One thing you learn as a prepper is that any new skill you acquire will come handy one day, cooking including. Sure, not all of us have the talent of whipping up a terrine or a souffle, but at least we learn to go by without actually having to starve to death or wasting away money on takeaways.
For my part, I actually managed to pick up a thing or two about the art of preparing delish and nutritious meals during one of those long blackouts. Yes, I’m still here, and no, the city council hasn’t gotten around to fixing the problem yet.
Now, for most of us, cooking’s not that big of a deal – get online, pick a recipe, follow the steps, and, Shazam, dinner’s ready! Still, the rules of engagement tend to change a bit if you’re forced to do the same thing during a power outage.
No electricity means that you will not be able to use the mixer, microwave, electric oven, toaster, and whatever cooking appliance running on electricity. Such a situation calls for some serious improv and, in today’s article, I’m going to show you my favorite blackout dishes and how to cook ‘em.
So, without further ado, here are my top 7 choices in no-power food.
Yes, I know they’re not palatable, but they do wonder for the body. Most importantly, you can prepare anywhere and at any time, power or no power. Just let them soak overnight in a bowl of water. You can serve them for breakfast or dinner with assorted nuts, honey, and dehydrated fruits.
Great Spanish dish and stupidly easy to make. I personally like to have fresh gazpacho year-round, since it’s packed with vitamins and minerals. More than that, this over-glorified tomato soup is a wonderful thirst quencher during those hot summer days.
So, grab yourself a couple of diced tomatoes cans and empty them inside a large bowl (don’t forget to drain all the juice). All that remains is to add one chopped onion, a thinly-sliced cucumber, a dash of cayenne pepper, salt, and pepper. If you’re looking for a bit a hit, you can add one teaspoon of Tabasco. Finish the dish by adding a bit of olive oil, chopped parsley, and some lemon juice. That’s it!
3. Corn salad
This is what I like to call the lazy man’s easy way out of the kitchen. I usually like to prepare this dish when my wife’s away – kids love it, and it takes me about five minutes to get everything ready. So, it’s a win-win. Take a can of corn, drain the excess liquid, and put the contents inside a large bowl.
Chop any veggies you have left in the fridge (I like to add onions, red and yellow bell peppers, and tomatoes to my salad). For extra flavor, you can add a can of black beans. Toss it around a little, add a sprinkle of olive oil, and serve. If you fancy a bit of dressing, you can quickly make one by combining apple cider vinegar, olive oil, dried basil, pepper, and salt in a bowl.
4. A simple salad with apples and white beans
By far, my favorite Sunday morning salad. Super easy to make: pour the contents of white beans can in a large bowl and add some apple chunks. To finish the dish, you need only add some olive oil, fresh thyme, a handful of walnuts, salt, pepper, and scallions. Give it a good mix and serve.
5. Good, old grains and beans salad
This is one of the first recipes I learned during the first bout of blackouts. It’s very handy to know since anyone has at least one can of beans and a grain sack around the house. Take out your portable stove from the B.O.B and boil water in a small pan. Add the grains and let them cook for about 10 minutes.
Drain the grains and allow them to cool down. In a large bowl, combine one can of beans (works great with both black and grain beans) and the pre-cooked grains. Add salt, pepper, and a sprinkle of olive oil. If you want to add consistency to your dish, throw in a couple of diced veggies, and chickpeas.
6. Chickpea or white beans spread
If you ever get tired of PB & J sandwiches, you might want to give this recipe a try. Empty the contents of a chickpea or white beans jar inside a bowl. Use a fork or potato masher to make them into a coarse paste.
Add some olive oil, parleys, a bit of mint, half a tablespoon of garlic powder, and some oregano. You can serve this spread with white bread, toast, and even crackers. I personally like to serve it with oven-baked white bread – if you want to get all fancy, take a clove of garlic and smear each slice of bread before adding the spread.
7. Tuna salad with canned corn and green lettuce
Personally, I prefer this recipe over all those BS, new age stuff with salmon or whatever. Grab yourself green lettuce and wash it thoroughly with cold water. Using your hands, rip it into big chunks. Add a can of tuna over the salad (don’t drain the oil inside) and a can of sweet corn.
To finish this dish, pour half a tablespoon of olive or sunflower seed oil, salt, and lemon juice. Toss it around and serve. This is what I like to call the ultimate detox dish – very healthy and tuna being packed with omega-3 fatty acids and all that, it’s a breath of fresh air after eating spare ribs and burgers.
Hope you’ve enjoyed my list of blackout dishes. Think I’ve missed something? Hit the comment section and let me know.