Storing vegetables in order to keep them fresh, and make them last longer is one of the most important grocery tasks. For people with exceptionally busy schedules, buying groceries every other day can be a little challenging, as their hectic schedule can get in the way of it.
You can’t go out to refill your fridge with salad items, meat, and dairy every other day, if you’re doing a 9 to 5 job. And, this isn’t the case with people who work, even single people living in studio apartments prefer buying their groceries in one go.
It’s only sensible to do grocery shopping that will last you for at least a week. Even if you’re someone who likes buying fresh, dewy vegetables, it is not possible to purchase them every day. Whether you’re tight on your schedule or simply can’t afford the transport to a grocery store every other day, knowing how to store vegetables is important.
If you’re in charge of the cooking in the house you should definitely know how to store vegetables. The seasons always arrive in full swing, be it cold, dry winters, or super-hot summers. And, each season brings with it a fresh produce of vegetables and fruits.
You may’ve often heard your elders saying that you should only eat the season’s produce. Out-of-season vegetables and fruits don’t have the same freshness, and can make you sick. Summers, for example, are always big on fresh and cooling cucumbers, while winters come with a fresh produce of delicious root vegetables.
The only thing you can do to keep the vegetables and fruits fresh is through storage methods. However, this can be tricky because there are some vegetables that can rot very quickly.
Cucumbers are one of them. Ideally, you should never buy more than a week’s supply of cucumbers because they have high water content. The longer you keep them in the fridge, the more likely they are to dry out, and eventually rot.
Sadly, even with your best intentions to keep cucumbers fresh, at the end of the week, you will always find a rotten or bruised cucumber. Thankfully, there are numerous effective ways to store cucumbers
and make them last for an entire month! Imagining a vegetable with high-water content like cucumber,
surviving in your fridge for more than a week can be hard.
However, it’s possible. The key to storing cucumbers is to cut them up, and then proceed with the different storage methods. By cutting them up, not only will it be easier to pack and store them but they will stay fresher.
All you need is a just little bit of creativity and some extra attention to last your cut cucumbers for weeks. Read on to find the super-effective ways through which you can stock cut cucumbers.
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Freezing any vegetable or meat is one of the oldest proven methods of preserving them for longer. There is very simple science behind freezing any kind of food. Warmer climate encourages microbial activities. Therefore, when you freeze any food, all the microbial activity, including yeast and insect growth immediately seizes.
This is the reason why meat is quickly kept in the freezer after buying from the shop. Similarly, cucumber slices can be easily frozen and used for up to a month. All you have to do is cut up the cucumber slices, wipe them dry with a paper towel, and then freeze them.
You can use either a freezing container or a plastic ziploc bag to store the cut cucumbers. This will increase their shelf life from 3-4 days to up to 2 weeks. However, make sure to use them within a few days because in the end, there is no replacement for fresh vegetables.
Pickling is a wonderful and extremely delicious way of storing cut cucumbers. If you’re someone who is big on tangy side dishes with just about every meal you have, then you will love pickled cucumbers. A plethora of pickle recipes can be found on the internet.
However, if you don’t have the time to get fancy with multiple ingredients, you can make cucumber pickles using the classic recipe. All you have to do is cut up the cucumbers and mix in equal parts of water and vinegar.
Season the cucumbers with salt, pepper and any other spice of your liking. Leave the mixture to rest in the fridge so that it can release all that tangy goodness. Wait for one whole day before you eat it with your meals. Biting into the sour and pungent cucumber slices will truly add a wonderful kick to your
Lemon and salt together make the best solution to keep your meat, vegetables, and fruit fresh and super-crisp. Anything that is used to keep meat from rotting will definitely keep the veggies dewy too.
If you want to keep cucumber slices in the fridge but are finding that they become soggy and lose their freshness too often, then try infusing them in lemon and salt. Both lemon and salt work together to keep cucumbers firm for a longer time!
After you’ve sliced cucumbers, cut up a fresh lemon wedge, and squeeze it over them. Follow with a few pinches of salt and mix everything nicely. Not only will they stay fresh but also extremely delicious to eat when cooled.
You can store cut cucumbers in lemon and salt for up to a week. The only thing that will change is their taste but their freshness will remain intact.
Another cool way (pun intended) to store cucumbers is to make ice cubes out of them. This will of course require you to freeze them but it is one of the quickest ways to get pre-cut cucumbers. The idea behind freezing cut cucumber into ice cubes is to use them in cooking when you’re pressed for time.
They will definitely stay fresh in the freezer, and can be conveniently taken out when you need them in a go. If you want to freeze cucumber for salads, you can also try squeezing in a few carrots and cabbage in the ice cubes.
All you will have to do is pop the ice tray out of the freezer at least an hour prior to making your salad. Allow the veggies to thaw completely and then throw them in the bowl for quick salad. If you’re big on hydration, you can also try popping a few cucumber ice cubes in your drink.
Not only is it delicious but you will never have tasted an ice cube healthier than this one. Instead of freezing full slices, you can even grate the cucumber and then store them in ice cubes. Grating them will allow you to add more variety in your dishes.
If you’re making sandwiches, you can quickly thaw the grated cucumbers in the ice tray, and add them in the chicken mesh.
Instead of freezing them in ice trays, you can also save cut cucumber in salad containers. Chop up other veggies as well along with chunks of meat, and throw in the salad mixture in a nice container. You can label your pre-cut salads with fresh cucumbers, with each day of the week.
Take them out from the freezer and pop them in the micro for a few seconds when you want a quick dose of a healthy, fresh salad. Season and enjoy.
During winters, vegetables like cucumbers can become too frozen if they’re kept overnight in the fridge. This is because not only is the fridge exceptionally cold but the outside temperature adds to the frost.
You may have found the cucumber wilted and extremely frozen in the fridge. Although, keeping them in the crisper drawer helps keep them fresh, they still end up freezing in winters. You should ideally lower down the refrigerator’s temperature so that the vegetables can survive in an optimal environment.
However, if you don’t like cold vegetables or can’t bring down the temperature due to other food items,
If anything, they’ll stay crisp and fresh because the cold atmosphere will subdue any bacterial activities. Hence, storing at room temperature is one option that you can try during winters. Another good way to stock cucumbers in your kitchen is to keep them safe high up in a basket.
You can even try aligning them in a kitchen crate, if you own one. Sliced cucumbers should be ideally kept in a bowl and covered properly if you’re going to keep them outside. Pour in some cold water if you’re going to use them in a few hours. This will keep them fresh for the meanwhile.
This method of storage is not meant for long-term use, because the cucumbers are all sliced up. Nonetheless, it will still help you keep them fresh for a few days when the nights are super-cold.
Another delicious way to store cut cucumbers is to make cooling and refreshing popsicles out of them. When making a popsicle, you won’t be pureeing all the cucumber slices. Try to leave a few slices within the cucumber mash for a chunky, tangy popsicle.
If you don’t like eating vegetables, this is a great way to include them in your diet. Kids love popsicles and this is a very good way to slip in some cucumber hydration into their diet. So, if you’re worried about how to store cucumber slices then now you know.
There are many recipes that can tell you how to make a tasty popsicle in minutes. However, if you want to keep it simple, simply mash the cucumber slices leaving a few just like that for the chunky taste. Add in some honey, maple syrup, lemon, and your favorite seasonings.
Pour the mixture into popsicle molds, and allow to settle and freeze completely. This may be an overnight process, so be patient. However, once these popsicles are ready, they will be the most irresistible snack you’ve ever had.
Cucumber popsicles are extremely cooling, hydrating, and refreshing when eaten in the summer heat. With so many benefits, you don’t have to worry anymore about storing your cut cucumbers because popsicles are here to save the day.
The good thing about popsicles is that they can be stored in the freezer for as long as you want. As long as they’re fresh, you’re good to go.
Another great way to make cucumber slices last longer, and benefit from their hydrating qualities, is to
use them up in detox drinks. Cut up some lemon wedges and apple slices along with the sliced
Fill a jug with water and put in all the slices. Leave the water in the fridge for an hour or so to help the vegetables and fruit release their nutrients. You can use this detox water for 3-4 days.
With such wonderful and creative ways of storing cucumber, you have no excuse not to buy them. It’s time to fill up your fridge with these delicious vegetables, and use one of the methods above to help them stay fresher for longer.