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With refrigerators running out of power, and gas being a limited resource, I agree we need more ways of keeping our food in good condition besides jarring it, as they are super rare currently. Root Cellars are what people used before refrigeration to keep vegetables and such from going bad (Meats were salt cured, dried, or smoked.). A root cellar is basically an underground storage area that is kept cool and well circulated. By digging deep (Usually 3 meters or 10 feet), the temperature is stable, and food can be stored. If you guys need some more information on root cellars, you can google it, or visit this page from the Farmer's Almanac This suggestion was inspired by Immortal Zed's little suggestion (question?), which is located here.
Long-term survival is a tricky proposition. Doubly so in that you can't preserve an enormous number and variety of foods-yet. Jars and Jar Lids are way rarer than they have any business to be. There's dozens of things that come in glass jars in even the most basic kitchen-pickles, salsa, premade pasta sauce, olives, applesauce, sauerkraut-and my mother's home canning business buys jars in bulk from K-Mart and the local hardware store. Furthermore, despite being in a farming state, nobody appears to can their own fruit-no jam, no jellies, no preserves, no marmalade. On top of that, there's no jerky-makers among the hunters; no sides of venison sitting in smokers; no freezers containing mountains of chops, roasts, ribs, steaks, and sausage; despite being in Kentucky, Fort Knox and Muldraugh are apparently one big pile of generic suburbia. This post addresses meat preservation better than I could, and leads into the preservation options I'd like for fruit...but he's left out the obvious! Jam! Combine multiple wild berries to make Wild Berry Jam, and turn all those little +1, +2, and +3 Hunger berries into a nice big crock of Happiness-boosting sweetness. Strawberry Jam for a little pot of joy. Peach Jam to brighten your day. And, of course, with all of the above...the purest comfort food, a Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich becomes possible. On top of these are Preserves-not merely "jam but thicker", but fruit in syrup; preserved peaches, spiced pears, Watermelon Rind Pickle, quince (impossible to eat until preserved or cooked), conserved berries, marmalades, the list goes on... And, of course, if it comes out of the ground and you can eat it, you can pickle it. Cucumbers for pickles would be nice, of course. Zucchini are crap pickled, but there is really no reason for them to not be implemented. Pickled cabbage is better known as...sauerkraut! Yes, you can pickle corn. Furthermore, if it comes off an animal, you can turn it into jerky. I've been to enough state fairs to know. And now, the recipes: CANNING The canning process requires multiple pots-one pot to cook your fruit in, and another to seal the jars. (Fruit) jam/marmalade: 30-hunger fruit (2 Apple/Peach/Lemon/Orange/Grapes; 1 1/2 Bananas, 10 Cherries, 15 Blackberries/Blueberries, or 6 Strawberries), 1 Sugar, 1 mug Water. (Fruit) Preserves: 30-hunger fruit, 2 Sugar, (spices). Crafting these only provides the uncooked base, needing to be added to a pot to make a Pot of Uncooked Jam. You can put up to ten of the same Uncooked Jam into a Cooking Pot, then cook it for two hours to get a Pot of Jam. You then make Unsealed Jars of Jam the same way you make Bowls of Soup or Bowls of Stew from a Pot of Soup or Stew, and cook those another ten minutes in a Pot of Water to get Sealed Jars of Jam. Unsealed Jars of Jam provide the same bonus but go off in a much shorter period of time, and are the result of opening a Sealed Jar of Jam but not using all of it as well as not sealing one in the first place. Pickling vegetables works the same as it does now, save for using a Salt Shaker instead of an entire bag of sugar. Speaking of Vinegar... BOOZE AND VINEGAR If you've got booze and rags, you've got vinegar in the offing. Just pour some into an open jar, tie a clean rag on top, and wait awhile, checking every so often. But what if you've run out the tasty red, lovely chardonnay, and sharp whiskey? You make your own, of course. There's all that corn to the north, and you can certainly make barrels by Carpentry 6, as demonstrated by the Rain Barrel. Enable the creation of a new Barrel, and you can make Corn Beer from corn. ...with considerable further difficulty, requiring the addition of a couple extra items that thankfully have their own separate uses. Dried Corn and Cornbread! I'd assume you can dry corn in an oven or kiln-until a kiln is added, perhaps for ceramics, it'll be oven or fire only. Use a Knife on Corn, get Corn Kernels, dry in oven to get Dried Corn. According to this post, it's quite possible to just throw cornbread into the mash to make wort and be done with it. Making that mash, however, is another thing entirely. This guide says you need a pound of grain per quart of water, and this article says you don't need hops. Assuming the Cooking Pot holds three gallons, that's six pounds of grain. Cook that for an hour, and you've got a Mash-suitable for eating, feeding to pigs, or washing in a Bucket. Washing the Mash produces Wort, which can be consumed for a mild Happiness, Hunger and Thirst bonus or taken to the next stage. Cook the wort for another hour, then pour it into your barrel. Wait a couple weeks, and either get Failed Beer or Corn Beer. Open the barrel and cover it with Clean Rags to get an enormous amount of Vinegar, or pull individual bottles and let them sit for smaller amounts. Bam, you can now make all the vinegar you need. SUGAR CREATION Sugar Beets are grown only occasionally in Kentucky. Sugar cane was grown historically, and might still be found growing feral. What IS grown in quantity is Sweet Sorghum, and that you could grow relatively easily without planting it near a river, pond or swamp. Since it doesn't matter particularly to the player whether they use white or brown sugar for preserving or baked goods, refinement isn't necessary. Just cook the Sugarcane/Sorghum/Sugar Beets into Blackstrap Molasses, strain that through a Clean Rag to get Molasses, and cook that down into Brown Sugar. SALT ACQUISITION Salt's harder. According to this map, there's a salt deposit along a creek 40 miles from Muldraugh, which would require cars and special dispensation on the map. That said...salt is sold in boxes for a reason. There's no reason to not put boxes of salt around the map; this would make preserving a more viable option, but still ultimately a temporary one. Unless you add traveling traders. With the addition of driveable vehicles and NPCs, the gameworld gets a lot larger. Three years in, there's gonna be a lot less zed, and people will start rebuilding. Rebuilders will need stuff they can't get locally-the traditional goods of wood, iron, and salt; and various precious commodities no longer available elsewhere. Trade will become a thing again, and the Survivor and their enclave will have a means to access salt, new stocks of scrap metal and raw iron...but perhaps I overreach the aim of this post. Anyway. Three pound boxes of salt in various houses. How 'bout it. TL;DR New items: Box of Salt More Food In Jars Large Jar of Olives (-Hunger, +Happiness, +Thirst) Large Jar of Pickles (contains four Pickles) Pasta Sauce (Prego, Progresso, Ragu, what have you) Jar of Salsa (-Hunger, -Happiness like Ketchup et al unless applied to Burger or Casserole) Jar of Sauerkraut (-Hunger, +Thirst, keeps one month after opened even without refrigeration) Jar of Applesauce (-Hunger, -Thirst, +Happiness) Box of Jars (Jars+Jar Lids x12) Jams & Preserves Applesauce Pineapple Jam/Preserves Grape Jelly Peach Jam/Preserves Marmalade (Lemons or oranges result in the same thing to save assets) Cherry Jam Blackberry Jam Blueberry Jam Strawberry Jam/Preserves Confits, Sausages and Hams as addressed above Barrel (Carpentry 6, four Planks, four Nails, possibly two Scrap Metal) Corn Beer Corn Vinegar Dried Corn Corn Mash Wort Sorghum OR Sugarcane OR Sugar Beets Blackstrap Molasses Molasses Brown Sugar Corn Kernels Modifications to existing mechanics: Jars now spawn in Large Crates and Hardware Stores. Various jams+jellies spawn in cabinets and sheds. Thoughts?
I am not sure if this was specifically suggested before, but I'd like to see smoking of meats, salting, pickling and other old school practices of preserving foods, especially meats to be looked into. The tradeoff for this is that in order to preserve said meats and foods you have to be a fairly adept cook, perhaps level 3 or even higher, and have the materials to do it. (Like salt.) There can also be a reduction on the nutrition value of the food, so its a trade between a long term supply or an immediate nutritious meal.
I Think it would be a great idea to use the crafting skill to make some contraption made of planks, where you can hang raw meat, and cover it with salt so that it won't spoil, it will act as a container and would need a carpentry skill of about 2 points, and a cooking skill of 1 point (So that the player would logically know a way to not let the meat spoil), and to collect salt, you could get it from convenience store, or if you have 1 point in the fishing skill, you could get it from the salt water in the coast, where you could ''fry'' the water on a fire place with a bowl, to get both purified water and salt in 2 inventory spaces, so you would have another source of renewable water. Thanks for reading, and post more suggestions in the comments below