How to Keep Fruits and Vegetables Fresh for Longer
Cooking with stale vegetables or eating rotten fruits is no fun. But it often happens to us – we buy fresh produce, stick it in the fridge, and before we know it, they look rotten and shriveled. Not only does it feel bad, but then we also need to throw away the no-more-fresh produce.
To avoid such a situation, make it a habit to store your veggies and fruits right. Doing so will keep them fresh and safe to eat. But how to store vegetables and fruits, so they stay fresh for longer? Here are the answers to basic FAQs.
How to Store Vegetables in Fridge the Right Way?
To keep veggies like carrots, cabbage, celery, broccoli, and even potatoes fresh for longer, store them in a dry corner of the fridge. Mushrooms remain fresher when stored unwashed in a paper bag. Leafy greens should be rinsed, rolled together, and wrapped in a paper towels before they are kept in the fridge for prolonged freshness. To store Asparagus, keep the stalks upright in a glass of cold water.
Another great way to store vegetables in the fridge is by freezing them. If you are not going to eat them right away, freezing them will preserve nutrients and original flavor. Most veggies might need blanching and boiling for a minute or two to prevent freezer burn.
Freezing is not recommended for leafy greens, root vegetables, sprouts, and eggplant.
How to Keep Veggies Fresh After Cutting Them?
Preserve the freshness of cut vegetables for up to 3 days by storing them in freshwater. Change the water regularly, if necessary. Exceptions of cucumber, garlic, and onions are best stored in the fridge in an airtight container.
Note that once cut or chopped, vegetables tend to lose nutrients and flavor when exposed to air (oxidation). Proper storage will help them stay fresh for as long as 3 days. Cut vegetables should be used within this period.
How to Store Tomatoes?
Perhaps, the trickiest of all vegetables - or fruits? At the counter or in the fridge – what is the best way to store tomatoes? Here’s the answer.
If the tomatoes are perfectly ripe, place them on the counter, away from the sunlight at room temperature. Position them in a way that the stem side is up. Make sure they do not touch one another. Ripe tomatoes kept on the counter must be consumed within a couple of days. In case not, they overripe, become softer and redder, in which case place them in the fridge.
How to Store Fruits?
Berries, Grapes, and Cherries: The best way to store strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries is to keep them in a dry container, inside the fridge. Do not wash unless ready to eat.
Banana and Mangoes: Keep green bananas on the counter and ripened bananas in the fridge.
Avocados: Like tomatoes, store ripe avocados on the counter, and over ripe in the fridge.
Apples: Store apples on the counter for a week, and in the fridge for more than a week.
Nectarines, Peaches, and Plums: Keep stone fruits in a paper bag and place them on the counter until they are ripe. Then move them to the fridge for an extended lifespan and prolonged freshness.
Citrus Fruits: Store fruits like limes and oranges in a mesh bag and keep them in the fridge.
Melons: Store cantaloupe and honeydew in the fridge even if they are not cut. Put watermelons in dry and dark places, but if cut, place the pieces in the fridge.
Ensure that veggies and fruits sit apart inside a refrigerator. Storing them together can cause quicker ripening.