Spring Five Produce Prep
I’m really excited to be sharing more produce prep tips with you again! After doing my first post last fall, and sharing more of my prep on Instagram stories, I’ve gotten a really positive reaction from you. This makes me really happy because prepping produce is such a passion of mine that I really enjoy sharing. It helps loads during the week when it comes to preparing meals, and helps keep your precious ingredients fresh so your meals taste delicious. I’m still working on an eBook to cover all of the produce items that flow in and out of our kitchen during the year, but for now, here are a few of my favorite pieces of produce this spring and how I keep them fresh all week! I hope there is a method in here somewhere that you find useful, and that you are enjoying this beautiful spring transition too :).
Radishes are wonderfully crisp and it’s thanks to their high water content. I love these in my salads.
They can be placed as a bunch in the crisper drawer of the refrigerator and keep for up to two weeks. Be sure to remove their greens before storing though, as those can become moldy and soil much sooner. (You can eat the greens, or compost.)
I enjoy prepping radishes ahead of time for salads. To do this I remove the greens, rinse well, and trim each radish. Then I slice them thin using a mandolin, and store in a jar of filtered water (sealed with lid) in the fridge. They’ll keep this way for one week.
Fresh greens can be tough to store sometimes, but I’ve found a way that I absolutely love and it works wonderfully.
This applies to whole, unwashed heads of lettuce that I bring home from the farmers market, but can work for loose baby greens too.
Simply store the heads of lettuce, unwashed, in a large glass or plastic storage container. Making sure not to pack them in too tight, they need some breathing room, but a gentle “push” to close the container is perfectly fine.
This way I remove the leaves I wish to wash and run through my salad spinner each day for lunch, and the remaining stay vibrant and fresh all week long.
(You could rinse, spin, and chop these ahead of time, but I would only do a few days worth - maybe three.)
Blueberries are the easiest of the berries to store by far. They just need to breath, and that’s it!
This is probably a little obvious, but worth saying: fresh and in-season berries will last. The ones from the farmers market are best and freshest, too. Always check for mold, and steer clear of mushy berries - those will rot soonest.
Washing as you go, rather than all at once, minimizes their chance of growing mold. Simply store in the breathable little crates they come in (shown here) or in a wide and low bowl that allows plenty of air flow (shown in the top image).
Keep in the fridge and enjoy within one week.
Ooo this is my favorite spring vegetable!
It is like a vase of flowers for your fridge. Simply place the spears in a jar and fill with a few inches of water. When ready to use, remove and give a rinse before trimming off their tough ends and preparing as you please.
We enjoy steaming these for a few minutes best.
When shopping for asparagus, look for a bright green color and healthy looking tips. Since we only buy these when they are in season from the farmers market, I look for farmers who are storing them in an inch of water. This tells me they understand how to keep their asparagus healthy and value their freshness - and I really appreciate this!
Sugar Snap Peas
These (and snow peas) come in as a close second as my favorite spring veggie. And can be stored the same way, too.
To capture and hold onto the water that keeps peas so fresh and crisp, simply place in an airtight jar or container.
Remove, rinse, and prepare as you please! I love using these raw in salads for a sweet crunch, or giving them a quick steam to go along with other beans, grains, veggies, and a sauce for dinner.
These are important to only buy in season for the crispest, sweetest taste. Look for snap peas that are bright green and preferably a little bulging from their peas inside, meaning the farmer let them grow to maturity and didn’t pick them too soon!
I recommend enjoying these within a week.