Tasty Tuesday – Fridge

Most refrigerators have several compartments that serve unique purposes as well as temperature zones. Taking advantage of these features can lead to less waste and crisper greens overall saving you from making poor choices.

Lets work top to bottom to keep it simple.

  • Upper shelves are reserved for Leftovers, drinks, ready to eat foods, and fresh herbs.
  • Middle/Lower Shelves are for eggs, dairy, and raw meat.
  • Crisper is for Fruits and Veggies. Good tip here is to keep these separate if possible. Do you actually know how to set the crisper or humidity drawers in your fridge?
  • Most humidity drawers are adjustable between low and high. These settings simply open or close a window in the drawer. The low humidity setting the window is completely open and the high humidity setting it is completely closed. Here are two basic principles that can save your lettuce!

The general rule of thumb is to put things that tend to rot in a drawer with a low humidity setting. This includes fruits and veggies that emit an ethylene gas, like apples and pears, because leaving the window open on the drawer gives those gases a chance to escape. When the gases are released, it helps keep the fruits and vegetables from rotting prematurely.

Here are some common fruits and vegetables to keep in this drawer:

  • apples
  • avocados
  • cantaloupes
  • honeydews
  • kiwis
  • mangoes
  • papayas
  • pears
  • plantains
  • stone fruits (apricots, nectarines, peaches, plums)

Things that wilt in the high humidity drawer. This will be all your leafy greens like arugula, spinach, and kale. By having the window closed, water vapor is held in the drawer and the moisture keeps the greens crisper and fresher longer. Keeping fruits and vegetables that are sensitive to ethylene gas, like strawberries, in this drawer will also keep them away from ethylene producers.

Here are some common fruits and vegetables to keep in this drawer:

  • broccoli
  • Brussels sprouts
  • cabbage
  • carrots
  • cauliflower
  • cucumbers
  • eggplant
  • green beans
  • leafy greens (kale, lettuces, spinach, Swiss chard, watercress)
  • okra
  • peas
  • peppers
  • strawberries
  • watermelon

Even organic food gets dirty so you want to wash your food before eating but too much moisture can cause foods to go from ripe to rotten faster than you can eat them. The goal is to wash fruits and veggies when it’s convenient, but not so far in advance that they are likely to spoil before you eat them. When washing fruits, remove extra moisture by draining in a colander, blotting with paper towel, or using a salad spinner. Berries are particularly fragile, so eat them within a day or two of washing.

As you prepare your greens and herbs place in a plastic bag or container with a square of paper towel to soak up excess moisture. Best place to then store them is on the top shelf where you’re more likely to see them and eat them up quickly.

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Tasty Tuesday – Fridge

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