It may be that you have a very productive vegetable garden, that your neighbors or friends have given you fruit they produce or that you have taken advantage of discounts on already very ripe fruit and vegetables at the market or supermarket. In addition to the rather obvious possibility of freezing what you can (always provided you have enough space available in the freezer), here are some possible alternatives.
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Throw the food in the garbage in times of crisis it represents a real waste. But how to behave if for one reason or another you find yourself having a unexpected amount of fruit or vegetables that is about to pass the ideal point of ripeness?
You may have a very productive vegetable garden, that your neighbors or friends have you donated fruit of their production or you have took advantage of the discounts on fruit and vegetables already very ripe at the market or at the supermarket. Besides the rather obvious possibility of freeze what you can (always provided you have enough space available in the freezer), here are some possible alternatives.
THEdrying it is probably one of the most ancient methods of preserving fruit, given that for it to happen it is enough to have the light and heat from the sun. You can also decide to use a professional dryer or drying some types of fruit in the oven at a low temperature. A do-it-yourself dryer for the summer can be made by mounting a net on a wooden frame that can support the fruit that you will place on it. What to dry? Berries, figs, apricots, plums, citrus peel, bananas and apple slices, but also chillies and tomatoes.
To learn more about food drying, you may be interested in reading "How to build a homemade food dryer" and the procedure for obtaining Sun-cooked Zucchini
READ also: How to dry fruit at home without buying a dryer
Apples, pears and bananas that are starting to be too mature can be used without problems for the preparation of baked desserts such as leavened cakes, muffins and plumcakes. You will have the advantage of using very ripe fruit as a basic ingredient, and therefore just as sweet, an aspect that will allow you to reduce the amount of sweeteners to use in your recipes, making them even healthier. Bananas can easily be mixed with dough after being sliced, sprinkled with lemon juice and mashed or blended. Apples and pears can be cut into slices or cubes and transformed into a filling for muffins, plumcakes, strudels or breakfast cakes. Another suitable ingredient in this sense are the ripe carrots, also particularly sweet. (Read the recipe of the vegan muffin with apple pulp)
If you have purchased the ripe vegetables as it was particularly convenient, use it immediately for dinner and prepare one good soup which may require the use of potatoes, celery, leeks, onions, carrots, courgettes, tomatoes and whatever else you have available. If you have some apples aside that are about to mature, use them for the preparation of salty soups in perfect combination with celery. Another important precaution in the preparation of soups concerns the use of the parts of the vegetables considered waste, such as stems and leaves. Especially if you are in the presence of organic vegetables, do not hesitate to use these edible parts in the preparation of soups and broths (tufts of fennel, well washed carrot peel, hard parts of asparagus, external leaves of cabbage and cauliflower, etc.). Remember that most of the soups are excellent even if served warm or cold and can therefore be eaten even in summer. If you want to know some special recipes for fresh summer soups, read here.
Jams and preserves
Take advantage of the large summer availability of ripe tomatoes for the preparation of homemade preserves in the form of sauce to be used throughout the course of the following year. If you have ripe fruit available that you think you will not be able to consume in time, get to work in the preparation of jams that can be prepared without adding preservatives. For jams with a denser consistency, especially if you are using apricots or plums, add an apple for every kilo of fruit; due to its pectin content it will work as a natural thickener. Remember to sterilize the jars and caps that you will use for your preserves and jams in boiling water and to pour them still hot sauces and jams, immediately after removing them from the heat.
Read also our guide on homemade organic converts
Juices, centrifuged and smoothies
Having a juicer or a blender available will allow you to consume large quantities of fruit and vegetables more quickly, with safe health benefits and avoiding having to throw away precious foods, just because their appearance no longer appears perfect, while the their flavor could still be great. So get busy in the preparation of smoothies and centrifuged to be consumed for breakfast, for a snack or after dinner. The combinations between different types of fruit and vegetables are practically infinite. Smoothies, in particular, are very tasty and healthy, they are simple and quick to prepare and because of their bright colors they will also be loved by children who do not appreciate fruit and vegetables very much. You may discover how tasty it can be to combine fruit and vegetables in their preparation. Read also ours 15 recipes for the preparation of super healthy smoothies.
READ also: Centrifuged: 10 recipes to purify the body
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