I met Angela Paskett about a year ago at a Food Insurance gathering. It was evident Angela knew her stuff when it came to storing and preserving food. At the time, Angela mentioned she was working on a food storage book. Well, the book is done and here’s what is in it.
by Leon Pantenburg
Book review: Food Storage for Self-Sufficiency and Survival by Angela Paskett
Whenever something gets popular or fashionable, a deluge of books will follow. Currently, preparedness is the rage, due in part to shows like Doomsday Preppers. There are some very good how-to books, and there are some that are nothing more than lists culled from prepper or government websites.
But “Food Storage for Self-Sufficiency and Survival” by Angela Paskett stands out from the rest, and it bears looking into.
Angela has four children and grew up with a mother who canned garden produce, milked goats, cooked from scratch and lived the preparedness lifestyle before it became fashionable. She got serious about storing and preserving food when she had her own family and became concerned about feeding them during potential disasters.
Angela found that storing food is more than an emergency plan.
“It is a means by which my family can be self-sufficient every day of the year,” she writes, “regardless of whether we have to deal with an emergency situation or not.”
Angela started her blog foodstorageandsurvival.com about five years ago, and now she has followers worldwide.
Food Storage is not a cookbook (thought there are some great recipes in it) or a complete survival manual. It is a nuts-and-bolts guide for storing food.
Here’s some of the high points:
Storing food for 72-hour emergency kits, short and long term situations. The needs for these different situations will vary, and the book advises on what foods to have ready.
The book also recommends normal, inexpensive grocery store foods that last a long time, or that supply critical calories.
Cooking these foods receives a separate section. The book takes the reader from the basic hole in the ground Dakota fire hole to more sophisticated methods. I was pleased to see the Kelly Kettle and Solo Stove biomass stoves mentioned. (Click here to learn how to make a biomass stove out of bricks. And check out the SilverFire line of biomass stoves.)
Water: On of the first things people will miss during an emergency is drinking water. Recently, in Portland, Oregon, there was a 24-hour boil advisory for the entire city while the water department dealt with E-coli. Within hours, store shelves were empty of bottled water.
Food Storage tells how to purify and store water in practical, affordable containers. The book talks about storage techniques that will maximize usable space, and work for people in whatever environment they may be in.
Water filters is another area I’m really interested in and Angela mentions some of my favorites, such as the LifeStraw and the Katadyn Hiker Pro.
Preserving your own food is an area where Food Storage really shines. Canning is
becoming popular again, and Angela is a master canner. She gives solid advice on getting started, what equipment is needed, and techniques for preserving different foods.
Other useful sections include tips on drying or dehydrating fruits, vegetables and meats.
Before you can store anything, you have to have food to store. Angela discusses sustainable food storage, makes some gardening recommendations and talks about hunting and foraging.
This book is not a stand-alone survival/preparedness book. But it is informative, an easy read, and packed with information for newcomers and experienced prepper types. Angela writes in an engaging, informative style that is very appealing, and you’ll find yourself drawn into the subject.
Probably the best use would be as a gift to someone who is considering food storage as part of a larger preparedness plan. If a newcomer knows nothing, they have to begin somewhere, and this book is a good first step.