Christmas is less than a month away, which means you’re probably starting to plan the dinner menu. And if you’re like me, you haven’t even had time to think about the endless number of holiday parties and family gatherings that are already filling up your December calendar.
Another thing you probably haven’t thought of is water. Most of us don’t stop and think about how much water it will take to prepare our favorite holiday dishes or to clean up after the feast or party. However, water actually plays a huge role in the kitchen, from food preparation to the clean-up process.
Here’s six easy ways to conserve water while preparing for your holiday meals and parties without running up your water bill:
- Defrost frozen foods in the refrigerator or the microwave instead of running hot water over them.
- Rinse vegetables and fruits in a sink or pan filled with water instead of under running water. This water can then be reused to water houseplants. A running faucet can use up to 4 gallons per minute.
- Select the proper size pans for cooking. Large pans require more water than may be necessary.
- Scrape food scraps into the garbage can or a composting bin, rather than rinsing them into the sink’s garbage disposal. A garbage disposal uses up to 4 gallons of water per minute.
- When washing dishes by hand, fill one sink or basin with soapy water and fill the rinsing sink one-third to one-half full. Avoid letting the water run continuously in the rinsing sink.
- Run your dishwasher only when you have a full load. Dishwashers use between 4.5 and 12 gallons per load depending on the age of the dishwasher.
For more water conservation tips, visit the Southwest Florida Water Management District’s website at www.WaterMatters.org/conservation/.
Rainfall in Pinellas County for the month of October was 2.85 inches. October marks the beginning of our traditional dry season so that’s about normal for this time of year.