How to store fruit and vegetables: refrigerator or room temperature? – Italian Cuisine

How to store fruit and vegetables: refrigerator or room temperature?

Here are some tips and advice to ensure a longer and safer life for your fruit and vegetables

Ideal allies for a correct and healthy diet, fruit and vegetables should never be missing in the fridge and pantry. To manage to keep them at their best, guaranteeing their integrity and freshness, is a fundamental step to fully benefit from their wealth of vitamins and minerals. Here are some suggestions to prevent them from spoiling and to contain household waste.

The right calculation of the doses and the containers to use

Don't buy fruit and vegetables in large quantities. Thinking about the real needs and consumption of these foods is the first step to avoiding waste. Be paper envelopes is wicker baskets: using plastic bags and containers to store fruit and vegetables is one of the most frequent and deleterious errors because it compromises their freshness. In particular, leafy vegetables should be kept in paper bags to absorb moisture.

Fridge or room temperature?

There are qualities of vegetables that deteriorate more easily than others, therefore the rule that fresh vegetables should be kept in the refrigerator until the moment of consumption does not always apply. There are in fact some vegetables that must be left at room temperature to prevent the cold from damaging them, such as potatoes, tomatoes, onions, garlic and legumes: at temperatures below 7-8 degrees they tend to change color and stain on the skin so it is best to keep them in a paper bag in a cool and dry place in the pantry. Eggplants and courgettes, however, among the most delicate vegetables because they wilt quickly, it is better not to keep them in the refrigerator for more than 4/5 days. In addition, once cooked, the vegetables can be kept in the refrigerator for a couple of days at most.

Regarding the fruit, out of the refrigerator must be put away the one that has yet to mature, the citrus and the exotic one which risks spoiling with the cold. Kiwis, pears and apples, which can last for weeks, can be stored at room temperature in a large basket. It is important to remember that apples produce ethylene and unless you want to ripen some other product quickly – fruit or vegetables is indifferent – it is better to keep them separate from the rest.

An alternative pantry

It is preferable to avoid leaving fruit and vegetables where the sun shines too long because high temperatures favor maturation. If you have one cellar or balcony, you can keep vegetables and fruit on ad hoc shelves in a shaded and well-sheltered place. Here you can store seasonal vegetables that suffer less like courgettes, squash, cabbage, onions, shallots, potatoes, garlic, apples, persimmons, pears and bananas.

Yes to the freezer

The freezer is undoubtedly a valid ally to avoid waste but to best preserve fruit and vegetables you must clean it by removing the inedible parts, blanch the vegetables for a minute and let them cool and then always divide into portions to have everything ready for use.

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