As you will be aware, we like a food hack or ten here in the SK kitchen so given the current uncertain and unprecedented climate we are all in, we thought this would be an ideal time to share a few food preservation tips which will make your food last longer.
So, here, in no particular order, are 10 things you can do to prolong the life of your food so you can hopefully avoid the trip to the supermarket – a trip which is never much fun but even less so at the moment.
SK Hack 1:
Vegetables and salad items always a nightmare to keep fresh especially once they are opened but if you line the salad compartment of your fridge with some kitchen roll, this will absorb the condensation that the veggies and salad generate as they chill, so there’s less chance of them wilting and spoiling.
SK Hack 2:
Bananas are prone to ripen very quickly which is no bad thing if you like them that way, but there’s a fine balance between something which is soft and ripe and something which is mushy and overripe. So, wrap the stems of your bananas in clingfilm when you first buy them and snap them off individually when you are ready to it. This will add anything up to 7 days on the life of your banana.
SK Hack 3:
You’ve all seen what happens to lemons if you leave them long enough. They start to grow the most interesting mould cultures. But if you slice them up into four quarters when you first buy them and then add salt and water, they can be preserved for up to SIX months. How do you like them apples!!
SK Hack 4:
Milk. The bane of your life when it comes to keeping it fresh. But to add a further seven days to the life of your milk, add a dash of table salt (yes you heard correctly) or bicarbonate of soda. This will reduce the bacterial activity which naturally occurs in milk.
SK Hack 5:
How many of you put tomatoes in the fridge? Hands up. By doing this you are killing their flavour, so instead store them in a cool dark place and not only will they last longer, they will also taste great. You can thank us afterwards.
SK Hack 6:
Cheese is one of life’s great pleasures and whilst it lasts longer than most fresh foods, by covering it in butter you will be giving it a protective layer which will keep air from oxidising and delay mould. You do need to bear in mind though that by doing this you are adding calories but hey in for a penny, in for a few pounds eh?
SK Hack 7:
Berries are great but often you have a few days at most to eat them before they become soft, mushy and yukky (yes all normal chef terms). Now bear with us on this one but if you mix together a bath of 1 part vinegar, and 3 parts water, swirl your berries in it, drain, rinse well and dry them off, you’ll find your berries will last much longer because the vinegar (acid) helps ward off any mould and bacteria. Just be sure to rinse them well (so they don’t taste sour) and dry them thoroughly (because bacteria love moisture).
SK Hack 8:
You can store egg yolks in your freezer for a year and always have them on hand so if they are approaching their use by date and you simply can’t stomach another omelette, rather than throwing them out, put the yolks in a plastic freezer bag and when you’re ready to have them again, defrost, whisk, add some salt and they will taste great.
SK Hack 9:
Potatoes are great, but not so much when they begin sprouting tentacles. Put them next to some apples and because the latter release ethylene gas, it will prolong the life of your tatties, but you will sacrifice your apples in the process, so what God gives he also taketh away…
SK Hack 10:
Asparagus stays fresh uncooked for about three days but put them in a glass jar with water and covering with a plastic bag will keep them fresh for a full week.
Don’t forget it’s Mother’s Day on Sunday. Because of the virus which begins with C, you may have had to cancel the lunch reservation you had made with mum, and you may not even be able to pop in to see her due to social distancing, but the wonders of modern technology provides you with numerous ways to get in touch to let her know you are thinking of her. Why not even set up a video call through Alexa, Skype or FaceTime and even make something nice together?