Friday, January 30, 2009

A Not-so-amazing Amazing Idea

Do you ever have those days when you have an amazing idea? Then you realize that the idea wasn't that great, but you're still really proud of it?

I have been trying to reduce my plastic consumption. It's nothing drastic, but I am trying to pay attention to what kinds of products I'm purchasing. Packaging is an issue, but so is buying so many of the products that are out there from toothbrushes to toasters. One thing that's easy to do is stop using plastic grocery bags, which I have done. The next logical step in that process is also to stop using the plastic bags that stores provide for putting produce in.

Deciding that it's okay for your tomatoes, apples, and oranges to roll around in your cart takes a little bit of getting used to. And what about things like broccoli? I got some little mesh bags that have a drawstring at the top for putting in produce. I find that I only need a couple and when they're full, I can let my apples roll around a little bit. So far this plan is working nicely. The only "problem" I've run into is what to do with the lettuce. That flimsy plastic bag seems to keep it so clean and fresh and keeps the rest of my groceries dry. (The misters always seem to go off right before or during my lettuce picking experience.)

When I get home, I like to wash and chop up the lettuce first thing and mix it all back in the plastic bag so when it comes time to making salads to take the work the next day, I just have to reach in and pull out a handful. But I'm trying to use less plastic, so this plan is no longer viable. Solution? I had two half-full bags of tortilla chips. I dumped one into the other, rinsed out the bag and let it air dry. By the time I got back from the store and prepared all of the lettuce, the bag was clean, dry, and ready to go. It still smelled a bit salty, but what can you do?

Now I have a tortilla-chip bag full of chopped lettuce. When my friends open the fridge they laugh and think it's a little silly, but I'll tell you what, my lettuce has never stayed crispier!

Tip: Throw in a paper towel with the lettuce before wrapping it all up in the bag. This keeps the lettuce crispy and rust free by soaking up extra moisture in the bag. Then, clean something up with it when you're done with the lettuce, or save it for the next batch.

Tortilla Chip Photo

1 comment:

Beccah said...

"You got lettuce-y Chips in your mouth?" I can just see you shopping for produce pushing around your cart with roley-poley apples... perfect for the pocket!