Keeping Greens and Veggies Fresh
Remember that what works for one keeper may not work
for another, variances in Refrigerator temperature as well as the care the
greens got at the grocery store has a lot to do with how long they last.
The most critical element is
to pick the best greens possible from the shelf, of course. Look for greens
- Crisp – greens should stand upright when you
grab one, feel crisp to the touch, etc.
- Good color – as little yellowing as possible
(none is best) and no blackening if possible
- Not sitting in standing water (leeches out
Here’s what to do once you
- Immediately wash the greens in cold water
- Segregate greens into piles by kind (Mustard
alone, turnip alone, etc.)
- Lay the clean greens in piles on a kitchen
towel, let them air dry here for 15-20 minutes
- Grab a plain, cheap clear gallon baggie for each
kind of green. Do not mix kinds!
- Tear greens up into the baggie, one kind per
container, about the size you’d want to feed them or a little larger.
Handle the greens as little as possible. For some using a sharp knife
works better than hand tearing, hand tearing extends their lifespan for
- Inside each bag, on top, place a dry paper
towel. Carefully squeeze out the air in the bag and close it when the air
is mostly gone.
- Each day, when making salads, tip the bag over
the sink to pour off any excess liquid that accumulates (usually there’s
not enough to worry with) and check to make sure the paper towel is not
real damp (if it is, change it!).
- Each day make sure you seal the bag well,
pushing out the air without squishing the greens.
For Hard veggies (Winter
Squashes, Parsnips, etc)
- Same procedure as above, however go ahead and
shred or mince these
- Separate into baggies by kind, do the same dry
paper towel rule.
For Summer Squashes
(Yellow), Zuccini, or Fruit:
- Wash upon arrival
- Cut off only what is needed for each day. I use
a dollar store hand grater for this and just grate right on top of the
- Seal the ends of the squash or fruit with saran
- Do not cut more than is needed for one meal.
- At the store, shake the water off the greens
before bagging them. You’re charged on weight, why pay for water?
- If the greens are priced “Per Pound” then take the bundles apart and get what you need. Don’t
pay for nasty, crumpled, spoiled, stalky greens
from the center. If they are priced “per bundle” then you have to, but
usually they are per pound just bundled.
- Its OK to rinse out the greens bags, turn them
inside out, and hang them to dry for re-use.