Why does my soup taste quite good when using 'normal' vegetables from a supermarket, while it's pretty tasteless when I use organic vegetables? I always have to spice the organic one up (more).
I just took a frozen block of soup out of my freezer, wanted to warm it up but then set my eye on something. There were 3 dots of mold sitting on it. How the hell does that happen? I never thought that to happen on frozen things?
How does the ice get in my plastic container? I usually have a pretty thick layer of ice beneath the soup and this also happens when I freeze meat that isn't vacuum packed. Is that how it happens?
asked bySam_6 (1191)
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on March 09, 2012
at 12:32 PM
- Your 'normal' (really abnormal) vegetables may be special hybrids bred for enhanced flavor. Or, it could be that the 'normal' ones are fresher; since organic vegetables are more expensive, they can sometimes sit on the supermarket shelves longer.
- Freezing doesn't usually kill microorganisms, it just puts them in a state of suspended animation. If the soup took a while to freeze, a little mold might grow while the freezing was happening. Or, if the soup had been in the freezer for quite a long time, the mold could have kept growing at a ridiculously low rate. (On the other hand, when something like this happens to me, it usually turns out to be a spot of ice or fat with some spices in it--something that looks like mold but isn't!)
- Probably. Obviously it's ice with something else mixed in, or it would be on top of the soup. Moisture mixed with something from the meat sounds like a really good bet.
on March 09, 2012
at 01:38 PM
I only know answer to 1:
My parents own an organic garden. I would not call it exactly organic, it is more like wild, because after my mom plants something, things are pretty much left to survive on their own. Sometimes they forget to harvest them and then they self-pollinate and the seeds germinate on their own. So I pretty much know what wild carrots taste like :)
Okay, here are the main things that I learned from my parents' organic/wild garden:
Most vegetables from my parents' garden taste like s#it. Cucumbers get yellow and bitter when they are under direct sun and overgrown, raspberries have worms in them (protein, yum!), cabbage gets eaten by pretty much everything that can chew, and carrots are not as sweet as the ones you get at the supermarket.
Organic/wild things look ugly, they have worms/insects, spots, specks and everything else. Their shapes are so weird, you would think they are mutant.
Organic/wild vegetables do not last long. Pumpkins go bad at the end of February, the seeds start to germinate inside. Same with everything else.
All fruit/berries/vegetables follow a natural cycle. They are not in abundance every year. The cycles are about four years long, so it means that one year you get too many apples, another year - too many strawberries, then the next year too much parsley.
So enjoy your organic vegetables the way they are. And don't worry about the taste, think about all the nutrients :)
on March 09, 2012
at 02:23 PM
My experience is that vegetables from the grocery store that are labeled organic are not the best quality vegetables for eating/cooking with. That's because most supermarket "organics" are monoculture vegetables produced in a commercial, high-production food system that does nothing more than swap out "organic" artificial fertilizers for "petrochemical" artificial fertilizers. In addition, most of these foods are picked before they're truly ripe, and shipped all over the place in varying states of storage climate, from being frozen as they go through ONE part of the country, to being baked in the back of a truck in another.
I'd try growing some of your own stuff, using grow-bags, and high-quality container gardening techniques -- even if you only have a couple of square feet near a window, you can grow your own carrots, onions, and some herbs. The difference is noticeable. To supplement that, start looking around for local farmers who provide healthy, biodynamically-raised vegetables in your area. Talk to your local farmers, and see who uses good techniques in farming to get high-quality food. Learn to test the "brix" level of the produce that you buy (brix testing measures the sugar content in the cells. High-brix foods have been exposed to more sunlight and the cells of the plant are optimal at converting sunshine to nutrients -- so the higher the brix, the more nutritious your produce).
Even if you don't learn to brix test (which I learned to do to make sure my plants were healthy in my container garden), once you switch to local produce, you'll never go back to the supermarket! The difference between locally-grown, biodynamically-cared-for produce and the commercial organic stuff is night and day.
on March 09, 2012
at 01:19 PM
I've never had frozen food mold so I would suspect it was already there as Frugal Jen suggests.
As far as the third thing goes, I think you are looking at the physics of freeze dried foods. Let's say you put some meat in a fixed container (like Tupperware) then freeze it. Most things shrink in volume when they get colder, gasses such as air classically follow this pattern. Water is a very notable exception to this rule.
So if you put meat in a container that has a good seal but also contains air (ie, it's not vacuum packed), then the air is going to shrink in volume and draw out the water molecules. But a lower pressure is not necessary (it just helps). This is also the mechanism behind "freezer burn", where the water sublimates into the freezer's air through an improperly sealed package. Water can and will evaporate from food (and even ice) whatever the temp. The only way to stop that happening is to eliminate the air.