A fresh, crisp salad is the perfect accompaniment for BBQ food. Even with a modern fridge, wilting and slimy patches can occur, so here’s some tips for keeping your salad ingredients fresh, for longer.
Line a plastic storage contained with paper towels, add your leaves and place another layer of paper towels on top before shutting the lid – don’t pack them in too tightly. A hard-sided box prevents the leaves being knocked or bruised by other foods in the fridge and the paper towels help absorb excess moisture.
This salad fruit comes from a warm climate, and that’s how it likes to be stored. Only the ripest tomatoes will cope with refrigeration, which affects flavour, colour, taste and texture, so keep them cool, but not cold. If you do need to pop them in the fridge once they are completely ripe, place them stalk-side down, and allow a couple of hours at room temperature to recover before using.
Cucumbers thrive and last longer at room temperature. They can develop chilling images, including pitting, accelerated decay and water-soaked areas. If you do need to store them in the fridge, keep them towards the front of the shelf where it’s warmer. Finally, don’t store cukes with tomatoes (or melons or bananas) as they are high ethylene producers, and our sensitive cucumbers will spoil very quickly if they’re exposed.
Store your pears at room temperature until fully ripe (4-7 days) – you’ll know it’s ripe when it yields to a gentle squeeze. If you want to ripen them more quickly, put them in a brown paper bag, and add an apple for even speedier results. Once ripe, store in a plastic bag in the fridge and they’ll last for another 3-5 days.
Keep it whole, keep it wrapped, keep it chilled, and you won’t go far wrong. Ditch the plastic bag it came home in and wrap it in aluminium foil – tightly enough to keep moisture locked in, but not so tight it bruises the stalks.
Avoid moisture whenever you can, so don’t wash or cut your bell peppers until you’re ready to use them. Store in the crisper of your fridge in perforated plastic bags or wrapped loosely in plastic wrap, and they should stay fresh for a week.
Have a look at ideas for unique ingredients to add into your salad.