FOOD STOR­AGE

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Both meat and veg­eta­bles can be stored in var­i­ous ways, in­clud­ing freez­ing, dry­ing and smok­ing. Each method has mer­its and draw­backs.

FREEZ­ING

To­day, freez­ing is the most com­mon food-stor­age method. The trick is to re­al­ize that most meats must be used within one year, so it’s nec­es­sary to ro­tate your stock. La­bel and date each pack­age. Meat can be pack­aged and frozen as is, but veg­eta­bles should be par­boiled prior to freez­ing.

DRY­ING

Peas and beans that you want to dry should be left on the plant un­til the shells are dry and brown. When you can hear the peas or beans rat­tling in­side their shells, open them up and spread the seeds on a pa­per towel or news­pa­per and al­low them to dry thor­oughly. Once dry, store them in an air­tight con­tainer. Squash and pump­kins can be dried by slic­ing and then hang­ing the slices. The seeds are dried the same way as peas and beans.

SMOK­ING

This is the most time-con­sum­ing and la­bor-in­ten­sive method. It’s the way peo­ple pro­cessed meat and fish prior to re­frig­er­a­tion. This method takes prac­tice, but once you learn the ropes, you can turn out some fine-tast­ing meat prod­ucts that will last for a time un­re­frig­er­ated.

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