Monthly Archives: February 2018

Episode-2172- Ted Kehl on Heating with Wood

Our guest today Ted Kehl is part of the 5th generation to farm their couple hundred acres in mid-Missouri (purchased in 1911). They raise primarily beef, goats, and timber.

He has lived in a bus for over a year to help pay for college.  He has a degree in Engineering Physics and mentors 4H robotics for his county.  In his spare time he is renovating the house his grandfather and great uncles built for his own family of 6.

Our guests brings 3 decades worth of experience with firewood and using wood stoves as primary heat as well as accumulated knowledge of past generations.
Finally, he is a longtime listener all the way back to episode 89 or 90.

Resources for today’s show…

Sponsors of the Day

Remember to comment, chime in and tell us your thoughts, this podcast is one man’s opinion, not a lecture or sermon. Also please enter our listener appreciation contest and help spread the word about our show. Also remember you can call in your questions and comments to 866-65-THINK (866-658-4465) and you might hear yourself on the air.

Join the MSB Today

Join the MSB Today

Want Every Episode of TSP Ever Produced?

Remember in addition to discounts to over 40 vendors who supply stuff you are likely buying anyway, tons of free ebooks and video content, MSB Members also get every edition of The Survival Podcast ever produced in convenient zip files in blocks of 24. More info on the MSB can be found here.

German Style Fermentation Crock – Item of the Day

crockEvery day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day is my favorite German Style Fermentation Crock made by TSM Products.  I first found this item about 5 years ago and have used it many times since buying it.  It comes in four sizes, 5L (1.3 Gallons), 10L (2.6 Gallons), 15L (3.9 Gallons) and 20L (5.2 Gallons).

I personally have the 10 liter model and to me it is plenty large enough.  Frankly the 5L model will make quite a bit per batch.  And while fermented foods keep quite well in the cellar or fridge but I prefer them quite fresh while they are still nice and crisp.  Additionally making them is so simple it is no big deal to just keep running batches of what ever you want as needed.

My main focus with fermented foods is taste and health not storage, so I personally think I would have been just fine with the 5L model.  The main use I would see for something like the 20 liter model would be for someone who is making product for a group or large family.  Please consider all this before deciding you need a huge crock.  Two whole cabbages fit in my 10L model with room to spare, that is a LOT of kraut.

Many people ferment in jars, this works, but it never comes out as consistently good for me as when I use my crock.  There are a few reasons for this in my view.  First and foremost is uniform temps, the thick ceramic construction holds a steady temp with minimal fluctuation.  Next is the total darkness of the environment.  Then you get a dead simple airlock with the water holding rim at the top.  Finally the stone weights hold everything nicely under the brine so you don’t get any funny stuff going on with exposed veggies.

I do make my share of sauerkraut with this thing.  My favorite variation is adding about 1/3rd by volume of cabbage shredded carrots and and equal amount of shredded apple, and a good helping of caraway seeds.  Man is that stuff fantastic on brats!  The key is never cook it, just gently warm it when serving it with things like your meats.  This way all the beneficial bacteria stays alive.

What about slow cooking pork in kraut you say?  Okay well then just do it, and at the end add a few tbs of fresh uncooked kraut to each plate.

My absolute favorite thing to make is my own signature brand escabache  though.  There are many varieties of escabache, some fermented and some done with vinegar.  The one that inspired mine is generally in a small bowl on every table in any good “hole in the wall” Mexican restaurant in Texas.  You know the kind of place where a margarita contains only tequila, lime juice and orange liquor, vs koolaid mixer and comes in a high ball glass vs. a fish bowl?

This brand of escabache consists of simply carrots, onions, jalapenos in a pickle brine.  Though every place will tell you theirs is “special”.  The best versions are always fermented and seen as a digestion aid.  To make mine I broke with the standard to make it bit milder and get by product of amazing pickled garlic.    Here is my recipe.

Equal amounts of the following vegetables cut to the shape of your liking, I like thin long strips….

  • Sweet Peppers (several colors make for a great eye appeal, use red, orange, yellow to contrast with the green jalapenos)
  • Carrots (again I cut them into thin sticks)
  • Jalapenos (seed half to go a bit more mild, seed all and you get almost no heat.  Tune in to today’s show for a major short cut on this)
  • White Onions (cut again in long strips)
  • Garlic (go to Albertsons Grocery, they sell whole pealed cloves in clam shells in the produce area for about 3 bucks, this is a great deal and saves a lot of time.  Don’t slice the garlic leave the cloves whole.)
  • Salt water (enough to cover, I use 2 TBS per quart, the standard is 1-3 per quart.  Use sea or kosher or pickling salt)
  • One hand full of black peppercorns

It could not be more easy, just stick everything in the crock, cover with salt water, put your stones on and wait about 7-10 days.  I usually cover the top of my veggies with grape leaves (muscadine or wild fox grape leaves are fine for this).  It keeps the little pieces from escaping and the tanning keeps things crisp.  Some use oak leaves but I have never tried this.

If you want to kick start fermentation, put about one tablespoon of whey from some yogurt into the brine.  While not necessary it is very helpful.

When done to your taste, put in ball jars and store in the fridge, it will be very good for 30 days and quite good for about 60.  After that to me anyway it gets too fermented even in the fridge which is why I make about 2-3 quarts per run.

Well, then there is the garlic, that stuff keeps for months.  So when I make a batch I usually buy 2-3 of the clam shells of garlic.  I jar up about half with the escabache and half by itself for cooking or snacking, man is spicy garlic great stuff.

Another plan this year is to make up some fermented Jerusalem artichokes.  Haven’t tried those yet but heard they are very good and it avoids the um, well side effects that make some call them fartachokes!

So if you have been thinking of adding fermented vegetables to your diet (and you really should) check out the German Style Fermentation Crock today.  At only 59 dollars for the 5 liter model it will pay for itself in a batch or two and give you better quality pickled veggies then you could ever buy in a store.  And unlike a ball jar, it will look awesome on your counter whether you have a batch running or not.

Remember you can always find the TSP Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop online you help support TSP and the work we do here no matter what you buy.

 

 

 

Episode-2171- The Hunter Gatherer Homestead

So today we will talk a bit about foraging and hunting and where they fit into all this but that is not the main topic.  I am talking hunting and gathering like behavior on your own homestead be it 1000 acres or 1000 square feet.

The term hunter/gather is tossed around a lot but we seldom look at the actual lifestyle of such people.  What is it composed of?  We such people do either grow or gather “survival rations” things you can store long term for when times get lean.  But in general they are like omnivorous human grazers.

Think about how much game was in North America before it was settled by westerners.  There were 10s of millions of Native peoples living here but they had almost no negative impact on the game.  Why?  They took what they needed as they needed it.  And you know what, they did this more for convenience than for conservation reasons.

Think about it, say you own 12 cattle on your land and your land can feed them.  How many are you going to kill at one time if you are only using them to feed your family?  Well one of course, it is less work, that is the biggest reason.  The rest continue to take care of themselves and make more cattle until you need another one.  We will examine this and more today as we take a different look at homesteading.

Join Me Today to Discuss…

  • The lifestyle of the hunter gatherer, it ain’t what we’ve been taught on TV
  • How this applies to homesteading
    • Some main crops or foraging in time of plenty
    • Most of the time eating like a grazer
    • Produce vegetables, fruits and proteins
    • Don’t work harder than you have to
    • Only harvest or even create large harvests that make sense
  • Some keys to this lifestyle
    • First it is basic permaculture design
    • Plant in high density
    • Plant in heavy diversity
    • Succession planting
    • Develop some protein source
    • Include perennials
    • Do a little bit every day
    • Automate anything you can
    • Accept seasonal limits
    • Grow what survives or create an environment where it can
    • Do forage/hunt off site
  • Why this method works best for the most people

Resources for today’s show…

Sponsors of the Day

Remember to comment, chime in and tell us your thoughts, this podcast is one man’s opinion, not a lecture or sermon. Also please enter our listener appreciation contest and help spread the word about our show. Also remember you can call in your questions and comments to 866-65-THINK (866-658-4465) and you might hear yourself on the air.

Join the MSB Today

Join the MSB Today

Want Every Episode of TSP Ever Produced?

Remember in addition to discounts to over 40 vendors who supply stuff you are likely buying anyway, tons of free ebooks and video content, MSB Members also get every edition of The Survival Podcast ever produced in convenient zip files in blocks of 24. More info on the MSB can be found here.

Magnet Tool Holding Arm Band – TSP Item of the Day

Every day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day my favorite Magnetic Arm Band.  Hold on this isn’t one of those wear this and it will cure your arthritis, it is instead wear this and you will keep track of screws, bolts, nails, drill bits, driver bits, etc. when doing a project.

Ever been on top of a ladder, you just took out three screws and want to bring down what ever you just disconnected and not loose the screws on the floor or say in the grass?

How about you drilled a hole and need to swap to a T25 Torx bit?  Great that bit is in the cool little holder on your DeWalt drill, yea I love that thing too, but it doesn’t hold drill bits.  Ever put a drill bit in your pocket only to have it manage to somehow drill itself to escape and never find it again.

Ever put sharp nails or screws in your pocket only to wish you hadn’t for one reason or another later?  Have you ever been on your back under a car and had to remove some nuts only to have one fall and well, you are just not able to get it, so you have to slide out and try to find it?

If only there were a technology that caused metal things to stick to something, gee wouldn’t that be great?  Okay I am being a little terse but you get the point, we call that technology a magnet.

With one or two of these bands your life when doing projects can be so much better.  It isn’t just that you don’t have to use a pocket, it is, you don’t have to reach into your pocket while holding up something heavy in one hand and a drill driver in the other and many similar situations.   That nail, screw, washer, drill bit, allen key, etc, is right there.

I look at it this way, these are like having that helper who can’t do much but can hold stuff and hand stuff to you while you work, except it is only 13 bucks and you don’t have to provide it free beer to help you on a Saturday project.

They are simple to use, very effective and will make your life easier on project days, so why not pick up a Magnetic Arm Band soon, your pockets along with the tender areas near them will thank you for it.

Remember you can always find the TSP Amazon Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop online you help support TSP and the work we do here no matter what you buy.

 

Episode-2170- Listener Feedback for 2-26-18

jackspirkoToday on The Survival Podcast I take your questions on the age of adulthood, microgreens, suicide, cryptocurrency, guns, preparedness and more.

Make sure if you submit content for a feedback show that you put something like “comment for jack”, “question for jack” or “article for jack” in the subject line to assure proper identification for my screening process.

Please understand I receive several hundred emails a day and can’t get them all on the air.

I also do put out a lot of information on Facebook from emails that I can’t fit on the program though so keep em coming.

Join Me Today As I Respond to Your Calls and Discuss…

  • What I learned by asking the question, what is the true age of adulthood
  • Growing microgreens outside, how to and what varieties are best
  • What we can learn from the Netflix series “13 Reasons Why”
  • How to buy cryptocurrencies that are not on Coinbase
  • Another source of Geoff Lawton’s Urban Permaculture
  • Choosing a shotgun
  • The danger of dependency with the illusion of security

Resources for today’s show…

Sponsors of the Day

Remember to comment, chime in and tell us your thoughts, this podcast is one man’s opinion, not a lecture or sermon. Also please enter our listener appreciation contest and help spread the word about our show. Also remember you can call in your questions and comments to 866-65-THINK (866-658-4465) and you might hear yourself on the air.

Join the MSB Today

Join the MSB Today

Want Every Episode of TSP Ever Produced?

Remember in addition to discounts to over 40 vendors who supply stuff you are likely buying anyway, tons of free ebooks and video content, MSB Members also get every edition of The Survival Podcast ever produced in convenient zip files in blocks of 24. More info on the MSB can be found here.

Jerusalem Artichokes from Yumheart Gardens – Amazon Item of the Day

Every day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Item of the day is Jerusalem Artichokes from Yumheart Gardens.  There are many sellers of Jerusalem Artichokes on Amazon but I have bought several varieties from this one and have been quite pleased with the results.

This is a plant I just think everyone should grow!  They are amazingly productive and talk about a plant you can grow almost anywhere they are hardy from USDA Zone 4A all the way up to Zone 9B.

I tried fermenting them in salt brine this year and I have to say it was my favorite way to make them so far.  You can see the very simple recipe in the PS below.  Let me tell you how my affinity for this plant began though.  All the way back in 2013 we we first moved to Nine Mile Farm a listener sent me 4 of them in a bag with a damp paper towel.  He said simply cut them in to 2-4 pieces each, make sure each piece has a nodule or two, stick them in the ground, make sure they get water and stand back.

I cut them into 10 pieces and planted them into a 10’x4′ small hugel bed.  That fall I harvested 4 five gallon buckets of them, what was left in the ground filled the bed with no replanting in 2014.  That year though I changed the purpose of that bed, it was also the last thing the chickens ruined before being gotten rid of and fully switching to ducks.

So for a year I didn’t grow any, and simply harvested a few random survivors that survived the bed conversion and the ravages of the chickens.  The fact that such survivors exist says something about this plant.

Since then I have tried a few varieties and a few sources, this one just seems like the best bang for the buck to me.  They don’t seem to be a specific variety, but they are low cost and grow very large.  Priced at 7.96 they are a great deal but shipping is 7.48 so call it roughly 16 bucks all in.  You are going to pay higher shipping on items like this because they are coming from independent sellers on Amazon (read that small businesses) who have to charge a bit more.  I find this fair enough and like to support entrepreneurs as you know.

The way to look at this though is you buy them once, if you make sure to hold over a few tubers each year for insurance, you never have to buy them again.  I also want to say I recommend a very cool red variety from this seller last year and they did well for me as well.  However, one listener bought them and was disappointed when she weighed them because they were about an ounce light of a full pound or something like that.

I would imagine that these are picked and packaged and ready to ship, it is quite reasonable that they could dry out a bit and be an ounce or two shy.  My view is so the heck what!  Again I planted 4 tubers cut into 10 pieces and got four 5-gallon buckets of harvest.

So please consider planting them as a very productive and sustainable food crop this year.  And as I said there are a lot of options on Amazon, but I have purchased several items from this seller and always been happy.  So consider planting Jerusalem Artichokes from Yumheart Gardens in your garden this year.

Remember you can always find the TSP Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop online you help support TSP and the work we do here no matter what you buy.

P.S. – Here is my basic recipie for fermented chokes.  It is very simple, wash them well to remove all dirt and cut into pieces about as big as say a carrot stick,  put them into your fermentation vessel of choice.  I do mine in jars and really like both Masontops and FermentEm products for doing so.

Add about 10 Black Peppercorns and two cloves of garlic peeled as well.  Cover with basic brine and weight down to keep under brine.  Ferment for about 7-10 days then store in fridge to slow fermentation.

They are crisp, a bit sweet and awesome!  They also don’t make you um, “gassy” if fermented.  For basic brine use 1/2 cup of salt to the gallon of water.  Adjust to the amount you need.

P.S.S. – The best way to store them hands down is in a ziplock bag.  Put them into said bag and add a wad of damp (not wet just damp) paper towels and refrigerate and they will store for many months.  The bottom drawer is the best spot.  If you store them long enough they may begin to sprout, if so you can just remove the sprouts and eat them or plant them and they will grow out again for you.

Episode-2169- Expert Council Q&A for 2-22-18

Today its Friday so it’s time for expert council show. To ask a question for a show like this, just send an email to me at jack at thesurvivalpodcast.com with “TSPC Expert” in the subject line.

Today the expert council answers questions on cryptocurrency, diesel vehicles, traffic stops, government auctions, goats, depression, energy, permaculture and more.

In the body of your email first tell me the council member your question is for. Second ask your question concisely in one to two sentences maximum. Third any and all details after that. This is the formula to give you the best chance of getting on the air.

I do what I can to get as many of your questions as possible on the air but can’t always get to all of them. Our council is made of a wide variety of experts in everything from the tactical to the practical and everything in between.

To get more information on our Expert Council visit our “Meet the Expert Council Page” to learn more about them and their specific areas of expertise.

Join Me Today As Our Experts Discuss

  • What is Heleum and Uphold and how do they work – Ben Fitts
  • The ins and outs of the new Mercedes Sprinter van – Charles Sanville
  • How a traffic stop warning actually works – Dan Ohmann
  • Getting the best deals at government auctions – Tim Glance
  • Dealing with health problems with goats – Darby Simpson
  • Dealing with anxiety and depression during a SHTF – Doc Bones
  • The war of the currents AC vs DC – Steven Harris
  • Of ponds and hugulkulture – Jack

Resources for today’s show…

Websites of the Expert Council Members

Remember to comment, chime in and tell us your thoughts, this podcast is one man’s opinion, not a lecture or sermon. Also please enter our listener appreciation contest and help spread the word about our show. Also remember you can call in your questions and comments to 866-65-THINK (866-658-4465) and you might hear yourself on the air.

Join the MSB Today

Join the MSB Today

Want Every Episode of TSP Ever Produced?

Remember in addition to discounts to over 40 vendors who supply stuff you are likely buying anyway, tons of free ebooks and video content, MSB Members also get every edition of The Survival Podcast ever produced in convenient zip files in blocks of 24. More info on the MSB can be found here.

The Herbal Medicine Makers Handbook by James Green – Item of the Day

handbook

Every day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day is the book, The Herbal Medicine Makers Handbook, A Home Manual by James Green.  If I had to rely on only one book on medicinal herbs and their use it would be this book.

This book is hard to describe in a way as it is almost a dichotomy in itself.  On one hand it is extremely easy to read and highly approachable.  The author starts out with a true project/lesson.  Making a dandelion tincture.  The author does this for a variety of reasons.  First, almost anyone can find dandelion to harvest locally.  Second, the herb is inherently safe to use.  Third, the herb is easy to identify and no dangerous plant even looks remotely like a dandelion.  Fourth, by getting you started with a project out of the gate you gain confidence as you proceed with the book.

This book is written by a guy that uses both humor and humility and never tries to sound smart, he just ends up sounding really smart, because well, he is.  This is not a guy that decided one day that “oh I should gather up some information and write a book about herbs”, rather a man that lives this way who decided to canonize his knowledge into an incredible book.  Yet it is kept incredibly simple with the majority of it based on a core of 30 common herbs.

Then there is the other side.  While easy to read and approachable, this is really like a full course text book on herbal medicines.  Want to know how to make your own simple still from what you likely already have in your home to make a hydrosol?  Well first would you like to know what a hydrosol is and how to use it?  You will learn both in this book.  How about making and using glycerite and 20 herbs that work well in that form?  Yep you will learn that too.  Take the time and work though this book, all 384 pages of it, make at least 2-3 products of every form given and it is like taking a self directed course in herbalism.

One thing to be aware of for some.  The author sort of crosses into the world of shamanism/paganism at times, sayig things like,

“Now that you have properly identified and graciously harvested this plant, offer gratitude one again for its life.  Consider leaving an offering, like a strand of your hair, a prayer, a song, a story, whatever; plant spirits are known to be deeply touched by simple gestures of appreciation.”

While this may be a bit off putting for some, I’d like to point out two things here.  First that showing gratitude is good for our spirits, no matter how you define spirit.  Whether a religious prayer before a meal or simply a thought of I am grateful for this food from a secular perspective, either one builds good character and self reflection.

Second I remember a documentary on Amazon peoples where the tribe decided they needed a new canoe.  A tree was selected and one man selected to fell the tree.  The man said a prayer and spoke to the tree, he apologized for needing to take its life.  He explained that his people would honor the tree’s sacrifice, that the canoe and other parts would serve his people for several generations.  That they would plant a tree from this trees own seed in its place and make sure it was protected so it could grow into a strong tree.

That had to be 25 years ago and I have yet to forget that moment and the words that man said to a tree.  Call such a man a primitive if you want but how much more forest would exist if all trees cut for our needs were cut with such reverence.  Also think about this, that man was about to spend a full day of manual labor to cut that huge tree down.  No chain saws in his tribe and yet he met the task with humility.

So yea there is some woo woo in this book but nothing over the top in my view.  What you get is quality instruction, a true course in home herbal medicine making and concise information to make this practice safe and effective.  Again, if I could only have one book on herbal medicine it would be The Herbal Medicine Makers Handbook, by James Green.

Remember you can always find the TSP Amazon Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop on Amazon you help support TSP and the work we do here no matter what you buy.

 

Episode-2168- Listener Feedback for 2-22-18

jackspirkoToday on The Survival Podcast I take your questions on dogs, cover crops, peppers, schools, growing fruit, worm bins, crypto currency, government, cooking beef and more.

Remember to be on a show like this one just pick up your phone and call 866-65-THINK.

Make sure if you submit content for a feedback show that you put something like “comment for jack”, “question for jack” or “article for jack” in the subject line to assure proper identification for my screening process.

Please understand I receive several hundred emails a day and can’t get them all on the air.

I also do put out a lot of information on Facebook from emails that I can’t fit on the program though so keep em coming.

Join Me Today As I Respond to Your Calls and Discuss…

  • What should you feed your dog
  • Choosing a good ground cover for a recently cleared area
  • Thoughts on peppers like Carolina Reaper, etc.
  • More on the decline of government schools
  • Container strawberries and worm big fodder
  • Of UBI and cryptocurrency
  • Dealing with tough beef

Resources for today’s show…

Remember to comment, chime in and tell us your thoughts, this podcast is one man’s opinion, not a lecture or sermon. Also please enter our listener appreciation contest and help spread the word about our show. Also remember you can call in your questions and comments to 866-65-THINK (866-658-4465) and you might hear yourself on the air.

Join the MSB Today

Join the MSB Today

Want Every Episode of TSP Ever Produced?

Remember in addition to discounts to over 40 vendors who supply stuff you are likely buying anyway, tons of free ebooks and video content, MSB Members also get every edition of The Survival Podcast ever produced in convenient zip files in blocks of 24. More info on the MSB can be found here.

Utopia Kitchen Flour Sack Towels – Item of the Day

Every day I bring you an item on Amazon that I personally use or has been purchased by many members of the audience and I have researched enough to recommend.

Today’s TSP Amazon Item of the day is Utopia Kitchen Flour Sack Towels.  I am going to tell you that really any flour sack towel I have used has been fine, these are just the best price per towel I can find and they are on prime.

Lot’s of people like these because they are lint free and dry dishes nicely, etc.  Some people use them for embroidery.  I don’t really care about that with them, I use them rather than cheesecloth and think they make a much better alternative when making yogurt cheese.

Cheese cloth wears out fast and doesn’t really offer any advantages for this use, where as flour sack towels last a very long time, you just wash and dry them and use them over and over again.  I am a huge fan of getting good bacteria like lactobacillus into your diet in many different ways and none are more awesome than yogurt cheese.  In fact it may be the easiest and most delicous way to up  your probiotic game.

All you need to do to make basic yogurt cheese is take one of these towels and dump plain yogurt with “live and active cultures” into it, stir in a bit of salt, put it in a metal strainer over a bowl and wait 12 to 24 hours.  You will than have something akin to tangy cream cheese.  But I have never made it so bland.

While your yogurt is still very soft is the time to stir in herbs and seasonings.  Here are a few of my favorite things to add to it.

  • Fresh Basil and Fresh Garlic – this is the universal one everyone likes
  • Chopped Jalapenos and Garlic
  • Cracked Black Pepper, Rosemary and Thyme
  • Cracked Black Pepper and Almond Slivers
  • Lemon Zest and Chopped Walnuts

Honestly if you think it might taste good with cheese it will likely work.  How much, well as in most things I do it by eye, just remember you can always add more but can never take it out.  Here is a save if you ever over do anything, make a plane batch and blend it.

Also if you want your yogurt cheese a bit firmer, try this, take a large heavy can of something, put it on top of the towel and it will help expel a bit more of the whey.  Oh the whey that stuff is probiotic gold.  You can drink it and you will also find that your animals will like it too.

So if getting more probiotics into your diet is in your plans for 2018 give Utopia Kitchen Flour Sack Towels a shot.

Remember you can always find the TSP Amazon Item of the day by just going to TspAz.com and by shopping at TspAz.com anytime you shop on Amazon you help support TSP and the work we do here no matter what you buy.