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Wednesday, May 20, 2015

DIY Fruit and Vegetable Wash

Clean your produce the cheap, easy and natural way.

Do you really need to wash your fruits and vegetables? You betcha! There could possibly be a host of bugs, parasites, bacteria, pesticides, and herbicides on that produce. Not to mention all the hands that have already touched that produce before you got to it! Even organic produce needs cleaned, hello natural fertilizer. :) Plus, it can be down-right dirty.

Mustard greens and green onions, washed in my DIY Fruit & Veggie Cleaner and ready to cook.

You can usually find cleaning sprays and washes next to the produce section of most grocery stores. But here is two reasons why I don't use them. One, have you looked at the ingredient list on the back of those things? I can't even pronounce most of them, and it totally goes against what you are trying to do. Your going to wash all the chemicals off of your produce, with more chemicals? Doesn't make sense, does it? I even question the so-called organic washes out there. They go to all the trouble of telling you what's not in their product, but don't tell you what the stuff is actually made of! Second, they're all expensive, even the ones you find at big box stores. Honestly it's not that hard! All you need is some fresh water and a little apple cider vinegar. That's it! See, I told you it was cheap and easy. :)

  • First, make sure your sink is clean. I know this should go without saying, but... we all get crazy busy, and sometimes this little piece of housework gets neglected.
  • Fill your sink about half full with water.
  • Add 1/2 cup of apple cider vinegar. A good brand to use is Bragg Apple Cider Vinegar
  • Swish it around with your hand to mix it together.
  • Add your fruit or veggie. Don't overfill it, you want the fruit or veggies to move around freely in the wash to get clean.
  • Soak for about 10 minutes, (2-3 minutes for berries, leafy greens and herbs), stirring the produce around a couple of times while it's soaking.
  • Rinse well then set produce on a clean dish towel to dry.

Easy-Peasy, right?

Notes: For a small amount of produce, say some berries, no need to fill the sink, just use a bowl. Add 1 tablespoon of ACV to a bowl of water, and proceed with the rest of the instructions above.

Just because you don't eat the outside of a fruit or veggie, doesn't mean you shouldn't give it a vinegar wash. Cross-contamination from peeling or cutting into the produce will occur. Even an orange needs washed. While you may peel that orange before eating it, anything that is on the orange skin will come off on your hands during the peeling process, then you tear the orange into segments with those same hands. Cross-contamination.

Make sure the produce is completely dry before storing in the refrigerator.

Only soak fruits and vegetables you plan on eating within the next two days.

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