How do we cook? : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

If the power and natural gas quit, what kind of OVEN can we get to bake bread from the wheat that we grind? Recommendations for cooking apparatus anyone? Thanks.

-- rory moore (, May 28, 1998


We cook bread the way people used to cook bread, in a wood fired oven. If you want a traditional stove/oven you can buy them at Lehman's or Cuberland General Store. Their web sites are and

please note that their published catalogs are much more extensive than their online catalogs and worth the money.

You can also bake bread in a dutch oven. You can make a traditional adobe oven of the southwest.

Also you can cook in a solar oven, there are plans all over the internet for them.

An expedient oven made out of cardboard and aluminum foil can be fired with charcoal. Plans for this can be found in the book that every Y2Ker should have, Nuclear War Survival Skills by Cresson Kearney, you want the updated version printed by OISM.

Finally if you can weld you can fabricate an oven from an old oil barrel and some flat pieces of metal.

-- R. watt (, May 28, 1998.

You could get a propane tank and convert your natural gas stove to propane. If you get a large tank, 500+ gal, it will last you several years if you use it just for cooking.

-- Rebecca Kutcher (, May 28, 1998.

I've about given up hope...It seems like you need an engineering/machinists degree to adequately prepare. I think I can build a solar oven, but the propane tank idea, even tho a good one, sounds to me like planning a mission to mars. We are having a heck of a time just installling a wood stove!! (Pray the house doesn't burn down). I'm one of those people who know better than to buy anything that says "some assembly required". I've learned a lot, but it's not enough.

-- PJ (, May 28, 1998.

Most folks have a barbeque or can lay hands on one. Charcoal ones are cheap and can also run on wood or coal.

Any natural source of heat needs to be well ventilated (and away from cars/petrol) and probably outdoors.

-- Bob Barbour (, May 28, 1998.

It has been said: "Any natural source of heat needs to be well ventilated (and away from cars/petrol) and probably outdoors"

Great care must be taken when you contemplate using fire for heat or cooking. There is a very good chance that there will be (NO) utility services available for, at least some time frame. That means, no communications and no services. No Fire Department and no extra water supply to put out a fire if one should start.

It might be a good idea to have a "COLD CAMP" as long as the services are out or as long as you can, depending upon where you are located in January 2000. If a fire breaks out, you need to plan out what you will do.

-- Dave Jones (, May 28, 1998.

I have had several requests as to how to change a natural gas stove to propane. In newer stoves (not over 15-20 yrs old), it is usually an adjustment to the orifice. In my stove you needed to take the orifice out and turn it over and adjust the air intake. In some stoves you will need to purchase the right orifice or there are other adjustments. A local gas person can help you there and the cost to have someone do this is fairly minor.

Someone above said that having a propane tank installed was too hard. The company you either buy or rent it from will set the tank and the regulator for you. You just have to have someone run the gas tubing to wherever you want. It was just about $200 when we had some run a year ago. It may cost more depending on how far you need to go with the tubing and how hard it is to place it (do you have a basement or crawl space, etc.) and other factors (like your location).

The other thing to consider when using propane is that the tank can be filled only about 80% to allow for expansion of the gas. Have it filled during the summer when supplies are better and usage is way down. Most companies run specials on summer fills.

-- Rebecca Kutcher (, May 28, 1998.

I went through a LOT of research on this for our family. I ended up purchasing a Coleman Duel Fuel Stove at Wal-Mart, and the Coleman Oven attachment from an outdoor shop. I then purchase 20 gallons of the Coleman fuel on sale. From my research, that amount of fuel should cook for 1200 hours - on high. I figure we'll do most of our cooking on less than the highest setting, so, it should last a little longer. At 3 hours a day, 400 days. The stove will also use unleaded fuel. DO NOT COOK OUTSIDE UNLESS YOU HAVE TO. IN BAD TIMES, IT WILL NOT JUST DRAW FLIES!

-- zerad (, May 28, 1998.

We have all become so blase & dependent on utilities; it is difficult to conceive how we might manage without them. But it can be done, for at least a short time; as any Boy Scout knows, or the people in Quebec who endured the ice-storm, or those who prepared for nuclear survival. Everyone should have some alternate energy equipment; a generator, propane tanks, or charcoal BBQ, candles, oil lamps, etc. But don't forget about carbon monoxide if you use these indoors; get both CO & smoke detectors and keep flashlights handy with lots of batteries. Try camping out, even if only in the back-yard, so everyone knows how to operate the equipment. It can be fun, before the real panic starts. Get familiar with sail-boats and bicycles too, while it is just for entertainment and recreation. Stock-pile lots of basic staple foodstuff and plant a vegetable garden. Freezers will only last for so long without power, consider propane. Talk with your neighbours about joint community survival plans. Better to share your resources and skills than to fight over them.

-- Robert Sparkes (, June 02, 1998.

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