An in-home freeze-dryer can save you thousands of dollars a year by allowing you to take advantage of the abundance of harvests. In an era where food prices are skyrocketing (with no end in sight), a significant portion of the world going hungry, and the food supply chain being consistently disrupted by drought and natural disasters, it seems a shame to waste good soil just because there isn’t anyone to eat what can be produced.
Freeze-drying is the safest, simplest way to preserve your garden produce. With the advent of spring, gardeners everywhere are getting their plots ready and are planning what to grow. Instead of scaling back, consider scaling up with plans to freeze-dry, or otherwise preserve, the extra to use in the winter or in an emergency.
Speaking of emergency food, if you’re building an emergency food supply be aware that commercially packaged freeze-dried food may include ingredients you don’t want in your food such as sodium nitrite, maltodextrin, monosodium glutamate, high-fructose corn syrup, hydrolyzed corn gluten, trans fats, methylcyclopropene, astaxanthin, corn starch, food colorings, olestra and more.
You can freeze-dry virtually any food including meat, dairy and any fruits or vegetables. Think about freeze drying snacks your harvest in the summer and fall and using it in the winter or spring for up to 25 years :
- Bell peppers
- Green beans
- All summer and winter squashes
- Apricots, peaches and nectarines
- All berries
- Spinach (for use in soups and casseroles)
- Herbs for use as ingredients in recipes
This is by no means an exhaustive list, but hopefully it helps you start thinking about how to extend your resources beyond the growing season. When one has come out of a long winter, it’s easy to forget that there is another one just a few months ahead. Plan your summer garden to accommodate the recipes you most use in the fall and winter and you’ll save money at the grocery, enjoy better food year-round, and have a stash of preservative free fruits and vegetables for years to come.