Are Your Potatoes Past Their Prime? Tips To Store Them Properly
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Potatoes are incredibly versatile and can be used in a wide range of dishes, both as a primary ingredient and as a complement. They can be mashed, boiled, fried, roasted, or even used in curries, snacks, and desserts. Potatoes are grown throughout India and are readily available in local markets at cost-effective prices. Different regions in India have their own unique potato-based recipes like aloo paratha, dum aloo (spiced potato curry), potato stew, and more.

While there are many recipes in which you would wish to use potatoes, you should always use fresh ones. Unexpectedly, there are a variety of reasons why potatoes can become bad. The amount of time a potato lasts depends on a number of things, including how it is stored and whether it is cooked or not. When potatoes deteriorate, they are no longer suitable for cooking.

Even the highest concentrations of some harmful chemicals may be present in rotten potatoes. How can you prevent a potato from spoiling rapidly, and how can you tell when a potato has gone bad? Let's look at some tips for preserving the freshness of this vegetable and avoiding consuming tainted food.

How To Tell The Potatoes Have Gone Bad?

When evaluating if potatoes are bad, there are various indicators to watch out for. The most obvious symptom is a change in colour. The potatoes should not be consumed if they have turned green.

A change in texture is another warning to keep an eye out for. They've gone bad if they've turned mushy or soft. Additionally, they shouldn't be eaten if they have begun to sprout, acquire black spots, or have an unpleasant scent.

It is not as easy to identify deterioration in cooked potatoes as it is with raw ones. However, you should be aware that rotten cooked potatoes can release a potent foul odour if you have a cooked potato and you feel it is going bad. A cooked potato with mould on it should never be consumed. Moulds can resemble coloured patches or fuzzy growths.

How Long Do Potatoes Last?

If properly stored, fresh potatoes can survive for between two and five weeks. Keep them in a pantry or cellar that is cold, dark, and well-ventilated. When kept in a refrigerator in an airtight container, cooked potatoes can last for 3 to 5 days.

On the other hand, when properly stored in the refrigerator, baked potatoes can survive for up to 5 days. To keep the potato fresh, it's crucial to take off the toppings and wrap it in foil or plastic wrap. The storage times shown above are merely estimations. Potatoes have a variable shelf life in reality. This is dependent on elements like storage conditions and potato quality.

The 6 Tips To Store Potatoes Properly

You'll have more cooking freedom and safer produce to deal with if you keep your potatoes fresher for longer. Let's have a look at some suggestions you may use to make sure your potatoes stay fresh for longer.

Select Fresh Potatoes: When purchasing potatoes, it's crucial to choose the freshest and firmest ones available at the store. Look for potatoes that are free from cuts, bruises, or any signs of decay. Fresher potatoes tend to last longer in storage.

Location: Potatoes need to be kept in a cold, dry, and dark area. Potatoes should be kept between 45 and 50 degrees Fahrenheit (7 and 10 degrees Celsius). They should not be kept in humid environments as this can cause rotting and sprouting. Vegetables can be stored in a special vegetable drawer in the refrigerator, a cool, dry pantry, or a cellar.

Avoid Sunlight: Never expose potatoes to direct sunlight. Solanine, a naturally occurring molecule that may turn potatoes green and make them hazardous when consumed in excessive quantities, can be produced in response to sunlight. Green potatoes ought to be thrown away.

No Plastic Bags: Plastic bags should not be used to store potatoes. Plastic bags can prevent appropriate air flow, which can cause moisture to accumulate and encourage rotting. Use a breathable storage option as an alternative.

Ventilated Container: Potatoes should be kept in a ventilated container, such as a wooden box, a mesh bag, or a wicker basket. The potatoes' freshness is prolonged and moisture buildup is prevented by these containers' ability to circulate air around the potatoes.

Freezing Potatoes: There are a few things to keep in mind when freezing potatoes for longer-term storage. Because potatoes have a lot of starch, when frozen for a long time, the starch can turn into sugar, changing the flavour and texture. It is advisable to blanch potatoes first by short boiling or steaming them before freezing if you intend to freeze them. This keeps their quality intact for a few months.