Make a “desert fridge”

Make a “desert fridge”

The heat is coming, and with it, the need to keep our food cold. Without the need for electricity, this alternative to the refrigerator is ideal for storing fruits and vegetables. Practical at home… or at the campsite.

1st step: The pots

Take the largest pot and if there is a hole in the bottom, plug it with the piece of wood. Line the bottom with 4 to 5 cm of sand. Then place the other pot inside. Fill the interstitial space with sand, up to the rim.

2nd step: The lid

Water the sand until it is completely damp. Your “fridge” is ready to accommodate your food. Cover them with a damp cloth or a lid suitable for the size of the inner pot.

3rd step: Location

Place your work in the shade and moisten the sand regularly. This device is based on thermodynamics: it is the evaporation of water which creates fresh air. But not from the cold. If the outside temperature is 30°C, it can drop to 20°C inside the pot.

Special cases

If you have tomatoes, apples, peppers, don't hesitate to make a fridge just for them: they release ethylene which accelerates the ripening of other fruits or vegetables!

The equipment to provide

  • A terracotta pot (unglazed) 50 cm in diameter.
  • A terracotta pot (unglazed) 30 cm in diameter.
  • A piece of wood (square, flat).
  • A cloth or a lid.

For further

A word : “low-tech”

This alter native fridge is a low-tech object (low technological intensity) as opposed to high-tech. This approach aims to develop simple and resilient techniques to adapt to ecological upheavals.

Two books to read:

Desert fridge, pedal blender, hydroponic furniture… A reference book for getting started in the manufacture of energy-efficient objects.

Accessible DIY projects like this “mobile hutch for mower rabbits” to experience ecology as a family.

Two sites:

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