know how life goes. One minute we’re happily intrigued
with some new information. And the next moment, we’re
scratching our heads saying, "Really?"
goes what I thought would be a slam dunk column this week,
featuring very cool food ideas forwarded to me from a friend
in cyberspace. Titled "Ingenius Innovations that Really
Work," I was indeed intrigued, especially with the last
item on this list:
Need to slice a bunch of small cherry tomatoes? Sandwich
them between two plastic lids and slide a long knife through
them all at once. Yep, it really works…if you have a sharp
keep brown sugar from becoming rock hard in a dry climate,
add one or two large marshmallows to your storage container.
It will keep your sugar soft. Another winner.
Baking stuffed peppers? Keep them upright in the oven by
placing them in a large muffin tin. Great idea.
Store an apple with potatoes to keep them from budding.
Really? I was curious about this one. After some digging
(pardon the pun), I’m still not able to confirm if apples
keep potatoes from sprouting. Ripe apples emit ethylene gas
and other compounds that some experts say suppress the
sprouting mechanism of potatoes. Other experts explain that
ethylene gas from apples promotes sprouting of potatoes;
they say it’s not a good idea to let fruit (apples) and
vegetables (potatoes) play together.
the discrepancy? According to Washington State University,
ethylene is considered the "aging hormone" of
plants. It causes fruit to ripen. Yet ethylene has a wide
range of effects on the sprouting of potatoes, depending on
the quantity and length of exposure, say other plant
experts. One older study from the University of California
at Davis, for example, found that short term exposure of
potatoes to ethylene gas encouraged more sprouting while
long term exposure suppressed it. Go figure.
2008, the test kitchen of Cooks Illustrated magazine did an
actual experiment on this question. After 8 weeks, they
found that potatoes stored with an apple did not sprout as
much as those stored without an apple.
we do know for sure, according to the United States Library
of Medicine, is that potato sprouts or any part of the plant
that turns green contain a poisonous ingredient called
solanine. We should always discard sprouts or any green on
potatoes since this where this toxin resides. All experts,
including Dr. Potato of the Idaho Potato Commission, say the
safest way to keep our spuds in good shape for the longest
time is to store them in a cool (45 to 55 degrees F.) and
dark place (not the refrigerator).
much for simple advice. Send me your comments and we’ll
figure this out together.