Author: <span class="vcard">SonzRestaurant</span>

Food storage

We’ve all been guilty of it at one time or another: finding a bowl of something that used to be baked beans, leftover casserole or a couple of now-furry vegetables in the back of the fridge that should have been disposed of a long time previously. Whilst refrigerators are fantastic at keeping food fresh in the short term, it is vital that we are aware of just how long various foods can be kept for. When it comes to a catering business, it is vital that everything that comes out of the commercial refrigeration units is safe for your customers to eat.

Knowing how long foods can be kept in the fridge is incredibly important, as certain foods can look, taste and smell perfectly fine despite being riddled with harmful bacteria because they have been kept for too long and should have long since been discarded. Unfortunately, trusting one’s nose and eyes is not always very helpful when it comes to checking up on the quality of food.

The US food safety guidelines on how long food can be kept in a refrigerator say that short storage times are best for most fresh ingredients, especially those which are meat-based. Conversely, it could be argued that knowing precisely how long food can be stored for will help us to waste less due to the fact that we would be more likely to plan what we are eating effectively, and only buy what we are likely to eat. Ensuring that your fridge is stacked efficiently can also help you to maximise the life of foods kept in there.

Got a small fridge? Here’s how to organize it right

 

It is a good idea to contact the manufacturer of your refrigerator if you are unsure of how long certain foods will last for when chilled. Getting in touch with the experts at a company such as Fridge Freezer Direct Ltd can help you to upgrade should it be necessary.

Salad and Vegetables

This differs greatly depending on the vegetable that you are storing in the fridge. Obviously, vegetables such as potatoes and onions should never be kept in a fridge, but the best you can hope for with items such as broccoli and cauliflower is between four and five days. Celery will keep for around two weeks, whilst peas will lose their peak condition after around two days.

Meat Products

Raw meat can become dangerous if it is kept in the refrigerator for too long. The harmful bacteria that can build up on meat products such as pork and chicken mean that it is vital that they are used before they become hazardous. Raw poultry and seafood should be used within a couple of days of being chilled, whilst red meats like pork and beef are safe for up to around five days. All cooked meat products should be eaten within four or five days of being refrigerated.

Dairy Products

Milk should not be kept in the door of a fridge, as it is the warmest part. Milk should be used within around five days of being chilled, whilst cheese and butter can last a lot longer if they are wrapped properly.

Note: How long your food lasts in the fridge also depends on how and where int he fridge it’s stored. The image below describes where each food should be stored.

store food in fridge

 

Blog How-to's

broccoli

Would you believe me if I said you could make a soup with just two ingredients? It’s true!

The only required ingredients for this soup are fresh broccoli and soup stock. I used chicken, but vegetable works equally well.

I used an average head of broccoli — basically, I just chopped up the entire amount that I bought, and most grocery stores seem to sell relatively standard sizes of broccoli, so don’t worry too much about the amount. I added enough soup stock to just cover it, and then I boiled it for about 20 minutes, or until the broccoli was tender.

I used my immersion blender to blend it all up. Easy peasy!

broccoli soup

Make It Your Own

I topped this recipe with nutmeg, but you could use any variety of things.

  • Nutmeg
  • Goat cheese
  • Feta
  • Garlic
  • Ginger
  • Soy Sauce
  • Carmelized Onions
  • Roasted Red Peppers
  • Chilli Powder / Cayenne Pepper
  • Salsa
  • Chutney

Use your imagination and let us know what worked best for you!

Recipe

Blueberry Topping

When blueberry season arrived I, along with every other food blogger and pie lover out there, rejoiced. Blueberries! In yogurt! In crumbles! In my mouth! Life was good.

Predictably, blueberry recipes started showing up across all the blogs I read. But I started to notice something strange. Every time I saw a recipe for a blueberry topping – the simple kind you spoon over baked goods or ice cream – it seemed to involve a tedious process that involved pre-chopping them in food processors and then boiling them up on the stove.

Well. Andrea to your rescue, people. You can easily make this exact same topping in 60 seconds. No heavy lifting required.

All you need is a microwave.

Blueberry toppingDump your blueberries into a microwave-safe bowl. A third of a cup of berries makes a nice amount for one — if you want enough to cover a whole cake you may want to use closer to two cups.

If your berries are quite tart, feel free to add 1-2 tsp of sugar per cup.

Microwave your berries for 60 seconds. That’s it. The heat will cause them to pop open naturally, and the juice will get all bubbly and hot. When they come out of the microwave, you can lightly mash them with a fork a bit more if you like. But there is seriously nothing else to it.

Eat it straight away (hot) or put it in the fridge for a couple hours to cool down (this will cause it to thicken a bit more as well.)

You can use this blueberry topping in a thousand ways:

• on waffles or pancakes
• on ice cream or frozen yogurt
• over cakes, cheesecakes, scones, biscuits
• as a topping for grilled meats
• whipped up with oil and vinegar into a salad dressing

…annnd approximately 995 other uses.

Now I’m not saying there’s never a reason to do up your blueberries on the stove – simmering them for a longer period of time can help the berries thicken up a lot more, and you can make more complex sauces like, say, a blueberry balsamic reduction. But for most of your day-to-day needs, I think the 60-second microwave method works just fine (and tastes just great!)

Recipe

eggs

The microwave is an easy and fast way to cook an egg. Best of all, the egg comes out in a perfect ‘patty’ shape that’s ideal for sandwiches.

Here’s how to make an egg in the microwave, perfect every time!

  1. Choose a bowl that has a relatively wide bottom, but not too wide. Think cereal bowl rather than dessert bowl or soup bowl.
  2. Spray the bowl with cooking oil, or, if you don’t have a spray bottle, simply blot a napkin with some oil and rub it along the inside of the bowl.
  3. Crack the egg into the bowl.
  4. Don’t worry if the yolk breaks. In fact, sometimes I use a knife to break the yolk a bit so that’s more evenly distributed.
  5. Add some extra egg whites. (Optional)
  6. You can add some extras at this point, like salt, pepper, garlic salt, torn basil, or chives. (Optional)
  7. Cover the bowl with a napkin or paper towel (or a clean dishcloth, for environmental-friendliness!) and place in the microwave.
  8. Set to cook for 1 min.
  9. Stand around in front of the microwave until you hear the egg make a little “POP” sound. This usually happens after 30-40 seconds. Stop the microwave.
  10. Check on the egg. If it looks liquidy at all, continue the cooking process until you hear it make another “POP” (Usually another 5-10 seconds.)
  11. After the second “POP”, it’s done!
  12. Run a knife along the edge of the egg, and then it should slide easily out of the bowl.

Your egg is now ready for its new home on an English muffin, between two pieces of bread, or even sliced up and rolled into a wrap. Enjoy!

There’s a lot more you can do with eggs in a microwave, here are 3 ways to cook an egg in a microwave

Blog How-to's