Storing produce so that it lasts as long as possible is challenging. First, you need to know where to store your produce: where it’s cold (apples belong in the fridge), where it’s freezing (ginger belongs in the freezer), where it’s room temperature (tomatoes belong on the counter), or room temperature and dark (garlic belongs in the pantry). Second, you need to consider how to store your produce: prepared, unprepared but washed, unwashed and whole. Here’s a good list of how to prepare and store different types of produce without using plastic. Third, you need to consider different storage container options. I’ve seen two types of containers recommended recently – Rubbermaid ones and (collapsible!) Progressive International ones.
Another option is to add paper towels to regular storage containers to soak up extra moisture that can ruin leafy greens. But using paper towels week in week out – and changing out soaked paper towels for new towels makes me feel wasteful (use resource A to save resource B). So, I made some “reusable produce storage towels” to replace (or at least partially replace) the paper ones I’ve been using week in and week out. Directions on how I made the towels are after the jump.
Here’s what you need:
- ½ yard 100% cotton fabric without dyes (I used bleached muslin, which was $2.99/yard at JoAnn)
- Fabric pencil
- Sewing machine
Here are the steps:
1. Wash and press your fabric.
2. Measure, mark and cut out rectangles. I cut out 9” x 6” rectangles because most of the containers I want to use with the towels are old lunchmeat containers.
3. Press down a ¼″ rolled hem on the short sides of the rectangle, pinning in place if necessary.
4. Repeat these steps with the long sides of the rectangle.
5. Stitch with your sewing machine.