There are a lot of things I wasn’t expecting at the outset of this contest. Of course I knew it would be a great experience for anyone who decided to join up, but I didn’t know I’d sit reading submissions each week cheering on the participants (for all my family to hear), laughing out loud at their funny weekly experiences, or feeling so touched by their notes of gratitude.
Another thing I didn’t expect to have happen was seeing how fast participants ended up catching on to food storage cooking and how good they got at it! I already knew if I could do it anyone could, but the motivation of a contest really fueled the fire and got the job done (and then some)! All recipes added up, it’s very impressive to see what these “once novice” prepper cooks accomplished in the short span of three months!!
Here are the stats:
Week by week, the pace of the contest grew more intense. And for anyone reading who may not have known the rules from the outset, one of the main requirements was that (beyond skill recipes, such as making things you might normally buy already made such as bread, yogurt, butter, tortillas, etc.) each participant was not allowed to repeat the same recipe twice. This necessitated a lot of creative planning and thinking ahead in each participant’s cooking. In the graph layout below you see the top point score each week noted at the top of each weekly column. The total number of recipes made that week (by all participants) is included at the bottom.
So, let’s get down to business. Here are our WINNERS as well as our final tallied points!!!
All of our 10 finalists will be receiving a Wonder Oven from me (as detailed in the initial contest post). Additionally, the top 5 will receive a package of some of my favorite containers to use in cooking with their Wonder Oven.
With an amazing two week end-of-show effort, Dawn had been watching the contest previously but seemingly came out of no where weeks 11 & 12 to catch 4th place! Great job, Dawn!!
Barbara was a consistent participant through the majority of the contest, making a total of 57 recipes and earning 427 points! In the midst of the contest, her family had some tummy aches from not being accustomed to eating wheat, her husband and daughter got serious about grinding wheat (in bulk!) for Barbara’s bread making weekly plans and she even had a yogurt and granola taste testing involving two of her granddaughters. In addition to this 3rd place prize, she also was the winner of two weekly prizes and one of the two facebook prizes.
Amanda kept within a shadow’s pace of our winner nearly every week, steadily driving the competition higher each week. She made a total of 136 recipes in all, totaling 1,170 points! She worked relentlessly (btw, she’ll be detailing her experience for anyone who wants to read HERE on her blog) and, like Barbara, got her husband to help with the work too! Hopefully her new WonderMill Deluxe Grain Mill will help her with not having to work so hard (at least as far as grinding is concerned) in future adventures. Also, in addition to this prize, Amanda also won three of our weekly points contest prizes.
Paula’s drive and determination has been non stop ever since she started the contest, week #2! The most impressive thing (to me) about Paula’s success in this contest is that she started it as a beginner.
She told me…”My food storage [previous to the contest] consisted of homecanned garden veggies and fruits and about 10 or 12 #10 cans of product from the local LDS cannery and nothing else.” However, even though she started this contest in the beginning stages of her preps, she didn’t let it stop her and went on to learn everything you’ve seen her do here simply because she was determined to do it.
Due to her hard work and persistance, spending hours upon hours planning, she did it and now (beyond more than $1,000 in prizes) has a lot of experience to show for it.
With a grand total of 134 recipes made, carrying over to 1235 points, Paula is our Biggest Prepper!!
I know she’s going to LOVE her new Sun Oven and I hope to get to see some of what she does with it.
A BIG thank you to each of these companies for their very generous support!!
Weeks #11 & #12 Prize Drawing
A prize package of three pantry sized cans of three great Thrive products, sponsored by our very own Amanda Schulz (visit her shopping site here!!) Her package for you includes a pantry sized can of each of the following:
Freeze Dried Sausage Crumbles
Instant Black Beans and
Freeze Dried Sweet Potatoes
From Foxhill Corporation, it’s a $90 camp oven!! Camp ovens fit over one burner of a gas or wood stove and allow you to bake as you usually would. Simply light whatever heating source you’re using, center the oven over it and adjust the flame to reach baking temperature. Because these units are compact, they don’t require a lot of heat. In using one, to prevent burning, start out with low heat and increase it gradually until your temperature is right. They’re made from rust resistant heavy aluminum, which further allows them to bake evenly.
In the collage above I pictured the smaller single unit, to demonstrate how it’s used. However, the unit being featured for our prize is the actually the double unit, measuring 10 x 10 x 9 1/2″ and weighing 4 lbs. Additionally, the package includes:
- Two Non-Stick Baking Pans
- Baking Rack with Removeable Middle Shelf
- Favorite Camping Recipes
- Easy to Use Instructions
- Side Handles
- Temperature Gauge
From Campmor.com for emergency lighting, heating and cooking, our next prize, a Tri Outlet Safety Post, turns a propane tank into a multi-use tool!! You just screw the pole onto a bulk propane cylinder and it allows up to three propane accessories to run at once. The post is 30″ tall and retails for $35.99.
To go along with this prize, is a compatible lantern, the Coleman Northstar Propane Lantern, retailing for $59.99. By placing the lantern on top of the pole, you’ll have light at the optimum height for any kind of area lighting.
A distributor of Goal Zero’s easy-to-use portable solar power products, the website powerinapinch.com is donating Goal Zero’s newest lantern, the $79.00 Lighthouse 250!! Product Description: Lantern and USB power hub in one. This bright lantern has 250 Lumens and three brightness levels and hand crank. Recharge through USB or solar. Also gives you the ability to recharge all your small USB devices right from the lantern. Integrated USB cord to recharge your phone twice, camera, gps, Guide 10, or to give a boost to a larger device like an iPad.
If you’re looking to go solar, whether it be panels, power packs or tools for lighting, the guys over at Power in a Pinch offer a wide variety of products to choose from. Get an idea of what they can offer you by checking out a video (a product walk through) HERE.
Thanks everyone for a GREAT contest!!
In the comments, I’d love to hear the answers from our participants to TWO questions:
#1: Knowing what you know now, how effective do you think you would have been in feeding your family with food storage if you’d been required to do so before beginning this challenge? Do you think you could have just “made it work” if you’d been called upon to do so? How long do you think you might have lasted eating what you had with the skills you had?
#2: What is the most valuable thing you’ve learned from this challenge about being prepared to cook with food storage?