A common goal among parents is how to get our children to eat more fruits and vegetables. A diet rich in fruits and vegetables as opposed to processed sugar and high sodium snacks is an important component of healthy growth and development. Our children’s diet in these formative years is the building block for their health as adults. Dietitians and nutritionists all agree that keeping plenty of fresh fruit and produce readily available for meals and snacks is the optimum way to encourage and implement healthy eating. None of us has money to waste, though, so we all need our produce to last as long as possible. Here are some tips on keeping your produce fresh for as long as possible in your refrigerator.
Carrots and Radishes. Raw carrots are delicious for snacking and radishes make a wonderful salad ingredient. Immediately cut off the tops of the carrots and radishes after washing them. Place them near the front of your refrigerator where it is warmer. This will aid in decreasing moisture loss and preserve the crunch that makes these vegetables so satisfying.
Cucumbers and Green Beans. Place your freshly washed and dried cucumbers and green beans in a brown paper bag before setting in your refrigerator. The bags do not need to be tightly closed, allow some air to circulate. The brown paper bag will absorb moisture, thus keeping them fresh long enough to prepare several fresh and healthy salads or snack plates with them.
Corn On The Cob. Who doesn’t love corn on the cob at a summer barbecue? Have you ever stocked up at the supermarket when the price dropped significantly and then had too much and didn’t feel like eating corn three days in a row? Place your unshucked corn in a plastic bag and tightly seal or tie the bag closed. This will significantly reduce the ripening in the refrigerator and enable you to space out your meals that include corn on the cob.
Strawberries and Cherries. Berries love it cold, so store them at the back of the refrigerator where the temperature is the coldest. Do not place berries in a bag before storing in the refrigerator; they need some air to prevent them from getting too moist and turning to mush.
Green Peppers and Celery. Always keep these vegetables in the crisper drawer. Lay paper towels down in your crisper drawer and place your vegetables on top. You will be surprised at how much longer these vegetables will stay fresh. If your celery does become soft and loses it’s crunch before you have a chance to eat it, separate the stalks and place them in a large cup of cold water on the top shelf of your refrigerator. This should restore the crispness to the celery stalks.
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