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Keeping Foods Fresh

by Jyl Steinback

  • Freeze foods at peak quality; they will taste better than foods frozen after several days of refrigeration.
  • Immediately freeze foods you don't plan to use within 1 to 2 days.
  • Slightly undercook prepared foods; they will finish cooking when reheated.
  • Most casseroles can be prepared and refrigerated up to 24 hours in advance. Add 15 to 20 minutes to cooking time if casseroles are chilled.
  • To test egg freshness: Immerse egg into a pan of salted, cool water. If the egg sinks, it's fresh; if it rises to the surface, throw it away.
  • Most canned foods, when properly stored at normal room temperatures, will stay good for several years.
    • Low-acid canned goods, including canned meat/poultry; soups and stews (without tomato base); pasta products; vegetables: 2 to 5 years
    • High-acid canned goods, including tomato products, fruits and foods in vinegar-based sauce or dressing: 12 to 18 months
    • Canned meat and poultry: 2 to 5 years

Best Freezing Supplies

  • Heavy-duty aluminum foil, plastic wrap, plastic freezer bags and vacuum-packed FoodSaver bags
  • Food-grade plastic containers made of moisture-and vapor-resistant material
  • Freezer-to-microwave or freezer-to-oven containers in a variety of sizes:
    • Quart containers hold 4 to 6 servings.
    • Pint containers hold 2 to 3 servings.
  • Select containers with wide top openings so food can be easily removed without thawing.
  • Foods can be frozen in supermarket wrappings if they are used within a month or two. For longer storage, overwrap packages with moisture-and vapor-resistant materials.
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Excerpted from Cook Once, Eat for a Week by Jyl Steinback. Copyright © 2003 by Family Fit Lifestyle, an Arizona Corporation.

To order this book go to Amazon.


August 29, 2014



Eating a colorful diet or fruits and veggies helps ensure your child is getting the nutrients he needs to keep his brain sharp while at school. Aim to pack three or more different colored foods in his lunch (or for snack) every day.


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