A friend of mine made an off-hand remark once about how women love to stockpile food, sometimes to the point of obsession. I had never thought of it as a gender divide before, but I sure do know a lot of women busy proving his point!
It didn’t take me too long living a subsistence lifestyle to realize that my problem would be actually eating all the food I cache away. Dumpster diving is especially dangerous, but also instructive, for people like me. It has (after a few years’ learning process) taught me restraint.
On the other hand, it’s really about knowing which foods you’ll eat tons of, and generally how much of what to put up. I feel that a little anal-ness is in order here. Keep track of what you put up each year, how much you use, whether there was leftover or not enough. You’ll be glad when next year rolls around and you have to decide when to stop picking salmonberries and start with the blueberries.
Here’s my list so far for 2008. The thing not on this list is bits and pieces gifted us by friends. We got a big box of salmon and moose from one couple, on their way out of town and tired of paying to keep a freezer running. Another big box of deer from our good friends who have their freezer in our shed. It took years in Cordova, but finally that magical thing happened to us where food, and good food, just shows up, quite frequently.
But here’s the bulk of our Homepack for the year:
- 2 black bear, mostly frozen, some canned
- 30 sockeye
- 60 half-pint jars kippered
- 19 frozen packs kipper
- 40 frozen fillets
- 31 pints salmon stock
- 16 pints bear stock
- 16 quarts salmonberry juice
- 3 ½ gal frozen blueberries
- 18 half-pint jars blueberry jam
- 3 pints blu-maple syrup
- 2 gal frozen cranberries
- 6 half-pint jars cranberry sauce
And a probably grossly inaccurate, because I’m only a little bit anal, most of this was eaten fresh and just can’t think to write down everything I pull from the garden for dinner–
2008 Garden Harvest
- 6 gal baby salads
- 1/2 gal radishes
- 3 heads lettuce
- 12 dinners of broccoli
- 2 lbs mini-onion bulbs
- 3 gallons onion greens
- 5 lbs baby carrots
- 30 lbs carrots (stored in damp sawdust in our garage)
- 3 dinners of chard
- 2 dinners of beets
- 4 heads cabbage
- 100 small to xx-small sized leeks, apx 50 dinners, some still in the garden
- apx 35-40 dinners of kale, most still in the garden
If anyone else is keeping track, please share! Let’s boost each other up!