From the time, immemorial we have been following few practices with respect to cooking and storing food items and never questioned if we were doing it the right way.
Here are few things we have been doing the wrong way:
Storing honey in the refrigerator:
Honey is one of the items which goes from the shopping bag directly to the refrigerator. The place of honey is not the cool air conditioned zone but outside on your counter top. Honey has this amazing property of pulling moisture from the air. So, when kept in a cool dry place away from sunlight, your bottle of honey will remain liquid and fresh. It has high acidic content and low water content, which will prevent any bacteria from growing. So not refrigerating will not spoil it. In fact, if honey is put in the fridge, it crystallizes. In case, honey turns darker over time, do not panic it’s the nature of the substance and is still edible.
No tomatoes in the fridge:
We think all vegetables, especially juicy ones like tomatoes rightly deserves a place in the overcrowded refrigerator. Tomatoes tend to lose all their taste and flavour once kept in the fridge. Harold McGee’s of ‘On Food and Cooking,’ says the cold temperature of the fridge will break down the membranes inside the tomatoes walls, turning it rough and dry when eaten raw. Tomatoes should be stored in a bowl or basket on the counter.
Ketchup not beyond 3 months:
We believe in money saver packs and buy large bottles of ketchup and leave them untouched for months together. Did you know ketchup is to be consumed once opened within three months? Ketchup stored at room temperatures after opening for more than 3 months tend to get spoilt. Bacteria and molds secretly tend to grow on them and change the smell, constitution and/or colour of the ketchup rendering it useless for consumption.
Washing vegetables post cutting:
Vegetables and fruits contain a lot of nutrients. When you wash them after cutting most of the nutrients tend to get washed away in your sink. It is best to soak them in salted water or wash in running water before cutting.
One of the most common culinary error is exposing vegetables to too much heat. This tends to break down most of the nutrients. Similarly, boiling the vegetables and throwing away the water is equivalent to pouring nutrients into the sink. The water-soluble micronutrients like riboflavin, folate, and B and C vitamins tend to get into the water when vegetables are boiled. Instead of overcooking or boiling try steaming them and tossing on medium heat in a saucepan.
Freezing is not always a great idea:
Freezing may stop bacteria and fungus from growing your perishable items. However, freezing for long periods takes away the taste from the items whether vegetables, fruits or meat.
Old habits die hard, but change is for better health and should be adopted as soon as possible, so what are you going to change today? Do share in the comments below!