Use your imagination for a moment… The world is ending. The dead are walking the streets, trying to chomp on any still-living body they can get their rotting hands (and teeth!) on. What would you do? How would you survive? Well, as long as you have packed ‘The Art of Eating Through the Zombie Apocalypse’ (written by Lauren Wilson and illustrated by Kristian Bauthus) in your bug-out bag, you will be better prepared than most.
‘The Art of Eating Through the Zombie Apocalypse’ labels itself as “a cookbook & culinary survival guide” and it really delivers on that promise. It not only guides the reader through food options from the initial days of outbreak all the way through a living-off-the-land long-term survival option, it also guides the reader through preparing for the apocalypse before it happens. This book has the 21st century “searching for food is going to the grocery store” citizen in mind. Not only does it have information on hunting and trapping – complete with the basics of how to make snares and fishing poles – as well as how to make a variety of stove and oven hacks, but it also gives advise on how to grow your own food.
Even if you are not a prepper, or one that considers the zombie apocalypse to be a realistic threat that looms over all of society, fans of zombie apocalypse shows (or books, movies, etc) often ponder the idea. What would they do? How would they survive?
While there is no one right way to survive the hypothetical zpoc (zombie apocalypse), there is one thing that is for certain: relying on scavenging for cans of food left over pre-zpoc is not the best long-term solution. While characters on shows like ‘The Walking Dead’ are portrayed as relied on canned goods, with a little assistance from Darryl’s game-bagging skills, in reality things left over from civilization will run dry eventually and it would be better to acclimate to the new world. Why not learn what foliage is edible, what bugs can be eaten (did you know that certain bugs are edible?) and how to grow food.
‘The Art of Eating Through the Zombie Apocalypse’ walks the reader through a couple different types of gardens (window gardening, rooftop gardening, container gardening), as well as how to start plants from the remains of food you already have (Romaine lettuce, spring onions, and potatoes are some great examples) so that you can continue to have access to fresh food once your supply runs out.
The recipes in this book run the gamut, from “Lets eat all that we can from the fridge before it spoils” recipes to “we have extra meat so lets make jerky in order to keep it from spoiling” (or “We’re so lucky to have a surplus of fruit! Lets make jelly/preserves!”) recipes, to “We foraged and found something edible! Let’s eat it!” (Mealworm Fried Rice falls under that category – like I said earlier, bugs are edible! – and instructions are even given on how to raise your own little farm of mealworms!)
Here is an example recipe:
It’s Not Easy Growing Greens Salad
Yields: 2 Hungry Survivor servings, 4 Regular Joe servings
The prospect of growing your own food might seem daunting, especially when day-to-day-trying-not-to-become-zed-food occupies 95% of your time. Good thing you can get all of the nutrition you’d get from vegetables (and more) through the effortless act of sprouting.
Sprouting does require several days’ lead time, and especially if sprouts are your main source of fresh nutrition, you may want to start a staggered seeding system so that you can have a steady supply. Sprouting trays are great for this—you can have several varieties, in decent quantities and in different stages of growth, sprouting in them at any given time. No sprouting trays available? You can also use glass jars, as outlined in Sprouting for Food (page 15).
Chef’s or survival knife and cutting board
1 large mixing bowl
1 small mixing bowl
1 c. sprouted adzuki beans
1 c. sprouted green pea seeds
1 c. sprouted garbanzo beans
1 c. sprouted onion seeds
1 tbsp. finely minced scallion or onion
1 tbsp. cider or other vinegar
½ tsp. mustard powder
Salt and pepper, to taste
3 tbsp. olive or other oil
- Rinse your sprouts in clean potable water, then dry using a salad spinner (if available), paper towel, or another clean absorbent (but not lint-y) material. Add the sprouts and onion or scallion to a large mixing bowl.
- In a small mixing bowl, whisk together the vinegar, mustard powder, and salt and pepper until combined. Slowly whisk in the oil until blended. Pour ⅔ of the dressing over the sprouts, then toss to coat. Taste, adjust seasoning if needed, and add the remainder of the dressing if desired. Eat immediately.
This recipe is a prime example of how eating in the zombie apocalypse doesn’t have to be all “We just bagged this and roasted it over a fire” type of cuisine. Sprouting beans is super-easy to do, requires very little in the way of supplies or effort, and sprouts are very nutritious. Seed sprouting is easy enough to try, even pre-zpoc, with little time or effort – even city-dwellers with limited space or time can accomplish this!
While there are other books out there that go more in-depth about the how-to’s of specific subjects, this book includes a good introductory explanation of the ins and outs of different survival necessities. It assumes that the reader has very limited to nonexistent knowledge of survival skills and includes easy-to-follow step-by-step instructions that include illuminating pictures to assist. Additionally, while this book gives introductions to a variety of techniques, additional reading material recommendations are also included (for those reading the book pre-zpoc) that can expand on the knowledge.
‘The Art of Eating Through the Zombie Apocalypse’ is a great book for fans of zombie lore, or those who would simply like to be more knowledgeable about living without the comforts of society. If the Zpoc actually happens, you might get eaten, but at least you can feel confident that you won’t starve!
“The Art of Eating Through the Zombie Apocalypse” written by Lauren Wilson and illustrated by Kristian Bauthus went on sale yesterday and is published by BenBella Books.