Developing Culinary Resilience

Processing a chicken

The tips we’ve discussed over the last couple of days have touched upon the topic of culinary resilience. “What do I do if I want to make pancakes and I come up lacking eggs, milk or baking powder?” This has prompted me to delve more this topic. Resilience in the kitchen is something that Jerreth and I have worked on for decades.

What is culinary resilience?

We’re talking about the ability to prepare and enjoy good food while experiencing the vicissitudes of life. Things happen! Often they affect how we live. The goal of resilience is to be flexible enough to still enjoy life, while dealing with the unexpected circumstances it throws your way. Perhaps you run out of something and can’t run to the store right away. Can you make do in the meantime? Can you prepare and enjoy nutritious, delicious food: if you can’t get out for some time, or if there is a power outage for more than a few hours? What if you go through a time of economic difficulty? A major part of being well throughout the surprises life presents is summed by the term “culinary resilience.”

Why would anyone want to develop culinary resilience?

I can think of a couple of reasons why this is important.

  • Food sustains health and life. We need it to survive.
  • Good food makes life more enjoyable and stress more endurable. I remember some years ago when we had a major ice storm and went 10 days without electricity. Our family was pretty well prepared for it. We ate like kings the whole time. I have fond memories of everyone sleeping by the wood stove and reading together by candle light.

Youtube: Hobbits Enjoy Good Food Amid Rack and Ruin

  • Developing culinary resilience will save you money.

Some simple steps toward culinary resilience

  • Learn to cook. Mind you, as with so many other important things, you don’t learn to cook when a crisis arises. One needs to work at learning, little by little over time. Then, when a crisis arises, this important skill will help greatly.

  • Have a couple of weeks’ worth of staples on hand. Staples (basic ingredients) are far more economical and store much better than do prepackaged foods.

Good resource for further study: Recession Proof Your Pantry

Some staples to have on hand:

flour
cornmeal
salt
beans & legumes
shortening (oil, lard, etc.)
sugar/honey/molasses
baking soda
canned tomatoes, vegetables, etc.
baking soda & baking powder
catsup, spices, hot sauce, etc.

canned beans, canned goods
Canned goods are great for preparedness, whether they be home canned or store purchased.
  • Have a stash of drinkable water.

  • Have an alternative manner of cooking on hand. (crock pot, wood stove, LP gas camp stove, solar oven etc.) Remember, if you lose power, some things won’t work. Have alternatives.

Here’s an LP gas cook stove we keep on hand for power outages

  • Have an extra bottle of dish detergent and an extra scrubby on hand.

  • Have one or two plastic dishpans on hand, in case you lose running water.

The best way to develop culinary resiliency is to work at it in a low key manner, over time. Make it fun, make it an adventure.

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