Summer is slowly coming to an end. The time for those amazing road trips and picnics with family and friends will end soon. So let’s focus on how to maximize the best of the summer. Perhaps, you already have a family retreat planned out in another city. You might have also planned a road trip with your friends to some other state.
Occasions like these ones are never perfect without packing some quality food from home. However, remember that such road trips can be really messy. So, keeping your precious food fresh might cause a huge worry.
So, how can you keep food fresh while on a journey? You ask. Some trips could last as long as 20 hours. In cases like that, it is important to be armed with tips on how to preserve food from getting spoilt.
You might have experienced a situation whereby your food got rotten, so how do you prevent a repeat? Luckily, the solutions are not far-fetched. They are right here; in this article. All you have to do is follow through to equip yourself with adequate knowledge.
5 Amazing Ideas that Ensure Your Food Stays Fresh While You’re on a Journey
Choose the good coolers
All sorts of coolers exist. However, to keep your food fresh and to avoid food spoilage, you do not need to get the most expensive of coolers. All you simply have to do is make do with what your usual efficient day-to-day coolers. Choose two coolers for long road trips; use one for your food while using the other for your drinks. The one where your food is stored should be only opened when necessary. In addition to this, place the cooler in a dark air-tight part of your vehicle once you are done using it. If available to you, place the cooler in a sleeping bag too. This provides the cooler with extra insulation.
The other cooler (for drinks and beverages), can be opened more often. This cooler should have a bottom drain. This way, it can release water from the melted ice. If your cooler has hinges at its top, then, its lid can kept sealed with a strong latch. A cooler with a lid gasket will work better as a cold cooler.
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Make ice packs
You will be going on a longer journey, so keeping your drinks cool till you get to your destination will be better done with ice packs than with crushed ice. The best part is that you can make your ice packs easily. All you need to do is fill a bottle or any nice container with drinking water and allow it to freeze. Doing so gives you your own ice at no cost and also gives you extra cool water once the ice is melted. This way, you get to enjoy the advantage of taking cold drinks all through your journey and still enjoy the advantage of having cool water (the cool water left in the container once the ice defrosts) on your way back. On the overall, ice packs will save your throat from thirst under the hot summer sun.
Purchase fresh food
Some foods turn out hard to preserve, no matter what you do. Most of the time, it turns out these foods were not fresh right from the store. No matter what, never purchase old products. Purchase fresh foods; from fruits, to vegetables, to cooking ingredients—make sure they are as fresh as they come. For your fruits and vegetables particularly, buy fresh ones the day you plan to set out.
Food from a farmers’ market is far more preferable from that bought from a supermarket. The former lasts two times better compared to the latter!
Do not wash your vegetables as this would make them damp. Dampness will reduce the life of the products if you store them in vegetable storage bags. If your vegetables are dry when packed, then they wouldn’t be damp. Condensation, humidity or dampness will cause a rot. Avoid all of those.
Pack with logic
While packing your food, you have to do so with the intent of keeping them fresh. This involves using logic. For instance, for the drinks and beverages, the fuller the cooler, the longer it would stay cold. As for food, it should be packed in such a way that the lid of the cooler doesn’t expose the food for periods longer than necessary. In other words, when you do not need any access to the food, shut it tightly—even while still packing for your journey.
Food that has a tendency to be consumed last should be at the cooler’s bottom. The food that will be eaten from very often should be stored at the cooler’s top. Since cold air travels down, your ice should be at the very top of the cooler.
You can also use the ice to its full potential by storing perishable foods like dairy and meat right on its top. If there are certain foods you need to keep dry, keep them in zip-lock bags. If you have spaces in between, within the cooler, put frozen water bottles in there to keep the content of the cooler cold.
Limit the number of perishable items to be packed
This idea is just as easy as it sounds. Avoid having lots of perishable items on your food plan. If they are lesser, you can monitor them. Whereas, if they constitute most of your food, then, have it in mind that it is possible to have most of your food spoilt before you reach your destination.
With these hacks, you are now fully equipped to set out.
The ideas for keeping food fresh are not limited to the ones in this article. You can use other ideas, based on your own experience.