UPDATED – The Final Reckoning – The End of This Year’s Food Storage

April 5, 2012 at 1:11 pm

UPDATE:  See below, for some new information on our inventory of local food.

I don’t really have time today to blog about being the Local Family, and the time I had to blog today about being the Local Family, I meant to continue my bloggy thoughts from the other day on you becoming an eat local follower. That was until I played my part in getting ready for tomorrow’s Passover Sedar at the Bungalow. Get the vegetables, a/k/a go through the crap. It’s the least I could do. And the least I can do now, now that I’ve gone through all the crap, is tell you about it.

As you know, the Local Family puts away a bunch of food to enable local eating in the winter. Some of the food is canned, some frozen, but the bulk of the food set aside is just set aside. We rely on an un-heated attic, an un-heated “mudroom”, even the garage. See, all you need to keep a lot of food around for several months is cold, dark, and a little moisture. We managed. To get an idea of what we had in the middle of winter, see this post. To get an idea of what was left today, read below.

At this point in the storage cycle, we have some usable food, and a lot of food we had to tank. Honestly, a bunch of the food tanked today was the kid’s fault. Yes, like any good parent, I know who to blame. We mostly relied on the younger members of the local family to move the stuff out of the attic as it warmed. The problem, we did not pay enough attention to where they put it, and they thought the basement “canning” room would make due. It mostly did not.

What We Tanked

  • A ton of apples that go too soft
  • About 2/3rds of the potatoes we had, which had grown too many ropes outside them; mostly a red “Norland” type
  • 3 large watermelon radishes I had been telling the kids for ages to eat
  • Something so liquefied and gross I cannot tell what was in the bag, but I think it was celery root
  • About a dozen turnips too sprouted (tanked previously)

What We Salvaged

  • Carrots, about 20 small carrots; not that tasty but usable for cooking
  • The other 1/3rd of potatoes, a Yukon gold type
  • Beets that are no worse for the wear
  • Delicata squash: 4
  • Some apples

What Was Fine Anyways

  • Leeks: we have a lot of leeks; all you need to do is peel off the dry outer layer and you’re fine
  • Onions, several onions both red and yellow, even a few Tropea
  • Cinderella pumpkin
  • Garlic, about 5 heads now

We’ve already gotten fresh, local, kale and fresh, local, lettuce to supplement what’s left.  In only a week or so, our Tomato Mountain CSA starts*.  I think we’re reckoning just fine.

Update – Used for Passover

  • All except the smallest potatoes – A few were boiled for a “Spring” salad, the rest grated into potato kugel
  • All the small beets: roasted, peeled – A component of the Spring salad
  • One of the large beets: grated – into the kugel
  • Carrots – soup stock and mirepoix for braised lamb shanks; Spring salad
  • Many onions – some went into a dish with squash puree (puree from freezer), other into kugel; also mirepoix, stock

Update – What We Added to Inventory at the Beginning of April

  • Asparagus – 2 bunches from Ellis, by having my wife working at Green City Market on April 7
  • 8 pounds Wisconsin russet potatoes from Angelo Caputo’s because after using nearly all the potatoes we had in the Bungalow for a Passover kugel, my wife wants to make another potato kugel.
  • Non- local herbs – what can you do sometimes
  • Fruit, both local apples and non-local bananas, oranges, mangoes, avocados

*My wife works for Tomato Mountain



  1. Kelly says:

    What do you guys do with kale and how do you store it? I’d like to use it more this season. As for the tanking issue, I had an unfortunate incident with a butternut squash having to be scraped off a shelf in the garage, but it was my own fault.

  2. Rob Gardner says:

    Hey, Kelly, way back in the early, salad days of the Beet (hahaha), I wrote this post on the ways of kale: http://www.thelocalbeet.com/2009/08/24/the-ways-of-kale-on-menu-monday/

    I think most of the advice still stands.

    I will say that the kale that we recently got is very tender, not really the thick green mostly written about in that link. This Spring kale worked really well in the kind of pasta sauce that only cooked as long as it takes to make the noodles. That is, it was the kale, some Tomato Mountain, and not too much later, dinner.

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