With summer in full swing and waistlines toning, a lot of fruit is sure to be in your diet. Farmers markets galore, super sales on blueberries and memories of cherry-stained faces always come into mind this season.
The only issue with all this healthy-yummy fruit in our diets this season is spoilage! It happens to all of us; the best of us. Last summer when I was working at a restaurant, the pastry chef at the time loved peaches and he left them out one night too long and they completely rotted! What a waste of resources and money.
But fear not, my friends. It is very easy to keep the spoilage from dampening your summer days and keeping you from cleaning out that refrigerator door at the end of the week. Just follow my easy, thoughtful tips and I guarantee you will not only save loads of money, but you will have more to go round!
Tip 1: Freeze you assets!
Don’t you just love berry season? I believe I’ve mentioned my love for it once or twice before. It is the best time of year! I always get super excited whenever I go to the farmers market and see the plethora that the Connecticut and New York vendors have to offer. I usually end up buying one (or two, or four) pints too many and they start to get over-ripe before I even get the chance to eat them.
All you have to do is freeze them! If they are blueberries, strawberries or the like just give them a quick rinse and pop them into the freezer. Put them in cakes, sauces, smoothies, pancakes, or stew them together and let them thaw when your having a craving. They macerate beautifully this way. I personally love to cut up strawberries and freeze them for a cooling snack. Yum!
Tip 2: Banana-rama
Bananas spoil so quick, but are oh-so essential to the healthy persons diet.
If you have ever been to a marathon they tend to have them by the hundreds lined up and ready to go. They are the perfect super-fruit; Full of complex carbs, simple carbs, fiber and potassium.
Instead of tossing those browned nanners, peel and freeze them. Add them to your next batch of oatmeal cookies, zucchini bread or, again, a smoothie. There are some great vegan ice cream recipes that can be made with them as well! I personally love them dipped in extra dark chocolate with some crushed peanuts and a little sea salt.
Tip 3: Someone say sangria?
With Labor day coming up, I am sure your getting ready to host or attend a fantastic soirée. If not, this is a great idea to start off any meal as well.
Simply take your fruit that your trying to use up, frozen or not, and add it to some wine and brandy; presto! Sangria is born. There are hundreds of different ways to make it, and usually none wrong. Add what you like, to taste. I always make mine with frozen blueberries, raspberries and leftover cherries. I love adding pear brandy and an inexpensive vino verde or cabernet sauvignon. Yum.
Tip 4: Soft peaches equal a yummy dessert.
Have some peaches begging to get tossed? Fear not!
Peel those beautiful babies and put them into a blender with:
1 part water
1/4 c of lemon juice
4/5 sprigs of mint
Add agave or simple syrup for added sweetness.
Freeze to make a granita (comb through it with a fork every half hour)
Churn it in an ice cream maker
Or, even easier: Ice pops!
There are endless things you can do with all that extra fruit so next time you veer away from it; think about the endless possibilities that await and all the money you will save by using it.