A Naturally Germ-Free Kitchen

How do you balance being eco-friendly and yet still keep your family safe from germs?  You’ve most likely heard about anti-microbial soaps and how some germs have become resistant.  In the kitchen, there is a solution!  In the book Organic Housekeeping by Ellen Sandbeck, I read about her “dual spray program”.  She keeps two spray bottles handy – one with vinegar and a dark colored one with 3% hydrogen peroxide (H2O2).  The dark bottle is for the hydrogen peroxide, which needs to be kept away from light so it doesn’t break down.

How does it work?

When the hydrogen peroxide is exposed to light, heat, or organic materials it releases its extra oxygen, so that pure water and oxygen are produced.  Micro-organisms find pure oxygen to be exceedingly toxic.  You can actually see the reaction as the hydrogen peroxide bubbles!   In Sandbeck’s book, she states that hydrogen peroxide kills 100x as many bacteria as vinegar, but when used in conjunction 10x more bacteria were killed as the hydrogen peroxide alone. Continue reading “A Naturally Germ-Free Kitchen”

Homegrown Bean Sprouts

Occasionally when I go to the grocery store, I pick up a bag of bean sprouts with the best of intentions. I enjoy eating bean sprouts, but once I get home they go straight in the fridge. The next time I get them out, they have invariably gone bad.  It could be a few hours or days, but I rarely get to eat them.

Besides tasting good, mung beans are a natural source of vitamins A, B, C, and E and minerals including Calcium, Iron, and Potassium. They are high in fiber and are easily digestible. They are very low in calories and make a great snack or an addition to a meal.

A few weeks ago I picked up a bean sprouter from Freecycle, complete with a half bag of mung beans. I brought it home and started some sprouts. They are very easy to grow and taste great fresh. The best part is that if I forget about them, they just keep growing instead of going bad! Continue reading “Homegrown Bean Sprouts”

Did you know?

According to the EPA, in 2006 the US (residents, businesses, and institutions) generated more than 251 million tons of trash (municipal solid waste or MSW).  This equates to about 4.6 pounds of waste per person per day. Of that 4.6 pounds, 1.5 pounds was recycled and around .1 pound was composted. The remaining  3 lbs of trash was discarded or incinerated. The largest portion of waste generated, 31.7 percent, was made up of containers and packaging.  See the full report at http://www.epa.gov/epawaste/nonhaz/municipal/pubs/msw06.pdf