Is it really necessary to bake bread in the bunker?greenspun.com : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread
I would like to generate a discussion as to the need to stockpile grain for breadmaking. I've been investigating the process and have come to the conclusion it is a job I'm not prepared to perform or which I have no experience. In the 51 years of my life I think I baked bread from scratch once or twice. I got a bread machine for Christmas last month and have prepared 3 loaves. To my way of thinking it's not really making bread it's more like baking a cake-throw the ingredients in and flip the switch.
I only bring this up because I think our time and energy could be better spent doing things we know something about. For people who have lived in the city all their lives, baking bread is as foreign as milking a cow. From all I've read about grain mills, they are extremely tiring to use. I just don't think people need the stress.
I also think it relates to the fact that we are not going to be able to do, eat, live, etc. like we always have. We don't need bread to survive.
I went to an international market today and talked to a Thai who showed me some durham wheat flour that is used to make chappati and such flat bread. I discovered also masa which can be used to make tortillas. Simple- both the flour and masa just need water and can be fried in a pan. Any comments? Mary
-- Mary (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 22, 1999
Wheta flour is not a good long term storage item. Wheat berries last for years if properly stored. You can sprout wheat - great source of vitamins. Lastly, real flour is far more nutritious than the enriched garbage in most stores.
-- RD. ->H (email@example.com), January 22, 1999.
You are taking the correct steps in evaluating what alternatives you want to establish to keep adequate food on the table, just as some people have to look at the fact that they could not possibly have a generator in their 28th floor, inner layer apartment.
-- Mr. Kennedy (y2kPCfixes@MotivatedSeller.com), January 22, 1999.
Mary, you can begin experimenting with sprouting grains & seeds now. Takes no heat, only minimal water. Sprouts are far more nutritious, living whole food, with fresh live enzymes, easier to digest and extract nutrients. Plus, your neighbors won't smell those inticing baking odors advertising your superior preparation ;-)
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-- Leska (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 22, 1999.
Good point on the bread, and one we've considered as well. There are also those who don't have the knuckle and elbow joints of their youth; kneading heavy bread dough is not an option. Besides chappati, nan, pita, tortilla and other flatbreads, starch alternatives are crackers, cornbread and Irish soda bread. Crackers and baking ingredients, properly stored with oxygen absorbers, should last a good while, at least until someone starts a cottage industry. Pillsbury says their regular flour lasts about 18 mos. and wholewheat about 9 mos, even without special treatment. There are both sweet and plain versions of soda bread and if you plug "soda AND bread" into Alta Vista, you'll come up with scores of sites and recipes. Same with "flatbreads."
A note on yeast: Red Star (my favourite brand) says their yeast has been tested up to a year in favourable conditions. (Cool, dark, dry.) They did not test beyond that time, but added that similar European yeasts have kept their strength much longer. There is a caveat: buy the yeast unrefrigerated and keep it unrefrigerated. A sudden change in storing temperature will cause its potency to deteriorate.
It's important to keep starch in your diet and pasta might be an easier alternative than bread for some people. (Wholewheat pasta is best, of course.)
-- Old Git (email@example.com), January 22, 1999.
If nothing else, consider baking bread -- and other uses of grains -- as something to do. Monopoly and Scrabble are fine, but you need a break now and then... If it's winter where you are, there really won't be much else to do -- no TV, no internet, no school for the kids, maybe no job, etc. etc. Grinding grain will mitigate cabin fever.
-- Tom Carey (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 23, 1999.
Mary, I gotta ask this. With all due respect, how are you gonna generate flour in a post event situation without doing the repetitive motion thing? How are you going to grind the wheat?
Enquiring Minds want to know?????
-- nine (email@example.com), January 23, 1999.
What a bunch of crap! My wife - who never baked a loaf of bread before about 3 months ago whipped up some rolls tonight. 5 minutes in the grinder (which I did), 10 (TOTAL) minutes of kneading & an hour of rising, then 20 minutes baking.
With your "can't be bothered" attitude, you're dead. You might consider surrendering now and get it over with.
Second, BREAD is called the STAFF of LIFE for a reason: It is a basic food stuff. Thai noodles are not.
Not so Jolly.
-- Jollyprez (Jolly@prez.com), January 23, 1999.
I do not understand all the people that seem to be going on and on about storing foods but aren't learning how to use them NOW. Do you think you will become an accomplished bread baker...or be able to make any ethnic flatbreads,chappatis,etc. without practice?? We have homesteaded and done for ourselves since our flower child days but are still trying new storage food recipes every week. Can tell you my first pita breads sure didn't have any kind of pocket! I urge everyone to prepare storage food meals several times a week...if nothing comes of Y2K you still will have new skills and eat cheaper in the long run,too. Good luck.
-- Diana R. Smith (windance @train.missouri.prg), January 23, 1999.
What about rice? It's what feeds Asia. You just need water & heat. It stores for a long time, it's good on its own, & mixes well with whatever else you happen to have, meat, veggies, sauces, etc. I'm storing mostly rice & canned foods of all kinds; not bothering with wheat at all.
-- rice eater (firstname.lastname@example.org), January 23, 1999.
Well good for you Ms. Smith. Would you please give these folks some feedback about the problems you ran into your first couple of years in the country. They don't seem to believe me when I tell them it is more work than most city dwellers have ever imagined.
-- Paul Davis (email@example.com), January 23, 1999.