When looking for egg storage solutions, dehydrating eggs at home flies right past many people. Eggs are one of the most nutritional and versatile foods around. From a remote homestead, to a backyard with a coop, they are easily accessible. Even without refrigeration they can last for weeks and still be edible. By refrigerating eggs that shelf life can be extended by several more weeks, maybe even a couple of months. For longer term storage some people freeze their eggs. By separating the whites and yolks, freezing them separately, eggs can last for up to 6 months. Still, for the long term Prepper that still isn’t an ideal situation. First off, freezing eggs is dependent on the electrical grid. If it goes down you loose refrigeration and the eggs that are dependent upon it. Secondly, 6 months just isn’t long enough. They are looking for solutions that will last for years and should try DIY Dehydrated Eggs.
Dehydrating eggs at home is an easy and viable solution for the Prepper looking for a that length of storage. Most people simply turn to a commercially available product such as those provided by Mountain House and Saratoga Farms. These freeze dried eggs have a shelf life of 30 years. They can be expensive though. For others, this is not an option because they do have their own flock which provide eggs for most of the year. Still, they are looking for a longer term solution as security against the loss of their flock and their egg laying capabilities. For people who can not afford freeze dried eggs or do have their own flocks and are looking to store their extra eggs, dehydrating eggs at home is a good solution.
There are two methods for dehydrating eggs at home. One method calls for pan scrambling the eggs before dehydrating them. The other calls for dehydrating beaten uncooked eggs. After consideration, I rejected the first method. The reason being that the only thing the first method yields when reconstituted is scrambled eggs. They can not be used for baking which makes them much less versatile. Read on to learn how to go about dehydrating eggs at home:
|You’ll need the following:
|Step 1: Break the eggs into the bowl. Use the whisk to thoroughly beat the eggs. The better you beat the eggs, the better the consistency of the final product.Step 2: Pour the beaten eggs onto the dehydrator’s fruit leather trays. In my NESCO Dehydrator, each tray will hold about 4 eggs. You may have to experiment to see how much yours will hold. Be sure to place the dehydrator where you are going to use it before filling the tray. You do not want to move it with full trays or you’ll make a mess. Additionally, make sure the dehydrator is level to keep your eggs from spilling. Use the spatula to even out the eggs on the tray.|
|Step 3: Set the temperature to 135 degrees Fahrenheit, and dehydrate for 16 to 18 hours. Once they are done they will form a thin crackled film on the trays. The surface will also look oily but don’t let that alarm you as it is normal.Step 4: Take the dehydrated eggs and place them in your food processor, blender, or spice grinder. Use the pulse function to grind the eggs up into a fine power. I used a food processor (shown left) to process mine and it did a good enough job but it seems like a spice grinder would be the ideal device for this process. The color of the egg powder will be a deep yellow (seen below).|
|Step 5: Place the egg powder in an airtight container. If you have any desiccant packages, you can drop them into the container as well to absorb the moisture. These eggs should last for up to 5 years without refrigeration and even longer when if kept in the fridge or freezer.|
Using the dehydrated eggs
1 Tbsp of Dehydrated Eggs = 1 Egg
Remember when handling the reconstituted eggs that they are still raw eggs. Salmonella is a real threat if they are not handled properly and food prep items are not thoroughly cleaned. All safe food handling precautions should be followed both before and after DIY Dehydrated Eggs are reconstituted.
After I submitted my article “How To Make Water Proof Matches,” Andrew asked me if I’d be willing to post some pics and descriptions of my home made fire making kit. I said sure. So, for your viewing pleasure and critique, here is my
|Here is the kit itself. The plastic container was purchased at Hobby Lobby for $1 USD. It measures 5.5in x 5.5in x 1.5in, and has a hinged lid. It is not waterproof; more on that later.|
|The next photo shows the kit opened up. There are 5 compartments, 1 larger center compartment and 4 smaller ones. I’ve numbered them for ease of identification in this article.# 1 A portion of the strike strip from a box of wooden matches. I used spray on contact glue to affix it to the inside of the lid.|
|#2 60 home made water proof matches. Click here to read the Prepography pictorial article on how to make them yourself. They are wrapped in a bit of aluminum foil to keep them from rattling around in the compartment,|
|#3 2 tea light candles and the instructions for the magnesium fire started that is in the kit. The candles came from a bag full of misc candles purchased at a local thrift store. I needed something to keep them from rattling around in their compartment, so I used the fire starter instructions. These instructions are made from card stock and folded to take up the extra space and keep the candles quiet. There’s also an added benefit to including them, not only do they provide instructions for the person who does not know how to use the fire starter…but in a pinch the card board can be used as tinder.|
|#4 Magnesium fire starter and a length of braided hemp rope. The fire starter came from Harbor Freight Tools and cost around $3 USD. It’s not the best one on the market, it does the job, though. The rope can be used as tinder. I wrap it around the fire starter to keep it from rattling around.
Andrew’s Note: Make sure to test your fire starter as there have been reports of counterfeit, non-working models being imported in recent years. Testing it will take several tries as there is usually a coating or varnish you must get through.
|#5 12 Vaseline covered cotton balls in a snack size Zip-lock bag. These make great accelerators for starting fires in damp conditions. Folded up, the bag fits perfectly in it’s compartment. The cost for this item was negligible, as everything came from the cabinet and pantry.|
|#6 2 lighters and 30in x12in piece of aluminum foil. One lighter is a Bic Mini ($1 USD). The other is a light anywhere lighter I got from Survival Life ($4 USD) It has a steel striker with a cotton wick that fits inside the lighter. The lighter is filled with butane. The striker is struck on a magnesium rod that is on the side of the lighter. It works very well. In my other fire kits, I have 2 bic lighters. The aluminum foil can be used for many purposes; gathering water, cooking, signaling, etc. It also keeps the lighters in place when in the kit.|
The kit has multiple ways to start a fire when needed, and are usable as they are. There are a couple of improvements I am going to make, though. The first is going to be to add some char cloth to the kit. I need to make it, writing a Prepography How-To article in the process. The second improvement will be to water proof the kit. I am going to do this by taking electrician’s tape and wrapping it around the case, along the seam where the lid and body meet. Not only will this help water proof the kit, but the tape could come in handy in a survival situation.
If you’ve made it this far, let me know what you think. Is there something I missed, or that you would change? Feel free to comment below.
|“How To Make Water Proof Matches” Materials:||
|1) Fill the pot with about 3/4 inches of water. Take the candle and put them in the tin can, and place it in the pot. Put the put on the stove and turn on to medium heat. Allow the water to heat up to a point right before it starts boiling, in order to melt the candles.|
|2) Once the candles have melted, take the matches and dip them head down in to the wax. The wax should cover about 1/2 the match.|
|3) Stick the dipped match in to the Styrofoam, and allow the wax to cool down.4) Repeat steps 2 and 3 several times, until each match has a good coating.|
|Use – Now that you have learned how to make water proof matches, to use them, simply take your finger nail and scrape the wax from the tip of the match head. Strike the match on an appropriate surface to light.Storage: Store your with your fire making kit, or some other easily accessible place. Mine (seen at the left) are wrapped in tin foil and are part of my fire making kit.|
Andrew’s Note: The same process works with Strike Anywhere Matches or turn your strike on the box matches into Strike Anywhere Matches using this technique. As one who’s been out in the wild with strike on box matches and a disintigrating box consider the more versatile but much harder to find and slightly more expensive Strike Anywhere Matches if possible.
I just bought my Survival Summit download and if you want to get yours before the pricing goes up to $97 buy it before 6PM Central Time 1/30/2014. I’ve only listened to 5 hours of the seminars so far but have already more than received my money’s worth.
Been checking out the online Survival Summit the past two days (missed Monday due to a family event) and it’s worth checking out. Watched about 5 hours of the presentations so far and they were good enough that I took copious notes. Presenters are well versed in their topics and I’ve had a chance to hear from a few writers I’ve followed for a number of years. Best of all the price is right!
That first day I missed the permiculture guy I’ve started following lately and a few others I wanted to see so I’ll probably end up buying the DVD but you can watch each day’s presentations free just by registering. Check it out!
Andrew’s Note: When I was a kid I always carried a bandana…maybe it’s time to start again. Looks like these guys who built the 60 Bandana Uses Infographic aren’t around on the internet anymore so there’s no link back to the source website.
Andrew’s Note: A few years ago I took a group of kids out to the woods, broke them down into several groups and challenged them to build a campfire. I had a prize waiting for the first group to successfully start their campfire…it was a very long wait. Knowing how to build a campfire was skill nearly every child learned when I was a kid…not so anymore. This is a critically important skill that’s key to protecting yourself from the elements in cold weather…pass it on.
In the article, Introduction to Full Spectrum Preparedness Doctrine we briefly discussed the ten fundamentals of preparedness, how they overlap and interact as well as how each fundamental has four aspects. Today we’re going to establish some conventions to aid us in our future discussions of how long to prepare for.
I’m working on a probability model (if you’re a mathematician and want to help please contact me) to help those readers that are mathematically inclined chose how long to prepare for…but for today’s discussion we’re going to simplify things a little and talk about preparedness time horizons. For convenience, I’ve broken the time horizons down into ‘Preparedness Levels.’
While there’s no reason a person, family or group couldn’t prepare to different levels in different fundamentals…you should keep in mind that your overall preparedness level is that of your ‘lowest level’ preparedness fundamental. For example: if your family is prepared to Level III, Weeks in every fundamental except Health (where you are prepared to Level I) than your overall preparedness level is Level I, Days.
Take a look at the graphic to the right to remind yourself of what the aspects of the Full Spectrum Preparedness Fundamental are. You can review the 10 Fundamentals of Full Spectrum Preparedness HERE if need be or look at the Graphic towards the end of this article.. Keep in mind as you read about the Preparedness Levels that different aspects become more or less dominant at different Preparedness Levels and factor that into your preparedness planning.
You and your family are unable to get through the next 72 hours without making purchases, borrowing from others or seeking charity. Perhaps your life sustaining prescription is about to run out, your pantry is almost bare or you don’t have a source of safe, potable water if the tap suddenly stops working. (more…)
Preparation through education is less costly than learning through tragedy.
Max Mayfield, Director National Hurricane Center
This article will provide a brief introduction to Risk Management for Preparedness, but it’s techniques can be applied to every aspect of your life.
We each do Risk Management every day of our lives, often without even being consciously aware of the process. Some examples of day-to-day Risk Management are:
The above are some examples of informal Risk Management. Risk Management can also be performed as a deliberate process. The deliberate process is better suited to riskier, more complex activities and operations and is a relatively easy process to learn if you take the time to practice it. In this article I’m going to discuss the U.S. Army’s way of doing Risk Management but simplify it a little and show you how this process can aid you in your preparedness planning and execution.
Note: For those of you familiar with the Army’s Composite Risk Management Process (CRM) I’ve modified the model to better support preparedness planning and survival situations. Also, I’m going to stop short of discussing the CRM Matrix. If there’s enough interest in this topic I’ll do a more advanced article explaining the use of that tool and perhaps tailoring a Risk Matrix specifically to help Prepography readers focus their preparedness efforts and keep safe in disasters, post collapse or survival situations.
As mentioned above the U.S. Army calls their program Composite Risk Management and applies the process to every operation and activity. The Army describes Composite Risk Management as “a decision-making process used to mitigate risks associated with all hazards that have the potential to injure or kill personnel, damage or destroy equipment, or otherwise impact mission effectiveness.”
As a prepper you can use this same tool, apply this same process to your preparedness efforts. This process can help the prepper with decisions as simple as deciding what type of backup heating to install in your home or to a decision as big and complex as deciding how long of a time period you need to prepare your family for. (more…)