Today's Quote


“If people let government decide what foods they eat and what medicines they take, their bodies will soon be in as sorry a state as are the souls of those who live under tyranny.” Thomas Jefferson

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Meat without Refrigeration

Meat is tricky without refrigeration. Many people eat more meatless meals, but you can still have meat. Living on a farm your meat stays fresh as long as it is still running around the pasture and yard. But what do you do when it is no longer running free. Well, there are some things. You cannot store raw meat for long periods of time without refrigeration, it is dangerous. However, you can store meat. If you butcher then you may can your meat. I like to go ahead an make up lots of soups and stews and such and then can it. Some people like to just can the meat and then use it for whatever. Canning meat is a delicate process as it can spoil ( becoming deadly) very easily. Get a good manual on how to can meat (Backwoods Home has several good articles) and then follow them precisely. Knowing exact temps is a must to canning meat. Jellies and such you can eyeball, but don't with meat. You can also salt cure meat. This is the old method of sticking your meat in a bucket of salt and letting it sit. It is a good way to preserve meat, but sure makes for a salty diet. Definitely not for those with high blood pressure. However, salt cured meat has a long shelf life especially if the outside temperatures are cool. Smoked meat is another good way of preserving meat. Again following temperatures and length of time in the smokehouse to properly preserve the meat. You can also dehydrate the meat using either a food dehydrator, or a slow open fire with the meat hung over the fire to dry. This is also called making jerky. Dried meat can be reconstituted to a certain extent, but is best used in stews and soups where it has a chance to be in a liquid for long periods of time. Even then it is a little chewy and not quite like fresh. Chickens are great farm animals, because you can butcher, cook and eat. No storage required. Same thing for meat rabbits. Of course larger animals like hogs and cows might require some thinking about what you are gonna do with the meat. I recommend a combination of all of the above with these animals. Remember you would get real tired of eating the same thing day in and day out over the winter months. So we are still seeing it is possible to live without refrigeration, even when it comes to something as tricky as meat.

7 comments:

ms/dark said...

This is great information for survival. This advice will be very benefitial if the stock market collapse.

Citizen Journalist said...

Canning meat is not the only option. Our ancestors all used salt curing of meats for generations. Simply bury the meat in sea salt (without iodide), and allow all the moisture to drain out. This will create a preserving brine solution that can keep fish and meats for months on end. Be sure that if you are using fatty meats you soak in alcohol first, as this will pull fats out of the eat meat that would otherwise go rancid at room temperature. Other successful methods include smoking (which involves carcinogens so it may not be the best option), curing (which often involves harmful nitrates), aging (which takes on a pretty ripe smell at times due to allowing some of the meat to partially decompose), and of course canning, which could kill you. I vote for salt.

Kat said...

You are right, canning is not the only option. I can, however, be the easiest for most people. Salt curing can take some time at the right temperature, especially for large pieces of meat like a ham. You don't need to soak the meat in alcohol. Properly cured the salt will cure the fat as well. Salt curing can be time consuming though. I think I will do a post on how we cured our hams. Thanks for reading and commenting. It was a good update to this post. Thanks, Kathryn

Mur said...

Hey Kat do you think you will do a post on curing your hams?? I sure would be interested!

Thanks,

Murray

Linda said...

Have you thought about goats? Their meat won't take up as much storage space as a cow, and I have heard that they also don't use as much acreage per pound of meat as cattle do.

Kat said...

Linda, welcome to my blog. Yes, we have goats and they don't take as much feed per pound as a cow would. They also reach butcher weight in a much shorter period of time. However, a good sized goat will still yield more meat than you could eat in a day or two so some sort of preservation is needed. I wouldn't recommend salt curing goat as it is a very very lean meat. It dries for jerky quite well though and also cans well. Keep reading and you will get to see all our goat antics. Blessings and again welcome, Kat

Unknown said...


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