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Entertaining

To Keep Your Vegetables Looking Fresh, Recreate the Supermarket Mister at Home

All you'll need is a spray bottle to get your produce glistening again.

A walk through the produce aisle of your local grocery store is inspiration for any home entertainer. Everything looks crisp and vibrant, and is glistening with dew, thanks to the overhead misters spritzing the vegetables with water every ten minutes or so. But once you bring it home, the clock is ticking on that butter lettuce. You may have grand plans for using it as an accent for a crudités board, but once you get all set up the once-crisp greens have lost their luster.

Luckily, there's a simple solution: Recreate that supermarket mister at home. 

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To get the same crisp freshness that first won you over in the store, fill a spray bottle with some cold water and use it to mist vegetables just before your guests arrive.

This never-fail food-stylist’s secret, generously shared by our resident expert Elle Simone Scott in her book Boards, is simple, yet game-changing. Serving a salad for a crowd or setting out bibb lettuce for Thai-Style Tofu and Basil Lettuce Cups? Using the spray bottle to mist the leaves will keep them vibrant for longer. Just a spray or two will do (nobody wants wet romaine).

And it works for more than just leafy greens—crudités of all kinds benefit from a good spritz, too. Take sliced carrots or radishes, for example. They offer a colorful contrast against Homemade Yogurt Cheese with Hazelnut-Nigella Dukkah, and while they look beautiful when first cut, they begin to look dull after sitting out. A quick mist will preserve the dewy finish they had when first cut. 

Whether you’re serving sliced peppers or jicama to dip into Vegan Whipped Cashew Dip with Roasted Red Peppers and Olives, help the veggies maintain some of the moisture they’re losing while they wait to be eaten.

Photo: Gong Mingyang/VCG via Getty Images