Here are some hopefully useful albeit a bit random food storage tips that can help us reduce waste and save money.
Get acquainted with containers
First of all get yourself an assortment of containers of various sizes and shapes. They don’t need to look fancy and they don’t need to be specifically produced for the purpose. You can just use empty jars and cans and such. As long as there’s a tight fitting lid, it’ll do.
Rice, pasta, cereal, flour, spices, dried herbs, and numerous other things need to be kept in airtight containers. Otherwise they could go stale way before their time and worse, bugs might get to them and you really don’t want that.
You’ll also need containers to store leftover foods in the fridge; same goes for some ingredients too.
Not all fruits & veggies like the fridge
It seems like fresh produce would like the fridge so that they can stay fresher for longer. But this just doesn’t seem to be the case for all. Onions and potatoes among others deteriorate quickly when left in the fridge.
Potatoes & onions don’t like each other
Potatoes and onions both like to be stored in cool dark places. They do love some air circulation too. But never ever store them in close proximity of each other. The gases released by these two just makes each other spoil faster.
Watch out for ethylene.
When storing fruits & veggies in the fridge, you’ve got to look out for a gaseous compound called ethylene. Many fruits, like apples, emit this compound which is actually a ripening agent. And when ethylene emitting fruits are stored with other fruits and vegetables, they cause the others to ripen too fast and hence spoil too quickly. So always keep such fruits away from the others and do a bit of internet snooping whenever you are in doubt.
Wrap your greens in paper towels
Greens like lettuce and spinach can go horribly slimy and that’s because of moisture. So store them with a couple of paper towels. The towels would wick away the moisture, leaving the greens crispier and fresher for longer.
Dairy products at the back
Dairy products like cooking cream, milk and yoghurt go bad easily. And while keeping the milk carton in the fridge door certainly makes it easier for you to find it, milk and other dairy products are better kept at the back of the fridge, where it’s the coldest.
Avoid freezer burn
And lastly, when you store meats and other products in your freezer, make sure none of it is exposed to the cold freezer air. When exposed to freezer air foods get damaged due to dehydration and oxidation. The condition is called freezer burn and when this happens foods lose their texture, taste and colour. Making sure foods you put in the freezer are securely wrapped in air tight packaging is a simple way of avoiding this.