Fresh Ideas-Keep Food Fresh Longer
The average American family wastes $1200 in food each year. That is a staggering figure both in terms of financial and energy waste.
But we can do a lot at home to reduce the amount of food that ends up in our trash cans and compost bins. Weekly meal planning, wise reuse of leftovers and conscientious shopping can all help us consume more of what we buy and grow.
Here are some tips and tricks to help keep foods fresh.
- 1. Buy locally. Local produce last much longer than supermarket fare, which has already traveled long distance before it gets to your kitchen.
- 2. Wash berries in water with just a bit of vinegar before popping them into the fridge.
- Rinse lettuce and other greens immediately in cold water and spin them dry before refrigerating them in the spinner or a breathable cloth bag.
- To keep celery, carrots and radishes around at all times, chop them and store them in water in the fridge, which keeps them crisp for a surprisingly long time.
- Rub butter on the cut parts of hard cheese to prevent them from drying out.
- If salad greens begin to wilt, soak them in ice water to crisp them up before fixing a salad. This trick also works wonders on peppers.
- Rub whole winter and summer squash with vegetable oil and store them in the pantry, where they’ll last for several months.
- Help keep air out of sour cream and cottage cheese tubs by storing them upside down in the fridge.
- Cure fresh onions by hanging them in a cool, dark place in a pantyhose “bag” which dries the outer layer before the onions go into storage.
- Keep apples way from other foods. Apples give off ethylene gas, which can cause foods to spoil.
- Triple the life of scallions by storing them in a jar of water on the counter. The green onions will keep growing as you snip the tips for fresh eating.
- Grow your own food! If you can’t eat it all by yourself, pass it along to friends, family or your local food bank.
- Asparagus lasts longer if its thick ends sit in cold water.
- After trimming the ends, store kale, collards, and Swiss chard in the fridge in a glass of water with a loose bag over the top.
- Store sliced hot peppers and cucumbers in a jar of vinegar in the fridge for several weeks.
Share your tips in the comment section below. We love to hear from you!