Store This, Not That! by Debbie Kent and Crystal Godfrey gives you practical food storage guidance you can use. It was my good fortune to visit with Debbie Kent for this week’s DestinySurvival Radio program. I’m grateful she took time out of her busy schedule to share insights with you and me.
Crystal and Debbie are proponents of a maxim you’ve probably heard a number of times before. Store what you’ll eat and eat what you store. But how do you make that work for you?
Meet Your Food Storage Helpers
Crystal Godfrey and Debbie Kent have achieved a certain amount of fame, and perhaps you’ve heard of one or both of them. Here’s a little background on each one.
Crystal Godfrey is Referred to as “the rock star of food storage.” She has been featured on BYUTV, LDS LIVING MAGAZINE, and local Morning TV shows. Even though she grew up promising herself she’d never make her family EAT food storage, she is swallowing her words and helping change the negative stigma of food storage…and helping others eat it (along with her and her family!).
Debbie Kent has been actively involved in food storage and preparedness for over 20 years. She has been featured on TV and radio shows and taught seminars all-around the western states where she shares her knowledge of the good, the bad and the sometimes funny truths in the world of preparedness.
Read This, Not That!
With so many books about food storage out there, do we really need another one?
Yes, if it’s based on real world experience, not theory or a sales pitch.
This is an instance where I defer you to the experts. Debbie and Crystal aren’t trying to sell you on some gimmick. They know what they’re talking about, and they’re not afraid to say what they think.
After watching people spend thousands of dollars on storage food that didn’t seem to be in anyone’s best interest, these two ladies teamed up to offer solutions for avoiding mistakes.
Most of their book consists of guidance on a variety of food storage topics. The aim is to meet your needs, no matter your level of experience. You’ll find plenty of recipes for using your storage food, too.
An added attraction is that Store This, Not That! is a colorfully illustrated book which includes several helpful charts.
Broadly speaking, topics covered include…
- Saving money
- 72-hour kits and emergency food
- 90-Day food supply
- Long term food supply
- Doing it yourself
Though Debbie and Crystal are opinionated, this isn’t intended to be a negative book. There may be certain things they believe you shouldn’t store, but they do their best to guide you into tailoring a plan for the best things you should store for your family’s needs.
And that’s what you want, isn’t it?
Get the Right Ingredients for Food Storage Success
The 72-hour kit – It’s probably meant for taking with you if you have to leave home. Therefore, you’ll want to optimize space. Survival food bars take up much less space than MRE’s and cans of food.
When it comes to storing water in your emergency kit, keep in mind water is heavy. Why not have something like the Berkey sport bottle for filtering water?
Debbie and Crystal aren’t fans of MRE’s, and Debbi and I discussed that during our conversation.
90-Day Supply – Food storage doesn’t have to be an all or nothing proposition. Start out simple with a 90-day food supply. It’s a good way to set aside what you normally eat, and you don’t have to spend a lot of money.
The ladies are pragmatic in their approach to stocking up. Diversify. Have food items from various sources, including foods you can put in your freezer and grow in your garden.
Avoid Shortcuts – Several companies sell food storage buckets, but are they what they claim? How can you know if these buckets are adequate for you and your family? Debbie and Crystal say the buckets claiming to offer 30 days of food are a gimmick.
Eating from ready-made storage food buckets is like eating out. And you’d better have plenty of water to reconstitute your food.
A year’s supply of food may not be the right thing for your family for several reasons. Debbie and I talked about that, and it’s spelled out in the book, too.
Common Sense Wisdom – When it comes to dehydrated and freeze dried foods, Crystal and Debbie want you and me to be careful about what we’re getting. Pay close attention to serving sizes and calories because the advertising and product labels may not be telling the whole story.
It’s essential to try various foods to see what you like and don’t like.
Alternative Cooking Methods – These get their share of discussion in the book, including solar cooking. Have more than one means of cooking at the ready. Debbie and Crystal tell why they aren’t fans of alcohol stoves.
Grocery Store Guidance – If you’ve wondered when to buy certain items at the grocery store to get the best deals, this book gives you guidance. For example, did you stock up on baking supplies during the holiday season?
Thoughtful Planning – If you’re one of those people who balks at the idea of planning, keep in mind that having a plan simplifies things. Once you get a routine going, you’ll be more efficient. Food rotation is easier when you store what you normally eat.
So get started. This book will help you with that.
Long Term Food Storage – The chapter on long term storage food is a primer in itself. What is it? How should you use it? This is info you need, especially if you haven’t had much experience with dehydrated and freeze dried foods. You’ll discover how to get the best buys from companies who want to sell you storage food.
You’ll also get info on price comparisons, appearance, taste and texture of various foods for your survival pantry.
Need to know how to make the most of powdered milk, butter, cheese and eggs? Crystal and Debbi help you sift through what you need to know..
Which fruits and vegetables are better canned, rather than freeze dried or dehydrated? Should you buy freeze dried meats? What about herbs and spices?
Don’t avoid storing whole grains. Gluten problems can be minimized when grains are prepared and used properly.
By the way, when Debbie and I talked, she shared a tip about popcorn you won’t want to miss.
I’m glad these ladies don’t shy away from rice and beans. You’ll see from their recipes that a little seasoning and spice can make all the difference.
Ever heard of bean butter? If not, you will when you hear my visit with Debbie or read the book.
If you’re tempted to buy brownie and dessert mixes from storage food companies, make sure you’ve met basic food needs first. If you still want a brownie mix, pay attention to the recommendations set forth in Store This, Not That!.
What about setting aside food and water for your pets? That’s covered briefly as well.
Timing – If you can’t give storage food items optimal storing conditions–a cool, dry place, out of the light–your food may not last as long as advertised. On the other hand, pasta, rice, beans and wheat can last for years. Canned items you buy at the grocery store may last well beyond the presumed expiration date.
But you don’t have to put that to the test. Rotate your food. The book discusses food rotation systems, and Debbie and I talked about that briefly as well.
Recipes You Can Use – If you’re wondering about menu planning and recipes for using storage food, it’s all in the book. You might be surprised by what your family likes.
You’ll appreciate the recipe for easy bread making. Plus, the ladies really do tell you how to make rice and beans interesting and delicious.
While the recipes use shelf stable ingredients, use fresh foods whenever you can. For example, you don’t have to use freeze dried meat, unless there’s no other option. Of course, if you garden, you have a ready supply of fresh vegetables.
Mix it All Together
Food storage doesn’t have to be scary and overwhelming. Experiment now, while things haven’t gotten as bad as they may get.
The book’s final chapter encourages you and me to adopt the DIY mentality. Develop skills in gardening, dehydrating food, canning, and sprouting seeds for food.
Debbie and Crystal want you and me to consider their book as a resource. They want to empower us to trust ourselves, since we’re the best advocates for our families.
I’ve written plenty in this post, but I’ve only shared highlights. Hear my conversation with Debbie Kent by listening to DestinySurvival Radio for February 25, 2016. (Right click to download.)
Get Store This, Not That! by clicking on its title wherever you see it in this post. That takes you to the page where it’s featured, and you can order from there. Also, check out the book’s companion Web site for more info at www.storethisnotthat.com
If you’re serious about making the most of food storage for your family, Store This, Not That! belongs in your survival kitchen collection.