Homesteading – the art of being self-sufficient in many, if not all, areas of life – has become much more popular in recent years. With so many technologies more readily available, and more time on people’s hands, it can be really worthwhile to be self-sufficient on a day-to-day basis.
If this is you, then you may be at a point when you’re considering homesteading and how you can prepare for it. How do you know that you have the right tools? Here’s a quick look at some of the things that you want to purchase.
1. Cast Iron Pan(s)
One of the first things that you want to get your hands on when you’re homesteading is cast iron cookware. Cast iron cookware is something that many homesteaders swear by, because its easy to take care of and food tastes so much better when it comes from this sort of cookware.
Cast iron’s popularity comes from the fact that the metal actually distributes heat evenly. So, you don’t have to find that “one spot” on the pan that is hot enough for the food you’re cooking. Food will cook more evenly and taste a lot better.
2. Dutch Oven
Dutch ovens are incredibly popular with homesteaders and home cooks alike. Like cast iron pans, they are designed to distribute heat evenly, which means that your food is going to be cooked more evenly. These, however, go inside of your oven.
Dutch ovens are ideal if you’re going the “low and slow” method, which is great for certain cuts of meat, stews, and more. You can also consider a crockpot or instant pot for this purpose, but your mileage may vary based on what you’re doing.
3. Stand Mixer
You’re going to be making lots of different foods, and you’re going to need to mix, blend, and get things ready to go. A stand mixer is going to make that process much quicker and a lot less stressful for you.
While there will be times where you’re going to want to mix by hand (for example, in recipes that call for “folding), you’re going to end up using a stand mixer quite frequently.
4. Specific Food Preparation Supplies
Homesteaders pride themselves in making their own food. Whether you’re storing things away for the winter or you’re making your own cheese, you want to have the right supplies on hand.
These may include jars, salt, cheesecloth (For more on cheesecloths, read the full details here), specific spices, parchment paper, and more. Figure out what you’ll make yourself and make a list of what you need to make those foods with ease.
5. Vacuum Sealer
Another form of food preservation is vacuum sealing. Instead of constantly buying zip-top bags, you can utilize a vacuum sealer to store meat and prevent issues like freezer burn and bacteria growth.
Vacuum sealing also makes certain types of cooking easier, like sous vide cooking – it removes the air and prevents the bag from floating on top of the water (rather than in it, which is necessary in this style of cooking.
6. Kitchen Scale
Measuring portions and sizes can be essential with dietary needs and when you’re getting ready to make any sort of meal. Also, if you’re splitting up any sort of meat, you may want to measure how many ounces are in a package so that you split it up as evenly as possible.
A kitchen scale can also be handy if you happen to be raising animals like chickens or bunnies – they’re just the right size to help you determine if babies are growing correctly. Anything small can go on a kitchen scale without any problems.
7. Food Dehydrator
Food dehydrators are a big help if you’re looking to dehydrate food for storage. Dried fruits and meats take up less space and they stay for a good, long while. You can even make your own jerky! You can do the same method in your oven or toaster oven, but it will end up tying up your oven for hours at a time, which can be inconvenient.
These are the things that you want to be sure that you have on hand and ready to go if you want to try homesteading out for yourself. More often than not, you’re going to want to find a lot of different options and make sure that you’ve got a constant supply of what you want and need. Research and learn as much as you can about the available options and you’ll be ready to go!