The holiday season is here. And for most of us it means having friends and family over, meals cooked and shared. And when you are entertaining.... you want everything to taste fresh. Never does the humble refrigerator work harder than in the holidays.
Here are a few tips to help you get the best performance from your fridge.
1. Make sure the fridge is running at correct temperature
The fridge’s ideal temperature is 3 degrees Celsius but can be anywhere from 1-4°C. The freezer should get down to -18°C. To keep your fridge in the optimum range:
- Adjust your thermostat settings (colder or warmer as required).
- Check to ensure the doors are closing properly.
- Do not leave the doors open. Many fridges will beep if you leave the door open.
- Especially on hot days, try to limit how often you open the fridge & freezer.
If you find your fridge is not running efficiently or is not keeping your food cold enough, it may indicate there is a problem with the fridge which requires service. When choosing a fridge repair company, make sure they use and qualified technicians, offer an in-home and same day service. One that also operates weekends and after hours is even better, like Melbourne
2. Do a big clean out and wipe down
Hold off on the grocery shopping till you’ve given your fridge a thorough clean first. And before you start arm yourself with a garbage bag, a cooler bag, soapy water and some microfiber cloths.
- Take everything out. Yes. You don’t want to clean
- Everything past the best before date goes into the garbage bag, as do leftovers no one has any intention of eating.
- The good stuff can go into a cooler bag till you are done.
Time to clean the shelves, door inserts, the egg cartridges and all the small parts that are removable. Most sinks are not large enough to hold all these. One easy way to do them all in one go is to put them into a
- Put the shelves and inserts back. Return the good food to the fridge.
- Repeat the same process with the freezer.
3. Shop wisely
You can now make your shopping list. Here are some tips to keep it under control.
- Keep the size of your fridge in mind. Make sure you have the right mix of refrigerated and pantry foods.
Alsoremember that you need to leave some room for leftovers. That may call for some menu adjustments, but you will be glad you planned.
- If you can, don’t shop for all events in one trip. Especially, the meat, fruit
andveg. A couple of extra trips to the grocery store are worth the trouble. That way you avoid expensive wastage, the fridge will not be overloaded and you’ll be entertaining with fresh food.
4. Store on the right shelf
The key to keeping your food as fresh as possible is storing it on the right shelf. Let’s start from the top.
- The top and middle shelves should have all the dairy, ready-to-eat food, cooked food, bottles, condiments and cooked leftovers.
- For easy access, you could segregate by type – all the dairy can be on the top left hand, the condiments on the right. Do what works best for you, but get the family to stick to one plan.
Alsosegregate raw food from cooked food to prevent contamination.
- The bottom shelf should have all the uncooked meat. This will prevent drippings from contaminating other food (although you should make sure everything is either sealed or in a container).
- The fruit and veg
goesinto the crisper drawers.
Here’s an important tip: Store the new food behind the old food. It will