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  Black Bean Chowder . . . Recipe  


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Why Food Storage?
    Survivors of the Great Depression of the 1930ís learned to save. They still wind string into balls, save glass jars, and accumulate plastic containers as well. Canned peaches, pears, preserves, tomatoes, jams, and jellies as well as sacks of potatoes and onions, filberts and walnuts for cracking, a basket or two of apples, and a case of ripening pears fill their well-stocked pantries in anticipation of tornados, blizzards, and economic crises. In a mostly rural America butchering and pickling, plucking and picking were part of their everyday life. The stores they put away would last well into the next growing and hunting season and beyond. The mere two to three day supply of food in most American city dwellersí homes today would have been cause for concern in pre-World War II rural America.

    WWII followed the Great Depression. That meant ration stamps that curtailed gasoline, meat, and sugar consumption. Planting a Victory Garden was a patriotic duty. Many Americans still have memories of what it means to do without.

    The second half of the 20th century, marked a time of unparalleled prosperity despite the Cold War nuclear threat, the Korean Conflict, Vietnam, the Gas Crunch (thatís when Americans lined up for gas on odd and even days), and the Gulf War. The computerized robotic monsters of sci-fi fiction could be defeated. But we never dreamed how the benign omission of two digits from computer chips capable of outperforming the World Grand Master Chess Champion could cause so much concern called Y2k. How could such a blessing harbor such a curse? Or could it also be a blessing in disguise to motivate some wise preparation for any number of unexpected challenges to the uninterrupted flow of food to our tables.

MODERN SURVIVAL CASE #1
    Just before WWI, Annie Greggís family migrated westward from Indiana to Washington State, lost their accumulated cash on a land deal gone sour, and eventually settled on a rented farm on the Yakima Indian reservation. When her best friend died in 1925, she unhesitatingly took in two motherless children. Two years later her own husband died. She found herself widowed, with twelve children of her own. Her sons and daughters still recite the ditty:

Soup, soup, we all love soup.
Take a bowl and drain it,
Let your whiskers strain it,
Any kind of soup will do.

The farm crops, the garden, the chickens, the cows, the hogs, and the steer sustained them.
    Fending off the Washington Children's Association official standing in her doorway was her challenge of the moment. He was attempting to serve papers authorizing the institutionalizing of some of her "orphans." While her younger children may have appeared a bit ragged as they kicked stones on their way home from school, they certainly werenít starved. Poorer children ate parched corn from their lunchboxes. "The Greggs," she contended, "could very well take care of themselves." During the depression, many hungry people came by the Gregg farm in search of food. Annie fed them all. She walked in the same faith by which she had initially received Christ as her Lord and Savior. She could be generous to others because she had a God who was generous to her.*



MODERN SURVIVAL CASE #2
   
When one visits Melana at her dacha (country house) outside St. Petersburg, Russia, one begins to appreciate why the Russians are known as a suffering and surviving people. Her aged mother, Maria, can still describe conditions in Leningrad (the communist name for St. Petersburg) during the 900 day Nazi siege. Between December 1941 and April 1942, 3500 people died of starvation every day. Bread rations were reduced to 4.4 oz per person. No city in modern history has suffered so much loss of life and deprivation. 

   Now a widow with four grown children and several grandchildren, Melana is a well-educated professional teacher who receives little monetary reward for her hard work. She is one of those rare persons in Russia of genuine compassion for the orphans she teaches. The new rubles issued in 1998, were devalued within months of their release. Like most Russians, Melana may trust more in crisp Franklins and Jacksons tucked into the mattress than in the bank. It is no wonder that the Russians joke, "A crisis to you Americans is just another ordinary bad day for Russians."

Black Bean Chowder  
from Four Food Storage Plans 
page 239 See Recipe Below

STEP #1  Cook Rice & Potatoes in Water

Add water
Add rice
Cube Potatoes
Add potatoes
STEP #2 Sautť Vegetables in Oil

    How does she survive? Her dacha is not so much a country summer home as it is a place to live while she tends her potatoes, beets, onions, cucumbers, tomatoes, bell peppers and apple trees. Occasionally she forages in the nearby forests for berries and mushrooms. As much of this "bounty" as possible is canned and preserved for the leaner months.
    The Russian woman prepares an awesomely tasty meal with a small number of ingredients. With amazing facility she turns out a wide variety of tasty dishes with or without a little chicken, beef or fish, and cabbage, carrots, potatoes, beets, garlic and onions, seasoned with dill and parsley, accompanied with bread or kasha (cooked buckwheat grouts). Her warmth and hospitality--without fear that guests will eat too much--as well as her borsch, is legendary. Created in Godís image, these women in poverty reflect his character more than many in the American culture who have relinquished the food provider role to the food technologists who now supply us with 60,000 choices of different food products.

What To Do?
  
  What should we learn from the past? Should we readopt the depression era lifestyle? Prepare to survive in a besieged city? Flee the city to the country? Build a shelter? Stock pile stores of food and supplies? We would do well to examine some cases of God honoring people in the Bible who prepared for and responded to such crises. Then we can better understand Godís purposes and plan more wisely.

The Divine Design

CASE #1 MANNA BREAD
 
   The Jewish Passover and the Christian celebration of communion are both rooted in the miraculous provisions for the emerging Israeli nation during the forty year Sinai wanderings. Moses explained in Deut. 8 that the purpose of this experience was to teach them a humbling dependency upon the Supplier of food so that they would learn that man does not depend only on bread, but upon Godís word.

CASE #2 THOUSANDS FED
    
Jesusí ability to provide food and drink--at a wedding, for thousands in the country side, or for a few fishermen on the beach--was well known. It always blessed both the stomachs and the hearts of participants. He taught that there was a God-designed link between the "daily bread" which he fed them and the "Bread of Life" which he offered to those who would believe in him.

  Food is a miracle of Godís creative provision. Humankind is utterly and completely dependent upon it. No one is self-sufficient. All owe appreciation to the Provider.

 The physical mirrors the spiritual. God intends that just as we hunger for daily food, we also hunger for an eternal life-sustaining source, God Himself in Christ.

God Provides

CASE #1 A MAN
   
Sold by his jealous brothers into slavery, Joseph gained the trust of Potiphar, but suffered imprisonment because Potipharís wife falsely accused him of attempting to rape her. Remembered as an interpreter of dreams, he was called up from prison to hear the pharaohís disturbing dream. Joseph predicted bountiful harvests for seven years followed by seven years of famine. Consequently, he was commissioned as the manager, second in authority only to the pharaoh himself, to requisition food for storage and distribution.

    When his family came from Canaan to Egypt to purchase grain he said: "...God sent me ahead of you to preserve for you a remnant on earth and to save your lives by a great deliverance." Genesis 45:7

Add olive oil
 Chop onions
 Add onion
Chop red pepper
Add red pepper

  CASE #2 A WOMAN
   
  Unlike Joseph who managed a food reserve for a nation, the widow of Zarephath found a lone prophet at her door asking for food in the third year of a famine. Elijahís God had told him "I have commanded a widow ...to supply you with food." (1 Kings 17:9). Her response was, "I donít have any bread--only a handful of flour in a jar and a little oil in a jug." 1 Kings17:12. In fact, she expected to die along with her son after eating their last loaf of bread. Elijah assured her that neither her supply of oil or flour would run out until the day God sent the rain.

Manís Provision Fails
CASE #1 NABAL    
   
The case of Nabal contrasts sharply. The future King David, at the time operating with a band of about 600 men, had provided "protection" for Nabalís herders and livestock. Davidís men had so won the respect of the herders that they vouched for his integrity and that of his men. When Davidís men came to Nabal for food, Nabalís unfortunate response was, "Who is this David? ... Why should I take my bread and water, and the meat I have slaughtered for my shearers, and give it to men coming from who knows where?"   (1 Samuel 25:11).

   Fortunately Abigail, his wife, foresaw the consequences of her husbandís arrogant failure to prepare for a diplomatic crisis. She immediately spurred her catering service into action and rode out to feed David and his armed men. In the meantime, her husband was indulging himself at a party instead of preparing to fight. Her diplomacy saved the lives of all of the men in her clan. When a sobered up Nabal heard about Abigailís successful intervention, the shock precipitated a stroke, paralysis, and death.

CASE #2 BIG FARMER
   
The prosperous farmer finally hit it big, really big. He built bigger barns to contain his horde and now rested in a secure early retirement, "You have plenty of good things laid up for many years, Take life easy..." (Luke 12:19).
   Luke 12:18-21 describes the fatal flaw in his vision of the good life. In his presumption he failed to recognize how many of lifeís uncontrollable variables he had failed to secure.

"You fool! This very night your life will be demanded from you.
Then who will get what you have prepared for yourself?
This is how it will be with anyone who stores up things
for himself but is not rich toward God." (Luke 12:20-21

    The craving for self-sufficiency and unwillingness to accept responsibility to provide for others out of oneís bountiful supply reveals poverty of spirit. Nabal and the rich farmer ultimately lost everything. 

God Provides through His People
STEPHEN & AGABUS          . 
     Acts 6:2-5, the Twelve..said, "It would not be right for us to neglect the ministry of the word of God in order to wait on tables...choose seven...who are known to be full of the Spirit and wisdom..."....they chose Stephen...Acts 11:27-30, During this time some prophets came down from Jerusalem to Antioch. One of them, named Agabus, stood up and through the Spirit predicted that a severe famine would spread over the entire Roman world....The disciples, each according to his ability, decided to provide help for the brothers living in Judea. This they did, sending their gift to the elders by Barnabas and Saul."

Chop green pepper

Chop green pepper

Add green pepper


 

    Here we see the Biblical precedent for both preparation and mercy ministries. Godís primary means of providing for believers who are in need is through other believers.

    Joseph was extraordinarily gifted and prepared as Godís man to save both Egypt and his family.  The apostles also selected the most qualified leaders
"full of the Spirit and wisdom." Stephen, the CEO of the new food service project, was such an effective communicator that the opposition found him intolerable and plotted his death by spreading lies. He became the first martyr for Jesus.

    Agabus' prophecy still holds. There are always people somewhere in our city, somewhere in this world, in need. Saul and Barnabus' first mission trip was to deliver supplies to Judea. Following that precedent relief and rescue missions, and countless other organizations minister Godís grace to a needy world.

    Our first challenge is to apply wisdom in anticipating the needs of those to whom God has given us immediate responsibility--our families. Secondly, Christ followers are called to participate in varying degrees each according to his ability in providing for others.

     Food is a means by which God expresses his love and care for us. We are the emissaries God chooses for extending this love to others.


annie gaston portrait1.jpg (27672 bytes)*Education beyond the eighth grade was not in the family plan for Annie Gaston of Sardina, Indiana. However, a teacher who recognized a bright mind in this capable young woman helped her get a scholarship to a summer short course at Purdue University.  There Annie supported herself as a milk maid at (that's what she did at home). That summer at  Purdue she met George T. Gregg. 

Annie Gaston Gregg, 1900


Prepare to mince garlic
 
 
 Mince garlic STEP #3 Combine & Cook Ingredients Add sautťed vegetables to cooked rice & potatoes
Add black beans Add kidney beans Add vegetarian beans with tomato sauce

Black Bean Chowder
Adapted from Soups & Muffns p. 82 (also The Busy Woman's Guide to Healthy Eating, p. 335). Per serving: $.80 with fresh, $.90 with dried vegetables.
This version from Four Food Storage Plans, p.239.

Serves 8 -- About 1 3/4 Cups
1. Bring water to a boil with rice and potatoes; lower heat to a very gentle boil, uncovered for 15-20 minutes until potatoes are about done:

2 1/2 quarts water
1/2 cup + 2 tbsps. instant brown rice, uncooked
2 medium potatoes, unpeeled or peeled, cubed or 1 cup dried (reconstituted first, see p. 225)
1 onion, chopped or 1/4cup dried onion

2. Add remaining ingredients, continuing to cook until vegetables are just tender and flavors blended:


1 red pepper, chopped or 7.5 oz jar roasted red bell pepper, slivered    or 4 oz jar pimiento, chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
or1/4 cup dried green pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced
15 oz. can black beans, undrained
15 1/4 oz. can kidney beans, undrained
16 oz can Vegetarian Beans in Tomato Sauce
15.25 oz can corn, drained
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon ground cumin seed
1 1/2 teaspoons chili powder
1/2 cup + 2 tbsps. vegetarian chicken broth powder.
3. Remove bay leaf. Top each bowl of soup, as desired, with:
 
grated cheddar cheese, if available, about 1/4 cup each bowl chopped fresh or dried parsley or cilantro

VARIATIONS 
Replace Sueís Seasoning with 1/2 cup + 2 tbsps. vegetarian chicken broth powder.

Sautť fresh vegetables in 1 tbsp. olive oil. Add in step #2 (Illustrated in photo demonstration to left.)


About the Book
  Four Food Storage Plans starts with the assumption: Eat what you store, and store what you eat. Beginning with a basic stock of canned goods found in any supermarket the four plans introduce an increasing variety of recipes that will help you adapt to the kinds of whole foods such as whole grains and beans found in long term food storage programs but at much lower cost. Economize by building your own storage plan for $1.70 to $1.75 per meal at 2,200 calories per day per person. Coping On a Tight, Tight Budget? 27 selected main dishes at $.20 to $1 per serving will fill stomachs and stretch $$$. Menus, recipes, and extensive shopping lists

What Others Are Saying . . .  
    You have done an excellent job presenting healthful eating with taste appeal, ease of preparation, familiar dishes, color, and beauty with thanksgiving to our God and Creator.
                                              Kathleen Hoffman, Somerset, Wisconsin

    I love your approach. You use "real people" food but it's done in a healthy way.
                                                              Lori Leeke, Plano, Texas


Four Food Storage Plans, 
A Preparedness Guide for  Families,

© 1999 SueGreggCookbooks Publishers

ISBN 1-878272-15-2   308 p. $20 
   
                         

Add corn
Add spices
3/4 cup Liquid Aminos to taste
STEP #4 Remove Bay Leaf & Serve
Add grated cheese, chopped fresh parsley or cilantro.     Enjoy!

Author Talk Cookbook Story  Chef #1  Lifestyle Survey   Lifestyle Answers   Food Body Mind Spirit   Whole Grains


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