I’m no fan of the grocery store. So I keep two freezers and a well stocked pantry.
One freezer is mostly for meat and the other is for fruits, vegetables, bread and other assorted foods. Throughout the year both freezers are in a constant state of flux. As one is emptied the other is filled again. I try to have both freezers low on food at the beginning of June to coincide with the summer garden. But sometimes that isn’t always possible. Especially if a cow,a pig or a couple of lambs have recently been butchered and put into the freezers.By November 1st I like to have both freezers and pantries well stocked for the coming winter and following spring. That’s the time when food is scarce.
It may sound strange to you, but if I had to choose between owning a freezer or a refrigerator, I’d give up my refrigerator before I’d get rid of one of my freezers.
To my way of thinking a freezer is a much more practical electric appliance than a refrigerator. I can live very well without a refrigerator, but not without a freezer.Here’s why.
Most foods are best when consumed fresh.
In fact a pretty effective argument can be made for always eating as fresh as possible and to avoid overly processed foods with a long shelf life. Many foods can be kept at room temperature for a few days to a week before any sign of spoilage begins.
Fresh eggs can sit out on a counter top and have a very long shelf life. Hard cheeses and breads do well as long as they are wrapped tight.
Potatoes, onions, squash, apples, oranges, celery, cabbage and many other common foods really never need refrigeration.
Dairy foods such as milk, yogurt, and soft cheese should be kept cool. Beer, fruit juice and soda pop are best served cold.
Happily those foods can be stored in a large cooler.
Meats and other foods from a freezer can be easily defrosted and consumed as needed.
The way that the Old Order Amish here in my corner of Pennsylvania keep their dairy foods cold is with ice. They use a cooler or an old refrigerator that doesn’t run.
The Amish who use a broken refrigerator will buy bagged ice in town. That ice is then put into a large plastic dish pan or tub on the top shelf of the refrigerator and the food is placed on the lower shelves.
Depending upon the time of the year and how often the refrigerator door is opened, the ice is usually replaced every few days to once a week. During very hot weather the ice has to be replaced much more often.
Of course during the winter food can be kept in a cold pantry, in a cold attic, on a cold porch or in a cold box that is fitted to a window.
When you have a freezer you can make the ice necessary to keep things cold. With ice you can keep your perishable food in a cooler or in an ice box.
I’m a food storage fanatic.I always store at least one year’s worth of food and supplies.
Long-term food storage is best accomplished by stockpiling foods by at least two different methods. Canning and freezing are the two methods I most often employ.
A large freezer (or two in my case) allows for the long-term storage of food and preserves the taste and texture of many foods much better than canning. Some foods like broccoli, cabbage or egg-plant should only be frozen and never canned.
A large freezer can be easily maintained during an electrical power outage with a generator and some common sense.
If for some reason a power outage should last weeks instead of days, most foods in my freezer can be canned in an orderly manner.
The foods that can only be frozen (like egg-plant or broccoli) will have to be eaten promptly or fed to pigs or chickens.
But that’s not a real problem in the big scheme of things.
Give me the choice between a freezer or a refrigerator – and I’ll pick the freezer every time.
If you ask me, a refrigerator is an expensive and overrated modern convenience that most people think of as a necessity. There are much cheaper ways to store milk, ketchup, onions, lunch meat and beer.