via the dailymeal.com
Most people, when bringing home fresh, ripe or nearly-ripe produce from the market, automatically throw it in the refrigerator. Later on, they wonder why the produce has wilted or gone moldy after only a few days. The fact is that popular storage practices are to blame. Here are a few guidelines about better fruit & veg storage:
1. Fruits and vegetables should be stored separately. Many fruits produce ethylene gas, which acts like a ripening hormone and can speed spoilage in the vicinity.
2. Vegetables need to breathe. Poke holes in the plastic or paper bags you store them in.
3. Don’t wash produce until you’re about to eat it; dampness promotes bacteria growth and spoilage.
Here are some fruit and veggies you’ve probably been storing incorrectly:
1. Store garlic at room temperature in an open container.
2. Like garlic, onion is best stored at room temperature on a counter top. NOT in a fridge and NOT next to potatoes.
3. Potatoes are best kept in a cool, dark place. Keep them out of the refrigerator, where the cold and moisture will turn their starches into sugars. Store them in a paper bag for the best effect. Distance them from onions or any fruits that exude ethylene gas, which can make your spuds begin to sprout.
4. A trick for storing asparagus is to trim a half-inch off the end of the stalks and then stand them up in a glass with a little water in the refrigerator. This will keep them fresh for days.
5. Carrots should be trimmed of any leafage when brought home, and then kept in an unsealed zip-loc bag in the crisper drawer. Carrots that have already been cut should be submerged in water in an airtight container.
6. Cucumbers hate cold temperatures. That said, if kept in the fridge they will stay edible for three days. Cucumbers, like potatoes, should be distanced from ethylene gas from fruits like bananas, melons and tomatoes.
7. Wrap celery with aluminum foil and store like carrot sticks: submerged in water in a tightly covered box.
8. While theories abound about tomato storage, the #1 tip is to keep them out of the fridge and on a countertop.
9. Against your best judgment, break up a bunch of bananas. Wrap the stems with a small piece of plastic wrap. This will reduce the emission of ethylene gas, and the bananas will ripen more slowly. Once a banana is fully ripe, placing it in the fridge WILL actually stop the ripening process and let it last longer.