made and that it can be used in place of ricotta cheese in lasagna or ravioli or cream cheese in other recipes. We all sampled the cheesecake made with the yogurt cheese, and it was good.

If you are going to store all that wheat and flour, you need to learn how to make your own bread. It is not difficult, but start now. If you can make bread, you can also make doughnuts, rolls, hamburger/hotdog buns, cinnamon rolls and pizza. So, if you can make pizza dough, grow your own tomatoes and oregano or thyme, then you should learn how to make your own mozarella cheese for the topping.

Mozarella cheese is made from a gallon of milk, 1/2 tablet of rennet, some citric acid and salt. You will need a dairy thermometer and the citric acid which you can purchase in Kitchen Kneads in Logan, UT or on the internet. The rennet is sold in Macey's or other supermarkets and is called Junket Rennet usually used to make ice cream or custard. The box is quite small and is found in the baking aisle next to the jello and puddings. It's current cost at Macey's is $1.49 for 8 tablets.

To make mozarella takes very little of your time and energy. Heat a gallon of milk to 88 degrees. Add the required amounts of citric acid and rennet and let the whole thing sit in the pot undisturbed for almost 2 hours. At that time take a spatula and cut the mass of milk into squares about a 1/2 inch by drawing the spatula through the mass first one way and then the opposite way. Once done, heat the curds to 108 degrees and stir every 5 minutes. Drain the whey from the cheese in a cheesecloth-lined colander. After it drains for 15 minutes, add the required amount of salt, heat in the microwave and knead the cheese for about a minute. That doesn't sound too difficult, does it?

If you will be brave and try this, you will be able to add "pizza" to the recipes/dishes that you can serve your family now and when you may have to eat from you home storage. Try it now while getting these ingredients and items are available. Complete directions are available in the Junket rennet box as well as recipes for many other cheeses: cheddar, cottage cheese, cream cheese, ricotta cheese, etc.

Remember that now is the time to prepare. When a crisis hits in your life, the time for preparation is past. The things you need may not be available or the cost may have been driven beyond your means.

I lived in the area of New York City before moving to Nibley. When President Bush stopped all air traffic during September 11th, 2001 crisis, many travelers were forced to find rooms in hotels. The prices of those rooms doubled and tripled in many cases because of the owner's greed. If there is an emergency wherever you live, the same thing can happen. People can raise prices at will. If there is a pandemic and people are sheltering in place, manufacturing may cease as well, transportation may slow, gas may not be available, the banks may not open. Get what you need now! If you put it off, you may regret it and regret the hardship on the rest of your family. What will it take to get you moving?

Monday, April 27, 2009

Update from February posts-April 23 Miniclass on Powdered Milk Recipes and Uses

The March miniclass featured a member of the staff from Anderson Seed in Logan, UT. Jared did a wonderful job of addressing the concerns of those who have never gardened to those who are seasoned gardeners. As Emergency Preparedness Specialist and as a mother who has had to cut every possible financial corner, I know how important gardening is to the family budget and to a family's nutrition. In January I sent out a form to all Relief Society sisters to survey which would like to learn gardening and for volunteer mentors for them within our RS ranks. It is one thing to want to garden, it is quite another to do it proficiently. Twelve sisters wanted a garden mentor and a sufficient number of sisters and brothers volunteered to help. The ward took on the job of rototilling ground for any who wanted it done. Now if the weather would just cooperate....

If I had to tell you the 2 most important things I have learned about Emergency Preparedness, it would be this:

1. Strive to be as close as you can to our Heavenly Father, following the commandments as closely and as religously as you can. If we strive to develop a close relationship with our Father in Heaven and are obedient to the things we are commanded to do, we have a promise. The promise is that we will be watched over and saved in the Kingdom of our Lord. Life may not be a bed of roses while this is occurring, but miraculous help can come into our lives when it is needed. Being the best people we can be, loving our neighbors as ourselves, consecrating our time, talents and means as we serve each other will bring the greatest peace and source of comfort at a time when peace and safety seem beyond our grasp.

2. The second most important thing I have learned in living providently over the years is the need to be flexible and to be able to think "out of the box". It would be so much easier each day to just reach for a box of this or can of that or a frozen whatever, heat it up, and eat it. This is an expensive way to live and not nearly as nutritious as when food preparation is "from scratch". We have been advised to store those foods we normally eat for 3 months, but our longer storage should be composed of foods that store for many years, i.e., wheat, beans,rice, powdered milk, flour,etc. The other advice that isn't always stated that goes hand in hand with storing these kinds of foods is that you have to learn how to use them, which means you will be learning to cook "from scratch".

Yes, that means if you want bread, then you will need to learn how to make a loaf that tastes good to you. If you eat tortillas, then you will need to learn to make those, too. If you enjoy mozarella cheese on your pizza, then you need to learn to make a bread dough that can serve as a crust for pizza and learn how to make mozarella cheese. You will need to adapt your diet to the foods that you store, which means you may not be eating cold cereal for breakfast each day. Learn to stretch your eating patterns to include some new recipes and dishes. You may be very surprised at what you find that you will like. Share these recipes and dishes with others so that your friends' palates can grow as well.

The good news is many fold. The times are still relatively good. Food is available at a decent price. Experiment now to find the kind of bread your family enjoys eating while you have the time and means to get the ingredients that you want. Making bread is not hard. It is just something that few people in this country do on a regular basis. But, you can do it.

I don't like change and trying new things. It sometimes takes me weeks before I get enough courage to try to learn a new skill. This is mostly because I have no one to teach me or anyone to go to for advice. But, I know from experience that if I wait too long that the opportunity may pass me by. So, I research what I want to do, spend the money on the ingredients, experiment, fail many times and then succeed. For example, the first time I made mozarella cheese, it came out perfectly. When I went to make it for my powdered milk miniclass, it failed four times. I wasted four gallons of milk, rennet, citric acid, etc. and had nothing to show for it except weariness and some hard-learned lessons. The important lesson to be learned here is that there will be some failures, but we do learn from them. We must keep trying to learn new skills now while we can.

This is the prime reason that I am holding these miniclasses. I want to share the skills and techniques I have learned with others so that they can become more self-sufficient and don't have to feel as alone in learning them as I have felt over the years. Remember that the commandments to get a 3 month/year's supply has come through the Prophets from our Heavenly Father, and that these commandments are eternal commandments not temporal ones. Obedience is everything no matter how difficult it is. Remember that our Father in Heaven is only a prayer away and that guidance comes through the Holy Ghost. You are not in this alone. Just keep putting one foot in front of the other, and you will reach your destination.

April Miniclass on Powdered Milk
One of the first things covered in this miniclass was the necessity of calcium in the diet. Calcium is necessary for the following: formation of bones and teeth; maintenance of a regular heartbeat; transmission of nerve impulses; needed for muscle growth and contraction and the prevention of muscle cramps; essential for blood-clotting; helps prevent colon cancer; provides energy and participates in the protein structuring of RNA and DNA. The amino acid lysine is needed for calcium absorption. Calcium protects bones and teth from lead by inhibiting absorption of this toxic metal, etc. Calcium deficiency may result in the following: muscle cramps, nervousness, heart palpatations, brittle nails, hypertension, eczema, aching joints, increased cholesterol levels, rheumatoid arthritis, tooth decay, rickets, insomnia, and numbness in the arms and legs, etc.. If you cannot get your children or other family members to drink milk, the following recipes and uses of powdered milk in the hand-out portion of this blog may help. Other sources of calcium include: almonds, sardines, seafood, green leafy vegetables, oats, tofu, etc.


Hand-out from the Powdered Milk Miniclass
Powdered Milk Uses and Recipes
Condensed Milk
In your blender, mix together 2 1/4 cups milk powder, 1/4 cup warm water, & 3/4 cup granulated sugar until well blended. Pour into container, cover and refrigerate until thick. Makes 1 1/3 cup which is equal to 1 can of Eagle Brand Condensed Milk.

Tootsie Rolls
2 tablespoons butter, softened (or margarine)
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
3 cups confectioners' sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup dry milk powder
1/2 cup white corn syrup

Mix all ingredients together. Knead like you would for bread. Roll into rope shapes and cut into desired lengths. If too soft, add more powdered milk or cocoa powder and adjust to your taste.

Protein Balls
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
3/4 cup nonfat milk powder
1/2 cup ground flaxseed
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup crushed cereal, such as Honey Bunches of Oats

One or two of the following:
1/3 cup raisins
1/3 cup Craisins
1/3 cup sunflower nuts
1/3 cup chocolate chips

Combine peanut butter, milk powder, flaxseed, honey in a bowl and mix well. Stir in sunflower nuts and Craisins,
2. Roll mixture in small bowls and then roll balls in crushed cereal. Place on waxed paper.
3. Chill in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour before serving.

Here are some tips to help the milk turn out as fresh tasting as possible:
• Fill your pitcher or container with half the amount of water you will be using. Measure in the appropriate amount of dry milk powder. Stir to dissolve. Fill the pitcher with the balance of the water called for above. Stir again and chill.
• Use cool water when possible. The powder tends to dissolve more readily in cool water.
• Stir the milk a lot, to dissolve the milk powder. Then let the milk sit for a little while and stir again. The protein in the milk powder blends most easily if it gets a chance to stand after mixing.
• Powdered milk may be used immediately after mixing if desired. For the best flavor chill the milk for at least 4 hours or overnight.
• Store the milk in a refrigerator if you have one. If you don't, then wrap the milk in a wet towel. As the water evaporates, the milk will cool. If you have a root cellar or basement, you may want to keep the milk there, or even outside in the fall and winter.
• If you store the milk outside be sure that it is protected from critters that may be thirsty. A box with a large rock on top is sufficient to keep out most animals.
• If you do not have refrigeration, then only prepare enough milk to last the day. I prepare it the night before, so it has a chance to blend and chill overnight. About 2 quarts will be enough to last a family of 4 for most of the day. If you continually find you have some left over, then prepare less the next day. If you find yourself running out, then prepare more.
• Some people add a drop or two of vanilla to their milk to improve the flavor. Other people add a spoonful or two of sugar for the same purpose. I don't use either of these ideas, because we are accustomed to reconstituted milk, and prefer it plain.
• Pitchers and wide-mouthed jars are the easiest to use for mixing and storing reconstituted milk. I used to try to use apple juice jars, but they are difficult to keep clean and awkward to pour the milk powder into. If you must use a narrow mouthed jar to mix your milk, then use a funnel. A chop stick or spoon handle is handy for poking down through the funnel when it gets clogged.
Products to Make with Powdered Milk
Sweet Vanilla Milk: Run a little hot water into a 2-quart pitcher. Add 1/4-cup each powdered coffee creamer and sugar. Stir well to dissolve. Add 1/2-teaspoon vanilla. Fill the pitcher half full with cold tap water. Add 2-2/3 cups of instant nonfat dry milk powder. Stir well. Fill the pitcher the rest of the way full. Stir again. Chill and serve. This milk is more palatable to some folks than straight reconstituted milk. The powdered coffee creamer gives the milk a rich fullness, while the sugar and vanilla make it taste sweet and almost dessert-like. If you must switch to powdered milk, and are having trouble with the flavor, this recipe can make the transition easier. For a gallon of milk use: 1/2-cup each powdered coffee cream & sugar and 1-teaspoon of vanilla flavoring. Add a dash of salt too if desired. Be sure to dissolve the creamer and sugar in hot tap water first. They do not dissolve readily in cold water.
A Very Rich Gallon of Milk: Measure 3-1/2 quarts (14 cups) of water into a gallon size pitcher. Add 5-cups of dry milk powder and a 12-ounce can of undiluted evaporated whole milk. Mix all together. Chill and serve. This makes about a gallon. It is richer than plain reconstituted milk. If you must use powdered milk, but prefer a richer product, this is the recipe for you. Children will sometimes tolerate it better than straight reconstituted milk, especially if they are already used to fresh 1% or 2%.
• To Mix with Whole Milk: Powdered milk is easily mixed half-and-half with whole milk. When combined and well chilled, it's nearly impossible to tell the difference between fresh milk and mixed milk. To do this, use an extra, clean milk jug and two 2-quart sized pitchers. First reconstitute 2 quarts of milk in each of the pitchers, using the chart above. Then, using a funnel, pour half of the whole milk into the clean empty milk jug. Using the same funnel, pour the reconstituted milk from one pitcher into each jug, making a gallon of mixed milk in each jug. Both empty pitchers then have to be washed, but they are pretty easy to keep clean. I used to try to reconstitute the powdered milk in the milk jug, with the whole milk, but it never worked as well as I'd hoped. Now I find it much easier to reconstitute the powdered milk in the pitcher first, and then pour the liquid milk into the jug with the whole milk. Like regular powdered milk, mixed milk tastes best if well chilled.
• Sour Milk: To sour reconstituted milk, just add a little vinegar to it and stir it up. For instance, if a recipe calls for 1-cup of sour milk or buttermilk, then measure a tablespoon of vinegar into a measuring cup. Add reconstituted milk to reach the 1-cup mark. Stir the milk gently. In a moment or two, it will sour. This can replace soured milk or buttermilk in baking recipes.
• Overnight Buttermilk: To make your own buttermilk, you have to start off with 1/2-cup of fresh, store-bought buttermilk and a quart (4-cups) of reconstituted milk. Combine the fresh buttermilk and reconstituted milk in a pitcher or jar. Mix it really well. Allow it to stand at room temperature overnight, or for about 8 hours. The milk will have thickened up and cultured into regular buttermilk. Refrigerate or chill and use anywhere fresh buttermilk is called for.
• Easy Evaporated Milk: To make this you only need dry milk powder and water. Measure 1-1/3 cups water into a jar or bowl. Add 1 cup of instant dry milk powder. Stir or shake to combine. This is the equivalent of a 12-ounce can of evaporated skim milk. To make evaporated whole milk, you will need to add some fat to replace the milk fat in whole milk. Do this by preparing evaporated skim milk and then adding 2-tablespoons of vegetable oil to the milk. Stir it up vigorously to emulsify the fat with the milk. It will separate on standing, so mix it really well right before using it. This is best used in cooking and baking. A spritz of nonstick spray will help the emulsification process.
• Sweetened Condensed Milk: On the stove, bring to a boil 1/2-cup of water, 1-cup of sugar and 3-tablespoons of margarine or shortening. Add a dash of salt. Stir the mixture every now and then. When it comes to a full rolling boil, remove it from the heat. Allow it to cool slightly. Add a cup of instant dry milk powder. Use a whisk to stir it smooth. A fork or a spoon will not work out all the lumps. You really need a whisk, or egg beaters. There, you are done. This is the equivalent of a can of sweetened condensed milk. This will keep unrefrigerated for a day or two because of the sugar. I have never kept it longer than that without refrigeration. In the fridge it will keep for 2 weeks. For longer storage than that, I freeze it.
• Quick Whipped Topping: This recipe is best made if you have electricity. Put 1/2-cup of water into a large bowl and place it in your freezer. When ice crystals form around the edges remove it from the freezer. Add 1/2-cup instant dry milk powder. Whip the mixture with electric beaters until it is light and fluffy. This will take a couple of minutes. Add 2-tablespoons sugar, 1-teaspoon of lemon juice, and 1/2-teaspoon of vanilla. Beat until thick enough to spoon like whipped topping. Use immediately. Can add 1 tsp. vegetable oil for additional creaminess.
• Molasses Milk: High in iron, with a caramel-toffee flavor this hot beverage is quite delicious. Heat 3/4-cup of reconstituted milk in a cup in the microwave. Stir in a spoonful of molasses. Serve hot. My kids love this stuff.
• Chocolate Milk: Fill a cup with reconstituted milk. Squeeze in a couple spoonfuls of homemade Chocolate Syrup. Stir to combine. Serve to thirsty children who object to plain reconstituted powdered milk. Cold chocolate milk can be heated in the microwave for hot chocolate. This is also great in lunch boxes. If you want to be really nice to the kids then make up a whole gallon of reconstituted chocolate milk at a time. They will brag to their friends and your reputation will become legendary.
• Homemade Yogurt: Using a bowl that has a lid, pour 3 and ¾ cups of hot tap water into it. The tap water should be hot enough that you can keep your hand in it, but not hot enough to burn it. Remember that high heat will kill the active yogurt culture. Add 1 and 1/3 cups of instant powdered milk, or the equivalent in regular powdered milk and stir well. The yogurt you will need to use to start a batch of homemade yogurt will need to be commercially made either in powdered form or by buying the cheapest form of yogurt that states that it has active cultures in it. At Macey’s you can purchase the Western Farms brand, just make sure it says “active cultures”. Stir 2 Tablespoons of the commercial yogurt in a small bowl to liquefy and then whisk it into the milk making sure it is well incorporated into the milk. Preheat your oven to get it to at least 100 degrees which is just enough to take the chill out of the oven. It can be a little hotter, but not much. Put the lid on the bowl and then place the bowl into a Corningware dish or some type of oven-proof container that has a lid and put hot tap water into that bowl to come to just under the level of the bowl with the yogurt. Place the lid on the bowl and put both containers in the preheated oven. Remember to turn the heat off in your oven. Let that mixture sit for at least 5 hours undisturbed. The longer you let the mixture sit, the firmer it becomes. You will need to experiment to see how long it takes to get to the consistency that you like. If, after you remove your mixture from the oven, you see that it has not set up, turn the oven back on to preheat it to at least 100 degrees and put the mixture back into the oven. If the water surrounding the container cooled too much while it sat in the oven, then the yogurt cultures will not multiply. Usually, by putting the mixture back into a warm oven, you can salvage the process. Wait another hour or two and check the yogurt again. If you like firmer yogurt, then leave the mixture in the incubating process for a longer amount of time. The whey (the watery liquid) will continue to separate from the milk solids. If you want to minimize this, you can dissolve one plain gelatin packet in some cold water, microwave to liquefy, cool, and add that to the yogurt mixture when you are mixing it originally. You can also add vanilla or some other flavor, sugar substitute, etc. before you begin the incubating process. If you are going to make yogurt cheese, then don’t add gelatin, flavoring or sugar substitute.
• Yogurt Cheese: Line a colander with a clean, damp piece of cloth. Pour prepared yogurt into the cloth. Allow the yogurt to drain overnight in the refrigerator. In the morning the remaining solids will be yogurt cheese. They can be used anywhere you would use cream cheese or thick sour cream. Use this yogurt cheese to make your favorite cheesecake recipe.
• Swiss-style yogurt: (refer to the yogurt process above on one of the preceding pages) If you like swiss-style yogurt that is already sweetened and has crushed fruit in it, then add not one, but two packets of unflavored gelatin that has been dissolved in cold water to the gelatin. You can liquefy the gelatin in the microwave after it has dissolved, but make sure it isn’t hot when added to the yogurt mixture. Whisk it into the mixture and add dissolved sugar or sugar substitute, plus any flavoring and crushed fruit into the yogurt and follow the rest of the directions for incubating the yogurt.
• Powdered Milk & Home Storage Q & A (from the Church’s website)
• What kind of milk is best to store? Nonfat milk, either regular or instant, stores well when packaged properly and kept at room temperature or cooler. In the past, many felt that non instant milk would store better. There is little difference in shelf life between instant and non instant powdered milk.
• What are the best containers? Milk stored in airtight, low oxygen packaging has been found to last longer and retain a fresher taste than milk stored in boxes or plastic bags.
• How long can powdered milk be stored? Optimal storage life on nonfat dry milk stored at room temperature is three years before the milk begins to taste stale. However, when stored at cooler temperatures, it can be kept much longer. [With this in mind you should either freeze your powdered milk, or buy it in the fall and rotate it yearly.] You can rotate powdered milk by using it yourself or by giving it to others who will use it.
• How much powdered milk should be stored? Guidelines for quantities of dry milk to store are found in the 1978 booklet published by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter day Saints called Essentials of Home Production and Storage. The booklet recommends that members store an equivalent of 300 quarts (about 75 pounds) of dry milk per person per year. However, since that time, a U.S. government study on nutritional adequacy during periods of food shortage has recommended 64 quarts, or 16 pounds, per family member per year. Equivalent to approximately one glass of milk a day, that amount will maintain minimum health standards. Keep in mind, however, that children and pregnant or nursing mothers will require more than the minimum amount of stored milk. Families who opt to store only the minimum 16 pounds of milk per person should also increase storage of grains from the recommended 300 pounds per person to 400 pounds per person to compensate nutritionally for the smaller amount of milk.
• What should I do with milk that is past its prime shelf life? Milk develops off flavors as it ages. However, it still retains some nutritional value, and unless spoilage has occurred from moisture, insects, rodents, or contamination, it is still safe to use.
• What can be done with milk that is too old to drink? It is important to rotate dry milk. Older dry milk may no longer be suitable for drinking, but it can be used in cooking as long as it has not spoiled. If powdered milk has spoiled, it can be used as fertilizer in the garden.

Shelf Life
Stored at:
40°F or below: 2 years
70°F or below: 1 year
90°F or below: 3 months.
• With this in mind you should either freeze your powdered milk, or buy it in the fall and rotate it yearly
Soft-serve ice cream or shakes
Place 1 cup of frozen fruit slices in your blender, e.g., strawberry/vanilla; peaches/almond extract; cantaloupe/almond; canned pineapple (no juice) no extract; blueberries/vanilla extract; sweet cherries (no pits) either almond extract or vanilla. I use 3 packets of Splenda to 1 cup of reconstituted milk. Whiz in blender until all fruit is pureed. Use less milk for ice cream, more milk for a thinner shake.

Rice Pudding
Cook 1 and 1/8 cups long grain rice in ½ gallon of milk over a low flame until much of the milk is absorbed. Beat 2 eggs in a 2 cup glass measuring cup or its equivalent. Add 2 Tablespoons of hot milk mixture from rice/milk mixture stirring constantly. Keep doing this until the eggs have been thinned by the milk and are hot. Then slowly add the egg/milk mixture into the pot with the rice that has been cooked in the milk. Let that simmer until your rice pudding is the consistency that you like. Remove from the heat and add 1/8 cup vanilla or to taste. Refrigerate.

Vanilla Pudding
¾ cup sugar or to taste 3 Tablespoons cornstarch
3 cups milk 4 beaten egg yolks
1 Tablespoon butter (optional) 1 and ½ teaspoons vanilla

In a heavy saucepan combine sugar and cornstarch. Stir in milk. Cook and stir over medium heat until thick and bubbly. Cook for 2 minutes more. Remove pan from heat. Gradually stir 1 cup of milk mixture into egg yolks. Add egg mixture to milk mixture in pan stirring constantly as it is added. Bring milk mixture to a gentle boil; reduce heat and cook 2 minutes more or until it reaches desired consistency.
Chocolate Pudding – Prepare as above, except add 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder along with the sugar; decrease cornstarch to 2 Tablespoons and the milk to 2 and 2/3 cups.

Cheesecake from Yogurt Cheese
Use your own graham cracker crust for this recipe. In a bowl blend 2 cups of well drained yogurt cheese with 3 eggs. Add ¾ to 1and ½ cups of sugar, 1 Tablespoon of flour and 2 Tbsp. vanilla. Mix well. You can add one tablespoon of lemon juice if you like. Make sure this is well blended and then pour into your graham cracker crust. Bake at 400 degrees for 30-45 minutes. It will brown and the center may not be completely done when the cheesecake is done baking, but it will not be runny once the cheesecake has cooled.

Quantity Mix for Fudgsicles
7 and ½ cups sugar 2 cups flour
2/3 cup cornstarch 2 cups cocoa
2 and ½ tsp. salt 20 cups powdered milk
Sift together and store in a covered container.

To use: Beat 3 and ¼ cups mix into 4 cups boiling water. Use a whisk or electric mixer. Cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Add ½ tsp. vanilla. Pour into molds and freeze. The mix will make 10 of these recipes.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Upcoming NIbley 6th Ward Emergency Preparedness Mini-classes

Here is a tentative schedule for our mini-classes. Although most are held on the third Thursday of each month at 7 p.m., some are not. An email is sent by our Relief Society secretary to those who have email. If you want to be notified personally on upcoming classes, please send me an email stating this, and you will be added to the list. My email is

March miniclass is being held at the Church on 3200 South on March 26 (Thursday). Starting time will be either 6:30 p.m. or 7 p.m. The class may run 90 minutes instead of the usual hour long meeting. A speaker from Andersen Seed in Logan will be addressing us on how to grow vegetables and fruits so that we can become more self-reliant.

As before, husbands are always invited to any of these meetings as well as any others wanting to attend that are not within our stake boundaries.

The date and time will be firmed up on Feb. 24. If you do not see an email or have this date announced in your Relief Society meeting, please email me.

April mini-class will be on powdered milk.
You will be tasting two different kinds of powdered milk mix and recipes made with powdered milk. There will be a demonstration on how to make yogurt (two kinds of yogurt: the kind with the fruit on the bottom that has to be mixed, and the Swiss-style that has the fruit mixed in and has the consistency of jello. Although you may not like yogurt, it is important to learn the process of making it as some of the cheeses that will be demonstrated begin as yogurt. I make a delicious cheesecake recipe from a cheese made from yogurt. Remember that this cheesecake is nonfat because it is made from powdered milk. I am exploring other uses of powdered milk (remember that I am a work in progress, too) so our repertoire will increase. More later on.

Other topics that will be covered in mini-classes this year, but are not scheduled yet include: making wheat gluten and bulgur wheat; first aid; pasta making; campfire building/dutch oven cooking; bean cookery; fire safety in the home; personal safety; soap making; and canning, if there is enough interest. This is all subject to change based on need and interest.