Irene has already made landfall in North Carolina and she is progressing up the coastline, turning slightly to the northwest, per current weather reports. She is expected to pass close to Cape May and Atlantic City around 4:00 a.m. on Sunday, August 28th.
News stations are suggesting our area could even be without power for up to 10 days, but it is impossible to predict exactly which areas will be hit worst and for how long.
Some people have spent the day cooking in readiness for possible extended power outages. While power is still available, it’s a good idea to use some of your long hours indoors to cook up and prepare some easy dishes that can be kept and eaten over several days, such as fruit pies, breads, muffins, boiled eggs, vegetable salads without dressing and fresh fruits and vegetables that can be washed and eaten simply with your hands.
Wherever possible, use surplus home grown fruits and vegetables that are past their freshly eaten best in cooked recipes. If you don’t have access to your own vegetable plot, then support your local farmer and buy some fresh produce from a road market or farmstand. Cheyenne’s Road Market in Mount Laurel, NJ was open for business today. An ever-changing array of “fresh as a dewdrop”, colorful, nutritious and organically grown produce is always available. Check their Facebook page for the latest information on opening hours over the coming days after the storm.
When weather conditions safely permit travel, pay a visit to your local farmers’ market. Most selections include items that can be easily prepared and incorporated into meals during a power outage. If you need a few ideas, then be sure to ask the staff for recipe suggestions. You’ll be doing yourself and your family a healthy favor while helping out small businesses in your area during these lean and extreme times. Though cultivating a smaller acreage, many gardeners can sympathize with local farmers, in that extreme weather conditions produce some devastating effects to carefully planned plantings and crops.
Whether it’s using our own home grown fruits and vegetables or fresh organically grown local produce, we can feel good about including non processed foods in our diet while dealing with Irene’s consequences. Avoiding or limiting foods and meats high in saturated fat shows a “green” attitude. We save resources, ourselves a greater chance of living in better health, thus reducing our need to place a strain on the medical system.
May all make it through this massive storm safely and in good health.