Tips for Extending the Life of Your Fruit and Veggies!

I’m so happy to find this! Are you like me and end up throwing away a lot of food because you’re not sure which need to be stored dry so they don’t rot versus moist so they don’t  dry out? Well, here’s a great guide to follow to extend the life of your produce.

http://www.mythirtyspot.com/2011/09/how-to-store-fruits-and-vegetables-so.html

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Cook One Day – Enjoy for 28 Days!

I love this idea! I once went to one of those places where you prepare your meals there and then bring them home and freeze. It was so so nice to be able to just pull something out of the freezer and easily heat it & eat it! The worst part was coming up with different sauces and flavorings for the chicken. But now, thanks to the site listed below you have 28 recipes right at your finger tips!  I know how I’m going to spend my Sunday!

http://whenthedinnerbellrings.blogspot.com/2011/06/super-easy-way-to-getting-meals-ready.html

Would you like to have fresh berries year round?

This comes courtesy of one of my favorite blogs, 100daysofrealfood.com. I always wanted to find a way to stretch the fresh berry season and now, thanks to Lisa I have! All winter I got great frozen organic berries at Earth Fare (they have great sales/coupons) for my smoothies, but it would certainly cost less to make my own. I can’t wait to try!

  1. Freeze unwashed berries in batches on a baking sheet and once they are frozen transfer them to a large zip lock back or other freezer-proof container. Wash frozen berries with a quick rinse before adding to things like cereal, smoothies, plain yogurt, pancakes, or homemade muffins. Frozen berries can also be used to make recipes like jamsand pie. (Note: I have frozen berries that had already been washed, and I thought the outcome was fine.)
  2. Make homemade jam that you either freeze or can. Be sure to check out “How to Can Some Jam”
  3. tutorial for a berry-honey jam recipe that doesn’t call for refined sugar or pectin.
  4. Dehydrate berries whole or puree them first to make homemade fruit leathers (similar to fruit roll ups). You can use either a dedicated dehydrator or a regular oven on a very low temperature. The dehydrated whole berries can be eaten as a snack or added to foods like granola, oatmeal, or yogurt.

Make complete dishes with fresh berries and then freeze them. Some examples are blueberry muffins, raspberry pancakes, mixed berry smoothies, berry sauce (for yogurt), and blackberry pie. For things like pancakes you can use the baking sheet freezer method mentioned in #1 or you can freeze them all together at one time between sheets of waxed paper.

Three Steps to a Perfect Salad

Tired of soggy or tired-looking salad? Here’s the secret for a perfect salad.

1. Clean and dry greens well. The best way to do this is to break out your salad spinner and use this technique: Fill it with cold water, add greens to the basket (figure on 1½ cups of greens per person for a first course or a side salad), and swish around. Lift out the basket (and greens), dump the water, and repeat until the water is grit-free. Spin the greens until thoroughly dry (in batches, if necessary). Excess moisture dilutes the dressing.

2. Dress greens just before serving. Do it too soon and the leaves will wilt. Toss in just a little dressing at a time (if you’re using homemade and it has solidified in the refrigerator, run the jar under hot water before pouring it in). The greens should be nicely coated. If the dressing is pooling in the bowl, you’ve gone too far.

3. Add delicate ingredients last. Place items like sliced avocado and hard-boiled eggs gently on top of a dressed salad. If tossed, they may fall apart.

(Thanks to our friends at Real Simple)