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Old 02-09-2012, 09:25 PM   #1
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Default #10 cans and only 2 people

I'vee been thinking about opening and using the contents of #10 cans with only 2 people. Some of them, especially things like entrees, say that they must be used soon after opening. I like stroganoff just fine, but not nearly enough to eat 16 servings day after day until all the can is gone. Surely I'm not the only one wondering about this kind of thing.

What I think we will try is vac sealing what isn't to be used immediately in canning jars in serving size portions. Once exposed to air and light and humidity, of course the food won't keep for a long time. But if repacked, surely that will buy enough time to use it up over several months.

Anyone ever done this? If so, what were your results? Or, do you have another idea about how to save the unused food?
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Old 02-10-2012, 09:33 PM   #2
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Hmm... Some vacuum sealer kits some with vacuum storage containers with their own special lids. Might be handy.

I guess just the basic snap lid and a cool environment would preserve it long enough, right?

Heck, if you're vacuum sealing the leftovers, just use the vacuum sealer bags, and take advantage of the opportunity to divide up in the portion sizes you prefer.


BTW, we open vacuum bags carefully, wash them out, and reuse them.
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Old 02-10-2012, 09:40 PM   #3
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I would get some of those vacuum containers for your vac sealer.

Open the can, dump the contents in the container and vac.

I would also vac seal the contents in the can in individual serving bags.

I am glad you are doing it. A lot of people are hesitant to open them even as they get older because they paid a lot a lot of money for it.

How are going going to know it is still good? How do you know if you really like it?

You think that you can eat anything during an emergency. History shows that isn't always the case.
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Old 02-10-2012, 09:40 PM   #4
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I would get some of those vacuum containers for your vac sealer.

Open the can, dump the contents in the container and vac.

I would also vac seal the contents in the can in individual serving bags.

I am glad you are doing it. A lot of people are hesitant to open them even as they get older because they paid a lot a lot of money for it.

How are going going to know it is still good? How do you know if you really like it?

You think that you can eat anything during an emergency. History shows that isn't always the case.
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Old 02-10-2012, 10:38 PM   #5
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We're talking about the dehydrated #10 cans, right? Realistically, I think you'll find that that 16 serving can really only holds about 8 servings. I wouldn't worry about it too much. Just put the snap on lid back on tightly and use within a few months. That stuff is full of preservatives. It will sit on your pantry shelf just fine for a few months.
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Old 02-10-2012, 11:07 PM   #6
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spinner,

How old are your cans? Years ago we tried the stroganoff, and it was the best of many freeze dried meals we sampled, but I wouldn't want to eat any of them very often. If your cans are pretty new, I'd suggest just holding onto them. In my mind, frozen and fresh foods get eaten first in an emergency (power out esp.), then everything else. After those are gone I might be hungry enough to really enjoy a freeze-dried meal twice a day. LOL

Maybe freeze the leftovers? I've had great luck with freezing nuts in glass jars. Long term storage in ziploc bags leaves oatmeal with a funny 'freezer' taste, however.
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Old 02-10-2012, 11:13 PM   #7
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Ham, a while back I came across several #10 cans of several entree types that said the contents must be used within a week after opening. So I really hesitate to rely on food opened longer than that, especially in a shtf situation.

And guys, I very strongly advise against using the plastic Seal A Meal type bags for storage based on my own experience. I've been dehydrating veggies for close to 10 years now. We have two of the 9 shelf Excalibur dehydrators and we usually have them going close to 24/7 during garden harvest time. The problem with the bags is they are soooo prone to getting pin holes, whether stored in boxes or in the freezer. And dried foods are hard, with sharp edges and corners. When you pull all the air out of the bag and seal it, you are stretching the plastic very tightly against all those hard corners and edges.

So a good many years ago, we switched over to using canning jars in small sizes for portion size vac sealing foods. The jars can be used forever and make it easy to see what's inside them. Also the canning lids can be reused for a very long time if we are careful about how we open them. Just heat the lids in warm, not hot, water and we're good to go again.
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Old 02-11-2012, 12:38 AM   #8
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No worries here w vac sealing.

They are always out 24 hours before I store them looking for leakers.
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Old 02-11-2012, 02:00 PM   #9
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I have found putting the dehydrateds in a paper bag, then placing the paper bag in the sealer bag followed by the standard sealing process reduces the potential for the pin hole problem.
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Old 02-14-2012, 04:13 PM   #10
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I'll keep that paper bag thing in mind. Yeah, food with pointy parts, say a steak bone that has been cut on a saw, can be hard on bags.

I'd never bet my life on a vacuum seal being 100% reliable. But they do make great freezer bags. If I vacuum seal some road flares for the car trunk, I can watch and see if they lose their hard vacuum. But even if they do, they're usually better off than flares not in a plastic bag.

Yep, I'm all for watching it a while after you seal it. Maybe there's a slow leak, maybe not.

I don't think I have any #10 "entree" cans that have to be eaten shortly after being opened. Most of my stuff is under 7% moisture with O2 absorbers. If it's just a can of beans, rice or wheat, the plastic cap will do fine for a while after you open it. I guess "instant, ready to eat" foods follow different rules.

Heck, how long are you trying to preserve the partial can? A canning jar, or just a mayonnaise jar with the lid screwed down should last long enough to finish consuming most foods, especially if it's in the fridge.
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Old 02-14-2012, 08:35 PM   #11
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I tried vacuum sealing some rifles. Just one bag failed more often than not. Placing the weapon in an unsealed bag inside another bag which I sealed seemed to be the answer. After a couple of years a full third of the bags had failed to retain a vacuum.
For #10 cans, I'd pick up a bag on oxygen absorbers. Leave it unopened along with a case of Mason Jars. When you open a can, put the rest in jars with an oxygen absorber.
Put the remaining oxygen absorbers into the smallest Mason jar you have and screw the
lid on as tight as possible. HTH
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Old 02-16-2012, 02:47 PM   #12
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When I tested, I annointed the guns with Break Free, put them in VCI bags first, then vacuum sealed. Ammo, food, clothes, matches, etc. all was vacuum sealed. I only left that Sonabuoy tube out for 20 months, but it looked like it would have lasted for years. Last thing into the tube was a dessicant. Not sure how long that would last before saturating.

Even with two people, what's the longest you really anticipate needing to preserve any of the contents after you open a #10 can? I'm sure there are solutions.
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