Zombie Meals - How To

11:10:00 AM

If you are unsure what a Zombie meal is, please refer to this post.

Now that you're all caught up, I'm going to give you the specifics on what you need to make these meals in a jar for your family food storage, emergency preparedness, or Zombie Mom nights.

(This post contains links to Amazon.com however, these items can also be purchased in many cases locally to you.)

You will need:
Glass Canning Jars in your preferred size.  I use mainly Quart and Half Gallon jars to create meals for my family of 7.
Two part lids for canning jars in the size needed (Regular mouth vs. Wide mouth.)
Oxygen absorbers in the 300CC size.  (I prefer these because they come packaged in groups of 20.  Once a package is opened, they start to lose their effectiveness.)
A Variety of Dehydrated or Freeze Dried Foods.  I use Honeyville, Thrive, and Augason Farms (which can also be found at Wal-Mart stores in limited varieties.
Spices and flavorings as desired.
Measuring implements such as measuring cups and spoons.
A Wide Mouthed Canning Funnel (not required, but VERY helpful)
Your Recipe!

1) The first step is to assemble all the needed items.  Clean, sterilize and COMPLETELY DRY the glass jars before using.  These foods are freeze dried or dehydrated, which is why they have a long shelf life. Moisture is going to be your enemy here.

2) Open the sealed cans of each ingredient and line them up on your counter-top  I typically do this in the order the ingredients appear in the recipe.

3) Using the funnel and the measuring scoops, put the desired ingredients into the jar.  It works best if you put in noodles and other 'chunky' items before the powdered items.  This allows the powder to settle down and around them, allowing you to put more food into the jar, conserving space.  Any delicate foods (for example peas and mushrooms because they crush easily) should be placed on top.

4) Top all the ingredients with an oxygen absorber packet.  If you have a canning device that removes air such as a FoodSaver with lid attachment, that would also work here, but it is not a substitution for the oxygen packet.  All the oxygen MUST be removed from the jar in order to prevent bacteria growth.

5) Assemble the two part lids, and screw them down tightly.

6) After one to two hours, the jars should seal on their own.  The oxygen absorber removes all the oxygen in the jar, creating a vacuum. The lids can be reused, however, the oxygen absorber cannot.

7) Label the jars with instructions for preparing, and then put into your food storage closet (or under the bed, whatever works best for you.)

As I stated, these meals have a long shelf life, usually around 5-7 years (based on the ingredients in the mix), however in our house they don't tend to last that long as we use them regularly (which is also important, because you *should* rotate through your food storage).  In addition, they are healthy, nutritious, and easy to make - meaning less last minute trips for fast food or consuming bowls of cereal on those busy nights.

I'll be posting a recipe for creamy pasta with peas and mushrooms next, which is actually one of our family's favorites!  And, watch for tips on creating your OWN recipes using dehydrated and freeze dried foods.

Enjoy!

Tamara




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