Sorrel, spinach, celery, cilantro, dill, parsley, tarragon – all these greens are healthy for people. But to feel their full benefits, you need to know how to store those greens in the refrigerator.
Particulars of storing greens in the refrigerator
Almost all green plants have developed leaves and thin skins, therefore, their ability to retain moisture is very weak, and water evaporates quickly. As a result, spinach, sorrel, dill, cilantro, parsley lose their original properties and droop. For this reason, all housewives want to know how to properly store greens.
It is best to store greens on the bottom shelf of the refrigerator. Before putting them into the refrigerator, you need to carry out the “cleaning” procedure – remove the leaves that are already yellowed, carefully fold the bunch sprig to sprig. Delicate herbs, such as basil, should be wrapped in a wet paper towel first.
If desired, you can freeze fresh greens. That way, they will retain their properties much longer. Before putting sorrel, spinach, celery, dill, parsley, tarragon, cilantro in the freezer compartment, all of them should be thoroughly washed under running water and dried on a towel. Then wrap the greens with plastic food wrap or pack them into plastic bags. For each type, you need to use separate bags. Make sure that there is no air inside the bag.
If you want to preserve the greens specifically for making soups later, then you will need to chop them before freezing. After you wash and dry all the herbs, carefully chop them. Do not squeeze greens so that they do not lose their juices, which contain healthy vitamins and minerals. Chopped greens can be placed into ice trays. Then fill the trays with water. You can just drop those “ice cubes” into your soups.
In order to preserve the appetizing appearance of your greens, it is important to control the storage temperature. In general, storing greens for a long time is not recommended. The optimal shelf life is 2 weeks. In this case, the temperature should be 0 degrees. Only the correctly stored greens can be good for your health.
What is the best container to keep greens fresh?
You can preserve the freshness of greens with special containers:
- glass jar;
- plastic container;
- plastic bag;
- paper towel.
It is best to put sorrel, spinach, cilantro, dill, celery, parsley, tarragon in a vacuum container from high-quality food-grade plastic. Such containers are offered by many manufacturers. They come in all different sizes, shapes and colors, so you should not have any difficulties purchasing one you like. The container should be thoroughly washed and dried.
Before putting the greens in the jar, you need to remove the bad leaves and cut off the roots. Greens will keep for a long time if stored in a wet paper towel. Wrap wet greens in a paper towel and put them in the refrigerator. Make sure the paper doesn’t dissolve from the moisture. If you decided to store greens in a plastic bag, be sure to tie it tightly. The result should be a kind of ‘ball’ with greens inside, which must be left the refrigerator.
If you do not need to store greens for a long time, then first remove all the bad leaves. Then moisten the roots with water and pack the herbs in different bags. After that, just put them in the refrigerator.
Tips for housewives
Fresh greens have only one disadvantage – a short shelf life. In just a couple of days after the purchase, they already begin to lose their original appearance and healthy properties. Heat and light are the main enemies of fresh herbs. They “kill” all the vitamins. In just a couple of hours, vitamin C can “disappear” from herbs. That is why you need to store fresh herbs in the refrigerator. And if you also know some secrets, then you will be able to save a wide variety of greens for as long as possible.
These are the best secrets for preserving fresh greens:
- After purchase, dill, and parsley should be put in a glass of water.
- Lettuce will be fresh all week if you wrap it with plastic wrap.
- Greens need warm moisture. Putting them in warm water preserves their aroma.
- Mint and dill are best stored in small portions and in foil.
- Onions, spinach, celery, parsley, dill, before being put in the refrigerator, need to be thoroughly dried.
- You can return the good appearance of withering greens by dipping them in hot water and then in cold.
- To preserve not only the benefit but the appearance of the herbs, do not salt them before you put them into the refrigerator.
- You cannot store dill, cilantro, and parsley for longer than three weeks. However, if you freeze them, you can eat them for a month.
- Unwashed greens keep longer than washed ones.
- If you don’t have time to immediately wash greens and pack them into containers, then just use a waffle towel. Wrap greens in it, and put in the refrigerator. It is better if there is a special compartment for storing vegetables in your fridge.
Fresh greens should certainly be included in the daily diet of every person. Not everyone has the opportunity to use the greens just plucked from the garden. But knowledge of properly preserving greens will provide you and your family with a tasty and healthy product. Keep the greens in the refrigerator, get the most health benefits from eating them, and be happy!