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All We Can Eat
Posted at 02:28 PM ET, 10/29/2012

Hurricane food: Safety during power outages and last-minute recipe ideas

So your pantry is stocked with canned beans and soups, chips, peanut butter, Oreos and other packaged items you grabbed at the grocery store that seemed entirely necessary to help ride out Hurricane Sandy.

But your refrigerator and freezer are also full.

Making comfort dishes such as casseroles, soups and stews can use up perishable ingredients — and provide sustenance through the storm.

Carly Prow’s Chicken and Rice Bake is a great way to prepare chicken breasts before a power outage occurs. Add brown rice, mushrooms, broccoli or other vegetables for a hearty meal that can be served or stashed as emergency rations.
From left, Must-Go CHowder, Chicken and Rice Bake, Potato Casserole and Carrot Apple Soup (Michael Temchine, Sarah L. Voisin, Katherine Frey, Matt McClain )

Do you have sour cream or spinach on hand? Try a Lemon Chicken and Rice Casserole.

To make use of salmon or other fish, David Hagedorn’s take on Baked Salmon, Tomato and Onion Casserole can be modified to fit a variety of ingredients. Or follow Hagedorn’s Must-Go Chowder recipe to use up whatever seafood is on hand and feed a lot of people.

Eggs can be hard-cooked for a longer shelf life, or worked into a Chicken Sausage and Three-Cheese Egg Casserole.

And if large quantities of fruits and vegetables are threatening to go bad, a Vegan Green Bean Casserole or Carrot Apple Soup might be a good solution.

If you are unsure about what to eat or pitch in the event of a power outage, check out the USDA’s guidelines regarding food safety. Raw meats, poultry or seafood that are held above 40 degrees for two hours or more should not be consumed; the same goes for lunch meats, pizza, soft cheeses, shredded cheeses, milk or cream, fresh (commercial or refrigerated) eggs, home-cooked or opened spaghetti sauce, cooked vegetables, fresh pasta and creamy dressings.

More tips on what to pitch and what to keep.

Cooking up a storm, before the storm

What dishes have you been cooking, and which items did you go looking for at the supermarket? Which foods are must-haves when you’re in emergency mode at home? Share your storm story here, or send us your videos, photos or tweets using the hashtags #stormfood, #SandyDC, #SandyMD #SandyVA.

By Cara Kelly  |  02:28 PM ET, 10/29/2012

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