Help the development of the site, sharing the article with friends!

Properly stored vegetables will retain their valuable properties and keep us he althy throughout the year. At what temperature and where to keep vegetables so that they do not lose their nutritional value?

Why do nutritionists recommend eatingvegetablesevery day? In addition to the fact that they contain vitamins and minerals necessary for the body, vegetables are the best source of dietary fiber, which regulates the intestines, lowers cholesterol levels, cleanses the body, and by filling the stomach, makes us satisfied faster.

Vegetables - nutritional values ​​

Some vegetables have a lot of protein (green peas, broad beans, corn, Brussels sprouts, kale) and starch (corn, green peas, broad beans, parsley root, celery). Kale, carrots, leafy vegetables, pumpkin, squash and broccoli provide a lot of beta-carotene, and cruciferous vegetables, pepper, horseradish, parsley and spinach - a lot of vitamin C. Thanks to this, they protect us against free radicals, preventing the body from aging.

Vegetables, especially green vegetables, are also a rich source ofvitaminsfrom group B (necessary for the work of the nervous system), especially folic acid and vitamin PP (niacin) and vitamin K. Chard , pumpkin, Brussels sprouts, white cabbage, spinach and parsley are a rich source of vitamin E.

In vegetables we can also find valuable minerals: calcium, phosphorus, iron, magnesium and potassium. Thanks to this, they have an alkalizing effect. They are involved in maintaining the body's acid-base balance. In addition, they counteract obesity, lower blood pressure, prevent infections, heart and circulatory system diseases and some cancers. They also have bactericidal and fungicidal properties.

Why do nutritionists recommend eating vegetables every day? In addition to the fact that they contain vitamins and minerals necessary for the body,vegetablesare the best source of dietary fiber, which regulates the functioning of the intestines, lowers cholesterol, cleanses the body, and by filling the stomach, makes us faster satiated.

Vegetables - the best fresh

Of course, vegetables straight from the garden are the tastiest and he althiest, but we can eat them only seasonally. Those that are available in winter or spring do not have the same taste and so many valuable vitamins. During long storage in vegetablesbecause there are many intense processes that reduce their quality and nutritional value. Why? It turns out that enzymes are still active in the carrots, parsley or beetroot we keep in the cellar. Thanks to them, vegetables grow, mature and … breathe.

The respiration of plants is that complex compounds such as starch or pectin (soluble fiber) are broken down. Thanks to this, simple sugars - glucose are formed. After 3-4 months of storage, parsley or celery contain less starch and pectin, and more simple sugars. They lose their firmness and are lighter than those straight from the backyard.

In addition, organic acids and vitamins, especially vitamin C, are broken down under the influence of enzymes contained in plants (cabbage loses about 18% of vitamin C, and potatoes 70%).

But that's not all. It is worth remembering that vegetables contain as much as 80-90 percent. water (leafy vegetables up to 95 percent). During storage, water evaporates through the skin, and vegetables wilt, lose their firmness and freshness. Therefore, they are less resistant to microbial and fungal attack. So they break faster.

But in the stored vegetables, there are also beneficial changes related to the maturation of the plants. Their color changes, e.g. in tomatoes and peppers the chlorophyll disappears and valuable carotenes are formed, e.g.lycopene . Essential oils are also produced - substances responsible for the aroma of vegetables, e.g. in garlic, onions, carrots and parsley.

How to store vegetables to avoid nutritional loss?

If the vegetables are kept at the right temperature and humidity, they will keep their quality longer. Although it will not stop unfavorable processes, it can slow them down significantly.

For example lowering the temperature by 10oC two or three times slows down the speed of some processes. On the other hand, too high temperature and low humidity in the room where we store vegetables cause them to wilt and dry out. High temperature and too high humidity are conducive to the development of mold and rotting of vegetables. And storing vegetables with access to light causes the breakdown of sugars, facilitates the production of green shoots in root vegetables and the sprouting of potatoes.

We should also remember not to store vegetables in tightly closed foil packages under any circumstances. Plants generate a lot of heat when they breathe - they heat up and rot faster.

Root vegetables: Carrots, parsley, celery, beets, leeks and cabbage can be stored in higher ambient humidity at 1 to 4 degrees C, e.g. in unheated basements. You can lay them loose or put them in boxes and sprinkle with damp sand to avoidwere drying up. Cabbage and leeks intended for storage should not be washed. They have a thin waxy film that protects them from water evaporation.

Onions and garlic require low air humidity and temperatures from 1-7 degrees C. It is best to store them in airy places (attics, gazebos). However, remember not to freeze them. It is good to tie them in bunches and hang them or arrange them in boxes.


Storage time of vegetables in the pantry

  • 4-6 months at approx. 1 ° C:beets ,onion , garlic,horseradish ,carrot ,parsley , radish,scorzonera ,celeryroot,leek ,cabbagewhite, Italian, red.
  • A few weeks at 10 degrees C:kohlrabi ,cauliflower , Chinese cabbage,Brussels sprouts,zucchini ,pumpkin , eggplant,peppers , unripe tomatoes and celery.
  • Not longer than 2 weeks at 10-12 degrees C: greenbroad beans ,broccoli ,chicory ,green beansicucumbers .
  • 2-3 days at around 12 degrees C: green peas,cornsugar, ripetomatoes , parsley , dill, chives, radish, lettuce,sorrel ,asparagus ,spinach .

Remember not to store tomatoes in one place with other vegetables. Tomatoes breathe in producing ethylene. This substance accelerates the respiration and germination of certain vegetables such as: broccoli, cauliflower, head cabbage, Brussels sprouts, cucumbers and spinach.

Frozen vegetables retain their nutritional value

Frozen vegetables (root vegetables, legumes, broccoli and cauliflower) are gaining popularity. Thanks to them, you provide the body with valuable vitamins, mineral s alts and dietary fiber throughout the year. Frozen vegetables do not lose their nutritional value and retain their high quality even after several months of storage. All because the low temperature (-18 degrees C) inhibits the activity of enzymes and microorganisms that cause rotting of vegetables. As a result, respiration and maturation processes are significantly slowed down. Vegetables do not lose water through evaporation.

While leeks and carrots stored in the cellar are dried out at the end of winter, frozen carrots retain the appearance and flavor of fresh vegetables. However, there is a condition. Vegetables should be frozen quickly at a low temperature of -18 degrees C, then they look fresh. If freezing is too slow at higher temperatures (from 0 ° C to -6 ° C), after defrosting the vegetables will be soft and soggy.

See the gallery of 9 photosYou must do it

Remember to:

  • vegetables, especially those from the store, thoroughly wash them with a brush under running water before removing them
  • peel thin - the most nutrients are found under the skin
  • peel with stainless steel tools
  • rinse, do not soak
  • steaming or in a little water, covered
  • initially cook the cabbage without a lid, then cover it
  • serve immediately after preparation, do not reheat
  • Cauliflower, broccoli, asparagus, white or savoy cabbage, Brussels sprouts boil with milk. This results in a better taste and protects vitamin C against decomposition
  • shred vegetables for salads just before consumption
  • do not pour the vegetable stock, use it to prepare soups and sauces (they contain water-soluble vitamins).

Silage is rich in vitamin C

Souring is a recommended method of storing vegetables, which prevents loss of vitamin C. Sauerkraut contains much more of this vitamin than fresh in a cellar. Pickling causes the sugar contained in vegetables to ferment. Lactic acid is formed which inhibits the growth of microorganisms and gives the vegetables their characteristic flavor. Sour vegetables can be stored in tightly closed packages for several months, preferably in a cool place.

Vegetables in vinegar, i.e. pickled vegetables

Vegetables can also be preserved with vinegar, which protects them against deterioration and prevents color changes. It gives a characteristic flavor to vegetable preserves and lowers the amount of vitamin C in the product (we lose it during cooking).

Greenhouse vegetables

Also in winter we can enjoy the taste of tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers and broccoli. Vegetables grown in a greenhouse are in no way inferior to garden vegetables in terms of nutritional value. Although they really differ in taste from ground vegetables. They are less durable than root vegetables. It is best to keep them in the refrigerator for no longer than 2 weeks.

"Zdrowie" monthly

Help the development of the site, sharing the article with friends!