NATIONAL CLEAN OUT YOUR FRIDGE DAY
This upcoming Sunday, November 15th is National Clean Out Your Fridge Day. Devised by Whirlpool Home Appliances in 1999, this special fall cleaning day was created in preparation for the approaching Thanksgiving holiday. Now before you roll your eyes and start picturing the little missus in an apron singing 1950’s jingles, let’s take a moment to think about your refrigerator.
The keeper of perishable sustenance, your fridge has a long history. Icehouses have been around for thousands of years. Originally pits were dug to store ice and keep perishable foods from going bad. Subsequently, dedicated structures were built, and ice was packed in straw to insulate the blocks and keep food cold. Another version of the fridge dates back to the mid 1700’s, when small buildings were first constructed over natural springs to protect the fresh water from animals and debris. The temperature in these small buildings stayed cool throughout the year, so people began storing perishable items in their spring houses as well.
While technology has progressed quite a bit since these early fridge prototypes, our mentality about food, in theory, is much the same. We keep food cold to preserve its life, thereby maximizing our resources and respecting our ingredients, just as people did hundreds and thousands of years ago. But often food gets forgotten in the back of our fridges, going to waste. We at Foodstand are pledging a #NoFoodWaste November, and we invite you to do the same! How? If you haven’t already, click to tweet your #NoFoodWaste pledge. And continue to share your good no-food-waste deeds on the Foodstand app and apply #NoFoodWaste for a chance to win prizes from Dig Inn and Farm To People.
National Clean Out Your Fridge Day is a brilliant reminder to limit waste. First, seize the day! If produce is about to go bad, now is the time to use it before it’s too late. Employ food CPR to revive sad and wilted vegetables, then cook up something tasty! Second, use the occasion to clean and reorganize your fridge by implementing proper storage techniques to prolong the life of your food. Simply adjusting the way you store your produce can lengthen its life by days or even weeks. Learn about food CPR and proper storage, plus additional ways to help you cut food waste in the kitchen in Foodstand’s #NoFoodWaste November Tips.
It’s not just us home cooks that are practicing these #NoFoodWaste techniques. Restaurant professionals are savvy in the ways of maximizing resources too. Check out this week’s READ section to learn more about how Elizabeth Meltz, director of food safety and sustainability at Batali & Bastianich Hospitality Group restaurants (Babbo, Del Posto), is implementing policies to cut down on food waste. If she can do it, we can do it too.
EAT & DRINK
KALE AND FRESH CORN SALAD WITH MICROGREENS by sugardetoxme
12 large Lacinato Kale leaves, torn and stems removed
1 whole fresh corn, uncooked and shucked
1 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil
handful of microgreens (in this salad, red sorrel and amaranth)
Pinch of Maldon salt
Squeeze of lemon juice
Massage the olive oil throughout the kale, softening the leaves up.
Add corn to salad. Toss in the microgreens. Add salt, a squeeze of lemon and serve!
GINGER VEGETABLE STIR FRY by annefood (adapted from the kitchn)
1 head cauliflower, cut into florets
a large knob fresh ginger, peeled and sliced into matchsticks
1 onion, diced
6 cloves garlic, sliced
3 large heads baby bok choy, sliced into strips (stem and leaves)
3 scallions, cut into inch-long pieces (white and green parts)
2 teaspoons, toasted sesame oil
1 tablespoon mirin
2 tablespoons Bragg’s Liquid Aminos
a splash rice wine vinegar
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
extra virgin olive oil
ea salt and freshly ground black pepper
steamed brown rice, for serving
Cook your brown rice according to package directions.
Preheat the oven to 425. Toss the cauliflower with a splash of olive oil on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Sprinkle with a large pinch of crushed sea salt, and a few grinds of black pepper. Place in the oven for about 20-30 minutes, or until the cauliflower starts to crisp.
Add a large splash of olive oil to your wok over medium heat. Add the ginger, and let cook for a couple of minutes until it starts to show some color. Add the onion and garlic, and cook until the onion begins to soften and caramelize. Add the bok choy, cauliflower, scallions, sesame oil, mirin, Bragg’s, rice wine vinegar and red pepper flakes, and toss to combine. Let cook for about 5 minutes, until the bok choy stems have softened slightly.
Place a mound of rice to each bowl. Add a large spoonful of vegetables on top, followed by a drizzle of sauce.