Down the Drain

We've been talking a lot about salads and veggies these days...call it spring fever! It's really an exciting time for growing organically and eating greener, but there is a flip side. Where does it all go when it's uneaten or unused? If you think the shot above is of fabulous fresh greens, guess again. It's confession time- it's a kitchen sink and these once gorgeous, now slime-y greens are on their way out.

Around here, we all have been doing really well trying to shop on an as needed basis. And while it's contrary to the "buy in bulk" belief, we are finding that when eating for one or two, it can be the most environmentally conscious method, especially when it comes to lettuce. Lettuce, as it turns out, is the number one wasted food. In Great Britain there is actually a "Soggy Lettuce Report" that states that 61% of all lettuce purchased in a week ends up in the trash! So when it comes to lettuce, we are advocates of buy more often and use it right away. That way you can also try all the different varieties out there (yes - there are varieties!). Arugula, Butter, Red, Watercress, Maiche, Mustard, Dandelion....the list goes on.

In the quest to be greener every day, this also opens up the big "can of worms" on composting. Quite honestly, we have not jumped on that wagon yet, but really would like to. Pushing those greens down the drain was painful!

Living in the city, it's a concern of space and cleanliness. After doing some research and even attending some urban composting seminars, the day is coming soon! The Nature Mill composter seems to be the best option, and a Stainless Steel counter bin is a good budget option. Earth 911 also gives a great guide to get started.

In the meantime, if you are storing greens- here is a bit of research we have compiled on how to keep salad greens fresher longer. Here are a few tips:

1. Try to purchase lettuce un-packaged, not in plastic wrap or in one of those clamshell plastic container. Take it a step further, and grow your own!

2. Line the refrigerator drawer (bottom and sides) with a layer of paper towels, newspaper or scrap copier paper.

3. Wrap unwashed lettuce in paper towel or a soft cotton dish towel. Remove any plastic wrap before storing (and recycle it!).

4. Place lettuce in prepared drawer and keep shut tightly until ready to use.

5. Wash only the lettuce you will use. Store remaining lettuce in the same fashion as above, unwashed. If the drawer liner your have prepared becomes very moist or soggy replace as needed to keep moisture to a minimum.

6. Whip up your favorite salad dressing and enjoy!

No comments:

Blog Widget by LinkWithin