Now that the main harvesting season is over, you need to store everything that’s left. This is a guide on how to store your produce during the winter.
How To Store Your Produce During the Winter
During the winter, the focus of any farmer shifts from growing food to storing it. There are numerous different methods for storing produce, but if you don’t know the nuances of each food group, you might not store your produce properly.
Nonetheless, as long as you know what you’re doing, storing your produce is a relatively simple process. Here is how to store your produce during the winter.
Understand the Differences Between Types of Produce
Each type of produce that you need to store will have different storage preferences. Vegetables generally store well in dark, dry areas with adequate ventilation and a cool room temperature.
Cardboard boxes and wooden crates work well for storing produce, but if your crop requires more air circulation, then you can’t stack the boxes on top of each other. You must learn how to choose the right packaging for fruits and vegetables before you store them.
Damp sand is the most suitable storage solution for root vegetables like beets, carrots, and potatoes. As for leafy greens such as kale or lettuce, these typically do not store well, so you should eat them or give them away soon after harvest.
Hard fruits such as pears and apples are the easiest to store because they are resilient.
Dry Off Your Produce Before Storing It
Although it affects the texture and flavor of your produce when you eat it, drying off your fruit also makes it easier to store. Drying your produce before storage helps to make it more compact, prevents clumping, and also eliminates microorganisms that can spoil your food.
You should also wash your produce after harvesting it to preserve your food and dry it before putting it in storage.
Freeze Everything Else
A cold, dark basement or garage can serve as a storage area for most of your produce. However, for the rest of your food, you can throw it in your freezer.
Freezing your food is the best method for long-term storage, but not all food acts the same when frozen. Produce that works best in the freezer includes berries, peas, and rhubarb.
Overall, no matter which crop you grew this season, you need to check to make sure that you store it properly. Now that you know how to store your produce during the winter, you should be able to do this with ease.
Recipes to Try:
- Oat and Blackberry Smoothie
- Pancetta with Roasted Butternut Squash and Kale Pasta
- West African Smoky Hot Pot
Stacey is a Southern girl with a taste for travel, thriving on the discovery of the world through food. After spending many years traveling and living overseas, she’s now back home in her beloved deep south enjoying life with her three little ones and loving the adventure. She’s a food stylist and food photographer, as well as, the creative behind Little Figgy Food, where she loves to inspire others to try new flavors and foodie techniques.