|Home Vacuum Packaging System
A lot of food products you find at the supermarket are heat-sealed
in plastic or foil packages. Others are vacuum-sealed
in packages. Vacuum sealing preserves foods 3 to 5
times longer, so it is widely used in the food industry.
Now heat sealing and vacuum sealing technology can be used at home.
There is a high quality home vacuum packaging system that vacuum-seals
proprietary plastic bags and rigid containers, and opened cans, jars and
wine bottles. It also reseals most heat-sealed bags. Cool.
That's the good news. The bad news is that the tool is expensive
to buy and use. The top of the line Food Saver, by Tilia, lists at
$315. The bags, which can be reused, cost about 50¢ a running
foot. Rigid containers cost about $10 to $20 depending on size.
So, why bother?
We cook for two every day. Of course more product is bought at
the store than consumed each day and often more than consumed in a week.
We buy whole pork and beef tenderloins, trim off the fat and silver skin,
cut and saran-wrap servings for two, and freeze. Seldom do I place
uncooked meat in the fridge that is not to be prepared that night or the
next. Veggies are consumed in quantity but I throw product out every
So, what does the Food Saver do for the GeezerGourmet?
Fresh leaf lettuce, washed, dried and placed in the fridge, looks
shabby in 4 days. If placed in a rigid vacuum container,
the leaves look great for 2 weeks. Other veggies too.
Vacuum-sealed tenderloins can be placed in the fridge for weeks and
age in the process.
A half full jar of pasta sauce is vacuum-sealed and put in the fridge
where it will keep until we're in the mood to make pasta again. Half full
cans of tomato paste and chocolate mole are vacuum sealed, as well.
Spices, bought by the half pound from my favorite source in Wisconsin,
are vacuumed packaged and stay fresh forever in the pantry.
Heat-sealed bags of crackers, chips, and the like, are resealed like
Cookies for friends are presented in sealed or vacuum-sealed bags.
Brown sugar is vacuum-sealed and stays moist until we bake again.
The freezer is now full of vacuum-sealed packages with no freezer-burn.
Over all—our pantries, fridge and freezer are more neat and tidy
with products that better hold their freshness, taste, texture and appearance.
It's all about quality of ingredients.
They advertise a lot on TV and have a Web site at, www.tilia.com.
Since buying the system, we acquired a 4-quart bulk container, of new
design, wherein lettuce is now stored under vacuum, ready to be washed
and spin-dried for the salad bowl. It stays fresh in the fridge for
about 2 weeks. Re-pumping the container is a pain, but the long life
of the lettuce is a real plus when cooking for two. We also store
parsley and cilantro in small vacuum containers. More and more, we
are using the machine to reseal packages-- everything from potato and taco
chip bags to plastic postal bags. It will reseal most anything that comes
The Costco people now carry the Tilia Food Saver. Not sure of
the models available. They also carry the vacuum bags needed for
the machine. A box of four rolls sells for a discount price that works
out to 29 cents a running foot. That beats 50 cents/foot big time!
I bought two boxes and find now that I am using the vacuum feature more