The Proper Ways to Store Your Produce

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1. Apples

Store apples in the refrigerator, ideally at a temperature between 30ºF and 35ºF (the latter is usually considered ideal in general). Put them in the crisper drawer, with a damp paper towel over them. According to some sources, the fruit’s lifespan decreases noticeably for every ten degrees above 30ºF; it has also been said that they soften ten times faster at room temperature than when refrigerated.

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2. Arugula

If you buy this bitterish salad green unpackaged and tied in bunches, trim the ends, then wrap it in a damp paper towel and put it into a vented bag. If it’s in a clamshell or sealed bag, just refrigerate it — but pay attention to the use-by date on the package and discard the arugula if it gets too old. Bacteria can develop on the leaves even if they still look healthy.

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3. Asparagus

To keep the spears fresh and crisp, trim the ends slightly, then stand the asparagus upright in a jar or glass half-filled with water. Fit a plastic bag loosely over the tops of the spears and refrigerate them.

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4. Beets

Cut the leaves off the beets, then store both in separate vented bags in the refrigerator. (Beet leaves make a delicious cooked green; younger, more tender ones can be tossed in salads.)

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5. Blackberries

Summer berries tend to grow moldy quickly. Cook’s Illustrated once counseled washing them in a vinegar bath (three parts water to one part vinegar), then spinning them dry in a salad spinner and storing them in a partly opened container lined with paper towels. An easier plan for blackberries and other varieties is to pick out and discard any berries that look damaged or are beginning to mold, wash the good ones gently, spread them out in a single layer on a plate or platter lined with paper towels, and stick them in the fridge.