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My SHTF food plan has to be revised.

Several weeks ago we were invited to a fellow preppers cottage. He is also brews beer (this puts him at the top of my list for people welcome at my house) and, as a public service, we test each others beer to make sure the public is safe. He would not accept any money for his hospitality so we took lots of food to feed the whole gang. I also took 5 different brews along to match the meals served.

Note: Amber Bock pairs perfectly with any breakfast.

Now on to the revelation. Their cottage was near a meat market that has the best bacon in the world. Since we were close I purchased 26 pounds in 2 pound packages. I put 20 pounds in the freezer and cooked 6 pounds while we were there. Here is the start of the problem………..

The first evening I cooked Orange Burgundy Duck on the grill. When my son and I returned from fishing the next morning we cooked 4 pounds of bacon 2 lbs. to serve with the Quiche and two pounds for BLT’s for lunch. Dinner was leg of lamb on the spit and Cajun salmon. The next morning I did another two pounds of bacon and had basted eggs with pan fried Texas toast. Lunch consisted of “Drunken Bratwurst” and dinner was pork loin and hamburgers.

When we were done with dinner a couple from the other side of the lake pulled their pontoon boat up and then the party started (six boats total). I was officially “UNINVITED” back by the Lake Association unless I took enough food for everybody. Almost everyone on this small lake could smell what we were cooking. The nearest cottage was over two hundred yards away. The food smells carried much further than that. The only meal that they did not smell was the BLT’s because I had precooked the bacon.

We fish and hunt a great deal and we currently have about 140 pounds of Salmon, twenty pounds of bacon, 40 pounds of bratwurst, 15-20 pounds of hamburger, 90 pounds of elk, 120 pounds of moose, 35 pounds of bambie, about 20 pounds of beef steak, 20 pounds of turkey, 40 pounds of perch and walleye and 70 pounds of cooking oil. We have three large freezers but are currently only using two. (Some, obviously, is store bought)

We have three barbies and tons of propane and charcoal. In a SHTF scenario I am now thinking that we will be a target just due to cooking smells. We are currently working on Dutch oven recipes to reduce the odor profile but that isn’t working out too well. We had a three day power failure here at home and we cooked outside as usual. Even in the Dutch oven the neighbors commented on the cooking smells. I am not concerned about the food thawing because we have a whole house generator that kicks on automatically. We have enough propane to power the generator for months (judicious use) and currently have a good freezer held as a spare. Even if we cook inside…..(a disgusting thought)…..ME MAN, ME BURN FOOD ON FIRE……… utilizing a vent or opening a window will give us away.

I am a Gourmand. The difference between a Gourmet and a Gourmand is a Gourmet likes good food….a Gourmand is a P.I.G. hog. Due to our hunting and fishing we will always have a lot of food in the freezer. When the “Fertilizer hit’s the Mixmaster “ I am curious how long we will be able to cook without compromising the welfare of my family. At least I will die fat and happy, hopefully, with a double IPA in hand.
 

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What he said..
You could also make a cookign feast and when enghbors show up next time give them some BUT at the same time casually dsiplay some guns and talk about how good a shot you were in the Army ..
They will remember this is SHTF
 

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You could try cooking indoors on propane. Make sure you have a carbon dioxide alarm and a carbon monoxide alarm.

The cooking smell problem probably isn't as bad as you think. You have to think about how often you'd cook 4 pounds of bacon at once.
 

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I am a little teapot
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Tugboats, this has benn discussed on PS in the past as a thing to be careful of. I'm very glad you posted this because it shows that our "What if....." discussions are more than just discussions and the things we talk about can and do really happen. Now you just p#ssed off some neighbors who were probably eating Spam and eggs for breakfast. What if those same neighbors had NO breakfast.....for weeks?
 

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performing monkey
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IMO you've already completely blown OPSEC in that location, there is absolutely no advice I can think of to unring that bell.
 

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I am a little teapot
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Good point, Blob.
 

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performing monkey
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IMO you've already completely blown OPSEC in that location, there is absolutely no advice I can think of to unring that bell.
Good point, Blob.
Better to make such a discovery now rather than post :shtf: , you have opportunity to change your location and how you operate.
 

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I have a sensitive sniffer and can often smell what all the neighbors are cooking.
And I have had more than one neighbor wander over to see what I am smoking when I have the smoker set up.
I have a feeling that unless you live as far off the beaten track as you can go and surround your place with huge prison walls. Cooking smells are going to give you away. And I have to say.. one of the most pervasive smells of food cooking and lingering is bacon. it sticks. Cabbage is another.
I am hoping that having neighbors that are close(not physically but friend wise) will make a small community and with the numbers make it safer. When we lose power here we all pull together even those of us who normally are not really friendly. I have seen this repeatedly in our small small town. We have been hit by some fierce storms more than once where out power has been off for more than a week. We keep an eye on one another homes while they are gone and we keep peace when needed. most of the time these storms are pretty localized so that we can go and get what is needed and are not pushed to steal from one another. It may be another story post SHTF. I'd like to think that we would pull together and rebuild. it may be a problem but there is a small hydro dam on our river and the people who work it and fix it and run it are all neighbors. it is possible that we would become targets if we could keep our power while others do not.
 

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IMO you've already completely blown OPSEC in that location, there is absolutely no advice I can think of to unring that bell.
And the sucky thing about it- it wasn't his land he was on. He was at another person's home/cottage. I am hoping it wasn't that preppers bug out.
 

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BORN PESSIMIST; we are doomed
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I have been thinking about this very subject lately, & wondered if that was not a point in favor of dehydrated food...? The "just add hot water" kind, limiting actually 'cooking' odors. Of course, you couldn't live on it indefinitely. :dunno:
 

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YourAdministrator, eh?
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Cookin' the food will always give off scent. I am hopin' that GypsySue might pop into here and give us some insight to her solar-cooker which might just be the ticket to cooking without giving off significant scent as it might be able to seal-in the scent with a clear lid as shown in the picture ...
 

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It points out that in a serious SHTF senario the active social unit needs to be larger than one nuclear family household. Cold canned and dehydrated will reduce food smells in the short term, however will get really boring quickly.
 

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Scavenger deluxe
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I can smell a BBQ at a half mile.burning garbage before cooking will mask it but they'll still know someone is around.the slower you cook, the less smell it makes as well.
 

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BORN PESSIMIST; we are doomed
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I guess you could cook with "low fragrance" ingredients...like no onions, garlic, etc...but then, who would want to go on living anyway...? :scratch
 

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My thought is that you need about 4-6 months of "heat and eat" meals that won't put off a lot of smell. After that most of the problem will have either pulled out for some FEMA camp handout or died of starvation for lack of any preparation for anything that disrupts the 3-day supply chain. At that point cook away to attract any "problem children" left in the neighborhood. Once they are dealt with you can go on enjoying your carefully stocked pantry.

John
 

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BillM
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Several years ago, i was the HVAC Engineer for a Health care Corp. My office was located adjacent to the shop and the Moruge.

The police recovered three bodies from an automobile that had sat in the summer sun for three days and brought them in for autopsy.

The odor was pretty bad in the office for a day or two.

On the second day a contractor came to do a semianual check on our emergency generators.

It was lunch time and the maintenance crew were washing up for lunch.

This contractor came barging in to the shop and says " Umm, what's that smell ? Are you guys having a BBQ ?"

I asked him to step outside on the dock and told him what he was smelling and he threw up.
 
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