It can be frustrating to go through the process required for preparing meals or a large gathering only to find you’re left with, well, leftovers. With the correct storage techniques, you can minimize the waste you are responsible for and also enjoy your leftovers long after the meal or gathering has ended.
If you plan on eating your leftovers shortly after, you can store most cooked food in the fridge for up to four days with Packwell’s stretch wrap. The high stickiness level of this particular cling film helps you preserve food and keep it fresh for as long as possible, and their accurate and easy slide cutter means less plastic waste as well . When storing food in the fridge, do not stack the containers on top of each other as this will trap the heat. The more surface area that’s exposed to the cold air, the faster your food will cool.
If you are not going to be eating your leftovers straight away, your freezer is a great storage option at this point. We personally love having a hearty, ready-made meal that we just need to heat up on those lazy days half-way through the month when we start feeling a little less inspired and a lot more lazy. With Packwell’s choice of big and small airtight and freezer friendly bags you can store any amount of leftover food in the freezer for future consumption. If you’re tight on space in your freezer, airtight bags are a great alternative to plastic containers as they are compact and take up less space. Stuffing your fridge too full will prevent cool air from circulating efficiently throughout your fridge and freezer, so using airtight bags is a great way of maximizing the space that you have and preventing overcrowding.
- Ideal freezing temperature is -18°C. One easy way of estimating your freezer’s temperature is to check the consistency of ice-cream stored inside it; if the ice-cream is not rock hard, your freezer is too warm.
- Always stick to the two hour rule. Any food that requires freezing should not stay at room temperature for more than 2 hours before placing it in the freezer.
- You can keep leftovers in the fridge for a few days before deciding to freeze them, but it is best to freeze them as soon as possible in order to preserve their taste and freshness.
- Once frozen food thaws, the bacteria starts to multiply quickly, which is why re-freezing thawed food is not recommended.
- Label frozen food items with their name and date, and use the items with the oldest dates first. Packwell’s airtight bags contain an area for writing this information neatly and clearly.
- If you are freezing salad dressings or sauces, leave at least 1 inch of free space at the top of the airtight bag as it will expand when frozen.
- When freezing liquids or foods with liquids, make sure to leave room in the freezer for expansion.
- Always cool cooked food completely before freezing. If the food isn’t cool after two hours at room temperature, refrigerate for a few hours before moving to the freezer.
- Freeze food in realistically sized portions. You don’t want to defrost a bag full of rice at once when you generally use smaller portions.
- If there is an electricity outage in your home, keep the freezer door closed. Food in a loaded freezer will usually stay frozen for 24 hours if you keep the door closed.
Find out more about Packwell’s excellent range of quality products on their Facebook, Instagram, or website. How do you deal with leftovers in Ramadan? Share with us your tips and tricks in the comments below.