Kitchen Tip Tuesdays: Food Saving without a Food Saver

I've talked a lot about using my Food Saver vacuum-sealing device, especially recently. Since the vacuum-sealed bags keep the food fresh for so long, I find that I only need to make meatballs once or twice a year; same with my homemade pepperoni. It's nice to get something made and stored away, and have quick (but still homemade!) meal solutions to pull out of the freezer. :)

One thing I don't use my Food Saver for, however, is cookies. I like having frozen cookies in the freezer, ready to be pulled out a few at a time for lunches or snacks. Here are some of my reasons for not preferring the Food Saver for cookies.

Although the Food Saver bags are re-sealable, the bag gets smaller each time, since you cut part of it off. And since I store my Food Saver on our porch (and only get it out when I'm doing some bulk cooking!) it's definitely not convenient to have to pull it out to re-seal a bag after I've taken 3 or 4 cookies out.

The Food Saver also has such powerful suction that you need to press the "manual seal" button before the air is all out, to avoid completely smashing the cookies. Another way around the "smashed cookies" outcome is to freeze the cookies before vacuum-sealing them. However, sometimes frozen cookies have sharp edges, and the suction can cause anything very dry (like my dehydrated green peppers!) or slightly sharp to puncture the bags.

Sealing bags of cookies... using a straw!

The solution? Use a high-quality zipper freezer bag, and fill with your cookies. Place the end of a drinking straw at one end of the seal, and seal the bag the rest of the way. Suck the air out of the bag with the straw, and then quickly slip the straw out and seal the bag.

I find that this method works quite well for cookies or other softer baked goods. And best of all, you don't need to purchase special equipment!! :) Oh, and it's much more sanitary than just using your mouth on the bag of food. Not that I would ever do something like that... Surprised

And in the interest of full disclosure, I did not come up with this idea myself. I read about it online somewhere, quite some time ago. I honestly can't remember where I read it!

To participate in Kitchen Tip Tuesdays: Post a kitchen tip in your blog, with a link to this post. Then come here and add your name, tip subject, and URL to this post! Links must be family friendly, as always. If you don't have a blog but would still like to share a tip, just leave a comment here with your tip! Everyone's ideas are appreciated. :) Note: Please link to your individual post, not your blog's main/front page! Thanks for participating! :)

Kitchen Tip Tuesdays Participants
1. Noah - lining baking pans
2. Stephanie @ Keeper of the Home (how not to buy organic)
3. Linda @ dieting on a dime (cut it like a pie)
4. Our Red House (10 things to do with lemons)
5. Debbie J. (cookie tips)
6. Erika (Sugar Question)
7. AmyG (Using it all up--wrap sandwiches)
8. Amy (salt dough ornaments)
9. Sonshine(homemade tv dinners)
10. JB@Titus2Journey (Re-use Grocery Bags)
11. Kirstin (Preparing Young Cooks)
12. Monica (icy morning treat)
13. Womanly Pursuits (cracker recipes to cheer up baby)
14. Mrs. Mordecai (peppermint pinwheels)
15. Kelly (no wax paper?)
16. Trixie @ Farm Home Life (Quick Cheap Meal)
17. Beth (softening butter)
18. Willa (white chicken chili recipe)
19. Lindsay (keep the draining board cleared)
20. Jane (no more hectic mornings!)
21. Julie (air freshener)
22. Ginny (menu planner)
23. The Garveys (Pie crust secrets)
24. The Garveys (save $ on coffee, enjoy it more)

 

Comments

So you suck the air out??

Yes... through the straw inserted in the corner of the bag. It works great! :)

I guess I don't get out much - I have never heard about the straw and bag thing. I will have to remember this.

Thanks Tammy, and thanks for hosting.

Blessings,
~Jane

I ues a straw too! Works well at removing the air. :)

~Tanya

I have done the straw and bag thing before because I didn't have a vacuum sealer thing!

Thanks Tammy!

Love your tip, Tammy! I REALLY SHOULD do this because I love to bake cookies and this would be such a time saver!

I will agree a straw works well to remove the air from a ziploc bag. I learned this technique from my mom and so I do it all the time.

Thanks for hosting the kitchen tips.

I will agree using a straw to remove the air works well! Thanks for hosting the Kitchen Tips.

Sonshine
http://glimpseofsonshine.blogspot.com/

interesting, I would have never thought to try that. I am planning to make cookies in the next week so maybe I will give it a try. Any thoughts on freezing cookie dough (already measured out)?
JB @ Titus2Journey

You can wrap it in plastic wrap (or my personal fave, Glad's press n seal) and then put it in a good strong freezer bag. I use (exclusively) Ziploc freezer bags. The double zipper bags. (not the sliding lock thingees, they don't keep out frost bite as well)

I usually make discs and freeze them that way. Easily to freeze, and less time to defrost. Not to mention less freezer space to use!

Hi Tammy, I have been a reader for almost a year now and have just started my blog. I am excited to participate in my first kitchen tip tuesday. I am also expecting a baby in a couple of weeks and have enjoyed how you have shared your preperations. Thanks for all the great tips. Monicahttp://joyfulnine.blogspot.com/

I have been doing that for years and I thought I was rather weird for doing it. LOL! But, it works! Sometimes, though, there is an air leak somewhere and the air ends up filling the bag again. For the most part, though, it works really well. Thanks for making me feel that I am not strange and alone. ;-D

In Christ,

Ginny
http://randvfarmstead.blogspot.com

My dear husband introduced me to that tip when we were first married. We use it often. ;o)
I was chuckling as I read your post because years ago, I learned, first hand what NOT to use our vacuum sealer with... fresh made bread. LOL! Common sense should have said not to do that (and I'm sure common sense did) but I must not have been listening that day. But if you ever need a shrunken, rock hard loaf of bread... that's how you get one. LOL

Thank you, by the way, for visiting me. The challah was very yummy and a very big hit. Thank you for the recipe. It was fun to make, too. ;o)

You asked about my beloved... he will return the beginnng of the new year, Lord willing. Woo hoo! ;o)
Have a blessed Christmas!
~ Christina
http://hskubes.blogspot.com

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