Healthy kitchen essential: The vacuum sealer

(HealthDay)—If you’re looking for a cooking shortcut and a way to make food more economical, consider vacuum sealing.

With a vacuum sealer, you can extend the storage life of foods by measuring out the right portion sizes and sealing them in handy bags, either premade or made by you from a roll of special plastic.

Vacuum-sealed foods won’t leak in the fridge or develop freezer burn in the freezer. Using a food sealing system extends the life of fresh food, inhibits the growth of bacteria, and even gives you extra cold-storage space because the sealed packages are more compact than supermarket packaging. You can easily use the poaching technique called sous-vide and cook food right in its bag. The sealed bags are also great for marinating.

For a traditional marinated and grilled flank steak, save prep time by making two meals at once, one to eat today and another to freeze. The flank steak cut usually weighs 1.5 to 2 pounds, more than you need when cooking for just two people.

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