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Even More Ways To Preserve Food Without A Refrigerator

To read the story referenced, “7 Time-Tested Ways Your Ancestors Preserved Food Without A Refrigerator,” click here.

Here is another good way to preserve food without refrigeration: Keep it alive! Small critters such as chickens, ducks, geese and rabbits could be butchered as needed. That’s what my family did on our farm in Michigan. I was 7 years old (1960) when we got our first fridge. And I am the 11th child of 12. The others in the family managed to get by for many years with no refrigeration by using the methods listed in the article.



The First Nations in my area (we are blessed with long hot dry summers) dried fish in the sun by filleting (usually sockeye salmon), then slicing the flesh crosswise every 3/4 of an inch without cutting through the skin. The sides were then hung in the direct sun, sometimes with a smoky fire to keep the flies away.

During the fur trade era the “sticks” of salmon were used instead of money during trading. If kept cool the sticks last a long time. Today you can see smallish (up to 15×15 or so) all-screened buildings behind many houses that are used for drying fish.



Old houses sometimes had a cabinet in the kitchen with a vent to the cold outside nighttime air, where butter, cheese and other small items could be kept somewhat cool.



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