Friday, October 14, 2011

You know, normally I say if it has a label, don't eat it. However - that doesn't always realistically allow for having stuff on hand when you need it - because you just plain ran out, or because an unexpected expense came up and you spent your grocery money at the auto mechanic's, or because a natural disaster happened and disrupted the food supply...

Over the years I have looked into storage foods to deal with these situations. I was never able to find what I really wanted until now, though. I did not want unpalatable food I wouldn't eat except in an emergency, and would have to throw out and replace when the emergency hadn't happened. I did not want a food plan built around meals I didn't like and high-carb fillers put in because manufacturers find pasta convenient.

I wanted good, wholesome, natural FOOD with no additives, no preservatives, no added ingredients. Food that is shelf-stable and yet when opened will be GOOD to eat, GOOD tasting and GOOD nutritionally. Food that is just, well, FOOD. Basic ingredients you cook with, using your own recipes. Green Beans. Carrots. Apples. Strawberries. Chicken. Beef. (They do have a few Entrees available, but that's really not their focus.)

I discovered a company - Shelf Reliance - that produces high quality natural freeze-dried foods - THRIVE foods! I tried their green beans first - and was seriously impressed. Freeze-dried food retains the shape, texture and nutrition of the fresh food, removing only the water. When I added hot water to the beans, they became green beans. Ready to eat, right then, in my opinion, although other people might like them cooked more than I cook them. (I'm into fresh, minimally cooked. If you like them cooked to death, go ahead - I'm sure they'll come out just the way you like them.)

Not only were they delicious - the remaining beans in the package will be good to eat for a long time (like 2 years! Opened). Just store airtight, dark and dry. They will not get freezer burned. They will not thaw out when my motor home freezer decides to be less than efficient in the heat of the summer. They will not become science experiments in the back of my fridge.

So I looked into the company and decided to become an Independent Shelf Reliance Consultant so I could share this discovery with others.

My kit arrived last night, and I spent the evening checking the shipment and studying the materials and all those things a new Consultant needs to do.

But this morning, I get to play with the food! I already know that the veggies and fruits will be yummy, so I started with some things I was skeptical about. Like Whole Eggs. I'm picky about eggs. In the name of product knowledge, I fixed breakfast.

Once again, I am impressed. I reconstituted enough egg powder for 2 eggs and made scrambled eggs. I had figured they'd be good for baking - but that they are good all by themselves as scrambled eggs was a very pleasant surprise. Next time I'll make up more eggs! They were quite yummy!

Another thing about THRIVE foods is that most of them are available in 3 sizes: #10 cans (gallon), Pantry Cans (5.5" high, 4" diameter), and Mylar Pouch. (a pouch of green beans contains 7 servings). The Pantry Cans are excellent for those of us who live in RVs and have limited storage space. The pouches are great for camping. The # 10 cans, of course, are the best value per serving and truly excellent for serious food storage.

Please make sure that you see
Jane Cassidy Store
in the upper right of the website before you place an order with Shelf Reliance. (That way you'll get the best pricing and I'll get credit!) Or email me for more information at shelfreliance@buffalo-woman.com.
Or come back here, where I'll be reporting on my continued adventures with these foods.