Foods You Should Never Refrigerate
Considering that this time last century many households did not have any refrigeration at all, it is amazing how we now love to shove all of our groceries into our fridge! This explains the rise in the popularity of huge, larder-style refrigerators. Whilst there are some foods, such as cooked meats, that absolutely have to be stored below 4 degrees C for food safety reasons, there are many that do not fare well at these lowers temperatures so perhaps we should start to think more carefully about what we keep in our fridge.
It is true that many products require refrigeration and this can even make them last longer, but as consumers, we also have to know what kinds of foods can get damaged in the refrigerator. Some lose their nutritional properties, whilst others lose their natural texture and flavours. Here is a list of foods you should never refrigerate for any reason.
Most of us are guilty of putting tomatoes in the fridge but they lose their flavour at lower temperatures and this makes them blander. Their texture is also altered because the cold breaks down their interior membranes making them more floury. If you place an unripe tomato in the fridge it will never ripen!
When potatoes are placed in the fridge, the starch inside them turns into sugar and causes their flavour to change. Instead, store them in a ventilated place in a paper bags. Potatoes hate being stored in plastic bags!
The idea behind storing bread in the fridge is that you will stop it from going mouldy but this is a huge mistake. Bread ages quicker at low temperatures and loses its flavour. Instead, put it in a cool and dry place. If you can’t use it all within a few days you can successfully freeze it.
These fruits come from hot climates they are hardly going to like it in the fridge! If you place pineapple, watermelon, peaches, avocados and bananas in the fridge you are simply accelerating their decomposition.
It is common for people to keep all cheese in the fridge because people believe that it prolongs the shelf-life. However, fridge can be a bad environment for some cheeses because it changes their flavour and makes them blander. Dry cheeses, such as like parmesan, can lose a lot of their distinctive flavour in the fridge. As an alternative, you can use a hermetically sealed container at room temperature.
Melons and peaches
At less than 10 degrees, these delicious foods lose their flavour and some of their nutritional properties. Keep them at room temperature.
Keeping honey at low temperatures is a serious mistake. Honey contains natural preservatives – thanks to its pH it can last for long periods in your kitchen cupboard. When you keep honey in the fridge, it tends to crystalize and lose a lot of its health-giving properties.
When olive oil is in the fridge, it gets condensed and hardens. It takes on the consistency of butter and also loses its great flavour. Keep it in a cool cupboard instead.
When chocolate is stored below 4 degrees C, a white layer forms that makes its flavour change. It is best to keep it at room temperature and out of the light. Of course, high temperatures are not great for chocolate either – it just melts!
When coffee is stored in the fridge, it undergoes changes similar to that of chocolate. It creates a new layer that changes its flavour and it also loses its distinctive smell.
Grains, pasta, flour and sugar
These types of foods are best stored at room temperature. When they are in low temperatures, they lose their vitamin content as well as their flavour and texture.
Most cooked meats have to be stored under refrigeration to stop spoilage and pathogenic micro-organisms from multiplying. However, some speciality meats are so highly treated that their available water content is too low to support microbial growth. It is safe and preferable to store them at room temperature as this maintains their special flavour.
Basil cannot be refrigerated because the low temperatures dry it up quickly and accelerate the decomposition process.