Here we are, hunkered down in New York City, waiting for Sandy to come through.
It is kind of pleasant right now; low key, nothing urgent to do. We have power and water, and enough food to keep us going for a few days, assuming it doesn’t all spoil before we can eat it.
When Hurricane Irene was expected, we stocked up with all the essentials. Somehow, seeing the long grocery lines, I was compelled to buy all kinds of things we normally wouldn’t eat. Pretzels, chips and crackers seemed to be important pantry staples, since they didn’t spoil and didn’t need to be cooked. They also didn’t need to be eaten.
The thought of several days without being able to go out, or obtain fresh food is daunting, but I don’t think we will be driven to eating only processed carbs for survival.
I am determined to get through this hurricane without wrecking havoc on my waistline.
Here are a few tips for diet friendly eating during a potential power outage:
Wash all vegetables now, while you still have water, and if possible, cut them and place them in storage bags in the refrigerator. That way there are always healthy salads or snacks to be eaten.
Wash whole fruit and put them into a big bowl somewhere accessible.
Nuts are high in protein and don’t require refrigeration or cooking to eat.
They are high calorie, so eat them sparingly.
Canned tuna fish is another good choice. Just make sure you have a hand held can opener on hand.
I have made lots of pureed vegetable soups in the last few weeks, and have them frozen in small containers. If the electricity goes out, I can eat these as they start to thaw, since we have a gas stove.
Freeze zip lock bags of water to be used later to keep perishables fresh. I always have fat free Greek yogurt and cottage cheese on hand, and placing them in a bucket or cooler with icepacks will keep them edible for several hours, should the power go out.
Keeping the door to the freezer firmly closed will keep food fresh for 24 – 48 hours, depending on how full it is. The fuller the freezer, the longer it will take to thaw. Just be sure to fully cook and eat the food as quickly as possible. Once food has thawed, DO NOT REFREEZE IT.
Place a thermometer in your refrigerator to be sure that it stays above 40 degrees. If the temperature rises above that, food becomes unsafe to eat.
Fill your bathtubs with water, so that you can use it to flush toilets, or wash hands. Be sure to have hand sanitizer, and baby wipes for basic hygiene purposes.
The wind just kicked up outside my window. I’m off to blow-dry my hair and run the vacuum before it’s too late! Stay dry and stay safe east coast!