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Saturday, 26 November 2016

HEALTHY FRUIT & VEGETABLES

The health specialist advises everyone to eat more vegetables and fruit as part of our staple diet. But to do that we all must understand the yearly season they are available and understand the dilemma that the farmer goes through to deliver your fruit and vegetables to your store. Knowing the seasonal plan of availability of fruit and vegetables also helps with your shopping menu plan as the health authorities insist that we must consume 5 a day fruit and veg.


Tips
  • Consider making tomato sauce using left over tomatoes
  • Berries
For berries like strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries, bag them in a freezer bag, recipe use them in smoothies, jams, or serve them in ice cream, or fresh yoghurt
  • Herbs
One way to preserve to use is to blend them all together and place in a container into the freezer. Apply mixture as a marinade sauces, and dressings with your next cooked dish.
  • Apples
That go off, you could shred them and add to salads them into salads and part of coleslaws.
  • Bananas
A couple of cooking applications can be smoothies or banana bread
  • Cucumbers, Peppers, Radishes, and Carrots
Better the freshness of the better the results, when pickling

WHAT IS PICKLING?

In pickling, the process is about adding acid (vinegar or lemon juice) to a low-acid food to lower its pH to 4.6 or lower. (Measure with pH Strips)


Acid foods include all fruits, tomatoes, fermented and pickled vegetables, relishes, jams, jellies, and marmalades.

Quick Pickling of Vegetables
  • Slice them thin
  • Pour the vinegar and water into a measuring cup, add the salt and sugar.
  • Microwave for two minutes.
  • Place vegetables & garlic in a bowl then pour the hot vinegar mixture.
  • Leave to cool and then serve or chill in the fridge


The seasons
Spring - March, April and May
Summer - June, July and August
Autumn - September, October and November
Winter - December, January and February



How Crop Rotation Works


Crop rotation is used by farmers to control pests and diseases that can become established in the soil over time. The changing of crops in a sequence decreases the population level of pests by:-

·       Breaking pest life cycles
·       Disturbing pest habitat.
·       Prevent the spread of plant disease
·       Reduce insect infestations
·       Nutrient Enhancement by certain plants that produce free organic soil conditioning
By rotating the crop you will also lessen the chance of the land becoming tired and drained of nutrients because of continual use of the same crops in the same place, hence the popular use of crop rotation.
 Fruits and vegetables preservation and storing methods
  • Store fruits and vegetables separately
  • Root vegetables and onions stored together spoil more quickly
  • Trimming vegetables, remove rotten ends, leaving an inch to keep the vegetable from drying out.
  • Ventilate the bags of the veggies stored also, pack veggies and fruits loosely, whether in the refrigerator, as the closer they are to each other, the more quickly they will rot.
  • Almost all fruits and vegetables can be stored in the freezer, in small pieces on sheet trays, or in airtight containers, this includes herbs.
  • Garlic, onions: store at room temperature in a well-ventilated area
  • Cucumbers: store above 50°F, If refrigeration is necessary, limit to 1-3 days before eating.
  • Spinach: store as quickly as possible, Spinach likes the cold. 4 days
  • Potatoes: store in a cool (45°F to 50°F) and dark place, using perhaps a brown paper bag, so as to prevent the spuds from sprouting.
  • Bell peppers: refrigerate, as they will only deteriorate if left out of the refrigerator.
  • Carrots: snip the carrot greens to keep them from sapping nutrients from the carrot roots. Note, there is the option of storing the greens separately. Place carrots in a closed container with plenty of moisture, either wrapped in a damp towel, or dunk them in cold water every couple of days. 2 weeks
  • Tomatoes: store unwashed at room temperature in a well-ventilated area. A few days
  • Plums, peaches, and pears: store at room temperature. Ripening can be accelerated in a brown bag.
  • Apples: can be stored in the refrigerator or a cool, dark location.













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