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Tips on Storing the Summer Harvest

Posted 8/5/2019 11:14am by John and Aimee Good.

Tips on Storing the Summer Harvest 

To download this as a pdf, click here.

Cucumbers - Store loose in the crisper drawer of your fridge, not in plastic bag or container unless cut. Will keep for 1-2 weeks. Great for preserving and making fresh pickles, lacto-fermented pickles, or canned pickles! 

Eggplant - Eggplant prefers to be stored at warmer temperatures than the fridge. We keep it in our “warm” cooler in the barn, which is set to 50 degrees. However, for household storage, you can store it on the counter for 1-4 days. It may start to get wrinkly skins after that time, but it still fine to use. You can also keep them in the fridge, but it may get dark spots, cold damage, after about 4-5 days.  

Greens - Leafy greens need to have their moisture content controlled. You do not want them to be too wet, or they can get slimy, yet if they are too dry, they will wilt. The dry air of a refrigerator will pull moisture out of greens if left exposed to the air, causing them to wilt. So the best storage is in an air-tight container, ie. a plastic bag, a tupperware container, etc. You may want to place a towel in with them, a dry one if they are really wet, or a damp one if they are dry.

Onions & Garlic - These alliums should be stored in a dry, cool, dark location. In a basket in a kitchen cupboard is a fine location. Sweet onions should be used within 3 weeks. Red onions should keep for 1-2 months. Garlic will keep for many months!

Melons - Watermelons can be kept on the counter until ready to eat. Store any uneaten portion in the refrigerator. Muskmelons can be kept on the counter for 1-2 days only. If not going to eat within 1-2 days, it is best to store them in the fridge. We pick them fully ripe, when they turn color and slip easily from the vine, and they will continue to ripen and can become soft and over-ripe if left out for too long. Muskmelon can also be easily frozen, for “Easy Melon Sorbet” or “Melon Smoothies”. (Recipes are available on our website!)

Peppers - Peppers should be stored in the crisper drawer of the fridge, loose, not in a bag. They will keep for 1-2 weeks. They also freeze beautifully. For short term storage, just de-seed and chop and put into freezer bags. For long-term storage (and highest nutritional content), it is best to blanch in hot water first, then cool in an ice water bath, dry and freeze on a tray. Then transfer to freezer bags, squeezing out the air.

 Potatoes -  Potatoes prefer cool, dry, and dark storage. They can be kept in a brown bag or basket lined with a plastic bag to hold the dirt, in a kitchen cupboard, or dry basement cupboard. Potatoes keep well if unwashed until ready to use. We generally just rub the dirt off before including them in CSA shares. You can wash them when you take your veggies home for use that week, or store them dirty until ready to cook.

 Roots - Roots are grown in the ground, and they prefer a humid environment as well, about 80-90% humidity for most. Roots cannot be stored loose in the fridge, even in a crisper drawer, or they will lose their crispness and become rubbery. They can be stored loosely in a bag or wrapped in a damp towel and stored in an air-tight container. Roots stored properly should keep for several weeks, including beets, carrots, etc. If edible greens are attached, such as beet greens, it is best to remove greens and store separately.

Sweet Corn - It is best to eat your sweet corn soon after getting your share, within 1-2 days it will be at its sweetest. Store in the fridge until ready to eat! Any unused portions can easily be frozen after blanching in hot water and cutting off the cob.  

Tomatoes - For maximum flavor, tomatoes should not be stored at less than 50 degrees. A normal refrigerator is 40 degrees, so it is best to store them on the counter. They should keep for a few days up to a week depending on how ripe they are. 

Tomatoes are very easy to freeze! Just core and half or quarter tomatoes and pack into quart-size plastic ziploc freezer bags, squeezing out excess air before sealing. In the winter, you can thaw and use in any recipe calling for a can of tomatoes. (Skins remove easily when thawed.) I love to make tomato soup with these in the winter, and it has the most amazing fresh tomato flavor! I cook 1-2 bags of frozen, thawed tomatoes with onion, garlic and 1-2 cups of broth. I puree it with a stick blender, and add salt, pepper and herbs, and sometimes sour cream. Amazing!

Zucchini & summer squash - Zucchini & summer squash actually prefer to be stored slightly warmer than the fridge, about 50 degrees is ideal. However, since we don’t generally have a 50 degree space in our modern houses, you can either leave out on the counter in a cool house for up to a few days, or store loose in the crisper drawer. They do not need to be in a bag or container. These should keep for 1-2 weeks.  

Your farmers,

John and Aimee Good

The Good Farm

8112 Church Road

Germansville PA 18053





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