Shopping for produce can be expensive and time consuming, if you don't know what you're doing. Here are some tips and tricks for getting the biggest bang for your buck and avoiding produce waste!
2-Use the freezer: Generally, fruits and vegetables are extremely perishable so should only be purchased a maximum of 1 week before you plan to use them. However, most fruits and vegetables can be frozen, so if there is a big sale (or the food item is in season), it may be a good idea to purchase a larger quantity and freeze for later use.
HERE IS A VIDEO FOR THE FOLLOWING STEPS:
• Choose high quality, fresh fruits or vegetables.
• Blanch the fruit or vegetable (submerge in boiling water), then immerse in ice water. Dry thoroughly.
• Freeze fruits and vegetables quickly in heavy-weight, air-tight containers or freezer bags.
• Fill containers to the top and make sure to remove as much air as possible from freezer bags.
• As a general rule, fruits and vegetables that hold up well to cooking will also freeze well.
• For a better texture, eat frozen fruits (like berries) before they’re completely thawed.
The dirty dozen for 2017 were as follows:
11.Sweet Bell Peppers
11.Sweet Bell Peppers
5-Go seasonal: Try to focus meals around fruits and vegetables that are in season. These will likely be cheaper and fresher.
7-Know ripeness and quality indicators: It’s easy to tell if lettuce or cilantro is rotten, the decay and
sometimes smell is obvious, but what about melons, apples, oranges, potatoes, or onions? The general rule for fruit is to smell it. If the smell is overly sweet, moldy, or just plain off, then do not buy it! Also, bruises or cuts on the skin are a good indicator of quality. Vegetables are more difficult because they always seem to smell a little earthy, which is close to moldy or musty. The best way to determine if they are good or bad is to gently squeeze them. If they are spongy or un-firm, keep looking. For information on ripeness and quality indicators, seasonality, and the proper storage of specific fruits and vegetables, refer to the “Shopping for Fruits” and “Shopping for Vegetables” handouts.
Eating produce provides so many benefits to your health, from increased immunity and disease prevention to maintaining healthy blood pressure and obesity prevention. Produce contains ample amounts of vitamins, fiber and phytochemical that will drastically improve your health. Make produce a priority in your diet and recognize the benefits that follow!
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