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Sunday, May 26, 2024

How To Clean, Bake, And Store Pine Cones

How To Clean, Bake, And Store Pine Cones

Do you know how to clean, bake, and store pine cones? What is the best emergency fuel to store? People ask me this all the time. We all have different budgets, cooking devices, and heating options. Some of us have tiny homes; others have medium-sized or large homes. Of course, we must evaluate our land and how much room we have to use the various fuel types available. Modern Uses for Pine Cones

Some of us have apartments or mobile homes with limited space for fuel storage and the challenge of using the fuels we have stored based on fire codes and hazards. We also must consider the storage life of the good fuels we want to store. There are also safety issues, such as how much we can store where we live. Life is all about storing the best emergency fuel that fits our living quarters and the budget we have available. I’m updating this post from a few years ago. Some readers have asked me about preparing and using pine cones.

Baking Pine Cones

Pine Cones on Golf Course

My husband plays golf and mentioned that the golf course has tons of FREE pine cones on the ground. I love the word FREE, so my husband and I went to the golf course one evening to gather some pine cones. Of course, the weather said it was going to snow that day. If you haven’t been to Southern Utah to see the beautiful red mountains, you probably have not seen the red dirt.

Yes, it is red, and it stains everything. It’s also like clay, so it’s sticky and sticks to everything. I didn’t want my shoes covered with wet red dirt, so we hightailed it to the golf course before the storm arrived. The wind was blowing, so the weather felt freezing to me! Below, you can see how we gathered them with a 33-gallon black garbage bag.

Free Pine Cones

I took a collapsible garbage can and put a large black bag inside before we left to go to the golf course. We weren’t sure how much sap the pine cones would still have on them. Now, you might wonder, “Linda, why would you call pine cones one of the best emergency fuels?”

Here’s the deal: I am not a good fire starter. I have tried many gadgets to light a fire, but I still need Tinder or FREE pine cones. Don’t get me wrong, these pine cones are good for more than just starting the fire; they burn faster. I can also use these in my Kelly Kettle.

Pine cones are also great for my Volcano Stove or firepit. We couldn’t store a lot of wood in Southern Utah when we lived there because of the termites. Plus, after baking these pine cones, they are insect-free, and the sap is gone as part of “baking” them.

My friend Lisa suggested baking the pine cones on cookie sheets covered by aluminum foil to bake in the oven. If there is a lot of sap, using the aluminum foil means you won’t have a lot of clean-up after baking them. It worked. I baked the pine cones at 200 degrees for 2 hours. The baking process eliminates any sticky sap and removes any bugs that may be hiding in the core of the pine cone.

I was a bit nervous in the first batch because I’d never baked pine cones, but I had no problems with baking them. I ensured I had zero pine cones hanging over the cookie sheet because I didn’t want any pine sap drips in my oven.

What Is The Best Emergency Fuel To Store | via

Baking The Pine Cones

What Is The Best Emergency Fuel To Store | via www.foodstoragemoms.comReady To Store Fuel

I am a bit of an organization fanatic. I might even be a little OCD; I don’t know. I store my wheat with red and yellow Gamma lids used for pasta. I made my emergency washing machines with green lids. Mark and I store my Kingsford charcoal in blue buckets with blue Gamma lids. I store my fire starter/best emergency fuel pine cones in black buckets with black Gamma lids. I order all my black buckets and Gamma Lids from this group: Black Buckets with Gamma Lids.

Storing Pine Cone

What Is The Best Emergency Fuel To Store | via

Gamma Lids on Buckets

The Gamma lids are two-piece: the ring or band, as you would call it, and the fantastic screw-on lid itself. It would be best to have a rubber mallet and a cloth to carefully tap the “ring or band” on the bucket. These are 5-gallon buckets.

Pine Cones

Store Pine Cones with Other Fuel

Kingsford Charcoal Story

I have to tell you this story about Kingsford Charcoal. I picked up two bags of this charcoal to complete my blue bucket storage project, which I finished with blue Gamma lids. I wanted them all packed and ready for when I might need them. Please picture me at my local grocery store. I ran to get my husband’s weekly allotment of bananas for his morning breakfast cereal.

Skip The Lighter Fuel Charcoal

While I was there, I picked up some Kingsford charcoal that was manufactured without the chemicals. Please note that charcoal without lighter fluid chemicals will be stored indefinitely in a waterproof/airtight container. I store my oak hardwood lump charcoal in red buckets with red Gamma lids. I want several types of fuel for different emergencies.

When I was ready to pay at the checkout counter, the clerk (about 60ish) asked me if I knew why Kingsford Charcoal was called Kingsford. I said I didn’t know. He showed me the bag where they tell a little story behind the name.

Oh my gosh! I couldn’t stop smiling because I had never heard the story and hadn’t seen part of it on the outside of the bag. We have a gas barbecue, and I only buy charcoal for a party or camping up in the mountains.

I wonder if the Boy Scouts or their leaders know about this story. I’m just thinking out loud about the name of the charcoal. This statement is straight from the Kingsford bag, and I quote: “The History Of The Original Charcoal: Back in 1920, Kingsford Charcoal repurposed wood scraps from the production of Ford Model T’s into charcoal briquets.

Made in the USA. Today, Kingsford remains the leading manufacturer of charcoal in the U.S., annually turning 1 million tons of real wood scraps into the authentic charcoal briquets America loves.”

What Is The Best Emergency Fuel To Store | via

Charcoal briquettes vs Lump charcoal:

What is briquette charcoal?

Charcoal has been pressed into similar sizes with round, uniform shapes. This is what we usually think of as BBQ fuel.

What is lump charcoal?

It’s generally charred wood fuel that is not formed into uniform shapes. It’s natural tree lumber that is burned in a kiln.

Which has more ashes: lump charcoal or briquettes?

Briquettes have more ashes because they are pressed into forms, and the lump charcoal is naturally charred tree lumber via a kiln.

Which product has more consistent heat?

Briquettes because they are uniform in size, therefore heating more evenly.

How does the price compare between the two?

This can vary widely because some lump charcoal can be made out of pecan, oak, pine, or whatever wood is natural for the area where it is being sold. Some woods are more expensive, depending on where you purchase them and their availability.

They are typically more expensive than briquettes. Note that the charcoal made from softwoods tends to burn faster, and the harder woods tend to burn slower and longer, so plan based on what you will be cooking and the desired results.

Cooking With A Butane Stove:

We still open a window to let some fresh air in just to be safe when using a butane stove. I used to use these stoves in classes where I taught food storage-type classes or emergency cooking classes. Mark and I also used this stove for six weeks, along with our solar Sun Oven, when we were waiting for our gas stove to be installed in the kitchen. We’re so glad we replaced our glass-top electric stove.

I’ve always preferred cooking with natural gas because you can control the heat more consistently and because it tends to be less expensive to use. Also, I haven’t found a glass-top stove to accommodate the heat generated during my annual canning. Some may be engineered that way, but I haven’t found one.

It’s been fun cooking with gas again. Once the harvest season is here, we’ll discuss proper canning techniques later this year and how to make the most of the fruit and vegetable crops we’ve grown in our garden or those found in our local stores or farmers’ markets. The gas stove makes it possible to can and pressure cook, which I couldn’t do with the old glass top. Butane Stove and Butane Fuel

Final Word

Please store pine cones if you can access them for FREE! May God bless this world, Linda

The post How To Clean, Bake, And Store Pine Cones appeared first on Food Storage Moms.

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