Spring Produce Storage Tips and Pea Soup Recipe!

photo: Liz Rueven

Photos: Liz Rueven

Spring is officially (and finally) here.  If you’re on the East Coast, the local produce is starting to appear at Farmer’s Markets….Yay! If your eyes are bigger than your stomach and you tend to overbuy produce, you’re not alone.Here are a few of our top tips for storing that delicious spring produce to help keep things fresher longer.

Photo: Liz Rueven

Leafy greens should be washed and well dried in a salad spinner.  Then simply roll them in dry paper towels or clean linen dishtowels and store in the refrigerator.

 

Photo: Liz Rueven

Scallions – There’s nothing worse than bringing home a bunch of scallions only to have them turn slimy when you need them most.  The best way to store them is white part down in about 2″ of water in a glass or jar in the refrigerator.

 

photo: Liz Rueven

Avocados, tomatoes, mangoes, melons, apples, and pears will continue to ripen if left sitting out on a counter top. Once they are ripe, refrigerate. Items like bell peppers, grapes, citrus, and berries need to be refrigerated.

 

Photo: Liz Rueven

When storing bananas on your kitchen counter, be careful not to store them next to other fruits or they will ripen any nearby fruits. Additionally, pull the bunch apart to slow down the ripening process.

 

Photo: Liz Rueven

Fresh herbs do best in a jar on the kitchen counter in a bit of water, ideally, loosely covered with plastic. If you want to store them in the fridge, place washed and dried herbs in a zip-loc bag or plastic container, left slightly open so that the air will circulate.

 

Photo: Liz Rueven

If you buy “bagged” vegetables, like Brussels sprouts, spinach or peppers… poke a few holes in the bag before refrigerating. After all, veggies like to breathe, too.

 

Chards are a wonderful springtime crop and there’s nothing worse than buying a beautiful head of Swiss chard only to have it turn, a day or two later.  The best way to store chard it to refrigerate it unwashed in a plastic bag with a couple holes poked in the bag for air.

photo: Liz Rueven

Cucumbers go bad very quickly when they’re kept too cold.  Store them towards the front of your refrigerator so they warm up a bit when you open the fridge.

Celebrate spring with this perfect Spring Sweet Pea Soup!

 

Sweet Pea Soup:

1 gallon

 Sweet Pea Soup

This quintessential spring pea soup is bright green and creamy smooth. It is a favorite of our clients.

This recipe is dairy.

Ingredients

  • 1 stick butter
  • 1 large Vidalia onion chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 8 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 potatoes peeled & quartered
  • 3 lbs. fresh peas
  • ½ tsp. cayenne
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1 vanilla bean sliced open the long way
  • 3 Tb. tarragon, chopped

Instructions

  1. Cook butter, onion and garlic until translucent.
  2. Add vegetable broth and potatoes.
  3. Bring to a boil and reduce heat. Simmer on low for 15 minutes.
  4. Add peas, cayenne, pepper and vanilla bean.
  5. Continue cooking for 15 minutes.
  6. Remove from heat and add 3 TBSP fresh tarragon.
  7. Remove the vanilla bean.
  8. Puree till smooth.

Notes

This silky smooth soup may be served at room temperature of piping hot.