When it comes to fruits and veggies, whether from the store or farmer’s market, let’s face it; they need a bath! The pesticide residuals, the dirt, the organic material (as in, manure), the packaging and handling; all this makes for some dirty produce!
If you’re buying conventional produce, washing the produce will not wash away the pesticides that have contaminated the item. But it will wash off anything that is on the surface; and that includes a lot of dirt and germs. Organic produce, while not having the pesticides, still have a host of dirt and germs that should not be ingested.
Here’s a list of the Dirty Dozen (those you should always buy organic as they are most saturated with pesticides) and the Clean Fifteen (those items that the pesticides do not penetrate, or at least not as much or as deep as the items on the Dirty Dozen).
You can buy fruit and vegetable cleaner at the store, but it’s very easy to make your own at home.
You can soak your fruit and veggies a sink filled half way up with water, adding one cup of apple cider or white vinegar. (Make sure your sink is very clean before you start.) Do not overfill the sink with items, make sure there is room for the fruit or vegetables to move freely. Let soak for 10 minutes. Remove and dry off. Ready to eat!
You can also use a spray bottle and fill it water along with a variety of items. I added a graphic I found on Pinterest so that you could print and cut it out for handy reference. I typically just mix water with white vinegar and lemon juice, but of course you can get fancier. It all depends on your preference.
Remember to wash the outside of melons and any item that you will be cutting through. If you don’t, the knife will become contaminated and carry the dirt and germs throughout the item.
The key is to make sure you have clean fruit and veggies ready to eat. Otherwise, you may tempted to grab something not so healthy. Cheers to good health and clean produce!