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  1. #1
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    Default Natural Disaster Meal Plans

    Interestingly, in the 12 years that I've been doing this, we have yet to create a menu plan for a natural disaster. Do you have plans for your family in the event that you are displaced or lose power for a lengthy period of time?

    When dh & I were first married we experienced a rather nasty severe ice storm that knocked our power out for more than 2 weeks up in New England. Luckily we had a gas stove and I was able to put together meals & since there was several feet of snow on the ground, we were able to keep most of our freezer contents from going to waste.

    Do you have a few easy recipes on hand for evacuations, hurricanes, tornadoes, cooking without power, cooking in the dark, not having access to running water, etc??
    ~Liss~
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  2. #2
    still digging' my way out
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    Default Re: Natural Disaster Meal Plans

    We use to have to face this issue often when we lived in Pennsylvania. Our solution was a bbq. If the food could go on a grill, it became a meal fit for kings and queens. We just put the grill on our porch which had a roof over it. Having a bbq in the middle of winter can be quite fun, especially if you can keep your sense of humor ; )

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Natural Disaster Meal Plans

    Quote Originally Posted by BellaRosa View Post
    We use to have to face this issue often when we lived in Pennsylvania. Our solution was a bbq. If the food could go on a grill, it became a meal fit for kings and queens. We just put the grill on our porch which had a roof over it. Having a bbq in the middle of winter can be quite fun, especially if you can keep your sense of humor ; )
    We did a bit of "grilling" during the storm, but there was several inches of ice on everything and digging it all out was quite an effort. For our current area we prep for potential hurricanes, tornadoes, and/or earthquakes.
    Each has it's own unique issues- like you obviously cant grill when the wind is blowing 80 miles an hour, but the food situation is always the same.. . . Trying to keep easy to prepare meals on hand is a pain, but necessary, regardless of where you live.


    Ways to Cook:

    • Mini BBQ Grills (outside)
    • Wood Fires (outside)
    • Electric Skillet- if you know you're going to a hotel- this is a more frugal way of preparing meals for your family. However, it's not overly useful if the power is out!
    • Slow-cooker/Crockpot- again, only useful if you have power.
    • 12 volt coffee pot - this is a great way to heat water quickly using very little energy

    Regarding water, we always keep a few gallons of fresh water on hand for emergencies, and if a storm is coming and we anticipate power outages, we fill the bathtub with water (for flushing the john, washing, cleaning, etc).



    Here are a couple easy, relatively inexpensive recipes that use canned food items you can keep on hand:

    Tuscan Chicken and Veggies
    1 can (13 ounces) chicken, drained and shredded
    1 can (14-1/2 ounces) zucchini in tomato sauce
    1 can (8 ounces) tomato sauce
    1 can (15-1/2 ounces) white kidney beans, rinsed and drained
    2 tablespoons dried onion
    1/4 teaspoon dried minced garlic
    1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
    Parmesan cheese (*optional, but so good!)

    Dump everything into a single pot and heat through. If you happen to have Parmesan cheese, it's really great on top! Serves 4.





    3 Bean Mexicali Salad
    1 can (15-1/2 ounces) black beans, rinsed and drained
    1 can (15-1/2 ounces) dark red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
    1 can (15-1/2 ounces) pinto beans, rinsed and drained
    1 cup picante sauce
    2 tablespoons dried onion
    1 can (15-1/4 ounces) whole corn, drained
    1 tsp Dried cilantro

    This one is great if you don't have any way to cook. Just mix everything together and serve! If you live in an area that is cold (or you're in the middle of a blizzard), stick the cans outside for a few minutes before preparing. It tastes even better chilled.


    Chocolate Covered Cherry Grits
    1 cup quick grits
    4 cup water
    Pinch salt
    4 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
    3 Tbs sugar
    2 teaspoons vanilla
    Tart dried cherries, dried cranberries, and/or chopped dried apricots, to taste


    Lightly salt the water and cook the grits as thick as you like, add the cocoa, sugar, vanilla & dried berries. If you have it, serve with milk, this dish serves 4 and is a great "comfort" food.
    ~Liss~
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  4. #4
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    Default Re: Natural Disaster Meal Plans

    We grill, and weather permitting cook in foil packets over a wood fire in the fire pit. We have a camp stove, and the camping style coffee pot as well. We also have a kerosene heater, oil lamps and tons of candles (because I love them!), not to mention battery operated lanterns (camping gear) and Flashlights galore.
    We keep 2 liter soda bottles for filling with water and freezing. I use them even when the (chest) freezer is getting a little low because they run more efficiently full any way. In the winter, I keep them lined out in back of the house. If there's a bad enough storm to where we need them - we drop them into the cooler and we're set to go.

  5. #5
    still digging' my way out
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    Heart Re: Natural Disaster Meal Plans

    Quote Originally Posted by Liss View Post
    Each has it's own unique issues- like you obviously cant grill when the wind is blowing 80 miles an hour
    Excellent point Liss

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Natural Disaster Meal Plans

    We are lucky in that we have a propane cook stove and propane fireplaces. We use these to heat the house and the stove to cook. Can't use the oven, but I do know how to make cornbread and biscuits on top of the stove. Iron skillet and iron griddle. We keep canned meats on hand, as well as store bought or home canned vegetables. I am wanting to can some meats as soon as they go on sale. If they ever do! =) I make mixes (from here) and store in jars with a label and how much to use. If you look online, you can find many, many recipes for one pot meals. (I love these!) I am planning on making some up for gifts for Christmas this year. We all have too much dust collectors and this is one thing that can be used. I am going to order some oxygen absorbers for the jars, within a few days.
    LNsGirl, Debbie J

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Natural Disaster Meal Plans

    Quote Originally Posted by Liss View Post
    Do you have a few easy recipes on hand for evacuations, hurricanes, tornadoes, cooking without power, cooking in the dark, not having access to running water, etc??
    Unfortunately, no. But now that it's come up, I DO need to do something along these lines.
    Our biggest threat is Tornadoes.
    Although I'm afraid if that's gonna be the issue, there may not be enough of -anything- left to cook. They're kinda destructive like that. Alabama is a little notorious for pretty bad tornadoes.

  8. #8
    Creator & Designer of Budget101.com
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    Default Re: Natural Disaster Meal Plans

    Quote Originally Posted by MrsPaws View Post
    Unfortunately, no. But now that it's come up, I DO need to do something along these lines.
    Our biggest threat is Tornadoes.
    Although I'm afraid if that's gonna be the issue, there may not be enough of -anything- left to cook. They're kinda destructive like that. Alabama is a little notorious for pretty bad tornadoes.
    It would be worth it to get an old Large cooler off Craigslist, fill it with canned goods with a lengthy expiration, seal it well with duct tape and bury it in a hole in the backyard. It would also probably be worth it to include a few recipes printed out and then placed in a plastic baggie (& a can opener) so you know what to cook for meals.
    ~Liss~
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