Foods You Should Not Refrigerate…Ever!
We’re all aware that everything has a place in the kitchen. However, when you’re fresh back from the grocery store or the local market, you’re tired, and it’s easy to forget the best place for storing some items.
Often if one doesn’t know the best place for a food they opt for the fridge because, what could go wrong?
This kind of thinking may not be ruining your food completely, but it is insuring that you aren’t getting the best flavors and textures out of what you buy.
Here are ten foods that shouldn’t go in your refrigerator and better ways in which to save them.
Many people grew up trying to ripen avocados in the fridge. Sadly, this won’t get you very far. Cold temperatures slow down the ripening process. While already ripened avocados can be stored in the refrigerator, it’s far better to ripen new ones in a closed brown paper bag.
The gasses that the avocado emit are what ripen it and trapping it in a bag for a few days with these gasses will speed the process. If left on the counter to ripen, it can take up to six days at room temperature.
While storing herbs in the refrigerator may seem to make them last longer, they wilt very fast in cold temperatures. Another downside is that they will absorb all of the smells from foods that share the fridge with them.
A better way to store them is in a glass of fresh water just as you would store cut flowers. This not only lengthens their life but also lightly scents your kitchen with its pleasant aroma.
It’s tempting to throw your bread into the fridge for a few extra days sans mold, but you’re sacrificing quality taste and texture when you do so. Bread dries out remarkably fast in the refrigerator. Instead, only keep out what you’ll use in 3 or 4 days and then freeze the rest.
Everyone knows to store your coffee in the freezer to preserve its taste. But even the freezer is no place for your daily store of coffee to go. While whole beans can safely be stored there for a month (provided the bag is not opened again and again) smaller quantities should be stored in a cool dark place in a sealed airtight container.
When a bag of coffee is removed from the freezer every morning, opened, and then refrozen, it builds up moisture in the bag that spoils the grounds. Instead, store two or three day quantities in the freezer and use them one at a time. Never refreeze an opened bag.
Garlic will sprout in your fridge that isn’t appetizing, and they also get rubbery and moldy. Instead store loosely in a cool dark place.
No reason what so ever to store honey in the refrigerator Honey keeps practically forever so storing honey in the pantry will do just fine. If the honey starts to get grainy or hardens, just submerge closed container in warm water until it returns to it’s original texture.
There are a few factors to take into account when deciding where to store hot sauce. First and foremost is ingredient content. Vinegar and chilies are both well known preserving agents, so they extend the life of the bottle pretty far. The safe bet is that an opened bottle of hot sauce can be stored in your pantry for up to three years.
Wash the crust that forms around the bottle cap with warm water regularly as it can harbor bacteria that will spoil the bottle.
Keep in mind that if you’ve been storing a bottle of hot sauce for 2 and a half years it’s going to taste a little different. The chilies have had time to sit making them more potent, and the overall flavor may have degraded slightly.
You don’t want to keep onions in the refrigerator for 2 main reasons:
- they will soften
- they will make your other foods taste and smell like onions
Keeping onions in that mesh bag them come in could be the best way to store them. It gives them plenty of air circulation which they need to stay fresh and keep from rotting. Just keep them away from potatoes that emit fumes that rot onions fast.
The refrigerator affects the flavor and texture of potatoes. It’s a better idea to store them in a paper (not plastic) bag rolled up in a dark corner of the pantry.
Make sure not to use a plastic bag for storage as it can trap moisture and speed the decaying process significantly. Most potato varieties should last about 2 to 3 weeks if stored properly. Stored between 45° and 55°, they can last up to 3 months.
Many people who grew up storing vegetables in the refrigerator don’t think there’s anything wrong with fridge tomatoes. One bite into a freshly grown tomato would be enough to tell them differently.
Refrigeration is responsible for that mealy texture we associate with grocery store tomatoes in the winter. The fridge slows down the ripening process and damages the cell walls, softening and changes the overall texture of the tomato.
It’s much better to store them at room temperature on the counter. Storing them in a bright place like a window sill can speed the ripening process but only do this if you’ll eat them all in time.