What's in a healthy fridge?
On the shelves
• Yoghurt: Organic 97% fat free yoghurt is a fridge staple. I use it instead of fresh cream for sauces.
• Healthy snacks: Olives, hummus and baba ganoush.
• Pastes: Curry paste, harissa and wasabi. I like mixing wasabi with a little mayo for a horseradish cream.
• Treats: It’s best to keep healthy snacks.
In the meat drawer
Bacon, ham and smoked salmon live here. I also buy fresh meat for dinners every couple of days so it’s never in the fridge for very long – one or two days max. I like to plan evening meals as I go.
In the crisper
• Vegies and fruit: One drawer has long-lasting foods like carrots, potatoes, celery, chilli, ginger, garlic, plus fruit such as watermelon, fresh dates, blueberries and grapes. I also shop every few days depending on what I’m cooking.
•Brekkie and salad: The other drawer has breakfast and salad items: baby spinach, baby cos lettuce, Lebanese cucumbers, cherry tomatoes, button mushrooms (stored in a paper bag), green shallots, avocados, red and green capsicums.
In the door
• Condiments: I keep all the condiments here, like pickled ginger, pesto, anchovies, tahini, capers and marmalade. I also keep fresh herbs in the fridge door for easy reach.
• Eggs and dairy: The door isn’t the coolest part of the fridge, so it’s not the best place to keep dairy foods like milk, cheese and butter, unless you go through them very quickly. I buy lactose-free skim milk for me and a2 light milk for the family.
• White wine: This is my treat and I use it in cooking, too, to intensify the flavours. front and centre. I buy a block of dark chocolate or chocolate-coated coffee beans when I’m entertaining, but if I had them on hand all the time I’d easily get into the habit of eating them every day.
• Cheese: Marinated goat’s cheese is delicious for salads and roasted vegies. I use shaved Swiss cheese on omelettes, parmesan to grate over steamed vegies and Weight Watchers Cottage Cheese is tasty with Corn Thins.
• Sauces: Mint jelly is a family favourite, and I Iike to keep Dijon mustard, whole egg mayo and spicy tomato chutney on hand.
In the freezer
Wholegrain bread (for the fam) and gluten-free (for me); frozen baby peas; frozen raspberries; frozen raw chicken legs (left over from roasting a fresh whole chicken breast on the bone); diced chicken thigh fillets for curries and soups; lean beef mince for moussaka, cottage pie or rissoles; ice-cream for entertaining.
Fridge food safety guide
• Keep the temperature below 5°C.
• Keep eggs in the fridge and eat them before the use-by date.
• Defrost and marinate food in the fridge, especially meat.
• Wash fresh fruit and vegies before preparing and eating them.
• Store raw meat at the bottom so it doesn’t drip onto other foods.
• Eat cooked meat that's been left in the fridge for more than 2-3 days.
• Eat food that’s past its use-by date.