Delicate foods are often delicacies on the table, well worth a lesson on storing eggplant. Something like the noble eggplant must have special attention to get the retain the flavor and get full enjoyment and nutrition out of it. Storing vegetables is well worth the effort when handled with care. Coming from the nightshade family of plants, the eggplant is actually a fruit and is quite versatile. It is relatively easy to grow, has a deep purple color and is readily found in produce markets or grocery stores.
How To Store Eggplant In Refrigerator
According to studies, eggplant can be kept for a couple of days outside of the refrigerator but only if the skin is not cut. The eggplant will perish quickly if the skin is punctured and left at room temperature. The inside of the fruit is tender and quickly perishes when exposed to room temperature air.
Clean each eggplant with warm water. Cut pieces must be kept in the refrigerator and prepared in a certain way for freezing and long-term storage as detailed below. As with all fresh vegetables, it is better to eat while they are fresh out of the garden, but are nearly as good when properly stored in the freezer.
Uncut eggplants will stay fresh for about a week in the refrigerator. Be sure to place them carefully without cutting or scrapping the skin. The skin is an important part of the plant that keeps them fresh for a longer period of time either in or out of the refrigerator. Storing eggplant in the vegetable drawer keeps it away from the freezer compartment so that it stays cool without freezing. Use the eggplant as soon as possible and within 5 days of refrigeration to avoid shriveling and aging.
Keeping eggplant fresh in the freezer for long-term storage requires a little preparation. Before freezing eggplant, carefully wash them in warm water then peal the skin and chop off the ends. Slice it into 3/8-inch-thick slices and boil in a gallon of water with a cup of lemon juice added for four minutes. Remove the eggplant slices carefully with a straining spoon and place into a bowl of ice water. Let sit for five minutes and add ice if necessary to keep the water chilled. Putting the eggplant slices in freezer bags will last up to five months. Vacuum sealed bags will extend the life of eggplants in the freezer to 14 months. Another option is to batter dip the slices to coat them in bread crumbs before freezing them on wax paper which is all put together in a freezer bag. They are all ready to fry after defrosting with no trouble. Eggplant may be a delicate fruit and require a bit more attention than other fruits or vegetables, but learning storing eggplant properly is well worth the extra effort.
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