Sunday, June 8, 2008

Canning beef

In the town I live in, there is a "Cash and Carry" store that caters to restaurants but will sell to anyone that comes in with cash. Well, they have the best deals on meat that I have seen. So yesterday was spent canning fifteen pounds of beef that I bought for $2.02 a pound. The stuff was beautiful, not an ounce of fat on it and boneless. It was called "special cuts" or something of the sort and it looked like flank steak ends.

So, dredged out the canner and the fry pan and started the process. I have a big non-stick pan (Yes I know, I know, but I love the easy clean up) and I started frying up in 2 pound batches. Each batch got two teaspoons of kosher salt, a teaspoon of pepper, a tablespoon of dried onion, and a teaspoon of dried garlic.

Browned each batch and then pooled them in my 3 gallon pot to let the juices run off. After I finished, I took the juices and added about 4 cups of water and 5 bouillon cubes and brought it to a boil.

While that was boiling up, I packed the meat into seven wide mouth quart jars, each with a bay leaf in it. I also reserved about 2.5 pounds of the browned meat for tomorrow's dinner. So each of the bottles got around 1-3/4 pounds of meat. I then topped off the jars with the juice/bouillon mix (leaving 1 inch of head space), put the tops on, screwed the lids on tight and stuck them in the cooker.

Cooked for 90 minutes at between 10-12 lbs (I have to have the gauge tested at the local extension soon, but it seems OK for now, I won't break into these until it's tested though) and Voila.....Stew concentrate to add to fresh veggies from the garden.

Now, the reason that I am writing all this boring stuff down, is to talk about how life might not be all that bad after TEOTWAWKI. You will just have to do stuff like this quite often. You will have to "make hay while the sun shines" whenever you can. Drying and canning will happen when the harvest comes in. When you get some meat you will prepare it for storage. You will eat from your garden and hopefully get some eggs from your chickens (my town lets you have three). Brew your own beer and watch the world instead of TV.

Life will be substantially different, but that does not mean bad. Work on what you need to live, not just survive

1 comment:

Mayberry said...

You hit the nail on the head there! At least for me, survival preps are for exactly that purpose, to make life enjoyable after TSHTF. And I know for a fact that I'll absolutely love TEOTWAWKI. I hate electric lights ruining the night sky, I hate TV, I love oil lamps, candles, and kerosene lanterns. I love being in nature, and absolutely despise cities. Life really will be better for all of us post TEOTWAWKI.