New Vaccuum sealer - ideas for using it

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by deberosa, Sep 15, 2004.

  1. deberosa

    deberosa SW Virginia Gourd Farmer!

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    I went to the fair on Monday. Got a great new sign "DEBEROSA" for my new homestead, but also got a new vaccuum sealer machine (I fall for all of that stuff at the fair :) ). I think this will help me alot because I have so much food go bad because I don't get it eaten in time. The chickens have been eating really well. Plus I am starting to butcher chickens and ducks so it's got to come in handy.

    What are some interesting things you use your vaccuum sealer for? Mine has the attachment that will vaccuum seal lids onto regular canning jars so I can put stuff in jars too. I am sure I won't come up with many cool ideas on my own. It has separate vaccuum seal bowls but I didn't get those.

    Thanks!

    Debbie
     
  2. MarleneS

    MarleneS Well-Known Member

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    I know it's not what you asked but I can tell you what to never use a vacuum sealer for -- sealing textiles or silver for long term storage.

    Marlene
     

  3. mtman

    mtman Well-Known Member

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    i dont have any but i thought iff you kept the air out of silver it wont tarnish was i wrong
     
  4. JanO

    JanO Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I use mine for everything that I can freeze. Meat of course, but also nuts, stuff like brown sugar, raisins, yeast (I buy mine in bulk), dried fruit, jerky, just about everything. I also use it if I'm marinateing something..,. I simply open it up, pour my marinate in the bag and seal it up again. The marinade gets into the meat and it's really good.

    Your going to find that it's an excellent addition to your kitchen. I use mine all the time.

    Jan
     
  5. Meg Z

    Meg Z winding down

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    I love my "Suck-and-Seal" as a dear friend calls it!

    There is a Yahoo group for users of these gadgets, called Foodsaver@yahoogroups.com. Those folks have lots of ideas.

    I limit my bag use to things going in the freezer long term, or other long term storage, because the bags are expensive, and it's too easy, and too much fun, so you find yourself using them up quick. I do want to get the jar lid thingy, though, which would be perfect for all my dried fruits and veggies.

    Aside from food, I have sealed pictures that are going with someone to bad climate areas. (military) Also sealed clothes packs to compress them and take up less space. My daughter took only her frame backpack to Brazil, and one pocket had a vaccum sealed canvas tote, so she could bring things back for people. It never would have fit if it wasn't compressed like that.

    I Don't seal clothes and things if they have to fit in the bag coming back!

    Have fun...it's one of the best toys out there!

    Meg :)
     
  6. deberosa

    deberosa SW Virginia Gourd Farmer!

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    Wonderful info - thank you! They tell me the bags can be reused - do you do that? I think the jars will be a great help - they say the seals will last for about 60 resealings before you need another canning jar lid.
     
  7. chronicle

    chronicle Member

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    I enjoy mine, too. Recently, I purchased a huge jar of pickle relish, transferred the relish into pint jars and sealed with the jar sealer. The only problem I had was one or two jars that kept unsealing. I just kept resealing them until they sealed properly. Also great for sealing home dried corn and carrots. I prefer to freeze nuts. I only re-use bags that have not held meats. Sometimes pre-used bags aren't as easy to reseal as new bags because the open edges tend to curl but just keep trying. Also, even after something appears to have been vacuumed and sealed, you should check periodically because sometime it can lose the seal. I've had this happen from time to time. Just re-seal. Don't try vacuum-sealing breads or soft fruits unless they're frozen first. The vacuum process will squash them flat.
     
  8. cowboy joe

    cowboy joe Hired Hand

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    What can you seal? Everything (except soup) :haha:

    I use inexpensive bags from the grocery store (i.e the ones that come with twist ties). I my neck of the woods, these bags run less than $1 for a 75 count box. They seal fairly well (have had any break open yet) and are much cheaper than the rolls of plastic. It takes a little practice to get used to the bag but it's definately worth it in the money you save.

    Good luck with your new sealer!
     
  9. fin29

    fin29 Well-Known Member

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    Actually you can, but freeze the soup first. Same with par-cooked veggies. Then, when it's time to eat, just pop the unopened bag of soup or veggies into a pot of boiling water until hot, cut it open, and pour it into your serving dish.

    Other things that we use it for:
    Cook up bacon or sausage, cool, freeze in family serving sizes and freeze.

    Fresh herbs from the garden stay green if you wash and dry them, seal them in little pouches and freeze them. It's also great for herb sales from the store, especially after Thanksgiving and Christmas.

    If you're sealing your chickens, place a length of folded paper towel between the chicken and the bag opening. As the vacuum pulls the air out, the juices will soak into the towel before they get sucked into the machine, which is always a huge mess.
     
  10. mikell

    mikell Well-Known Member

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    For camping when I hike in I remove the foods from their original packages and vacuum pack them to save space.

    mikell
     
  11. deberosa

    deberosa SW Virginia Gourd Farmer!

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    In the demo they soaked a sponge with water and vaccuum sealed it - she said to only put the vaccuum on to the point that the liquid moves up the bag and stops short of the machine. Haven't tried it though. Glad to hear you can use the regular bags, will have to try that too!

    The sales woman said that fluid doens't hurt this machine - it's different that way. There is a plug on the bottom and to clean you vaccuum in some water and drain out the plug... Although I am sure lots of liquid would have to be bad for it, plus ruin the seal.
     
  12. MarleneS

    MarleneS Well-Known Member

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    mtman -- It's a common error to only be concerned with the air not coming in contact with what's placed in plastic...after all that's the point of putting stuff in plastic right -- keep it fresh and perhaps dry? The problem with silver (and probably other metals too) and textiles is the longterm contact with the plastic itself. For example if you seal your silver -- you end up with darkened spots which mirrow the ridges and folds in the plastic -- and textiles will breakdown.

    Sorry deberosa this isn't what you were asking for.

    Marlene
     
  13. HilltopDaisy

    HilltopDaisy Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Cool! My sister asked me just a couple of days ago if I'd like to have hers, as she never uses it! She's more into running to the grocery store every day :rolleyes: .

    I find that cereal and corn chips get rancid before I finish the bag, so I'll use it there. I love marinated tofu, but it's really pricy, so I'll be making my own. Hopefully this will solve the problem of freezer burned veggies. I go to so much trouble to plant, grow, harvest and freeze-then it gets all yucky in the freezer. Have fun, Deberosa!
     
  14. deberosa

    deberosa SW Virginia Gourd Farmer!

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    I know, now I am really glad I got this! I would prefer to NEVER have to go to the grocery store, but at least get it down to once a month or once every other month. There are far more fun things to do here on the homestead!

    Marlene - don't worry, I learned from your info too!
     
  15. mtman

    mtman Well-Known Member

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    o i see thank you
     
  16. Elizabeth

    Elizabeth Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I got one of these machines this year and love it! What I do to save on bags is this- when I cut a new bag I make it several inches longer that what is required for the item I am storing. Then, when I open the bag I just cut off the very top of it and thus have plenty of bag left over for several more uses.

    I also re-use all my bags until they are too small to be useful. If they have contained meat I swish them in a sink of soapy water to which I have added bleach, then run them through the dishwasher. So far no problems.

    Another thing that I love about the machine is that I can re-use single-use jars (mayo, etc) which I would not normally use for canning. I use the jars for storing nuts, dried fruits, jerky, etc. Saves on buying canning jars.
     
  17. deberosa

    deberosa SW Virginia Gourd Farmer!

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    I joined the food savers list mentioned and have been using my new sealer all the time. It stays out on my counter where it is handy. I like having everything in jars so I can see it! I have gotten into the habit of doing something in the crockpot over the weekend and sealing portions in jars for the fridge. Now I have a selection of ready meals to choose from! I also have butchered and put all of the meat into sealed bag for freezing - it's a great too!
     
  18. gilberte

    gilberte Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Please remember that the vacuum sealing doesn't take the place of the canning process. You cannot, for example, vacuum seal a jar of tomatoes and store them on the shelf at room temperature