How To Store Fruits And Vegetables
Storing fruits and vegetables is an enigma. Not because of the actual process, but because every different fruit/vegetable reacts differently to being stored in the traditional manner.
In this segment, we’ll briefly go over and address the best way to go about storing fruits and vegetables. The key takeaway here is that you need to pay utmost attention to detail and familiarize yourself with minute innovative techniques that can help you get the job done.
Without further ado, let’s get started!
Note: we’ll address the main type of fruits/vegetables and not get into the particulars.
1. In A Cool, Dry Place
When thinking of a cool and dry place, people often make the mistake of confusing that with a fridge. However, that couldn’t be further from what’s expected.
In food-storage terms, a cool, dry place refers to an open space that has good ventilation and isn’t subject to extreme temperatures.
Fruits such as banana, lemons, limes, and tomatoes should be stored in a cool, dry place. Any type of moisture is bad since it can lead to moisture accumulation and degradation of food quality.
Eggplants should also be stored in a cool, dry place, but it is of utmost importance that you use them in a few days of purchase, or else they’ll go bad.
Mushrooms can also be easily stored in a cool, dry place. However, we’d recommend that you wash them right BEFORE use, and not before storage.
Last but not least, you should also consider storing potatoes in a cool, dry place with proper ventilation. This will ensure that they don’t get soft over time and lose their taste.
2. In The Fridge
Storing in the fridge is arguably the easiest way to store fruits/vegetables. Below, we’ll highlight the main things that you can store without any hassle and retrieve whenever needed.
For starters, apples are arguably the easiest fruit to store. If kept at room temperature, they’ll get soft pretty quick. Hence, throwing them in the fridge is the best course of action the moment you get home.
Berries, of any kind or variety, can also be stored in the fridge. The key is to wash them right before eating. Washing them beforehand isn’t really a bad idea, but it’ll just end up taking more time.
Another way to store them is by placing them inside plastic bags. However, make sure that they have holes in them. This allows for proper ventilation and will keep the product fresher for longer periods of time.
Carrots can also be stored in the fridge without any loss of quality. It’s always a good idea to peel before use, as opposed to peeling before storage. This is to retain the fresh taste, but won’t really affect the overall quality of it.
Storing asparagus and lettuce can be a little tricky, though.
Fresh heads of lettuce need to be washed thoroughly under running water before being stored. Dry them afterward and store them in a plastic bag along with some paper towels. The latter will help absorb moisture and keep the lettuce heads from getting soft.
Asparagus can also be stored in a similar manner, but need to be wrapped with a paper towel to get the job done right. Otherwise, they might go bad.
3. In The Freezer
Generally speaking, you can store virtually whatever you want in the freezer. However, there are a few guidelines that you’ll need to follow to get the job done right.
When working with fruits such as papayas, mangoes, or something of a similar texture, it’s best to cut them into pieces, place them in a fruit bowl, and then to store them.
Bananas should also be peeled and cut up into small pieces, and then stored in a bag. This is the best way to make them work long-term.
4. At Room Temperature
Storing at room temperature requires minimal effort to get the job done right. However, that doesn’t mean that it doesn’t require effort entirely.
Tomatoes, melons, and cantaloupes should be stored at room temperature. However, between the three, the latter is most likely to go bad. So, if you’re getting cantaloupes, it’s also a good idea to eat them soon.
Pineapples are also advised to be kept at room temperature. There is no point or purpose of storing them in the fridge or any other place for that matter. Rumor has it that storing them upside down is also a good idea since it helps redistribute the flavor and sweetness.
As far as vegetables are concerned, garlic and onions should be stored at room temperature as well. They don’t really require any sort of maintenance or checkups. Just keep them wherever and they’ll be fine.
Word Of Advice
When buying food, it’s a good idea to keep storage places in mind. The worst thing you can do is get plenty of food and run out of storage space. In that case, things that demand extra care or attention might go bad if not consumed within 48 hours.
Save yourself from that predicament, and shop smarter!
Now that we’ve gone over the essentials, we hope you’re familiar with the best ways to store the bulk of the fruit and vegetable at your counter. If you want more help or recommendations, or would like to share your own tips, do mention them in the comment section below!