December 12, 2011

Kitchen Tip: Keep It Handy

You probably did some grocery shopping over the weekend, didn't you? I bet you might have bought some stuff to make salad. But when you get down to it, making a salad can be kind of a pain, huh? All the washing, chopping, prepping and that pumpkin pie? It's much easier to slice a piece of pie than dice tomato, cucumber, cabbage and lettuce. 

Next thing you know, your kitchen looks like a cool-whip/pie crime scene, you feel bloated and your jeans won't button.
Maybe that's just me.

I saw a really cute idea on pinterest where the salads were prepped in mason jars (everything on pinterest is made with mason jars, isn't it?) and the dressing on the bottom and the lettuce on top. I don't think that far ahead, but I like the idea of having prepped stuff on hand.

I don't like the pre-washed bagged lettuce. It scares me. I hate when I buy it and it seems okay on the outside, but the leaves on the inside are slimy. Ewwwww! So you buy the lettuce to prep it yourself, only you can't use a regular knife on it because the blade will oxidize the lettuce and now you have brown on the edges of your lettuce.

I bought this handy plastic knife on amazon for less than $5. It's serrated and awesome.

Pretty cool, huh?
I have a large Tupperware that I use for my salad lettuce. I found it at a yard sale. It's a total throwback. The lid fit nicely and it's big so I don't have to squish my lettuce. My husband has a thing about squished lettuce.

My lovely lovely greens. This weeks were romaine and green leaf. Rinsed and ready to go.
I put 2 paper towels in the bottom of my Tupperware. It helps with the moisture. I think. I could be wrong. I'm sure I'm doing it all wrong, but this is what works for me.
I chop off all my rinsed lettuce and toss it in the bowl.
I grab another paper towel and mix it around in the bowl.
Just to get some of that additional moisture out of the lettuce.
Then I top it all off with a new dry paper towel.
This keeps my lettuce for a week. It has totally cut down on our wasted food. I don't throw out nearly as much spoiled/wasted/unused vegetables anymore. (I suppose you could use a salad spinner thing, I had one and it took up a lot of space and the knob/spinner broke. If you have one and it works for you, Rock on! Please tell me which one you have/recommend.)

Another big prep I do is all our salad ingredients. I chop/slice/dice/grate all our veggies. Chopped tomatoes, sliced cucumbers, shredded red cabbage, grated carrot and diced radishes (also cooked quinoa and lentils). I was using my food processor with the grate wheel on it, then I dropped the bowl and it shattered. This weeks prep took a little longer than normal. 

It's all totally worth it when your husband makes his own salad.

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