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Tricks for cleaning really buggy produce?

I bought brussels sprouts (on the stalk) at the farmers market and just happened to get a quite buggy one. I took the sprouts off and soaked them to get rid of grit and the bugs, but I've changed the water 5 times now and I'm still getting bugs in the water. Is there a trick to make this go faster? Hot water? Vinegar? Just forge ahead and cook them and convince myself I'm eating black pepper?

Lindsay-Jean is a Contributing Writer & Editor at Food52.

asked about 2 years ago

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7 answers 317 views
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Susan W

Susan W is a trusted source on General Cooking.

added about 2 years ago

Extra protein? I don't think there is a solution that will help in this instance, but have you sliced one in half to see if the layers of leaves are embedded with bugs? If so, how do you feel about shredding them all on a mandolin and dunking all of that in water? If the infestation is too great, I may begrudgingly toss them..in your outside garbage so they don't move on to other produce or plants in your house. At least you know your farmer does practice organic farming.

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730e314f caf5 438f 9a9a 998057ffb9ff  20151109 150352
Susan W

Susan W is a trusted source on General Cooking.

added about 2 years ago

Disregard my solution of shaving them on a mandolin. After I posted it, I had visions of shredded bug feet in your brussel sprouts and skeeved out. The link below that SMSF provided has a less gross solution.

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Lindsay-Jean Hard

Lindsay-Jean is a Contributing Writer & Editor at Food52.

added about 2 years ago

ahaha "shredded bug feet" -- simultaneously skeeved out and giggling

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added about 2 years ago

Soaking them in salty water, usually will kill the bugs and then they will float free.
If they are too far embedded though the salty water may not penetrate.
Good luck.

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SMSF

SMSF is a trusted home cook.

added about 2 years ago

Most likely the bugs are aphids - they sure love brussels sprouts and I guess we can't blame them for it : )
Here's a post that addresses exactly the issue you're having:
http://www.liveearthfarm...

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Lindsay-Jean Hard

Lindsay-Jean is a Contributing Writer & Editor at Food52.

added about 2 years ago

I guess my black pepper idea wasn't an original one! Thanks SMSF

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cv
added about 2 years ago

For people who don't want to read the entire post provided by SMSF, here's the one sentence summary:

"Cut off the parts with the aphids."

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