7 Kitchen Hacks for Vastly Paper Towels That Will Keep Food Safer, Fresher & Crisper
Some would argue that the most sustainable, earth-friendly option for the kitchen is a kitchen rag or dish towel. But we’ve found that they just aren’t quite the right tool for every use that a home cook might need. Plus, a soiled towel requires gallons of water to wash, even if it’s only used once.
Here are seven ways that Vastly paper towels are better, practical, and sustainable alternatives to your kitchen rags or conventional paper towels. If you haven’t tried using Vastly paper towels for these specific uses, try these methods to improve your food prep and maintain quality in the kitchen.
1 | In the refrigerator, keep produce fresh, longer
To extend the life of your fresh produce, consider using Vastly paper towels to line the produce bins in your fridge. The paper towels will absorb moisture from the produce that causes it to rot or mold. For lettuce, wash the leaves (preferably in a salad spinner), then wrap the bundle carefully in a paper towel before placing in your produce bin. Pre-washing and storing in paper towels will not only extend the life of your lettuce, but it will make it much easier to grab ready-to-eat lettuce for a salad any day of the week!
2 | Safely manage raw meat, poultry, or fish bacteria
Dish towels can be surprisingly hard to remove bacteria from, even when washed with hot water. [SOURCE] To avoid cross-contamination when preparing meals, it’s best to not only use separate cutting boards for vegetables and meats, but to use fresh paper towels for cleaning up afterwards. Using a paper towel to clean up after preparing raw meat, poultry, or fish is safer than using dish rags because the bacteria will be deposited into the trash rather than sitting on the counter or going into the laundry.
Another culprit of kitchen bacteria is a raw egg spilled on the counter. Reach for the paper towels to clean up that mess, then toss the paper towel when done. Once the initial liquid is removed, follow with a cleaning spray and a fresh paper towel to make sure all bacterial residue is gone. Following these guidelines will prevent the spread of food-borne illness in your house and help you maintain a clean kitchen.
3 | Keep your kitchen sink germ-free
Your kitchen is an incredibly germy place, containing four of the top five germiest spots in your home: dishes and sponges, the kitchen sink, pet food bowls, and the coffee maker. [SOURCE] The common bacterial culprits in these locations are E. coli, salmonella, yeast and mold, and listeria. The kitchen sink is a particularly troublesome bacteria habitat because you need to have it clean in order to effectively clean all your other dishes, pots, pans, and cooking utensils on a daily basis.
To effectively clean your kitchen sink without spreading germs all over your counters and other kitchen surfaces, first wipe down the sink with a clean paper towel to remove solid food and other sink debris. Follow with a fresh Vastly paper towel and a cleaning spray of your choice, then toss the paper towel right away. Rinse thoroughly with hot water and aim to fully clean the sink several times per week to keep grime and bacteria at bay.
4 | Prevent frozen bread from getting soggy
Freezing a whole loaf of bread can save time, but it can also taste a little off if thawed improperly. To avoid a soggy, defrosted loaf, first wrap a Vastly paper towel around the loaf before freezing, put the covered bread back in its plastic sleeve, then freeze. When you’re ready to defrost the bread, your paper towel will absorb the moisture that melts off and keep your bread fresh! This works equally well for store-bought or homemade bread loafs.
5 | Craft an elegant, restaurant quality presentation to showcase your food creation
For fancier presentation by the home cook, try using Vastly paper towels to clean the rim of your dishes when hosting a dinner. For example, wipe extra frosting from the edge of the cake plate for a polished look, or remove any dribbles made on the rim of a bowl of soup before serving. Your guests will be impressed by the level of detail on a perfectly clean plate!
6 | Never again use newspaper to drain bacon or greasy foods
You may be familiar with the common practice of using newspaper to drain bacon grease, but did you know that consuming food contaminated with newspaper ink can be toxic? Newspaper ink typically contains Naphthylamine and other chemicals that have been found to be harmful to human health. When mixed with hot foods, particularly oily ones, the chemicals transfer easily to the food, ultimately finding their way into your digestive tract. [SOURCE]
Instead of taking a risk with newspaper ink, reach for a Vastly paper towel as you prepare your fatty or fried foods. If you’re making bacon on the stove, layer a few paper towels on a plate and place cooked bacon on top to drain off the grease. When you’re done, wait for the pan to cool, then wipe the fat out with another paper towel or two before cleaning it in the sink to avoid clogging your pipes with the solidified grease. The same process works well for preparing other greasy or fried foods.
If you like to make your bacon in the microwave, layer several paper towels on a plate, then add your bacon and prepare as usual. The paper towels will automatically absorb the grease and your bacon will be perfectly crispy. After it’s cooked, allow the paper towels to cool, then toss for easy cleanup!
7 | Build up your kitchen compost with used paper towels
Composting paper towels is an even better sustainable choice than recycling them. And it’s easy to begin! Simply toss your used paper towels in with your kitchen scraps, and you will have a natural compost within a few months. Vastly paper towels and napkins break down fairly quickly in a compost bin, especially when already wet.
Ideally, compost bins are a healthy mix of “greens and browns” - a balance of nitrogen-rich food matter (greens) and carbon-based materials like leaves and wood chips (browns). With the right ratio, compost breaks down quickly and without much smell. Straw-based Vastly paper towels provide a healthy dose of “brown” to your compost, which helps balance the necessary carbon-to-nitrogen ratio. This keeps the smell to a minimum and allows all the materials to compost fairly rapidly, usually in just a few months. Home composting is perfect way to cut down on waste and get additional nutrients in your kitchen garden!
Reasons Vastly paper towels are a chef’s best friend in the kitchen:
They can be used once and put into the trash, which reduces the spread of salmonella, E. coli, yeast, mold, and other bacteria.
Because they’re made from post-harvest, rapidly-renewable wheat, Vastly paper towels are a guilt-free alternative to other brands of paper towels made from wood pulp.
If you compost at home, used Vastly paper towels are a great way to feed a healthy compost pile.
The unique, silky texture of Vastly paper towels is ideal for a range of kitchen applications and other uses around the house and garage.
Vastly paper towels are not whitened with chlorine bleach, which means that they are environmentally friendly alternative to conventional paper towels.
They help keep foods like fresh vegetables and fruits and even frozen bread fresher longer.
Clean-up after making greasy or fried foods is safer and easier than ever with Vastly paper towels. Using them means crisper bacon too!
How do you use Vastly paper towels at home? Let us know by leaving a comment on our Facebook page!