Monday, December 14, 2009

root cellar

a while ago, i mentioned that i live in a old-farm house from the early 1900's...having a older place is nice, there are quarky little things in the space like an ironing board in our wall and a dinning room lamp that we can pull down in the kitchen...
there is also a cellar which i have been excited about, being a food preserver and all.

an old-school form of food preservation is the root cellar. here in southern california (and modern times), we really havent had a use for them. but with the preserves taking-off, our living space at a dear minimum, and making vinegars and such, the cellar is so interesting to have.

just in case: a root cellar is a structure built underground or partially to store food items. this was big in areas with gardens (or plain bad weather-think everywhere but so cal) and little space to keep things warm and dry in the winter and cool in the summer.
now just dont put any old food thing under a box or in the shed-there are only certain items and environments that you can successfully "keep" (the preservers term for preservation-aka: old-school lingo) in a root cellar. think the "durables" (my lingo):
good food items/durables for a root cellar: onions, beets (not the leafy part), squash, potatoes, turnips, carrots and other thick-skinned rooty food items (see the similarity already?), also canned goods and salted goodies do super well here instead of taking up room in a closet or pantry.
i love this idea for several reasons:
1. our farm-house-complex also has several other people who may want to store food
2. this form of food preservation saves us room in storage and energy in cooling
3. this is a great area to store vinegars and other canned goods that i might not be using for a while
4. this is a great emergency food/supply area PLUS it is there-we should use it!

the one bad thing is that it is CREEPY! talk about scary movie in the making...getting the initial trash out of here i had the constant feeling that i was opening the door to Hellraiser and that dude with the needles in his face was going to come out of the corner and come get me (yes i am a scaredy-cat!)

(listen dude, all i want to do is store my food goodies and save some energy!)

this is going to be my Christmas project so stay tuned on how it will turn out!


Shari said...

That is so awesome! You could also keep bulbs in there like for tulips, lily's and such if you're into that at any point I bet. This is in Orange County? Wow!

delilah said...

i totally want more info on what to keep in the cellar..THANK YOU for the tips!
bringing the homestead in OC chica!

Rebel Girl said...

Love it. We may have a space that could be turned into one - though I worry about our wildlife out here...big and small...

So cool.