Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Squeaky Clean Fruits and Veggies

If your budget does not support buying organic fruits and vegetables, make sure you give your produce a good scrub-a-dub before serving. Your fruits and vegetables carry residual fertilizer and pesticides and can also carry bacteria or fungi.

Don't waste your money on commercial sprays and washes sold for cleaning vegetables. Numerous studies show that the expensive commercial washes do not remove pesticides any better than plain tap water. Here are three ways to effectively clean your produce;

Food scientist Susan Sumner developed a white vinegar and hydrogen peroxide recipe to clean fruits and vegetables. For this recipe you will need; two dark-colored spray bottles, white vinegar and 3% hydrogen peroxide. Fill one spray bottle with white vinegar and the other with peroxide. Spray your produce first with vinegar and second with hydrogen peroxide. Rinse the produce under running water. This wash is non-toxic and inexpensive. In addition to effectively washing your produce, it can also be used to sanitize counters, cutting boards and other food prep surfaces.

You can also mix 1 part vinegar to 1 part water in a large bowl. Place your produce in the bowl and soak for 5 to 10 minutes. Rinse after soaking to wash off the vinegar.

You can also soak fruits or vegetables in warm salt water (two or three teaspoons of salt per gallon) for 5 to 10 minutes. Rinse with warm water after soaking to wash off the salt.

Pesticides can cause a lot of trouble, especially in infants, young children and the elderly. A growing body of research also points to a causal effect that pesticides and chemicals and food addititives have on ADHD symptoms. To reduce the risks, always wash your produce before serving.

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