50 Days of the Little Things: Week 3 {Giveaway}

Some of my little things from Week 3 of 50 Days of the Little Things:
Kelley’s visit. It was so nice to see one of my best friends after a long year and a half.

Flowers from Dan. I was too sick to go to the grocery store on Wednesday, so Dan went for me after work. In addition to the trick-or-treating candy and other things we needed, he brought me home a bouquet of “Get Well Soon” flowers.

Watching the Sing-Off and cuddling with Dan. Right now, I think the Dartmouth Aires are our favorites, but I could also see Pentatonix going all the way. And I hope Delilah can bring back the amazing sound they had the first week.
Advil Cold & Sinus. Enough said.
Michael Buble Christmas CD. Now I just need it to be late enough in the year to listen to it more than once…

Our crockpot. I really wanted some veggie- and bean-packed chili yesterday, but didn’t have the energy to make it. Crockpot to the rescue!
Beautiful leaves and waterfalls. This is a gorgeous time of year here!



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And…time for another giveaway! This time, one of you will win two dozen of my maple sugar cookies, all decorated for fall. And who knows… there may be a few other little goodies in your package as well!

To enter, simply link up your post about 50 Days of the Little Things below OR leave a comment telling me five little things that made you happy this week.

Giveaway ends at noon on Friday, November 4. The winner will be announced in that day’s Little Things update!





How to Store Potatoes

Baked-Potato-Soup-1.jpgIt is the season of greens, root vegetables and winter squash. If you’re lucky, you’ll find a great deal on potatoes at the Farmers’ Market or grocery store in the coming weeks. Mature potatoes (the kind you find in the fall) are well-known for their long shelf lives, making them ideal to keep on hand for soups, casseroles and baked potatoes.

In keeping with my “how to store XX food” trend, let’s discuss the best way to store potatoes.

Store potatoes

In the dark. Sunlight causes potatoes to take on a greenish color. Green potatoes not only taste bitter, but can also be toxic. So keep them in the dark, and cut off any green parts before you cook!

In a cool pantry, entryway, basement or garage. Ideally, potatoes should be kept between 45 and 50F. Refrigerator temperatures are usually lower than this, and these cooler temperatures make the starch break down into sugars. But if they are stored in too warm of an area (like room temperature), the potatoes will more quickly sprout and decay. So choose an area of your home that is cooler or less insulated to store your potatoes.

Unwashed. A thin layer of dirt actually helps protect the potatoes from bruising and therefore from decay.

In a humid but well-ventilated area. A humid environment will keep the potatoes from drying out and shrinking. Ventilation will allow the potatoes to “breath” and slow down decay. Studies at the University of Idaho have shown that plastic produce bags with holes in the sides are a great cheap and easy option. The bags allow just enough fresh air in while still preventing the potatoes from drying out. Do not use airtight containers.

Away from onions. Both potatoes and onions release gases in storage that causes the other to go bad.

What food do you want to know how to store?

Previous “How to Store Food” posts:

 

For more food science posts, check out my Brain Food 101 page!