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Go Green Tips:Kitchen Green-Ing
The list of what goes into regular petrochemically-based dishwashing liquids, detergents, surface cleaners and other household cleaning products is enough to turn anyone’s stomach. Fortunately there are plenty of natural cleaning companies that produce non-toxic, biodegradable, plant-based detergents. Or you can always create your own cleaning products using everyday ingredients such as vinegar and baking soda, which combine to make a great all-purpose, non-toxic cleaner.
Preheating is almost prehistoric. Many newer ovens come to temperature so rapidly, they make preheating almost obsolete. If you’re roasting or baking something that’s a little flexible when it comes to cooking time, you can put it in right away, then turn the oven off five or ten minutes early, and let dishes finish cooking in the residual heat.
Avoid purchasing pre-prepared, frozen foods, and make them yourself; meals that are frozen and reheated suffer a loss in taste or quality. Skipping these steps by buying and serving homemade food would be the best alternative. As an added bonus, you also know exactly what is going in to your food. If you have the space, take it a step further and grow your own fruits, vegetables, and use your composted kitchen waste as fertilizer.
Forever and ever
Choose cookware and utensils that stand the test of time and won’t have to be thrown away with your leftover container. Use stainless steel or cast iron instead; low-quality wooden spoons, for example, can rot, and plastic will melt if you leave it on the stove too long. Buy high-quality knives that you can sharpen by hand, and use long-lasting cloth towels instead of paper.
Gas vs. Electric
Many cook prefer gas because it’s easier to control temperatures; it also offers instant-on heat, and doesn’t waste much heat when the cooking is done. If you’re a gas devotee shopping for a new stove, know that the lower the output, the more energy-efficient your stove will be.
Purchasing from the bulk bins mean less packaging, and fewer trips to the store, and can also mean financial savings. Bulk cooking is a more efficient use of appliance energy and time. Plan ahead meals that can feed you and your family for a few days are great ways to shop efficiently and free up your precious leisure time.