Storing food properly – a topic that many people think about. After all, the correct storage of products for daily use is important to preserve their shelf life. The better you store food, the longer you can use it. With storing food the right way regional products are available to you regardless of the season. Every product has its own requirements for the right storage location.
Now how can you make sure that your food is stored in the best way? What about flakes and muesli? How about fruit and vegetables for my healthy breakfast? And why do foods go bad at all? All these questions will be answered in this blog post.
Why does food go bad anyways?
The spoilage of food has several reasons. In most cases, it is physical, biochemical, chemical and microbiological circumstances that cause products to go bad. In many cases it is also the infestation of pests, which you should avoid in any case. The other circumstances cannot be prevented – but slowed down!
In the case of microbial spoilage, it is bacteria, yeasts and moulds that infest food. Pathogenic microorganisms form substances that can be harmful to humans. And they do so without the food being visibly spoiled.
How quickly food spoils depends on temperature, water activity, the pH value and the oxygen content of the food. The greatest importance here is attributed to the storage temperature.
What is the best way to store food?
In general, one can say: every food needs its own storage place. Some foods need special treatment, while others are not so delicate.
Storing onion and garlic properly
Onion and garlic, for example, are not too squeamish – it is best to store these two in a cool room. A clay pot is also an advantage here. Clay is good because it leaves room to breathe.
Storage of vegetables – this is how it works
With vegetables such as cucumbers, tomatoes, but also peppers, aubergines or courgettes, things are a bit different. Tomatoes should never be stored in the refrigerator, as they lose their aroma quickly at cool temperatures. Best is 15 degrees for tomatoes. For other watery vegetables, it is just as unfavourable if you store them in the refrigerator. Here it can happen that they mould faster.
You have to be a little more careful with avocados – as we all know, you buy them unripe. You should let the avocado become ripe for a few days – preferably in a bowl. If you only eat half of it, you can put the other half in the fridge. Just pour a little lemon juice over the cut surface and leave the kernel inside. This way you can keep it for a few days. In general, you can wrap cut food in a beeswax cloth for protection.
What belongs in the fridge?
Eggs, butter, milk, opened or self-made plant drinks, cheese, drinks and opened jams should definitely be stored in the refrigerator.
The correct storage of bread
You should always keep bread at room temperature – although bread generally stays fresh longer in the refrigerator, it tastes stale very quickly. And watch out: Bread boxes made of wood are not recommended as there the bread dries even faster.
Storing oil correctly
Olive oil – as you probably know – is best kept in a dark cupboard. That way it stays fresh the longest and does not become flaky.
What is the best way to store fruit?
Fruit tastes best in only one way: fresh! We recommend buying fruit fresh and in quantities that you can actually eat. This is not only good for your wallet, but also for the environment. Once you have the fresh fruit at home, it is best to store it in a bowl. Bananas, tangerines, apples and many other kinds of fruit should not be kept in the refrigerator. If you want to store fruit for a longer period of time, you can also use the freezer. You will find out how to do this in a moment.
Store muesli and flakes correctly
For muesli and flakes, it is best to put them directly from their original packaging into airtight containers. This also applies to nuts and dried fruit. Our pro tip: add the best-before date directly to the airtight containers – this way you always have the best before date in view and can avoid wasting food.
Why does food not spoil in the freezer?
The question is not quite right. Yes, it is true that storage in a freezer increases the shelf life a lot. This is because the low temperatures mean that water activity is almost non-existent, and the proliferation of microorganisms is also reduced to a minimum which means that frozen food can remain fresh for several months. The great thing about the freezer is that there is hardly any reduction in quality. But before you freeze fruit and vegetables, you should clean, wash and possibly peel them.
It is important for storage in the freezer not to prepare portions that are too large. Airtight storage is equally important. The following basic rules apply to the shelf life of food in the freezer:
- Fruit and vegetables 11-15 months
- Beef and poultry 9-12 months
- Fish and fatty meat 6 to 9 months
This is especially important for us when it comes to the storage of regional fruits. We can freeze delicious berries in summer and enjoy them as topping on our muesli or porridge all year round – here is a recipe:
Porridge with berry sauce
- 50 g oat flakes
- 250 ml milk or a plan-based alternative
- A pinch of salt
- 1 tsp agave syrup
- 150 g berries (fresh or freeze-dried)
- First, put the oat flakes in a pot with a pinch of salt and the milk or plant-based drink and let it boil up briefly. Stir briefly again and again.
- Then remove the pot from the oven and add the teaspoon of agave syrup.
- Then let the porridge steep for about 2-3 minutes.
- In the meantime, wash the berries well and then put them in a bowl and mix them with a hand blender or a normal blender.
- Then put the oatmeal in a bowl and add half of the pureed berries and stir well. Then pour the remaining berries over the porridge.
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