This colorful and very readable infographic entitled “Ripe and Easy – A Guide to Produce Ripening” was designed by LundsandByerlys.com and although I do know some of these hints for storing and preparing fruits and vegetables to ripen, some are new to me and should prove useful.
It’s important to mind your fruits and vegetables!
Some hints I’ve discovered through my own experience also lengthen the viability of fruits and vegetables.
All of the fruits and vegetables that should be kept at room temperature, I place in a large wicker basket on our dining room table as an informal centerpiece. Not only is it attractive, I find we eat more of our daily requirement for fruit by having it visible and so readily available.
I don’t know if its our climate, but I have noticed that melons of all types must be kept in the refrigerator here. Even being left out overnight tends to soften them prematurely. Besides, there’s just something much more appealing about eating crisp, cold slices of melon with a dollop of cottage cheese – YUM!!!
As a general rule of thumb, I don’t wash any produce until I’m ready to use it. Even if the washing itself isn’t detrimental to the produce, I find if they’re not dried very well, the moisture from washing promotes decay.
This is one I learned recently on the internet.
One of the fruits you’ll most likely find in our fruit basket is bananas. I used to just set the entire bunch in – still attached. I read a tip that bananas last much longer if they are separated and laid out in a layer on top with space between them – and it really works! I always place them in the basket last so they aren’t compressed and bruised by the weight of other items.
Save those plastic bread bag tags!
Onions and potatoes should not be stored together. I’m not sure what the chemical reaction is, but close proximity causes them both to deteriorate much more rapidly.
The best method of prolonging the viability of potatoes, onions and whole garlic is to drop them into the leg of a stocking one by one, twisting and binding with a plastic clip from bread bags between each one to keep them separated. (I never throw bread bag clips out as I have several uses for them.) Once the stockings are full, I hang them in separate closets in the coolest part of the house. I never get green spots and they last much longer than before I learned this trick.