Thursday, October 16, 2014

DEHYDRATED GREEN BEANS - Dehydrating and cooking with frozen foods

We eat a ton of green beans at my house. I grow it, buy it, and freeze it.
When it comes to canning my own food, I mainly focus on meat. The reason being... I would MUCH rather put my energy, time, and money into something that would be considered most valuable in our diet.
Meat would be a commodity during a crisis, because without refrigeration, unless a person had stored it canned or dried, there wouldn't be any available. For those of us who live in town, raising livestock, or hunting would be unrealistic.
And of course, if you're vegetarian, your focus would be on protein substitutes.

 When I learned about dehydrating, I knew that my problems were solved. Without wasting all of my canning jars on green beans, I now had a way to preserve it without taking up any precious time and space. In the photo above, the amount of green beans in that ONE QUART sized jar, would have normally taken up the space of at least 5 or more jars. Not to mention, a jar of dehydrated beans is practically weightless.

 I buy my green beans frozen at Sams Wholesale. The bag shown is 5 pounds, no preservative or additives. Just plain green beans.

With my 5 tray dehydrator, I managed to spread out about 4 pounds of the frozen beans. I left it on all night and checked on it the next day. No work involved. Simple. Since we technically can't "over dry" the beans, I left it in the machine till practically noon. I wanted to make sure the beans were thoroughly dried.

 Speaking of noon, I needed to make a QUICK lunch. From the stash, I added a handful of green beans to a bowl.

 Adding water, I waited about 15 minutes. This really depends on how firm, or soft you want your beans. In this case, I wanted to create a fast and simple meal using my dehydrated beans.

The beans returned almost to their original state within 15 minutes.
 Here's a comparison of the rehydrated beans, and a dehydrated bean at the bottom.

Since I needed a quick meal, I opted for stir fry. I use leftover meat and whatever vegetables I have on hand. In this case, I sliced some beef sausage, chopped an onion, seasoned with salt, pepper, cayenne, and a handful of dehydrated bell peppers. I'm mainly using the bell peppers for seasoning and want some of it to retain its firmness.

During an emergency situation I could easily prepare this meal with what I have stored in my cabinets. No fresh ingredients are needed. Just add canned beef or chicken, some dehydrated vegetables, a little oil, and fry over a hot iron skillet.

A person could eat like a king during a SHTF scenario. All it takes is planning ahead and storing the food properly.

 This dish is also good for those on diet restrictions, as you can add whichever ingredients you want for each family member.

Even better, you can stretch this meal over a bed of rice.
Do you have a recipe that you fix completely with dehydrated foods? I would love to hear your ideas! You are welcome to comment here, or  come join our family on Facebook!

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