Hey Rally Fam!
Today we are talking about preserving foods.
A whole section in my cookbook is dedicated to outlining exactly how to store your foods to get the most out of them. There is nothing more frustrating than spending $ on grocery haul, only for it to spoil the next day. Or to meal prep or cook in advance, just for it to taste like a freezer. A few simple tips and switches in the way you preserve your foods can erase these mishaps, and save you time, money, and sanity. As you know, that is the Prep + Rally way.
Let’s explore the options.
Preserving Food in a jar.
I have always been taken with preserved lemons. People have these things sitting in their fridge for up to a year, and it always tastes fresh! Being that I love a little tanginess or zest, preserved lemons are something I have fun experimenting with. They are perfect for mixing into sauces, adding to an upscaled salsa, tossing with roasted vegetables, eaten with fish or eggs, drizzled into classic mediterranean dishes like hummus, tehina, or labneh platters.
If you love this flavor, want to try it out, or have loads of lemons to get rid of, you can make your own. It’s easy but takes time as they need to sit for some weeks until they are fully done. See instructions on preserving lemons here.
Other methods of preserving food in a jar are pickling, or making jams. These are great options for extra fruits and vegetables. You can take any vegetable and pickle it, and take any fruit and turn it into a jam.
My go to plan for preserving foods like extra vegetables is: A) throwing them in a soup or B) pickling them for use throughout the week. Vinegar pickling kills off microbes with it’s high acidity and causes the food to change in flavor and texture, and last longer! It is so simple, takes no time at all, and is pretty darn delicious. Pickled onions seriously jazz up any meal.
See my recipe below, along with other pickled/jam recipes! Just click on the photo for recipe access.
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Quick Pickled Vegetables:
-1 cup carrots, thinly sliced
-1 cup beets, thinly sliced
-1 cup radishes, thinly sliced
-1 cup onions, thinly sliced
-1 cup rice wine vinegar
-1 cup water
-1/4 cup sugar
-1 tablespoon Kosher salt
Instructions: Place vegetables in one jar, or separate them into 4 separate jars. In a medium pot, add all other ingredients and bring to a boil. Immediately remove from heat. Pour hot liquid all over vegetables. Let cool, and store in the fridge in a jar with a tight fitting lid. They’re best served the next day!
The most common food preservation tactic is freezing. Most people I know have 2 freezers to handle the overflow of frozen foods, leftover meals, etc.
For best results in freezing homemade food, be sure to wait until the food has entirely cooled, and freeze in a freezer bag (with all air removed) or in an airtight container. This will ensure that there are no water droplets that will freeze into ice crystals or give you that freezer burn taste.
I also love these Super Cubes that come with airtight covers and help you store foods in precise portions. I can’t live without these, check them out!
There are loads more tips and tricks on preserving foods in my cookbook, so this just a tease! Check out the book here.
Which preservation method is your favorite? Let me know if you try anything new to save your produce and spice up some dishes!