Kitchen Wisdom and the Like

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August 12, 2014 by kholzhauer

I’m a shitty blogger. I keep meaning to post, and then life gets away from me.  Here’s to fixing that and to doing what I love again – writing more, cooking more, and freaking out less. I’ve got a clean bill of health and I’m hoping for a better attitude to go along with it – I’ve been crazy negative lately.

Sunday is my kitchen chores day – major grocery shopping, prepping for the week, etc. I spend a huge chunk of Sunday either in the kitchen or running kitchen related errands. For me, it’s quietly blissful. Here are some quick little tips I’ve picked up that make prepping for the week, and kitchen storage in general a little simpler.

1. Berries go bad quickly. To keep them fresh longer, bring them home and rinse them in a water-vinegar solution. I do about 1 part red-wine vinegar to 10 parts water, and let them sit in the solution for 5 minutes or so. Then I let them drain, dry them completely, and pop them back in the fridge. Even the organic farmers market berries last forever this way.

2. Make compotes to use up any fruit that’s about to turn. Since I shop once a week, I pretty much estimate the amount of fruits/veggies I need for the week. Sometimes that means I’m left with extra on Sundays and it’s beginning to go soft. Since I hate wasting, I turn all that softening food into compotes –  I cook it down with a bit of sugar and a bit of lemon juice until jammy and fragrant. Then I either can it or refrigerate. Takes up a lot less space, and really preserves the flavors of the season.

3. Slow-cook your Sunday dinner. I always throw something in the crock pot on Sundays right when I get home from shopping. That way I can have a hot dinner pretty much ready when I’m done with chores and not need to scramble last second or get burnt out. Today it’s slow cooked pork.

4. Keep a garbage can or garbage bowl handy. Our kitchen trash can is a bit unwieldy, but I’ll pull it out when I’m doing a lot of prep and scrape things right into the trash. If I’m cooking dinner I use a bowl or a tupperware for veggie scraps (nowhere to compost,) meat trimings etc.

5. Everything within arms reach. I have a big butcher block that I use for rolling out dough and big projects, but for the most part, I have everything I need to make dinner within 2 steps – all my utensils hanging over my stove, fridge, spices, trash, knives. Not having to run all over the kitchen makes dinner prep easy and relaxing, not a chore.

Stay tuned for part two. I just wanted to get SOMETHING up on the blog and get the ball rolling. It has been ridiculously too long.

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