Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Just 6 Food Products: which would you choose?


Kendal Black said...

When you allowed only three choices, mine were crackers, peanut butter and dried fruit. Now that you ask for the top six, I would add

3. Thin spaghetti

4. Canned mixed vegetables

5. Spam

Thin spaghetti, "angel hair" and so on cooks faster than other pasta and requires less fuel. Spam is the famous American pork product that won WWII. If you prefer canned Argentine beef I forgive you, for it is rather good, and less fatty.

When expanded to six products, our lists ended up looking much the same. Interesting.

Anonymous said...

Nice videos! I would add: eggs. While eggs are not long-lasting like peanut butter or pasta, it does have the highest Biological Value of natural foods, and it is a complete source of proteins. It's also relatively cheap.

I would also add: condiments & spices. These would help vary meals and prevent appetite fatigue.

Don Williams said...

1) Your point about having food that does not require a lot of fuel to cook is a good one.

A fireplace or campfire giving off a lot of wood smoke will pull in the hungary predators in some circumstances. Not good --especially at night.

As I've noted before, a camp stove hooked up to a 20 lb propane tank will cook cans of food for months. In contrast, trying to cook dry beans in simmering water for hours really burns up the fuel.

2) The internet has a number of lists for the shelf lives of various food types. What is interesting is that CANNED forms of cooked beans, vegetables and corn have shelf lives of 2-5 years
whereas the dry, packaged forms of those foods are only rated for 1 year of storage.

Note, however, that is for the standard commercial plastic bag packaging seen in supermarkets -- storing the dry bulk forms in special mylar bags with oxygen removers will increase the storage life.

3) I have a bucket of wheat and a grain mill -- but it seems to me that cranking the mill to grind the wheat into flour burns up more calories than I will obtain from the resulting bread.

Digging hard suburban clay soil of poor quality with a mattock to plant some vegetables also seems to burn up more calories than I will obtain from the harvest.

Maybe you can survive this way but anyone who tries it can see why medieval peasants worked their butts off sunrise to sunset and were still on the constant edge of starvation.

Don Williams said...

1) Two things I noticed about Ferfal's items that he did not mention explicitly:

a) The container sizes are small -- which is handy if you do not have ice or refrigeration. If you have very large containers -- as is common in the USA warehouse stores like Sam's Club and Costco -- much of the food will spoil before you can eat it unless you have a large family or share with neighbors.

Which may be where the custom of feasting arose --if your food is going to spoil before you can eat it all , then why not share it with neighbors and put them under a social obligation to give you return meals in the future?

b) I noticed that he also favored glass jars vice cans for some foods?? MY understanding is that canned food lasts longer in glass. While glass containers may break if dropped, they are also not vulnerable to rusting from moisture (aside from maybe the metal lids.)

Kendal Black said...

It just occured to me that we can condense two choices into one, if we find a canned soup or stew that contains a decent amount of meat and an assortment of vegetables.

Anonymous said...

You can shorten the cooking time and fuel required for dry beans by bringing the pot to a boil and letting the beans sit in the hot water for an hour or two. They still take time and fuel, just not as much. Lentils are the best beans, they cook in about 30 minutes.