Fast Food

Five Easy Meals to Make at Home When Hurricane Matthew Kills Your Power

Here it comes: the hunger. The pangs always seem worse when you feel trapped in your home, without power, hot water, or the ability to use your stove, microwave, or even your grill.

It's South Florida, so without any air conditioning, you don’t want to fire up the grill or head outside during a storm. So, during a short-term power outage, it's necessary to go for food that doesn't require much in the way of preparation. As long as you have a few basic ingredients, you're good to go.

Here, we offer five easy-to-execute hurricane recipes for when you're low on ingredients, utensils, and — most critically — the ability to actually cook anything.

5. S'mores
No campfire (or microwave)? No problem. As long as you have three ingredients, you can still have your favorite dessert. Simply layer chocolate-hazelnut spread like Nutella and jarred marshmallow Fluff between two graham crackers or your favorite cookie shells. Waffle cones will work in a pinch too.

4. No-Power Nachos
Who doesn't love nachos? It's the ultimate snack no matter what you're doing, including hunkering down during a hurricane. To make some without the use of an oven or microwave, you only need a few ingredients from your fridge, which needs to get worked through quickly anyway. Layer tortilla chips with canned cheese sauce (or cold shredded cheese), jarred salsa, sour cream, canned pickled jalapeños, and some chopped deli meat like chicken, turkey, or bologna.

3. No-Cook Soft Tacos
They might be a little colder than you're used to, but if there's food inside a tortilla, it's still a taco. While hard corn tortillas that need baking won't work as well as soft tortillas, they're still edible. If you've got the soft ones, however, use them. Layer with mustard, mayo, or ketchup. Then, stuff with any canned meat like Spam and top with salsa, chopped leftover veggies, and canned queso-style cheese sauce. Are you picking up on the usefulness of canned cheese here?

2. Dinner-Style Tuna Salad
As long as you have a manual can opener or pop-top can of tuna and a jar of mayo, you can make a simple tuna salad. But what if you have a little more? Combine a can of tuna with a can of beans (preferably white, but any will do), chopped onions, chopped peppers, and chopped black olives. Throw in any raw or canned veggies if you have them as well. Mix in a little mayo and dijon mustard, and top with Italian salad dressing to taste.

1. Prison-Style Frito Pie Ramen
Being trapped inside your house is almost (not quite) like being in jail. A dorm room and big-house favorite (or so we've heard), ramen is an easy meal to make when you have limited ingredients and a means to cook them. So, do like the inmates do: Make what they refer to as "crackhead soup."  Soak the ramen noodles in warm water until tender, drain them, and add chopped bologna, chili seasoning, and crushed corn chips.

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Nicole Danna is a Palm Beach County-based reporter who began covering the South Florida food scene for New Times in 2011. She also loves drinking beer and writing about the area's growing craft beer community.
Contact: Nicole Danna