Is that a thing, I wonder? Can one hoard too much food? I’ve always felt better when my kitchen cupboards and freezers are full, but with the impending food shortages and price hikes I’ve kicked it up a gear. I’m bordering on survivalist prepper. Most people my age use the freezer for ice cream and vodka and think I’m mad to have KGs of chicken and leftovers in the freezer … until we’ve finished the vodka and everyone is a little peckish and I can pull out a whole mezze platter chop-chop like. Then I’m the queen!
The fact that I’m a food hoarder became obvious to me when I had to evacuate the kitchen to make space for the renovations. I have boxes of stored food. I think it’s inherited. My Mom has always stored food too. That’s how we know for sure the size of a condensed milk can has reduced in the last 10 years. Yup - that’s why your fudge doesn’t come out quite the same as it used to.
I just don’t see how it can be weird or unnecessary to buy extra supplies when things are on special. Then when you are low on cash you still have food. Recently we’ve been stocking up on extra basics like flour, sugar, vinegar, butter, dried beans, salt, bicarbonate of soda - things I can’t make or produce myself. Everything is going to get more expensive, it has already started, so I’m not even waiting for the specials at the moment. If we have the basics we can make anything.
I preserve a lot of fruit and veg and the vinegar and sugar are essential for this. You can extend the life of almost any fresh produce with these ingredients, a big pot and a few glass bottles. Mason jars are coming back into fashion as more people start bottling again. Look around for Consol or Ball jars. You can buy new lids and all your bottles are the same so they pack neatly. I still reuse product jars though, so I have some to give away or trade. I prefer the Consol to the Ball jars, mostly because Consol is a South African company, but I have to admit that the Ball lids seal better at the moment.
I’ve been making my own bread because I think it is nicer than supermarket bread. Also I can make thin ‘buns’ sort of like pita bread but just a little thicker. These are great for sandwiches and homemade burgers. This cuts down on unnecessary bread, there is just enough to hold all the good bits together, and they have a lovely crust you don’t get on sliced bread. Also - I know what ingredients I’ve put in it. That makes me happy.
This is were I would have inserted picture of my beautiful homemade bread. But we ate it all. Sorry. Next time I bake I’ll be sure to post a pic.
Here’s my recipe. It’s nothing fancy but it is tried and tested. I make a big batch and freeze extra so there is always a bread roll or loaf on hand - just as if you were buying it from the supermarket. This bread freezes well. If you know you’re going to freeze it you can bake the bread till it’s just done and then pop it back in the oven when you’ve defrosted it to finish it off and give it that just-baked freshness. This bread + a dollop of Mom’s homemade apricot jam = HEAVEN.
The recipe is from my recipe book. I’ve been updating it and writing in all the recipes I had laying around on scraps of paper and serviettes. I’ve found so many recipes I forgot I had. If you like this one I’ll be sure to share a few more with you in the future.