Week 6: Pasta
8 lbs of Pasta (any variety)
After this week, you should have 8 lbs stored. The program goal is 40 lbs. We will address Pasta 4 more times (in weeks 17, 26, 41, and 46).
Busy families continue to search for foods that are healthy, satisfying, and economical, and they do not need to look further than the pasta aisle. Pasta is very low in sodium, and non-egg varieties are cholesterol-free. Per cup, enriched pastas provide an excellent source of folic acid and a good source of other essential nutrients, including iron and several B vitamins. Also, as a food that is low on the Glycemic Index (low GI foods are digested more slowly), pasta provides a slow release of energy without spiking blood sugar levels. A 1/2 cup serving of cooked pasta (spaghetti) contains a mere 99 calories and less than 5 milligrams of sodium. Pasta is high in complex carbohydrates which provide a “time release” of energy rather than a quick boost. And for this reason, pasta would be a great energy source during an emergency. And finally, pasta is very cheap. You will not have any problems finding an 8 lb variety of pasta for very little.
Pasta comes in many forms and can be made at home, purchased fresh, or purchased dried for long term use. You don’t have to look very far before you find hundreds of ways to prepare pasta, so the sky is the limit on this one. And for these reasons, we will address pasta several more times before this 52-week food storage program is over. If pasta is not your thing, find a substitute so you are storing something this week.
It is best to store pasta in a dry, cool place. Pasta or boxed pasta mixes can be kept in their original packaging up to the expiration date (typically a year or two), but can go bad after that. If you plan on cycling through your pasta, then the original packaging will be just fine. Follow the FIFO (first-in, first-out) method. If you would like to store pasta long term, take the pasta out of the original packaging and put it in buckets, #10 cans, foil pouches or your own vacuum sealed bags. By doing this, it can literally last for decades.