Where can I put my melons??? ;)

Posted: April 28, 2012 in Health, Healthy Tips, Nutrition

Now that is a great title of a blog post if I ever heard one!

Ever wonder if it is safe to store your broccoli with your turnips? Will a green pepper butted up against an onion make it cry? I am always wondering about these things on grocery shopping day, I know, such problems I have, right? Anyway, here is a handy list you can refer to if you find yourself staring at a head of lettuce and haven’t a clue as to where to keep it.

Meats and Fish:
Store meats and fish on the bottom shelf of your fridge, separate from other foods to avoid any juices that could leak out from contaminating other foods like fresh produce.
Raw meats and poultry: Keep them in their original packaging, but also wrap it up in heavy plastic wrap or aluminum foil before storing it in the fridge to keep it fresh and prevent leaks.
Fish: Should be used within a couple days of purchase, but to store it in the fridge until then, remove it from the lightweight supermarket packaging and wrap airtight in heavy plastic wrap or in an airtight plastic freezer bag.

Fresh Fruits:
Fresh fruits with delicate skins (like berries and grapes): Don’t wash them before storing them in the fridge, as this will cause them to go bad quicker. Instead, store them in the fridge in their original package and wash just before use.

Apples, oranges and grapefruit: Store them in the crisper drawer of the fridge where it is cool and dark and they’ll last quite a while..

Tropical fruits (like mango and pineapple), pears, peaches: Leave them out at room temperature until they begin to ripen. When the texture becomes slightly soft to the touch (gives slightly when you press on the fruit), they should either be used right away or put in the fridge at that time.

Fresh Veggies:
Asparagus: Wrap a slightly damp paper towel around stems before storing in the fridge in a plastic zip-top bag.

Carrots, Bell Peppers, Broccoli, Celery: Store in plastic zip-top bags in the crisper drawer and don’t wash them until right before you use them.

Mushrooms: Keep in their original packaging and store in the fridge, and again, don’t wash them until right before cooking or eating.

Pre-bagged Veggies (including salads): Keep in their original bags in the fridge, and even after you open them, keep the rest in the original bag (these bags are specifically designed to help keep it fresh longer)–fold the top down and then double bag it in an airtight plastic bag.
Fresh Greens: If you are buying lettuce or other fresh greens and washing and chopping it yourself, you can wash and chop them before storing them in the fridge. Just make sure that after you wash them you dry them thoroughly with towels or in a salad spinner. Then you can store them in an airtight container with a dry paper towel to absorb any remaining moisture in order to keep the greens crisp.
Fresh Herbs: To keep fresh herbs fresh in the fridge, first snip off the bottom of the stems with kitchen shears. Then, rinse quickly and dry the leaves completely with paper towels. Next, fill a small glass or jar halfway full with water and place the cut side of the stems into the water as you would do when putting flowers in a vase. Finally, place a plastic bag over the top of the leaves and the glass and store in the fridge. Be sure to change the water every few days. You can except your fresh herbs to last two weeks or more if you take the time to store them this way.

Keep This Produce OUT of The Fridge:
Tomatoes, bananas, limes, and lemon: They’ll fare best if you store them on the counter top at room temperature (think fruit bowl).

Fresh garlic and onions: Should also be stored at room temperature in an area of your kitchen that has plenty of ventilation.

Potatoes: Store them in a cool, dry, dark place.

Melons: They’ll have the best flavor and texture when allowed to ripen at room temperature on the counter – ain’t that the truth 😉

More Tips: I personally recommend storing foods in clear plastic or glass containers or bags whenever possible and marking the with the date the day you first put them in the fridge so you can find things and determine their freshness quickly. Last, but not least, remember to pull older items to the front of the fridge whenever you put newer items in so that you will use the older items first before they go bad.

As you can see, taking a little time to store fresh foods properly will keep you enjoying them longer!


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