Fun uses for the forgotten produce in your fridge

When Chef Karishma Sakhrani discovered extra chives in her fridge at her residence in Mumbai, she wished to save lots of the valuable greens, understanding discovering them once more can be troublesome throughout the ongoing lockdown. The GraspChef India Season four finalist reduce them up and froze them, thus providing them a brand new lease of life, whereas additionally letting herself use them when she wanted to in the close to future.

The manner we work together with meals and elements has modified throughout the lockdown: extra home-cooked meals, extra OPOS (one pot one shot) cooking, recipes of two or three elements, head-to-tail cooking, and, now, extending the lifetime of elements to minimise meals wastage.

Karishma states freezing is a brand new norm, given we can not go for grocery runs regularly. “It is a great way to preserve all the nutrition, and sometimes flavour and texture aren’t too disturbed.”

Quick suggestions and tips…

The shelf lifetime of ginger is between 4 and 6 weeks at room temperature, “I grate and put it into a mini ice cube tray and then demould it, putting it into a ziplock bag, so I have little pre-measured cubes of grated ginger to put it into dal or whatever else I am cooking.” The identical will be performed with ginger-garlic paste. Karishma recommends this fashion of preserving issues one uses quite a bit in the kitchen — reminiscent of tamarind and uncooked mango — and never simply throughout lockdown.

Yes, ’tis the season of the king of fruits, however resulting from hovering temperatures, mangoes tend to ripen fairly rapidly. Karishma factors out that barely overripe mangoes (gentle to the contact whereas nonetheless smelling contemporary) are superb to mix up with some yoghurt and sugar for a breakfast aspect or a fast pick-me-up. One can even go for lassi or the traditional home-made aamras, that’s superb for the complete household and will be rapidly consumed too.

Hyderabad-based culinary teacher Arundati Rao is spending her lockdown time at a farm in Shankarpalli, Telangana. She says the yellow pumpkin — widespread throughout all Indian households and simply out there by way of the yr in the South — is a prized vegetable for curries, tangy gravies or as a dry dish. “If uncut, it can be stored for months,” she explains, “but once cut into, like a melon, it spoils fast. Steam the pumpkin and purée it, and then it can be frozen for as long as three months. The defrosted purée can be added to pasta sauces, kneaded into roti doughs or even substituted in place of banana or apple purée in your favourite cake recipe.”

Converting tomatoes into a purée or pasta sauce helps sustain the ingredient’s usability for longer

Converting tomatoes right into a purée or pasta sauce helps maintain the ingredient’s usability for longer
| Photo Credit:
Dennis Klein on Unsplash

One explicit fruit that has been overbought is the tomato, which in this warmth, ripens and softens rapidly. “Tomatoes have a lot of versatility,” feedback Karishma, “When they are soft and look slightly bruised, you can make a puree or a gravy, or whip up a large batch of base pasta sauce. Oven-roasting tomatoes brings out a lot of sweetness, and doesn’t require a lot of hands-on time as the oven does the workload. Once roasted, you can blend them into a soup with a smoky touch.”

Alternatively, extra tomatoes will be transformed right into a tasty tomato chutney, to be eaten with sizzling white rice and a splash of ghee, creating a complete new meal in itself. These home-made chutneys are the go-to choices for these not eager to half with still-usable produce, reminiscent of ridge gourd, onions and yellow cucumber.

Refrigeration hacks

A by-product behaviour of extending the lifetime of elements is changing into extra conversant in your fridge, and studying tips on how to use it to its full potential. Which shelf is perfect for which elements? What about temperature adjustments? Basic suggestions embrace retaining opened meals or meals near expiring in direction of the entrance of the fridge for faster consumption, not overcrowding to disrupt the circulation of chilly air, and retaining unfrozen meats and fish at the backside for optimum preservation.

A vegetable lot

Our leafy greens are inclined to brown quick, particularly coriander and mint, that are every day staples. Karishma says, “I wrap these greens up in cling-wrap tightly, and roll it up so that it uses less space in my vegetable drawer, while not compromising crispness and texture. Do not keep these in the door of your fridge; they become more prone to spoiling because when the fridge is continually opened, their exposure to fluctuating temperatures speeds up oxidation. Keep less perishable foods in the fridge door.”

But not every part will be ‘saved’. Preserving needn’t have the identical mentality of panic-buying; upcycle with moderation and don’t overpopulate your freezer.

Arundati Rao’s pumpkin spiced cake recipe (Makes one seven-inch loaf)

Preheat the oven to 180 levels Celsius, and grease and line a 7-inch cake pan

Sift collectively the following:

3/four cup complete wheat flour

half cup maida

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/four teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon cinnamon powder (optionally available: go away it out in case you don’t like the style or add your favorite chai masala or cardamom powder and even a big pinch of dried ginger powder)

1/four teaspoon salt

In one other bowl, whisk all of the under until the sugar has melted and the combination is frothy.

four tablespoons melted butter or oil

1/four cup brown sugar

1/four cup white sugar

half cup yellow pumpkin purée

half cup milk

1 teaspoon vanilla essence

1 egg or four tablespoons yoghurt/milk


Add the flour combination in Three components to the moist combination, stir in with a spatula and don’t over-mix the batter.

Optionally add 1/four cup walnuts/almonds or chocolate chips to the batter and stir. Pour it into the ready cake tin, faucet a few occasions on the desk and bake for 40-45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the centre comes clear.

Cool for 15 minutes on a wire rack, lined with a clear kitchen towel earlier than de-panning. Slice solely after totally cooled.

If you shouldn’t have an oven, use a heavy-bottomed pan with an inch of salt, a trivet and bake the cake for 45-60 minutes. Alternatively, one can use the identical batter (scale back the sugar) to make pancakes or waffles.

Arundati Rao’s Escapades Culinary Studio , Hyderabad, will be reached at 09959202255 for digital baking/cooking courses.

Leave a Reply