CategoryFood and Cooking

Healthy Baby Foods and Recipes

Feeding Babies: Introduction

Feeding babies solid foods has always been a subject of many different opinions. Namely, some experts think that solid foods should be introduced earlier and some think that this should be done at a later stage in a baby’s life. In addition to this, the choices of solid foods are great, so there are many different opinions here as well. Therefore, many parents are left to make tough decisions about not only how and when to introduce solid foods, but also what foods to introduce and how to prepare the solids. Knowing this, many people simply do not know what to do and who to trust, considering that friends, family members and neighbours always have something to say on the subject.

Introducing Solid Foods

Although many parents have no idea what to do when it comes to introducing solid foods to their baby’s diet, the reality is that this should be taken seriously, but with a positive attitude. The main thing to remember is the fact that every baby is different, and that there can never be universal rules to follow. Instead, parents are advised to try out the types of foods from the list of age appropriate foods and try them out more than once. This means that a baby can refuse to eat a certain type of food one day, but it can also love that food just a couple of days later and there are no rules when it comes to a baby’s taste of foods.

First Recipes to Be Introduced to Babies – Fruits and Vegetables

Fruits and vegetables are the best solid foods to be introduced at first. They are easy to digest, nutritive and easy to prepare. It is important to give priority to vegetables when introducing solid foods, because many babies find it difficult to accept vegetables if they get used to delicious and sweet fruits. At first, all the vegetables and fruits should be cooked and mashed, in order to avoid any potential choking. Also, it is recommended that the fruits are peeled before they are cooked, because they are more easily digested this way. One thing that many parents are not aware of is that they can successfully mix fruits and vegetables, which can make feeding their baby more fun and more practical.

First Recipes to Be Introduced to Babies – Meats

Meat is also very important to introduce, but only after the baby has accepted fruits and vegetables. Meat is a great source of protein and iron, and these are extremely important for any baby. When it comes to introducing meats, it is important to understand that no processed meat should be introduced. Rather than this, chicken and turkey should be introduced first, then the red meats. The main thing to pay attention to is to tenderize the meat before cooking, to remove all the visible fat and to cook it thoroughly. Also, it is great to marinade the meat in apple juice before cooking it.

Cook Egyptian Food and Experience New Kind of Recipes

For many reasons, kitchen could be the favorite place for many housewives, especially if they are interested in cooking and trying new recipes. Many though tend to get bored with the quality of food they are cooking or the type of food. Of course we all agree that having the same type of food or something similar a lot could have a lot of effects. It is important to supply your body with different elements and different kinds of food.

Besides that food is not only something that you have to shut your hunger down, it is not only suppressing it by throwing food into your tummy. It is also about feeling fully satisfied and having the joy and delight of food. I’m not encouraging you to eat all the time and gain a lot weight, I’m just trying to make you explore new ways of looking at food new ways of accepting it and enjoying it.

I have found my food pleasure in so many different kinds of food. I travelled the world through my kitchen by experimenting and trying different food, foreign food. I have tried so many different kinds of other countries food and found my pleasure in only a few. Egyptian food was one of the most foods I found pleasure in both, making and having. When I started looking for Egyptian recipes, I found a huge variety to choose from. Each Egyptian recipe I try is better than the one before. Try Egyptian food recipes and I promise you will never regret it.

Buy Fresh Seafood Online and Cook Healthy Seafood Meals

Did you know you can buy fresh seafood online? Are you someone who loves to cook and loves all kinds of seafood? Do you find that the grocery store prices on less than quality seafood are turning you off to this highly nutritious food all together? It’s not surprising. Seafood is wonderful and can be used in many different recipes, from boiled lobster, to adding shrimp to a pot of jambalaya, to a fresh salmon fillet.

Seafood is really great for you, too. Salmon is rich in Omega-3 fatty acids, which are essential to our bodies, and lobster contains high amounts of vitamins A and B, as well as calcium. If you’re not incorporating seafood into your diet, you really should be. The problem with any kind of food that comes from water is that it has to be very, very fresh to offer an optimal flavor. Your grocery store may not offer such fresh varieties at a good price, but you can get fresh seafood online and know that you’re getting the freshest fish you can get at a good price.

If you’ve never really been one to cook seafood, but are considering it, you might want to start with a fish that’s a little more meaty and oily, such as salmon or trout. When prepared properly, these are two fish that will melt in your mouth and don’t taste like fish at all. Another type of fish that you can try is Mahi Mahi, which is great marinated in teriyaki sauce and cooked on the grill.

Choose a fish that’s versatile and easy to prepare. Some fish are easier to do this with than others, so you should make your selections carefully. For instance, salmon can be seasoned several ways, but can also be drizzled with olive oil and seasoned with as little as just a little lemon pepper to cook it up. You can wrap it in aluminum foil and bake it or put it on the grill until it flakes easily and is light pink. As with any kind of seafood, though, you will want to make sure that all of your seafood is fresh so that you avoid any kind of “fishy” taste. Consider buying your fresh seafood online for some of the freshest just caught selection available.

What if you don’t like fish, but want to incorporate other seafood into your diet? If you like Cajun food, then you will love cooking up a pot of shrimp gumbo or jambalaya with some crusty bread. Gumbo is fun because you can also add crab meat and scallops to it if you’re feeling creative. Dishes such as these will warm your body and soul while providing you with a healthy dose of seafood. They are easy to make and the whole family will love them. If you don’t like spicy food so much, consider making lobster bisque, which is rich and creamy and goes great on cool winter and fall nights. Pair it with some salad and rolls to make a full meal that everyone will be raving about.

Once you see how many really wonderful recipes there are for seafood, you’ll be buying all kinds, so it’s going to be really important that you find a place where you can get the freshest seafood available at the best price. This is why you need to begin shopping for all your fresh seafood online. You’ll keep yourself and your family in optimal health and save yourself tons of money in the process.

Shopping and Cooking Tips

I’ve discussed previously the term Power Cooking and how cooking meals “ten at a time” saves both time and money, now I’m going to share some tips on both shopping and cooking those meals. If you shop the same day you plan to cook, it will save putting many groceries away. You can choose any day of the week that works best for you. My day is Saturday in the morning, kids and hubby are still asleep and this gives me some time to work in the kitchen. Pull any frozen foods that you need to thaw for cooking and place in the refrigerator. This can be done the evening before. Pull any items from your cupboards and group the ingredients for each recipe on your counter. By going to your “bulk” store first you can get items in bigger quantities. This will definitely save you money.

Next, go to your regular store for remaining ingredients. If you can get away without the children, that’s great. It will give you more time to concentrate on what you need to get at the store. (I can’t tell you how many times I’ve gone to the store with the children and got distracted and forgot something or overlooked my list because I wanted to hurry up and get out of there. This is why I suggest going without the children.) Last, shop the inner aisles first, and then produce, then bakery and frozen foods last.

If you’ve done all of the above, you are now ready for Cooking. Have an empty garbage can that is easily accessible and a bag or container for the recyclables. If you have a jar handy, it’s perfect for leftover chopped vegetables for soup starter.

Before starting to cook, clean and sanitize your counter tops and sink . Empty dishwasher and fill the sink with hot, soapy water Wash dishes as you go. Let one group soak while you prepare your next meal. When it’s the last time you are going to use the utensil, have the dishwasher empty and fill as you finish. Chop and prepare all fresh foods at once and put in prep bowls on the counter. “Scoop” the required amounts when assembling your meals. (Most meals make 4-6 servings. If you have a larger family, you can adjust your measurements to fit your family size.) It’s always nice to have two sets of measuring cups and spoons, one for wet and one for dry ingredients. I have the perfect kitchen tool for measuring both dry and liquid ingredients and it’s one handy tool ever kitchen should have. It’s convenient and saves space in your kitchen. High Quality Kitchen tools in your kitchen can save you time and money in the kitchen.

Write down start and finish times of foods that you are cooking at the same time. As you finish a meal, cool on racks away from your cooking area (on your kitchen table, etc.) If you start your longer cooking recipes first, by the time you finish the last “quick” one, the first one will be complete. After your recipe has cooled off, store in a zipper freezer bag flat in your freezer or use other appropriate container.) As you finish a recipe and you still have items (canned, pantry or frozen) that need to be added on the day you serve the meal, put an X on the label or mark how you see fit and explain to your family that they are not to eat this ahead of time. (I learned the hard way on this tip. Forgot to label and couldn’t find the day I wanted to make that particular meal.)

Cheese or bread crumbs that need to be added in the final stage of cooking should be measured and put into a small zipper bag and taped to the side of the freezer container or bag with the meal. Pull tomorrow night’s dinner out of the freezer the evening before. After cleaning up, treat yourself for a good day’s work!

Kids and Cooking – Start Out Healthy and Stay Healthy

So often, children will model most aspects of their parent’s actions. Whether it be the smallest quirks or the worst habits, children do learn from by watching what their parents do and that has consequences both good and bad. This is why it is essential for parents to start their children off on the right food concerning their diet and eating habits.

Several decades ago, it wasn’t unusual for all families to eat every meal together, every day, all at the same table. In today’s times, that scenario is more likely the exception than the norm. Parents are busy with child-rearing, work, and household responsibilities. There is often a lot of eating on the run and not as much concern for eating healthy, balanced meals. But in order for your kids to learn how to eat healthy and always be conscious of what is going into their bodies as they grown into adults, it is important for parents to learn that lesson for themselves.

Imitation is Flattering

Because kids are prone to mimic what their parents do, cooking can be a great lesson for the entire family. First, it teaches everyone to slow down and enjoy the quality time with each other that is often taken for granted. Second, cooking with children teaches the younger generation the importance of responsibility by preparing meals for the family. They get to understand the importance of hard work and the value of their parent’s time that is put into the family. While younger kids may not immediately understand that message, it is one that should stick with them as they get older. The third most important thing cooking with kids can do is teach them how to express a side of themselves through the recipes they prepare or invent on their own. Plus, there are tons of lessons in math and science kids will not learn hands-on in the classroom.

The Hands-On Approach

Through cooking, kids get a better understanding of what their dinner is made from and how different combinations can be put together to make a meal. This is a prime opportunity for parents to educate their young about the importance of adding healthy and fresh foods into each meal. Kids can learn more by doing than by just simply listening. By having them actually adding the carrots to the casserole or learning how to measure a cup of peas, they may be more likely not only to eat what they have created but also to keep wanting to help in the kitchen.

Encourage Their Talents

While not every child will revel in their kitchen learning experiences, those who do can be encouraged to stick with it. There are professional course available that are geared towards teaching budding chefs about the basics of cooking for those children who develop a strong interest in the craft. It can be a wonderful outlet for children to use for creativity and build self-esteem. In addition to better physical health for the whole family, mental health is also affected positively.

It may seem at first glance that kids and cooking do not mix. Like with everything involving kids, parental supervision is required. There should always be a parent assisting with the cooking process to prevent injuries and burns but kids should also be allowed to practice mixing and pouring and the other safer areas of cooking without parental interference so they have an opportunity to learn.

The next time dinner needs to be prepared, call the whole family into the kitchen and get to work. You may be surprised at what your family can do together and you will be pleased with the new bonding time you will be instituting into your family tradition.

Georgina White has developed ways to make great tasting food using healthier methods. She feels that it’s important to be kind to your body and provide it with plenty of nourishing, fresh food while letting the taste buds enjoy it too!

Tips on the Safer Storage, Handling, and Cooking of Meat at Home

Medical records have firmly established that saturated fat and cholesterol are bad for the heart. Unfortunately for meat lovers, most red meat (like a big, juicy hamburger) can be high in both. It is believed that the risk of advanced prostate cancer is increased with a high intake of red meat. Some types of poultry contain the most saturated fat and cholesterol. Some of the fattiest meats include brisket, ribs, ground beef, bacon, duck, and goose. Studies have shown that diets high in meat, especially red meat, increase the risk of heart disease and heart attack and are associated with a higher risk of colon, rectal, and prostate cancers.

On the positive side, meat can be part of a healthful, low-fat diet if you choose lean cuts, cook them properly, and make sure to balance your diet with 5 to 10 servings of fruits and vegetables a day and plenty of whole grains. Small servings of lean meat deliver a solid amount of nutrients without too much fat. Red meat, such as steaks, burgers, and pork, is loaded with protein, B vitamins, iron, and zinc. Although chicken and turkey don’t contain as much iron and zinc, they have considerably less saturated fat. Wild game, such as ostrich, emu, pheasant, venison, and buffalo, is also a lean meat choice.

If meat is undercooked, it can cause mild to severe food poisoning. Bacterial contamination is another problem. Most raw meat carries some form of bacteria, and when it is not handled or cooked properly it can make you sick. For example, hamburger may carry a dangerous strain of E. coli bacteria, which can cause bloody diarrhea, abdominal cramps, and, in rare cases, kidney failure. Chicken is likewise prone to contamination from salmonella bacteria. Severe diarrhea, abdominal cramps, and nausea – which can last a week or longer – are some of the symptoms that are caused by eating tainted chicken.

To make sure that you properly and safely store, handle, and cook meat at home, follow these few safeguards:

– Store uncooked meat in a freezer at -18 degrees Celsius (0 degree Fahrenheit) or below, or in a refrigerator below 4 degrees Celsius (40 degrees Fahrenheit), and separate it from other foods. Don’t refrigerate fresh poultry or ground beef for more than two days – use it or freeze it.

– Thaw meat in the refrigerator or microwave and cook it as soon as it is thawed. Thawing meat at room temperature (for example, in the sink or on the kitchen counter) promotes bacterial growth.

– Don’t allow raw meat or any trimmings to touch any other food that you plan to serve raw or lightly cooked. The bacteria on uncooked meat can spread to other foods.

– Don’t let raw chicken sit out since it can spoil in a few hours. If you want to marinate it, do so in the refrigerator.

– Before cooking, trim all visible fat from steak, veal, lamb, or pork.

– After handling meat, clean utensils, countertops, cutting boards, and your hands with hot soapy water.

– Cook ground beef above 71 degrees Celsius (160 degrees Fahrenheit), steaks and roasts above 63 degrees Celsius (145 degrees Fahrenheit), poultry breast meat above 77 degrees Celsius (170 degrees Fahrenheit), and whole birds above 82 degrees Celsius (180 degrees Fahrenheit) to kill any bacteria in the meat. For the internal temperature, insert an instant-read meat thermometer for at least 15 seconds near the end of cooking.

– Juices should run clear or yellow, not pink. But don’t rely on looks to tell whether meat is done. One study found that even brown meat can be insufficiently cooked.

– Don’t char meat; high heat causes potentially carcinogenic compounds to form. To avoid this, partially cook meats in the microwave or a slow oven first, and finish them up on a cooler part of the grill.

A nutritious, balanced diet includes two to three daily servings from the meat food group, which is made up not only of red meat and poultry but also fish, eggs, legumes, tofu, and peanut butter. Staying away from meat, therefore, is not really necessary to stay healthy. What’s more important is that you know how to store, handle, and cook them properly – and safely.

Choose Right Foods And Oils While Caring For Health

Selection of nutrient rich diet is the stepping stone to healthy living. A lot of people remain ignorant of the simple tips that can help them choose healthy and taste-enhancing foods and oils. Unhealthy eating can be easily avoided, without compromising with food fondness in any way.

Maintaining normal cholesterol level and body weight should be among the top goals while making these selections. In addition, you need to take into account the supply of important nutrients in adequate quantity. Here are some steps that you would love to follow to achieve these benefits.

Prefer Mono Saturated Fats:
To begin, choose cooking oils that have high percentage of mono saturated fatty acids. Rice bran oil with 47% mono saturated fat is one good example. Other examples include coconut oil, olive oil, palm oil and avocado oil. Avoid cooking in oils obtained from cottonseed, flaxseed and grape seed rich in poly saturated fats that are unstable and contain high amount of free radicals.

Oils With Additional Qualities:

Rice bran oil is also known to contain a cholesterol-lowering compound called oryzanol. It is also a good source of Vitamin E. Groundnut oil with MUFA and PUFA qualities is another popular cooking medium. With antibacterial and anti-inflammatory qualities, coconut oil is also counted among the best.

Choosing the right oil for a particular cooking technique can also decide the worth of the food you prepare. For example, rice bran oil can be used for high-temperature cooking techniques like stir frying and deep frying. In addition, it is also useful for baking and salad dressing. Make sure that you consider different applications and choose the right oil accordingly.

At the same time, it is also important to use right quantity of cooking oil. Excess of oil is not only unhealthy, but it can also deteriorate the foods taste.

Cholesterol Lowering Foods:

Just like rice bran oil, there are many good examples of foods that can help in lowering bad cholesterol and promoting the good one. Here are some examples:

• Soy: Apart from reducing the amount of saturated fats, using soy instead of butter can also help in lowering LDL cholesterol.

• Beans: One good way to keep a check on cholesterol is by consuming adequate fibre. Beans are extremely rich in soluble fibres that prevent the body from re-absorbing excess of cholesterol.

• Avocado: Similar to avocado oil and rice bran oil, avocados in fruit form are rich in mono saturated fats. Moreover, they contain good amount of beta sitosterol which lowers down the quantity of cholesterol that body absorbs form various foods.

• Spinach: Rich in lutein, spinach has been proved to safeguard heart against heart attacks by preventing the clogging caused by cholesterol.

Many other good examples of cholesterol-lowering foods include oats, walnuts and barley. Fruits like apples, water melon and oranges are also recommended for this purpose. A diet expert can help you plan a good eating regime involving each of these healthy foods. Adopt and follow such a plan religiously to live a healthy life.

Fast Food And Mobile Vending

Lifestyle living has been adapted over the years to meet the ever-changing needs of the times we live in. Our modern hustle bustle way of life so often dictates the way we sleep, eat and socialize.

As much as an economic downturn has it negative effects, it also creates opportunities. In South Africa there are many such success stories – what was a means to an end for survival became a national brand or multiple franchise.

Perhaps as an interesting introduction to fast foods, let’s look at the history and origin of this phenomenon. The following extracts are from Albert Jack’s wonderful book “What Caesar Did for My Salad.”

A quick history of fast food:

Fast food goes hand in hand with modern living – people lacking the space or time to prepare food for themselves – and as the Romans are credited with the invention of the town, so it is most likely that they came up with the idea.

In Roman cities much of the poorer communities were packed into insulae (islands in Latin) – multi storey apartment blocks built out of cheap materials – proving that high-rise accommodation is not such a new concept either. With little opportunity to cook for themselves without burning down the neighborhood, many had to depend on the food vendors for their meals.

This wasn’t what we would recognize today as fast food: in the mornings, bread soaked in wine was eaten as a quick snack and cooked vegetable and stews were in demand later in the day but the idea behind it is the same. By the middle ages, all large towns and urban areas supported numerous vendors, providing a huge range of dishes. As in the cities of antiquity, these establishments catered for those without cooking facilities: workers, the poor, travelers and pilgrims.

At a time when the daily diet of most people living in the British countryside consisted of simple fare such as PEASE PUDDING, the food on offer would have seemed highly sophisticated: the pilgrims in Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales (1387 – 1400), for instance, are constantly talking about snacks, and munch their way through everything from pasties and roasted onions to sweetmeats such as blancmange.

This kind of food fascinated people living in rural areas, who had a much more limited and unimaginative diet. Even quite lowly folk in the cities had access to a huge variety of speedy meals. Then as now, it was all part of the instant gratification of urban life. ‘London Lickpenny’, a popular fifteenth-century poem, picks out many of the cries of the food sellers on the streets, who offer the narrator a whole range of cooked food, from ‘hot sheep’s feet and oysters’ to ‘ribs of beef and many a hot pie’.

These precursors of the burger bars, fried-chicken outlets and kebab shops that litter (quite literally) today’s inner cities had only their owners’ voices and distinctive jingles to make them stand out from the crowd. As a consequence, London became notorious for the constant racket from vendors trying to drown each other out. As Joseph Addison wrote in the Spectator in 1711: ‘there is nothing which more astonishes a foreigner, and affrights a country squire, than the cries of London.’

Street hawkers were a popular subject for artists and by the middle of the 1700s, engraving of the ‘Cries of London’ had become all the rage. Likewise, their attention-grabbing cries were written down and collected.

Food Trailer Business Boom

For the person who wants to open a restaurant, the brick and mortar issue can make it an impossible dream, with property and rentals being so expensive and risky. For many years, we have seen food trailers that park on street corners, in events grounds and parking lots and business parks. These business people run low overhead operations that are less expensive than rent and easily moved where the revenue will be best. It is like embracing a new food culture.

The creativity and personal style of cuisine and the design of these rolling restaurants is a lifestyle which appeals which to many a family. Some of these are brightly painted to match the food they’re selling. Investing in one of these little mobile restaurants would present a multitude of opportunities.

What may be a great venue this year may fade in time but now you are not stuck with rent and overheads. Pack up and move to the next venue and if this fades down the line there’s the venue somewhere else. People willing to work late hours can profit from the late nightclubs too. A well-placed coffee trailer can reap many profits through morning peak hour business.

The start up investment for a trailer is around R25,000. It’s possible to do it for less. Then it’s getting the proper licenses and permits where required. Look for auctions where you can find great bargains on catering equipment. Keep it as simple as possible – simple menu and manageable productivity and profits.

Street food vendors today supply a range of foodstuffs from fire-roasted mielies on the cob to a gourmet schwarmas or pancakes. As a business opportunity it can be a low cost way of starting up a business. Many have started up out of desperation for extra income. There are many vendors who travel from venue to venue which in itself has become a lifestyle for them.

Mobile food vending offers everything from hotdogs, burgers, chicken, Chinese, Thai, Mediterranean, as well as coffee-on-the go from a trailer to a fully equipped van. What about more variety of wraps style mobile stalls, for people who eat while they are driving, mobile curry stalls, healthy alternatives, organic variety, salads, Mediterranean style kebabs, soups and ice cream parlor mobile stalls? What about offering decent espresso and a selection of quality pastries, in the mobile market?

The options are endless, and there are more than enough experts who can tailor design and manufacture mobile trailer units. Don’t wait for the mega trends from overseas to dominate the market. Follow through on your own ideas and meet the needs of the eating population.

Street stalls and kiosks can meet the needs in an economic slowdown. Reviewing the costs and potential franchisable concepts, it presents itself as an efficient way of doing business almost anywhere. Opening a mobile street stall or kiosk does not require significant amounts of money. This way you can also offer and sell freshness that is easy to manage and control.

Where to start? Well, like everything else, it starts with a plan. The bigger the outlay the more detailed the business plan should be. There are a number of trailer specialists who will assist you in designing a trailer to your specific requirements. There are companies such as Priclo, Venter, In Tempo Trailers to name a few.

Other alternatives could be to get an engineering company to build one for you or find an old second hand caravan and convert it as required. One could always purchase a second hand vending trailer. Containers are another alternative too.

But let’s review some valuable pointers first:

Starting your mobile food business

Many people dream of a work style that gives them independence, enjoyment and, at the same time, a decent income. But it still takes effort, careful planning and diligence.

Survival Food and Water: Five Tips

“I never drink water because of the disgusting things that fish do in it.” – W. C. Fields He didn’t have a LifeStraw. No, but water is an essential part of survival in so many ways. Survival isn’t just about avoiding getting your arms cut off, or drowning from a storm or radiated from a nuke. Survival is really a balance between avoiding the catastrophe and maintaining your own health. You’ll need strength and endurance. And food and water are what will give you the energy you need. So in this piece, we’re going to talk about five things. We’ll cover

  1. natural purification methods
  2. salt water purification and heating water to purify it.
  3. foraging for food and avoiding poisonous plants.
  4. freeze dried foods and proteins, cooking gear and ovens and bug out meals.
  5. water tablets/UV purification and water where there is no water.

Once you’ve read this, you’ll have a good handle on the things to deal with in any disaster when it comes to food and water.

PURIFYING WATER NATURALLY

Next to life threatening wound care, drinkable water is the first priority. The reason why is that you cannot predict how long the disaster or its effects will unfold. The store shelves might be wiped clean of bottled water. And if for some reason the water supply is contaminated, how do you get the water you need?

What if you don’t have water purification tablets on hand? How do you naturally purify water? One way is to find a tree with large leaves. Find a branch that’s in the sun. Next, tie a plastic bag around the end of a branch. Over time, the humidity from the leaves will attach to the inside of the bag and form water droplets. It’s not a drinking fountain, but its drinkable water.

Another method is the Sodis method. You just take a soda bottle, and fill it with filtered water. Filtered meaning water that has no rocks, debris or leaves, branches, etc. Put the top on the bottle, and lay it on a black metal surface in the sun. This will generate enough heat to kill all of the bacteria in the bottle over 6-8 hours. But what do you do with salt water? We live near the ocean and there’s plenty of water here. Just not drinkable water.

So an interesting option is a salt water distiller. These are not as complicated as you would think. There’s no electronics either. Its a twist on the first method I shared with you. Check it out. water tablets and UV purification water where there is no water The next thing to think about is food. Foraging for food.

WATER AND FORAGING FOR FOOD

One of the survival rule of 3’s is that you can’t go without food for more than 3 weeks. For me that will be a problem because I’m running to Wendy’s every 3 hours. But here’s the thing. If there is no way to get food from stores then you may have to find it in the woods. I’m talking foraging for food. So to get the process rolling, I recently added to my BugOutBag a deck of cards called 52 Wild Edibles. Each card is dedicated to one wild food item. And each card has some specifics about preparation, warnings, and identification tips.

Also check out Steve Brills work on wild plant foraging. He has a list of 14 plants that are a combination of edible and poisonous plants. In this list of plants, he covers cattail, dandelion, elderberries, mulberries, juneberries, nettles, poison ivy and others.

And while you are foraging, consider firemaking. Part of the strategy in foraging is boiling leaves of some of the plants. So your ability to build a fire is critical with food foraging. You can still forage without water though. But that’s just one part, the next thing is..

FREEZE DRIED FOODS AND PROTEINS

For mobile/light travel survival, you want the most impact from your food at the lightest weight. That’s where freeze dried foods and proteins come in. This combination gives you the biggest bang for the weight and space taken up. The nice thing is that freeze dried foods only need some water and they are ready to go. They are very light and contain the same nutrients that non freeze dried foods have. You can get vegetables, fruit, meat, dairy products (freeze dried cottage cheese!) and even ice cream! Having ice cream that isn’t cold is a little odd though. I’ve had it and it tastes very good. For energy, you want to avoid sugary and energy type drinks or foods. They may bring you up, but there will be a price to pay hours later.

Best bet is to get your energy in a way that is as sugar controlled as possible. That’s because you’ll want consistent and reliable energy for your body. The answer? Protein. And the best place to get this is through protein bars. They are packed with energy and are lightweight. And if you combine protein with freeze dried foods, then you are in that much better shape. That’s because you have more room to pack more food which will help you last longer. But that’s just one part, the next thing is..

BUG OUT COOKING GEAR

Part of your food and water plan is to have something to cook or boil water in. So what you’ll need is some kind of fire making capability or stove if possible. To make fires, I use the UST BlastMatch. And for a stove, I’ve got the MSR WhisperLite International. It’s for backpackers where where MSR-brand fuel isn’t available.

So the WhisperLite can burn kerosene and unleaded petrol (gasoline). Also, it burns “white gas” that MSR and Coleman sell. Its an old design, but continues to prove its self to many around the world as a reliable stove. The downside is that you have to carry the fuel bottle with you. But in a rainstorm where you might not have dry fuel and tinder, that might not be a bad thing.

Now let’s talk about your cooking set. Check out the GSI Outdoors Dualist Cook set or the HaluLite. This set is non stick. That means it’s healthier and comes with pots, cups and bowls. Also it comes with a water sealed drawstring bag that you can use as a wash basin. Now if you want to take things a step further, try this. Combine the stove and cookset. The product you’ll want to check out is the Optimus Crux Lite for your bug out meals. But that’s just one part, the next thing is..

WATER WHERE THERE IS NO WATER

Our fifth tip for survival/bug out food and water has to do with finding water when you don’t see water. If you didn’t already know it, check this out. The US Geological Survey estimates that there is more freshwater located underground than in all of the earth’s freshwater lakes and rivers. But you can find water above the surface of the earth too. Here are a couple of places you can find it. First, from the plants and the dew they produce. Here’s how you get it. Tie an absorbent cloth around your ankles and go walking through high grass. Squeeze the water out of the cloth and you’ll have a small amount of liquid to drink.

Another idea is the transportation well. Its simply a bag you tie onto the branch of a tree with broad leaves. After being in the sun for a bit, you’ll see dew begin to form on the inside of the bag. Second source of water is from the ground. What you’ll be looking for are depressed areas.

Also, look for dried up riverbeds, bottom of hills, areas with lush vegetation. Dig some test holes about 4 feet apart. Make them 5-7 feet deep. As you keep digging, you’ll see water seeping into some of the holes as you are getting closer to a water source.

Now you’ve got the framework of a water plan for your bug out kit. You now know a little bit about foraging, freeze dried foods, bug out cooking gear and finding water where there is no water.

So this week, as a test, what you’re going to do is try fasting for the weekend. That’s right. Here we talked about all this water and food, and I’m asking you to fast? Yep. That’s because you might be going without food if you eat your stores in the first 72 hours. Try fasting for 1-2 days just as a test. This will begin to train you in the reality of what might be coming down the road when or if disaster hits.

Taking a Culinary Vacation

When you think about gourmet food and travel you probably aren’t thinking of the reheated frozen food you were served on the plane. There are many choices available to those whose love of travel is equaled by their love of gourmet food. You can travel to an exotic (or romantic) location and take gourmet food cooking courses taught by well-trained chefs in top culinary programs (some are even offered on cruise ships.) You can also take a tour that allows you to visit a region and sample some of the area’s best cuisine-without doing any of the gourmet food cooking or preparation yourself. Before you buy that ticket, here is some basic information to get you started on your search:

If you love to cook gourmet food at home, you should definitely think about taking a trip to visit a culinary program abroad. There are all-inclusive travel packages which include your airfare, your accommodations and your courses all in one price. These tour groups are usually fairly small, so you get more personalized instruction. The courses can last anywhere from a few hours to a few weeks. You may be able to set up courses through contacting a gourmet food cooking school directly, but you may not be able to get the deals on the airfare and accommodations. Some of the packages also include tours of the local area as well.

On the other hand, if you want to leave the gourmet food cooking to the experts, you can find tours which simply visit different areas, focusing on the local cuisine-with local sites of interest thrown in as well for good measure. Some of the more popular tours are the wine tours, the cheese tours and the chocolate tours. You can see how the food is made and you can sample it as well.

Those who want a more flexible and independent experience can simply look up traveler reviews of restaurants in the areas they plan to visit and chart their course based on the food they want to eat.

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