When things go bad…or not

A friend gave me a bunch of fresh lettuce a few weeks ago.  He’d obviously planted a lot of lettuce and there was plenty to go around.  Last week he brought some more in, I laughed and said I hadn’t finished what he gave me before.  He wanted to know how I kept it from going bad.  I shared with him my very simple technique that works for green leafy vegetables fresh from the garden or from the store.

I place the greens in the sink, and fill it with cold water, let it soak for 10-15 minutes, lift the greens out and place in a colander, draining the water.  Most dirt sinks to the bottom of the sink, so I rinse the sink out and then repeat the process.  After the greens are drained, I pat them dry and place them in an airtight container and refrigerate.  Usually sometime during the duration, I dump any additional water out of the container.  I’ve had greens stay fresh up to 3 weeks with this technique.

Soaking in water can revive carrots and celery that are still good, but may have lost their crispness.   Soaking in ice cold water can bring them back to freshness.  I just had this experience with celery that I had planned on using in soup last week and forgot.  I picked up a stalk and it was so limp it bent in half.  I soaked the entire head and it’s crisp, fresh and tasty.  I haven’t tried it on any other vegetables, but if you’re going to throw them out anyway, why not give it a shot and see what happens?