Food Wisdom Gleaned from Superstorm Sandy

By Analiese Paik

The dairy section at Whole Foods Market Fairfield was almost entirely cleaned out the day after Superstorm Sandy.

We’re pretty tough here in the Northeast, having had our share of nasty Nor’easters and freak storms, but Superstorm Sandy has strained our resources and patience. My heart goes out to everyone who lost a loved one, suffered damage or loss to their home or car, and is still without power. Like many of you I feel the need to create some semblance of normalcy in my life, and for me that’s blogging. I hope you share a few of your own words of wisdom so we can all be better prepared for the next ill wind that blows our way.

1. A frozen octopus can be used to keep food cold just as well as a block of ice.

2. Half gallon paper milk containers are excellent for making blocks of ice.

3. A chest freezer eventually turns into a refrigerator full of water after a few days of no power. If it doesn’t go above 40 degrees, everything can be refrozen. Bail out the water first of course.

4. A piece of grass-fed flank steak will cook to perfection if left in a closed oven despite losing power after the first 5 minutes of cooking.

5. Pasta will cook fully despite losing power after it comes to a rolling boil.

6. A supermarket should not stock their shelves in advance of a storm unless they have a generator (Trader Joe’s Fairfield I’m talking about you and the dumpster you filled.)

7. Heat and serve meals are the first to sell out after a storm. Mozzarella and ricotta were two dairy products I did find in the mostly empty dairy section at Whole Foods Market Fairfield. So, I was probably the only one making eggplant rollatini, happily, from defrosted eggplant we had grilled over the summer.

8. You can’t have too many granola bars and bites (especially if they’re Nothin’ But) for snacking.

9. Organic, Fair Trade chocolate bars are fantastic for making it through stressful moments.

10. Wine purchases were trending on Facebook and Twitter and appear to be the beverage (and palliative) of choice for adults.

11. A grill and smoker are your best bet for cooking in a power outage, providing you ignored your husband’s protests to leave them on the patio. After witnessing the huge trees and power lines that fell, it’s easy to see how they could have been toppled and ruined.

12. A French press coffee maker only requires boiled water to make a steaming cup of much-needed am coffee, something that can be done on a grill. (Thanks to John Turenne for posting that on our Facebook page).

13. When no food is available, emergency government rations will consist of MREs (Meals Ready to Eat aka Army food).

14. A generator is the most practical holiday gift you can give anyone with a refrigerator or freezer.

Stay safe and may your power be restored soon. Here’s to a return to normal.

What food wisdom do you have to share? Please comment below.


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