February Tip of the Month

The weather outside might be frightful, but inside you can have a delightful time organizing and giving your kitchen the TLC it needs to best serve you. Put on some jazzy music and get started! Open your pantry and toss the outdated staples. Then vacuum every square inch of the cupboard. Wipe down the shelves and lay down fresh shelf paper.
Next, set your sites on your oven and stovetop. Nothing is more exhilarating (it’s all in the attitude, folks!) than making these workhorses shine after months of hard work. While you’re at it, give the microwave the old one-two.
Then onto the refrigerator. Take everything out, thoroughly clean it out then consider the following advice from Le Cordon Bleu trained chef Christine Gallary:
Upper Shelves: Leftovers, drinks, and ready-to-eat foods (like yogurt, cheese, and deli meats).
Lower Shelves: Raw ingredients slated for cooked dishes.
Door: The refrigerator door is the warmest part of the fridge, so only condiments should go there. Don’t put eggs or milk in the door, as they should be placed in a colder part of the refrigerator.
Drawers: These can be tricky. Since they’re designed to hold produce at specific humidities, it makes sense to store fruits and veggies there. But they’re usually at the bottom of the fridge, so we risk contaminating our fresh vegetables if we put meat on the shelf above.
Some solutions?
If you have two drawers, make one of them exclusively for veggies and the other exclusively for raw meat.
If one drawer is above the other, use the lowest drawer for meat. If they’re side-by-side, either drawer would be fine. Clean the drawer you’re using for meat often.
Need both drawers for fruits and veggies? If it’s unavoidable to put raw meat above other foods, improvise your own meat drawer by using a clear plastic bin that will catch any accidental drips and keep the meat safely away from everything else.
Next, organize your kitchen drawers, sorting out the extraneous and ratty looking items.
Now time to go to the store for fresh supplies. Once you have purchased fresh rice, oatmeal, cereal, grains, etc., transfer them to large glass Mason jars for safest storage.
The weather outside might be snowy and miserable but your kitchen will shine with happiness and you can glow with the pride of a job well done.