There are many reasons to start learning how to make things from scratch – allergies, healthy eating, saving money – but one of the most important could be to prepare for a day when that could be a way of life.
It could be a prolonged power outage, a truck strike that delays store deliveries or just the cost of food that could make more people buy basic ingredients and start making the things they would typically buy.
I started years ago with baking our own bread. I discovered I had an allergy to sulfites and found only one brand of bread in Alaska that I could eat. I stocked up on the bread by putting it in the freezer since our family would go through bread quickly (or at least mostly me).
Then the day came that the company decided to stop shipping that brand up north. I started learning to bake bread. A bread maker machine made it very easy to start learning and once I felt comfortable, I branched out to baking without the machine.
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From there, I moved on to food items that I could make so my family could eat healthier. With the help of several food blogs and books, I learned how to make granola bars, pancakes (without baking mix), ice cream, seasonings, brownies, and salad dressings.
Some of the best I have found are 100 Days of Real Food, My Humble Kitchen’s 25-day challenge, The Food Babe,
Homemade Pantry by Alana Chernila, and GNOWFGLINS. The owner and editor of GNOWFGLINS, Wardee Harmon, is also one of the podcast hosts with The Survival Mom Radio Network.
“Small, but permanent, changes.”
Some people tell you to clean out your fridge and pantry and start from scratch. That can lead to waste and feeling overwhelmed. I’ve been able to make lots of changes during the past few years by taking on one thing at a time. As she says, I am making small, but permanent, changes.
Practice makes perfect
Hopefully we’ll never have to face an end-of-the world scenario, but if we do, boxed mixes and pre-made meals will be a thing of the past. Knowing how to make basic items from scratch is easier to do beforehand than when the world has changed.
Bread requires very few ingredients and can be baked over a fire. Beef jerky sounds easy enough to make, but do you know what seasonings your family prefers to eat? Have you made oatmeal without a microwave? Can you bake bread on an open fire or solar cooker?
Make a list – here’s mine
Besides food, I have learned some basic sewing skills and my husband has learned some woodworking skills. We can now make pajamas and bookshelves instead of buying them at the store.
We are going to keep learning. I will be making jam and homemade fruit snacks soon. I want to start making our own cleaning supplies, butter, crackers, yogurt, and pasta. By doing one thing at a time, I know I will learn how to do it well and can be assured I will know how to do it if the worst comes our way.
Start now to make sure you are staying prepared.