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Using a root cellar

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Since I store what I grow, and eat what I store, I use root cellars. Working with root cellars is a little different than just going to the store or even to the freezer for meals. Food stored in root cellars are stored in a way that only slows down the process that breaks them down. Basically the food will continue to deteriorate, but slower than if it were stored above ground. I can usually get most of the root cellared food to store into March and some of it into April, but it takes vigilance. I have to check the cellars a couple times a week in the beginning and by early February, they need daily inspections. I am looking for food going bad; a soft spot on a squash, a bit of shriveling on a potato, or a brown spot on an apple. The minute I see a piece of less-than-ideal food, I quickly get it out of the cellar and cook it up. If left in the cellar, one bad apple can destroy every apple in the cellar, plus many other foods in storage. You can lose an entire cellar of food by not keeping an eye on what is stored. This means I don't make the decision on what I am eating for the day, the contents of the cellar does.

This morning I had a few apples that had a bit of shrivel to them, so I mixed them with some milled oats I traded for, sunflower seeds I grew, added some cinnamon from the pantry, and maple syrup that I canned last spring and made a nice granola-like trail snack. I always find comfort in knowing that I have the skills to work with what I have to feed me and mine from the land around me.
Food Ingredient Recipe Cuisine Dish
Food Plant Rolled oats Ingredient Mixture
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