Sunday, October 16, 2011

Videos of making wheat gluten

Now the lady in these videos is making her gluten a bit different than what I described below, but if you watch these videos you will get the general idea of what I am talking about. In a couple of these videos the sound is really yucky, but follow along. I hope this helps.

The time will come that gold will hold no comparison in value to a bushel of wheat.” Brigham Young

I want to talk mostly today about Wheat Gluten. Gluten is the principal protein part of the wheat, just like eggs, meat, fish, milk, beans, tofu, etc. Gluten holds the carbon dioxide that is made from yeast, which enables the dough to rise. Gluten is such a versatile food and can be made into may things, most importantly it can be used as a meat replacement.

After wheat is ground into flour, gluten can be separated from other parts of the flour by adding water until it's very thick, mixing, kneading and pounding while washing the mixture in a bowl of water. The more the mixture is washed, the more elastic it will become. A hard winter wheat gives the best result because the protein content is the highest.

7 cups whole wheat flour yields 1 – 2 cups raw gluten

1 cup raw gluten – 72 grams protein

1 oz ground beef – 6 grams protein

How to make gluten:

Put 20 cups whole wheat flour and 12 cups warm water into heavy mixer or large bowl, and knead and mix well. Let stand for 10 minutes. The mixture shouldn't be too stiff or too loose, but a nice sticky batter.

Put gluten into a clean sink or large bowl with about 20 cups warm water and knead gently for about 3 minutes.

Finish with a final washing by rinsing in a colander with warm water. All milky starch needs to be washed out, but not all of the bran. It will be very gummy, but the water will be running clear. It actually takes awhile for this process so don't expect it to happen quickly.

Use well greased loaf pans, or cookie sheets. Flour well and place gluten in loaves or spread on cookie sheet. Bake in 350 oven for about 1 hour, until it sounds kind of hollow when tapped, it will kind of have a tough rubbery texture.

When it is done, cool and break into chunks. Simmer in beef broth or chicken broth for at least 1/2 hour and then leave it to soak for two hours.

At this point you can store in fridge. What I do is chop it up in my blender, but if you have a meat grinder, you could use that too. You can freeze it like this, just as you would hamburger, or dehydrate it and store on shelf, it has a pretty long shelf life after being dehydrated. Then use it in any recipe calling for ground beef or chicken. Be creative.

Hints for gluten:

  • In dishes using tomato products, such as sauce or paste, or chili sauce, use a small amount of cheese or meat mixed with gluten. It helps to hold it together better. But it isn't necessary. Egg would also work.

  • In using spices or herbs with gluten use only half the amount called for in a recipe because it can become easily over spiced. The spices tend to react stronger with gluten, as do strong acids such as pineapple juice or vinegar.

  • One tbsp of honey added to gluten with acid products will also help to neutralize the acid

  • After simmering gluten in broth, it will keep for 4 or 5 days in fridge, if is smells sour, it is bad

  • You can use the gluten water in other bread recipes but it will sour quickly if not refrigerated

Some of my favourite gluten recipes:

Basic Beef Burger recipe:

Grind through grinder or chop in blender

4 cups gluten

3 or 4 bouillon cubes

1/3 cup cheese (cheddar or Parmesan)

Grind in blender:

2 1/4 cups cooked soybeans (should be the consistency of dry bread crumbs)

Chop and add:

2 cloves of garlic finely chopped

1 med large onion diced fine

Add and mix well:

1/4 c powder milk

1/2 tsp salt

2 tbsp honey

2 1/2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce

3 eggs (or substitution)

1/4 to 1/2 cub bread crumbs

Form into patties or as called for in any of the following recipes. (You can omit the cooked soybeans, but they give you more texture and nutrition.) I have omitted them if I don't have any cooked at the time. To cook soybeans soak overnight, drain and add fresh water, boil for 10 minutes. They can now be ground. Brown the mixture slowly on low heat, both sides.

Veal Parmesan – My family loves this recipe. They raved about it when I made it.

2 cups beef burger recipe formed into patties

Mix 3/4 cup crushed bread crumbs and 1/2 tsp salt

Beat 3 eggs

Dip patties into beaten eggs then into crumb mixture. Repeat to give a double coat. Brown in oil and place in a baking dish. Place 1 piece of parmesan cheese over each patty (I just sprinkled on generous amount from can)

Mix together:

1 can cream of tomato soup

1 tsp basil

1/2 tsp oregano

1/4 c sour cream

1/4 tsp salt

1 tbsp honey

Pour over steaks. Cover with lid or tinfoil and heat in oven at 375 for 15 min or on top of stove over low heat just until cheese is melted.

Salisbury Steak

Brown 2 cups Beef Burger recipe made into patties

Prepare 1 pkg brown gravy or make your own gravy. Add mushrooms if you like.

Add patties and heat through.

Enchilada Casserole


1 cup beef gravy

1 can tomato soup

1 can tomato sauce

1 onion chopped

1/4 tsp oregano

1/4 tsp garlic powder

1 tsp chili powder

grate 1 lb cheddar cheese

Prepare 1 lb beef burger gluten, not formed into patties, by frying in a pan like you would hamburger. Dip 9 to 12 tortillas in the sauce. Place in the centre of each tortilla some of the gluten and cheese. Roll tortilla and place in a 9 x 13 pan. Sprinkle remaining sauce and cheese over. Bake until cheese melted and bubbly.

Sweet and Sour Meatballs

Mix and form into 18 balls:

2 cups beef burger gluten

1/4 c bread crumbs

2 eggs

2 tbsp onion, chopped

Brown the meatballs in small amount of oil. Add and cook until it thickens:

1 20 oz can pineapple chunks

3 tbsp vinegar

6 tbsp water

3 tbsp cornstarch

3 tbsp soy sauce

1/4 c sugar

Add: 1 large green pepper cut into strips and 1 cup fresh mushrooms cut up. Heat through and serve over rice or steamed wheat or noodles.

Chicken and Cheese chili

Combine and heat:

2 cups chicken flavored (or beef) cut into cubes or ground

2 cans cream of chicken soup

1 medium onion diced

1 can chopped green chilies, mild

1/2 c water

Dip tortillas in sauce, then lay in pan, sprinkling each layer with chicken sauce and grated cheddar cheese. Layer 12 tortillas. Pour the rest of the sauce over top and sprinkle with remaining cheese. Bake at 350 for 20 – 30 minutes.

Gluten Burgers

2 cups ground beef burger

2 tbsp beef bouillon

1 egg

1 med onion finely chopped

salt and pepper

whole wheat flour

1/2 c butter or margarine

Combine beef burger and bouillon. Stir in egg, onion and salt and pepper. Add enough flour to make patties. Fry in butter or margarine, browning both sides. Steam in covered saucepan 5 minutes. Serves 4.

I think you are starting to get the picture. Here is another way to do it, which is much less work. This may not taste much like the meat you are used to, however is does taste awesome. Try soaking your wheat until it sprouts, then rinse it off and put it through a grinder until it is the consistency of ground meat. It is totally healthy and delicious. You can then season the ground wheat to whatever flavor you want it to have and make it into patties, meat loaves, and other meat dishes. By using the sprouted wheat, you have increased your food value exponentially.

Experiment, because that is the only way that you will be able to do it and enjoy it, especially if the time comes that we actually need to use it. I personally love the gluten beef burger. My kids love it too. We don't eat it all the time, but I know they will eat it and we will eat pretty good with all those buckets of wheat we have. :) I'd love to hear of your adventures with making gluten.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Economic Crash - What will you do?

Economic Crash – What will you do?

Have you ever thought of what you would do if tomorrow, out of the blue, the dollar value dropped right out and the whole economy collapsed. Banks closed. You lose your job because they don't have money to pay you. People start to panic. Rioting and looting. Disease starts to spread because many of the essential services are shut down. Okay, I think you are starting to get the picture.

It can take less than 3 hours for supermarkets to run completely out of food during a crisis....and up to 3 weeks to fill shelves again with any items, if you are lucky to be one of the first ones there to get some of it.

Well I seem to be hearing so much chatter going on throughout the world about unstable economies..........and if you are paying attention at all, I am sure you are hearing the same thing. There are a ton of varied opinions about the matter. There are videos, blogs, and news articles full of the possibility of a collapse. So I decided to really figure out what might happen if.......or should I say when, all of a sudden we find ourselves unable to pull out of the massive economic issues we are all facing. Now up here in Canada, we think we are sitting pretty and we are not in as much trouble as some.....but I guarantee you that if US dollar drops off the charts, it will most definitely affect us, and the picture won't be pretty for any of us.

There are definitely some things that we can do to prepare for a situation like this, even though I don't think we realize just how serious it might actually get.

  1. Educate yourself and your family on what might happen. Educate yourselves on various survival skills like, first aid, food storage, basic camping skills, and first aid skills.

  2. Find an area of interest that you can use to make money in rough times. Possibly food production, raising chickens and eggs, any small business that you can produce a good or service that can be sold, or bartered for what you need.

  3. Learn now to minimize your expenses. Money might be tight for a short while, but if you can learn to spend less right now, it will help in two ways. First, you will be able to live on less when or if the time comes, and second, you could use some of that money saved to purchase tools, food supply, or other essentials to help prepare for what is ahead.

  4. Get some food stored. Food will instantly become one of the most valuable commodities out there. Have at least a year of rations stored for each person in your family. I know that for some this might seem a bit overwhelming. You don't know where to start. But start somewhere. Here on this blog are many different ideas on food storage, and there are so many other sites that have great information. Start small and work your way into a years supply. And share with those around you the urgency of doing the same. The more you share your knowledge now, the less you might have to share when the time comes, if you get my meaning??

  5. Get your preparedness and survival gear in order NOW. Learn what you need and how to use it all. Again do some searching and find out what your family will need. Our needs will all be a bit different, yet survival is still survival, and we all have basic needs, so find out what you will need in your family if the above situation happens, and get it ready as soon as possible. I have listed below a sample checklist of what you should have. Again, adjust it according to what you think you will need.

  6. Do you have a plan in place for water for your family? If you can't get water out of the tap, what are you going to do? Is there a river, lake or stream near by? If so, do you have a filtration system ready in case you need to use it? Do you have water stored? Water purification tablets will be invaluable, they are inexpensive and small, so get lots.

  7. Do you have any garden seeds stored? If you can't find any produce available, the stores are shut down, where are you going to find produce? You will have to grow it. Store some gardens seeds and know how to use them. Make sure that they are heirloom varieties as these will produce seed that will grow again next year. The new improved hybrid varieties are great, and produce abundant crops, but if you plant the seeds the next year, they will not grow.

  8. Get in place an alternative source of power. It might be a solar power set up, or a generator, whatever is within your budget, but get it and know how to use it. Also know how to cook without power, heat without power, and wash and clean without power. It is quite likely that for short term situations, we may be without power.

  9. Have you thought about defending yourself and family in case of rioting or looting. People tend to get a little crazy, when they are hungry or have hungry children. Think defence, and how you could best defend your family and put a plan into action.

  10. Warm clothing and/or proper clothing for your weather situations is important. Winters can be harsh enough with proper clothing, don't be without them. You never know if you are going to always have heat in your home, or have to evacuate your home, so be prepared for anything. Snow, ice, rain, extreme heat, tornadoes, or whatever the situation might be, get prepared for it.

  11. A good pair of shoes or hiking boots for each member in your family is essential. You may find yourselves in situations where you are walking everywhere and flip flops just won't cut it.

  12. Communication will be important to all of us when things really go bad. You will want to communicate with family, friends, doctors, and emergency people. Cell phones may not work for long. The internet may or may not work – what will we do??? Have a plan, radio, walkie talkies, or other. Have a bike in good working condition in case you need to get around quickly.

  13. Personal hygiene items, and medical items will be essential for you to have on hand. We won't want to be without any of these items, and we won't be able to get them from a store, so have them in your home. Remember herbal medicines also. They are invaluable if you know how to use them. Think of your prescription medications, and have on hand a 3 month supply of them in case of pharmacies being closed, which is likely.

  14. Always have a backup plan. If someone steals your food – what will you do? If you can't drive where you need to go – how will you get there? If you have to leave your home – where will you go? Crisis' rarely happen just like we plan for. Always have a back up plan. Be flexible and be ready to do whatever it takes.

I found this possible scenario of what might happen the first week or so after a financial collapse happens. Of course this is just a scenario, not for sure, but it might help us to think through our situation at home and help to put together a plan.

  • Day One – reports of the dollar collapsing, people start to get mad. Most stores taking cash only since bank machines might be down. No credit cards either. So if you want food or gas, or other supplies, you will need cash.

  • Day Two – Grocery stores will sell out of food. People will be stocking up on everything that they have cash for. Mobs at the grocery stores, and possible looting in other areas.

  • Day Three – Banks will all be closed. If they are opened, they will be limiting the amount of money you can withdrawl. The stock market will fall drastically and possibly close. Most stores will be closed and prices will sky rocket. Cash, gold, or silver will be the only form of currency. Barter will take place.

  • Day Four – Panic will be in full force. Things will be out of control. Hyper-inflation out of control

  • Day Five – Families will start to group together for support. Pension funds and other funds failing. Many work stoppages and emergency services halt.

  • Day Six – World wide mass demonstrations as the world economy collapses all over. Power outages, and other such events

  • Day Seven – Army / National Guards are sent out to attempt to restore order. Cash is totally worthless at this point. Gold and silver will be accepted, barter society begins

  • Day Eight – No power still and essential services limited. Radio perhaps still broadcasting as the only form of communication

  • Day Nine – No water as services have stopped. Real panic sets in

  • No emergency services – no police, no firemen, no medical responders, they are all staying home to protect families. Neighborhoods start to organize group protection. Government falls. Breakdown of society, armed gangs, looting. Martial Law is declared.

And then of course you can imagine the scenario to continue from there. Are you MENTALLY and PHYSICALLY prepared for this? If not how can you get there?

We don't know all of the possibilities that could arise. We don't know if there will be disease, pandemic, natural disaster, war, or economic disaster. What we do know is that there are some tough times ahead and we had better get prepared. I don't want to get caught unprepared for anything, and yet, I don't know all of the things that lie ahead, so I can only prepare according to what I know and feel is right. Mentally and physically we all need to get ready! I want to be in the situation of helping, not being a burden. Prepare, prepare, and prepare some more!!

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Natural Medicines and First Aid

I have been thinking much lately about what we would do we would do in certain situations where there were no doctors, or no medications available. And the more I think about it, the more I realize that I need to learn more about natural kinds of medications, herbs, oils, and natural cures. I do use essential oils on a regular basis, and I love them, and I believe strongly in natural medicines, but I don’t know and understand a lot about them. So I have done some research.

For many years people used plants / herbs to cure all kinds of things. Throughout the Bible and other scriptures, throughout history, herbs have been the norm for medicines. Then we all of a sudden jump to modern science and we now use both natural and man-made medications, some of which have nasty side effects and some which just are simply not good for us. When a virus strikes us, the first thing we do is run to the doctor to get a prescription. While in reality, that prescription is not going to do us any good. The thing that will help us most is to treat the symptoms and get lots of rest. Now I am not knocking modern science, but I think there are some things that we miss out on by not using our natural sources first. Natural antiviral treatments can be very powerful for treating a virus. They are known to reduce the healing time, and the side effects are practically non – existent compared to the nasty side effects from the prescription medications. Some of the best antivirals include garlic, oregano, Astragalus, Echinacea, mullein, elderberry, green tea, and licorice.

We should have a variety of these essential oils and herbs in our emergency first aid kits. I also think that it is important to carry with us in the first aid kit a guide to herbs for first aid. Whether this is one that we make up ourselves, or one that we purchase,(such as the one here), make sure you have one and read it, and know how to use it. For your first aid kit, how about purchasing a simple lunch box of some kind and pack it with your herbal remedies so that it is always ready to use.

I must put in my disclaimer – I really don’t claim to know a lot about these herbs listed here in this article. I have done a lot of research to find this information, but please use common sense also. Don’t take anything I have said and expect it to be the “gospel truth”. Some things might work great for one person and not another. And, this list is in no way a comprehensive list. Do your own research, and consult your physician if you have any concerns. Also a great resource would be to check with your local natural medical doctor. They do much research into these things and could be of great help. However – in an emergency situation where there are no doctors available, it would be great to have on hand the following things, and know how to use them well.

Okay first a few great sites that I have found:

Essential Oils for medicine - lists the top five essential oils for emergency preparedness that you should have.

The Vinegar of Four Thieves - making your own four thieves vinegar

Ten medicinal herbs - Ten medicinal herbs you should know

Herbal First Aid Kit - Making an herbal first aid kit. Definitely one of my goals is to make a first aid kit with herbs and spices, complete with a guide on what to do with each of the items in it.

Medicinal herb and spice cabinet - Preparing your medicinal herb and spice cabinet

Link30 popular herbs - 30 most popular herbs for natural medicine

Now for some of the natural meds:

Aloe – is of course fabulous for burns, and will also help to soothe and heal cuts. This plant will easily grow in your house and all you have to do is cut a piece of the leaf off, open it up, and place it directly onto the cut. You can find aloe gel in most stores and it is fairly inexpensive. Use it on any burns including sunburns, and use on cuts or wounds to aid the healing process.

Lavender - is a wonderful multipurpose herb. The essential oil basically is an all-purpose remedy. It can be helpful for anxiety, insomnia, headaches, wounds, and burns. It can be applied directly to the skin, unless you have very sensitive skin.

Echinacea – helps boost the immune system, the liquid extract is versatile and can be used internally or externally. But if all you have are the tablets, you can also break them open and use the oil for skin irritations. It can also be used as a great herbal tea. Echinacea helps to stimulate the white blood cell production to help fight more effectively against viruses. It is best taken early in the viral illness to be most effective, and is recommended only for short term use. A gargling solution can also be made with the tea to use with a sore throat. For cases that are not strep throat related: add 10-16 drops to water or to sage or ginger tea and use as a gargling agent. If a person is fighting strep throat: every two hours, gargle with the above mentioned teas to which you add a drop of Echinacea extract. If only tablet or capsules are available, take then every two hours during the acute stage

Ginger root – when dried and made into ginger tea is great for pain. 1 tsp of dried ginger in 1 cup of boiling water. You can also add sweetener. This can be drank several times a day to help relieve pain or stomach upset, and to shorten the illness. It is an excellent remedy for nausea and diarrhea. It is also has antioxidant effects, which are important for preventing free radical damage, and strengthening the immune system.

Oregano – can be used as ginger root. 1 tsp of dried to 1 cup boiling water. This will also help to relieve pain. The oil of oregano is an excellent antiviral, antibacterial, and antifungal oil. It has been used for hundreds of years to fight infections. It can be applied to minor cuts. It can be dropped one or two drops of oil, into ear for ear infection. Take caution though because it is very strong and can burn if skin is sensitive or too much is used.

Cloves – clove oil will deaden toothache pain almost immediately. Carefully rub the oil on the gum surrounding the tooth and even put a drop into the cavity.

Mint – spearmint or peppermint are all very useful to help open stuffy nose and throat. You can chew the raw leaves, or brew a tea, or use the essential oils. Peppermint will sooth an upset stomach, and help relieve itching from insect bites. It will help clear sinuses. If you have sensitive skin, dilute it before applying. Use it to treat headaches, colic, heartburn, gas and nausea. It also has properties that will help improve circulation. Drinking a fresh tea will help relieve these symptoms. It is great for helping relieve morning sickness.

Garlic – a natural antibiotic. Garlic dates back to ancient Egyptians. It offers antiviral, antimicrobial, antifungal, and antibacterial benefits. It has been effective in clearing up the common cold and flu, as well as Bacillus, Strep, and Staph infections. During WWI and WWII it became known as the Russian Penicillin. It is most effective when used fresh. Eat it whole, dice it, or juice it. Garlic capsules can also be used if you don’t like the taste or the after taste. Garlic draws out the pain from joints, toothaches, and earaches. Place a crushed raw piece of garlic in some gauze and place the gauze over the area of pain. For the joints, use a garlic paste. For the ear, use slivers in gauze. It takes about 5 days to cure the ear infection.

Arnica – this has great anti-inflammatory properties and will stimulate circulation. It is excellent for sore muscles, sprains, and bruises. Not good to apply to broken skin.

Calendula – comfrey salve – great healing properties. Antibacterial, antifungal, anti-inflammatory properties. Calendula stimulates the growth of new tissue and helps heal wounds.

Shepherds Purse – The juice from this plant will stop bleeding and is perfect for minor scrapes and cuts. You can crust the plant and place it directly onto the cut or scrape.

Thyme is great for treating whooping cough. Make a syrup of thyme tea and honey to treat a strong cough. It can also help relax the nervous system and relieve headaches. It has also been used to help get rid of internal parasites.

Cinnamon – it has been proven that 99.9% of viruses and bacteria cannot live in the presence of cinnamon. Cinnamon capsules are available, as well as it can be added to teas of many kinds to make a great tasting tea.

Sage – a tea made from the common garden sage has been known to help with depression. Ginseng can also be added to this to help lift and energize. The American Indians were known to use sage tea rub downs and baths to bring down a fever. Adding apple cider vinegar to the tea can be very effective in reducing fever. Sage leaves can be wrapped around a wound like a band aid to help heal it faster.

Chamomile - Works as a mild sedative, helps promote relaxation, relieve indigestion and can soothe skin irritations when applied to skin. It can also be used as a warm compress on ear infections or eye problems. It can also aid indigestion, morning sickness, and nervousness.

Elderberry – this is essential for stopping a cold or flu. This can be used as a good preventive and if you already have a cold, it can be used to hasten your recovery time. Studies show that it is effective against all strains of the flu virus and can also help prevent the spread of viruses.

Elderberry tincture - information on making your own elderberry tincture

Eucalyptus essential oil – potent antibiotic and antiviral – excellent for treating colds lus and sinus infections when steam inhaled. Dilute with carrier oil before applying to skin, and this oil should not be taken internally. Can be used as a massage oil or rubbed into pulse points to be most effective. Can be added to a warm bath.

Astragalus –a powerful antiviral herb that helps strengthen the immune system. It is very effective against the cold or common flu. It has a warming effect which helps sooth the body. It is probably best taken in capsule form or made into a tea.

Astragalus - a great article on how Astragalus can help to boost the immune system and help fight a number of illnesses including cancer

Mullein – properties include, antiviral, anti-inflammatory, calming, expectorant, antihistamine, and emollient. For viruses with congestion it is an excellent choice. It is available as a tea, syrup, infusion, tincture and decoction

Mullein - A great article about Mullein

Green Tea – you can buy this one decaf so it is better for you. There are a couple of things in green tea called catechins that are known to be very effective at inhibiting the replication of the flu virus. It can be taken in tea form, but can also be taken in capsule form. It definitely has caffeine in it, so precautions should be taken if this is something that you want to avoid.

Licorice – a great antimicrobial that is effective against yeast, fungi, bacteria and viruses. However it can raise blood pressure, so if you have high blood pressure already, you should avoid eating it.

Tea Tree Oil – a great oil that is known to treat a wide variety of problems. It can be applied full strength to any affected area up to three times a day. It can be mixed with warm water and gargled. It can be used as a shampoo to keep away lice or other unwanted bugs, add drops of oil to a fine tooth comb and comb through hair to catch lice eggs and remove adult lice. It can be used as an insect repellent and rubbed on your skin to keep away bites. Tea tree oil is also great in healing warts, cold sores, athlete’s foot, and yeast infections.

Juniper Oil – is a potent antiviral. It is found to be effective against both the herpes virus and flu viruses. It can be used in a diffuser, as a massage oil, in a bath, in lotion form, or applied as a compress. It is not recommended during pregnancy as it can stimulate the uterus.

Lemon Balm Oil – has many uses. When used on cold sores and other herpes sores, is has helped to heal them and prevent them from spreading. It can soothe the digestive system and help relieve gas and bloating.

Lemon Balm - a great article on Lemon Balm

Cayenne Pepper – a few grains in hot tea will aid in sluggish digestion. It is an excellent source of Vitamin C. An anti-flu drink might include 2 tsp of cayenne pepper, 1 ½ tsp salt, 1 cup boiling water, 1 c apple cider vinegar. Mix this together and take 1 tsp to 1 tbsp every half hour (adult dose). This will help cure the cold or prevent the cold from coming on. This can also be gargled to help control a sore throat.

Dandelion – yes the nasty little weed – gather the flowers and a few leaves and make a tea that will treat the acids in the blood. It will help treat gastric disorder that can be caused by liver or gall bladder. A tea can be used to cleanse the liver, pancreas, spleen and female organs. Dandelion has been known to lower high cholesterol levels and normalize blood sugar levels in diabetics.