If you are looking to do any type of food storage or preservation other than canning, you need a way to keep your foods at the peak of freshness. Freezing and dehydrating are great, but you have to deal with the one element that can spoil all of your hard work and your food: Air.
That’s where the FoodSaver v4840 bursts onto the scene to save the day. With the FoodSaver 2-in-1 vacuum sealing system you can protect your foods from exposure to air and keep them fresh up to five times longer than conventional zipper lock baggies. Everything you need to get started vacuum sealing and preserving you food comes right in the box. No need to spend extra money to get set up after you buy the unit.
Why is Air the Enemy
Before we look at the benefits of the Food Saver, let’s look at how air affects your food while in storage. Actually, it’s not the air that causes the damage, but the oxygen in the air. our air is made up of approximately 20% oxygen. While oxygen is vital for life to exist, it also causes tissue to deteriorate. Fats go rancid when in contact with oxygen. Some fruits like apples change color when exposed to oxygen. That is why nature blessed them with a protective skin. When we start processing these fruits for preservation, we break that skin and jump start the ability of oxygen to break down the foods we are trying to save.
What does a Vacuum Sealer Do?
Vacuum sealers help protect your food from oxygen by removing the air that surrounds it. Less air, less oxygen. Less oxygen, less deterioration and food will last longer. In the case of fresh foods, using a vacuum sealer is not enough to preserve your food. Freezing is necessary to complete the process. But, if you are preserving grain like dried rice or dehydrated fruits and vegetables, removing the air would be adequate for preservation.
The FoodSaver 2-in-1 Vacuum Sealing System
The FoodSaver 2-in-1 vacuum sealer is a great option for people buying their first vacuum sealer or someone looking to upgrade their old vacuum packer. This vacuum sealer does everything you expect a vacuum sealer to do and more. and it comes with everything you need to get started preserving your foods and saving money on your groceries right out of the box.
2 Sealers in One
The FoodSaver v4840 is a 2-in-1 system. It uses bags in the conventional way, removing the air from the bag and sealing it with a near air-tight seal when done. It also has a handy little attachment on the top of the unit that other models do not have. This handheld unit can be used to seal zipper bags, mason jars, and marinate meats. When you are done with the handheld unit, it retracts and stores easily in the top of the unit. The canister bags and the marinade attachment are sold separately, but the Food Saver does come with a starter supply of zipper bags.
Roll Storage in the Unit
The unit comes with 3 quart size heat seal bags and 2 gallon size heat seal bags. This is great if you just need quart or gallon sized storage items. The big plus is the roll of make-your-own bags. This roll is 11 inches wide and 10 feet long. The unit has a place to store the roll and a cutter to cut the bags to the perfect size. So, store a little or a lot. It is up to you how big your bags are. The manufacturer recommends that you only use the FoodSaver brand bags in the unit for “best results”. The FoodSaver v4840 2-in-one Vacuum sealer has no problem handling third party bags and rolls. Just be aware that the roll storage in the unit is limited. If you are planning on buying and using a big industrial roll of sealer bags, larger rolls will not fit in the unit. You will have to cut the bag to size manually and seal it that way. This really isn’t too much of an inconvenience when you look at the cost savings between the two rolls.
Easy to Clean
The FoodSaver 2-in-1 has a removable drip tray inside the unit. The drip tray catches excess water and juices from the foods you are sealing. The tray keeps these juices from ending up inside your sealer or all over the counter top. When you are done with it, you can empty the contents in the sink or in the trash and throw the drip tray right in the dishwasher. I love me some easy. 🙂
Control the Suction
The FoodSaver has an automatic sensor. When you insert the bag it begins the process of sucking out the air and sealing up your food. This is a nice feature for people who have an old sealer or have used an older sealer in the past. There is no hassle trying to get the bag perfectly placed over the nozzle inside the machine. No fold over of the bag as it is removing the air. Just put the bag in and it starts. You can control when the unit seals the bag as well. This is particularly handy if you need to seal up breads, baked goods, or delicate fruits like berries. Older units had only one setting and that was to remove as much air as possible. This resulted in crushed foods. Sealing English muffins in the old units resulted in hockey pucks because the machines were a bit too thorough. They would suck out all of the air between the nooks and crannies. Control over when the bag seals allows you to stop before you turn your berries into berry sauce.
FoodSaver offers many different products for different storage solutions. I mentioned the marinade container and the lids for the Mason jars. FoodSaver has you covered with other storage solutions including a Wine Saver that removes the oxygen out of your open wine bottle and seals it fresh for your next glass. Honestly, I think this would be the least used accessory in my house. An open bottle of wine is an empty bottle of wine if you know what I’m saying. Fresh seal containers are like Tupperware on steroids. They come in various sizes so you can store your leftovers and keep them fresh longer. We have a friend with a hard and fast three day rule when it comes to leftovers. With these little containers, that three day rule stretches well beyond a week or more. I hate throwing leftovers away. it’s like throwing money away. Food Saver has clearly made the products that keep this appliance from being a one-trick-pony appliance. Alton Brown would be proud.
Increase Life of Stored Foods
We touched on this a little. The useful life of your food stored with the FoodSaver 2-in-1 system increases by 5x. So that 3 day hard and fast rule of my friend and her leftovers extends to 15 days! Food Saver put this chart out to show you a comparison between foods stored conventionally and foods stored with the FoodSaver System.
In the long run, this means money saved. Especially if you buy in bulk and store your food at home. If you have a garden and grow your own food, even better. FoodSaver calculates that their vacuum sealer can save the average family save up to $2700 per year! That’s enough to pay the average home electric bill for a year.
Ah. here’s where we run into a bit of a snag. Sealing liquids. Say you made some soup or salsa or have some fruit juice that you would like to freeze. The vacuum sealer wants to suck out all of the air, sure. But it also wants to try and suck out the liquid. This is a problem. But, not something that can’t be overcome. Here’s how:
- Place your soup or other liquid in a bowl and place the bowl into the sealing bag. The sealer will remove the air surrounding the bowl and seal off the top without sucking up a bunch of the liquid in the process.
- Freeze your liquid first. Put the liquid you want sealed into a ziplock bag or other container and pop it into the freezer. Once frozen solid, pull it out, remove it from the bag or container you froze it in, and seal it with the vacuum sealer. Pop it back into the freezer and it is as good as protected.
The FoodSaver v4840 2-in-one vacuum sealer system is a great tool for the kitchen. Maybe it is your first sealer, maybe it is an upgrade from an antiquated model that you have had for years. This system is going to do everything you want and more. Vacuum seal systems are a necessary tool in the home food preserver’s arsenal. Our ultimate goal is to keep all of our food tasting as fresh as it did the day we placed it into our bags or jars.
If you don’t currently have a vacuum sealer or are looking for a new one, I suggest you check out the pricing on this unit over at Amazon.com. Once you have it, you will wonder why you didn’t make the investment years ago.