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general

sand badge

cast iron skillet (select one)
   - fry an egg so that is slides around
   - vegan option (do both)
       - a stack of ten pancakes
       - hash browns that fully cover the skillet
cook oats
cook overnight oats, overnight in a crockpot
cook overnight oats in the haybox cooker
   - heat them up in on a rocket stove
cook stir fry
make soup / stew / chowder
cook rice in four different ways
   - you can replace rice with something else, but you have to cook that same thing in these four different ways:
       - stovetop
       - rice cooker or instapot
       - solar oven
       - haybox cooker
           - heat with rocket stove and move to haybox cooker
       - each time, you need to produce at least 2 cups of food
cook and serve a pound of fresh sunchokes
make pizza (polydough)
dry food in a solar food dehydrator
vinegar brine pickle something
salt brine ferment/pickle something
Bake 2 loaves of bread (polydough?)

straw badge
under construction

wood badge
under construction

iron badge
under construction
COMMENTS:
 
gardener
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This is one of those badges where it is very important to remember the difference between "calendar time" and "experience time." It might take 30 minutes of calendar time for the oats to finish cooking, but the amount of time spent actually building experience at cooking oats during those 30 minutes of calendar time might be closer to 5 minutes. So for the purposes of this badge, cooking oats counts for 5 minutes.
 
gardener
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Refurbishing cast iron. Should it be in here or is the thought to put it in a different category?
 
steward
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wayne fajkus wrote:Refurbishing cast iron. Should it be in here or is the thought to put it in a different category?



I think that might be a good one for a straw badge.

 
master steward
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How is "cook oats" different from cooking them in a haybox or crockpot? If one cooks the oats in a haybox, does it meet the requirements for "cook oats"?

EDIT: I went ahead and just made a Badge Bit for it here: https://permies.com/t/102826/PEP-BB-food-sand-oats Please fix it as necessary!
 
paul wheaton
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Nicole Alderman wrote:How is "cook oats" different from cooking them in a haybox or crockpot? If one cooks the oats in a haybox, does it meet the requirements for "cook oats"?

EDIT: I went ahead and just made a Badge Bit for it here: https://permies.com/t/102826/PEP-BB-food-sand-oats Please fix it as necessary!



I intentionally selected three different ways to cook the same thing:

   - stove top

   - crock pot overnight oats

   - overnight oats with a rocket stove and a haybox cooker

First, you get pretty basic oats from stove top.  You learn that the overnight oats are better - and you build experience with a crock pot.  And with the third option you carry on with "better", but build experience with the rocket stove and the haybox cooker.

 
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Straw Badge Suggestions:

Show proper care and maintenance for cast iron cookware in short video that includes initial seasoning as well as proper cleaning after use

Show off knife skills by chopping a 10 onions correctly so that pieces are the same size
Show off knife skills by peeling 10 potatoes with a knife
Show off knife skills by rolling up leafy green things and cutting chiffonade

Use all of those cut vegetables in one meal

Rehydrate 1lb of dried tomatoes or mushrooms and cook with them

Build a home made solar dehydrator
Dry 10 lbs of food in solar dehydrator

Hardboil a dozen eggs in a solar cooker

Vinegar brine 3 different things

Salt brine 3 different things

Make a dozen skillet flatbreads (naan, tortilla, roti)

Poach a fish and an egg

grow and harvest garlic or onions and braid the stalks

Start a sourdough culture from scratch

Cook 1 loaf with that starter

waterbatch can 10 pints of something

pressure can 5 pints of something





Wood Badge

Cook breakfast, Lunch, and a dinner meal on an open fire - not a grill

Cook rice risotto style

Harvest flint corn and turn into polenta

Harvest, Thresh, Winnow, grind a small seeded grain and use to make bread

Keep sourdough starter alive and use to make pancakes, pizza dough, sandwich bread, and cinnamon buns

Dehydrate and store vegetable chips and keep them crispy for three months

Start a homemade apple cider vinegar batch

Dry 10 different kinds of herbs

Waterbath can 10 gallons of something

Pressure Can 10 Gallons of something

Salt brine 5 items for a total of at least 3 gallons

Vinegar brine 5 items for a total of at least 3 gallons

Design and build winter storage (root cellar, storage basement, buried cooler, in ground storage)

Overwinter 3 different crops in the ground where they grew and use throughout winter

Brew 1 gallon of beer, mead, or wine





 
pollinator
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For the pizza making BB, does dough made from scratch in a bread machine qualify? As in: put flour, water, instant yeast, salt and let the machine mix it and rise it for an hour. Then the dough is being let rise some more outside of the bread machine. And then pizza is made from it.
 
paul wheaton
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Liv Smith wrote:For the pizza making BB, does dough made from scratch in a bread machine qualify? As in: put flour, water, instant yeast, salt and let the machine mix it and rise it for an hour. Then the dough is being let rise some more outside of the bread machine. And then pizza is made from it.



Good question!   I think that for sand badge, the answer is no.

 
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Is there a BB up for canning yet?

I just canned 8 1/2 quarts of stock and was wondering if I could post it somewhere for a BB.

Thanks
 
paul wheaton
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Penny McLoughlin wrote:Is there a BB up for canning yet?

I just canned 8 1/2 quarts of stock and was wondering if I could post it somewhere for a BB.

Thanks



Canning will be in this badge.  Probably straw badge and higher.
 
pollinator
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Sorry I can't see it anywhere, but how many bits does one need to do?
 
paul wheaton
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Skandi Rogers wrote:Sorry I can't see it anywhere, but how many bits does one need to do?



At least 13 for this badge.
 
master steward
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I tried pasta making from scratch for the oddball badge but it was suggested it might fit better somewhere here: https://permies.com/wiki/10/97787/PEP-Badge-Oddball#946119

Any thoughts?  
 
Skandi Rogers
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paul wheaton wrote:

Skandi Rogers wrote:Sorry I can't see it anywhere, but how many bits does one need to do?



At least 13 for this badge.



I was just wondering as many of them say do 5 or do 10 so this one is everything ok.
 
pollinator
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would at home freeze drying fit here?
https://www.wikihow.life/Freeze-Dry
 
r ranson
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note to self: a BB for making a stainless steel non-stick and how to maintain it as non-stick.  (hint, it's so crazy simple you'll wonder why everyone doesn't do this)
 
Posts: 47
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Alright, this is likely the newbie confusion talking, but I have no logical reason to get a sun oven in an area that averages 285-290 overcast days (we're averaging more at the rate our summer is going), or build a rocket stove or rocket oven (I'm a masonry heater girl, who is going to build a cob oven "eventually" = "maybe when the kids move out", but the house is mostly passive solar with propane backup with no intention to "upgrade" unless I can get a masonry heater, but my home state is actively working towards making any kind of wood fired heating or cooking rather illegal).

And I won't be getting or making a "hay box" (how'bout the pumpkin looking "wonder bag"? Those are a modern equivalent), that I have considered), although I sometimes may cook in a thermos style container, so does this automatically disqualify an otherwise proficient home cook from earning a badge? Does one need to check off every single line off the list?

People use the term BB's and ask how many you need for a badge, but it still throws me off. I can out-cook and out-bake a number of professionally trained chefs and bakers with no formal education past middle school home economics, but I don't have a lot of the listed "permie"-equipment, so the fun, "easiest" for me badge sounds suddenly unattainable*. If it's elective, is it possible to specify "complete 2 of 4 minimum" under options like "cook rice", if not every point is required?

Thanks to whomever spells it out in "Blonde" eventually. It's greatly appreciated!

* - I'm okay not earning badges, I never did scouts either, nor submitted anything to the county fair for ribbons, but it does remind me a little of recipes in most newer books, magazines, or convenience food packages, that start with "with your electric stand mixer, mix ingredients for 10 minutes..." and here I am, 35 years old, still whisking by hand, usually with a fork... XD
 
Nicole Alderman
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Penny Oakenleaf wrote:

Thanks to whomever spells it out in "Blonde" eventually. It's greatly appreciated!

* - I'm okay not earning badges, I never did scouts either, nor submitted anything to the county fair for ribbons, but it does remind me a little of recipes in most newer books, magazines, or convenience food packages, that start with "with your electric stand mixer, mix ingredients for 10 minutes..." and here I am, 35 years old, still whisking by hand, usually with a fork... XD



I can't spell it out in "Blonde," but I will say that I am 34 and also mix most things with a fork. I don't want to get out my handheld mixer, and I don't want to have more things to wash! (I am, however, not a fantastic cook. My family eats it and usually likes it, but I KNOW it could be a whole lot better!)
 
Penny Oakenleaf
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I think, after sleeping on it, that my biggest hangup is that for a sand badge in textiles right now, you need to just about darn a sock, knit or crochet a potholder, sew a small pillow, and weave a basket out of things you find laying around. I think I can complete the whole project in an afternoon, if I get some uninterrupted time. The list for food processing (which upon reflection looks like a work in progress), starts with "build your own kitchen from scratch". I'm hoping if we give it several months, it'll be refined to a more achievable set of skills for the beginning cooks. :P
 
Nicole Alderman
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It sounds like a good excuse reason to host a workshop and have someone build a rocket mass heater and solar cooker on one's property. I'm almost tempted to do just that, except I have NO IDEA how to build a rocket mass heater/oven and a solar cooker. And I'm an introvert. And I don't know who I could convince to come teach us/build us these things.

I think when Paul designed the badges, he was planning them as things people could do at a predetermined site, like his property. And, if--coincidentally--they could gain those skills at home, all the more power to them! Paul really likes cooking with less electricity and fossil fuels. Wood and solar cooking is direct and saves a lot of energy. Running the oven for an hour is 2,000 watts (about a dollar) and running two burners on medium costs about the same! Heating (be it cooking or heating our homes or drying our clothes) takes a lot of fossil fuels. So, for Paul, having someone show that they can cook without that, is a big permaculture skill.

All of the badges require some amount of equipment. Textiles needs sewing needles and knitting needles (Raven and I really wanted the Sand one to be accessible, and we were the ones that hashed it out). Roundwood woodworking needs access to trees, a knife, a saw, a manual drill (believe me, while one can technically do them using a normal hand drill and increasingly larger drill bits, it is NOT that fun and takes a WHOLE LOT LONGER!), and a preferably an ax. Gardening needs one to make a giant hugel and seed it full of stuff that might be hard to find, etc. All of the badges are probably easier to do at Paul's place. Somehow, I've still managed to get four of them, though, and just need to make that stinkin' hugel scaffold (that I've been putting off for over half a year...) to get the roundwood badge. So, while they seem overwhelming, many can be done from home. I think the key is just to do the things bit by bit when they need to be done.

And, yeah, I'm kinda bummed that I probably won't ever get the food badge, because--while I'd love a rocket oven--I don't have access to the skills or funds to make one.

Maybe some of these things might eventually get moved to the Straw Badge, but I think Paul was really involved in this badge, and rather likes it the way it is :D
 
Penny Oakenleaf
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My hangup, even if it makes me a Devil's Advocate, is that badges are currently wildly unbalanced between subject matters. I honestly don't know if anyone ever noticed the same. Textiles are "dumb easy", gardening and cooking are "pro athlete" hard from the gate due to specialized equipment requirements, even when most of us can probably whip up a quick meal from a rather sparsely equipped kitchen (I hope). I'm not a native English speaker, so maybe there's just a bit of a miscommunication, but the whole PEP badge system just confuses me at this point.

The major concern I have, is that most home cooks, who might want to pursue a badge, are women, who may or may not build things. I do build, but it's beehives and chicken coops. With dimensional lumber and occasional plywood. I don't work in cob, mortar, or concrete. I don't weld, and I am content never learning to on my current path. I don't know how many women out there do, but I've only met a handful who didn't feel apprehensive about building things from scratch, and I'm the only woman I know who can wrangle my tractor implements to the PTO hookup without help. ;)

Stuff like baking bread, fermenting something, and canning a batch of homemade jam or pickles would be more on par with newbie tier badges (which I assumed sand badges were supposed to be, because x amount of sand badges equaled a straw badge? That's how it'd work in most video games. :P ), since anyone with a basic home kitchen and simple, accessible supplies, even renters, can usually achieve those. Bonus that since a lot of the sand badges are geared to be "vegan inclusive", all of the things I listed are. If making cheese is not an option, maybe a vegan might want to make tofu, and so on.

I'm okay not getting a permaculture gardening badge, because although I like permaculture's guiding principles, I don't have a hugel mound in my plans in the near future, so the time conscious logic says "no use trying for the gardening badge bits either". I may use things like nitrogen fixers and mulch, and water retention swales and other cool things in my garden, but it's not a hugel, and not a food forest, (although the weeds make it look like a jungle), and I adore regimented straight lines as a foundation for a garden, so I'm content remaining a hybrid. But I live and breathe food and cooking, so it's a bit of a tougher nut to swallow. :P

The food processing sand badge just is cost prohibitive, and very time intensive, and with the amount of specialized equipment or "appliances" needed, did I say time consuming and expensive? And almost assumes you have access to regular sunlight for the sun oven, and a big enough property, or a gracious enough friend with property, to build an alternative energy kitchen. I do have a thermos bottle and some thermal pots, and use residual heat and cast iron to maximize my cooking efficiency, but the kitchen the house came with is the kitchen I have.

A pack of 16 sewing needles cost me under a dollar, and knitting needles for a small project can cost about the same. For a sand badge in textiles, if using scrap fabrics and yarns laying around an average home, you're going to be out maybe $5. If you buy all the supplies at premium rates, I'm sure you could spend more. The time commitment is a few hours. I think if I had a babysitter, I could finish the sand badge for textiles by sundown today, without leaving my property to source supplies. I guess I could ask the Amazon Fairy™ to bring me foam insulation and a wood crate, and a sun oven and some kind of solar dehydrator to be able to start on the cooking badge, but that'd leave me without a grocery budget for August, and maybe part of September, so the cost is just a lot out of the gate in specialized equipment I don't have, while going against all my principles of "work with what you've got".

If you need a rocket stove or oven and hay box (without being permitted alternatives with a similar function, such as thermal cookers) to cook with to qualify for any cooking, I'm going to take the attitude of "damned if I do, damned if I don't" and just not even bother pursuing them, because although we're all about alternate energy here (saving up for a full solar array is slow going, but we're working on it, utility company will actually subsidize it here), as I did say before, Washington is trying to make wood burning illegal. just look up any company that sells woodburning stoves and pick one you like, chances are there's a disclaimer at the bottom that says it is "illegal for sale in the State of Washington", and they're trying to ban the remaining few types, even the efficient and cheap ones.

End snarkasm: I had never seen an electric clothes dryer in person until I set foot in America in my adulthood. Old habits die hard, so I still line dry my laundry when the humidity % gets below "soggy". I mostly bake on cold winter days, because the oven helps keep the house warm so it does double duty. Don't everyone? Or is it just us Europeans? ;)

I'll let what I wrote sink in, and be discussed by the powers that be. I hope I made my point clear while steering clear of rude, because I really do not intend to come off as ornery. Of course, one could also just catch up the rest of the badges to the difficulty level of the food and gardening badges: If the textile badge required "build a floor loom and weave your own bedding" as a sand badge, it'll be "balanced", but that's sort of an ornery thing to say. Sorry.
 
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From what I understand, PEP is Permaculture Experience according to Paul, so it is designed for what is working on his property, so that they can certify things there.

I also have a lot of cooking and preserving skills, but find myself unable to complete this sand badge because I am off-grid, don't have a rice cooker, and already am cooking with wood on a combustion stove, so am not especially motivated to try out other wood and solar alternatives, even though they do sound really good.

I wonder if it's possible to create a PEX food badge with alternative badge bits for some things? I am happy to help develop it and certify badge bits. I'm not sure how this would work with awarding a badge though - could we use the same badges as PEP?
 
Nicole Alderman
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Kate Downham wrote:

I wonder if it's possible to create a PEX food badge with alternative badge bits for some things? I am happy to help develop it and certify badge bits. I'm not sure how this would work with awarding a badge though - could we use the same badges as PEP?



This is a REALLY GOOD QUESTION! It's something I wonder, too. I'm rather fond of the pretty badges (hey, I made them, so I get to feel fond of them :D). I think this is the main reason no one is really feeling too inclined to make their own PEX, because why put all that effort into it if it's not getting them a pretty badge here on permies?

So, I don't have an answer to this question, and I think it's one only Paul can answer.
 
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