Onions & Potatoes

scpalmettoApril 6, 2014

For many years we have had a small cart with open shelves in our kitchen and I kept the onions, garlic, some squashes and potatoes on the shelves in pretty baskets. There will be no room for the cart or any open shelves (at least that will work for veggies) in the new kitchen.

Where do you keep your veggies that do not need refrigeration?

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romy718

In my pantry. There's a tomato & garlic in the plastic bin but I just moved the tomato out to a bowl on the kitchen counter. Since the pantry is dark, I think it sped up the ripening of the tomato? I bought the wooden chalkboard bins at Target.

This post was edited by romy718 on Sun, Apr 6, 14 at 13:03

    Bookmark   April 6, 2014 at 1:00PM
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terri_pacnw

Where did you get the pull out handled "holey" plastic bins?

I like the wood chalkboard fronted ones too, but totally dig the handle idea on the others.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2014 at 2:21PM
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snookums2

Container store has a variety of plastic handled bins.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2014 at 2:56PM
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justmakeit

I keep my potatoes and onions in the pantry in a similar set up to romy (though my bins aren't nearly as nice as hers). But I'm not sure it's a good place, because the potatoes sprout so quickly. I'm thinking I need to find a cooler dark place.

My friend and I were actually having a conversation about this recently, wondering how we could approximate a root cellar in our houses, and thinking that someone should design a small appliance for this, lol.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2014 at 3:39PM
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justmakeit

There are some clever suggestions

Here is a link that might be useful: here.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2014 at 3:41PM
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junco East Georgia zone 8a

America's Test Kitchen/Cook's Country did a series of experiments recently and concluded that the refrigerator is the best place to keep white potatoes.

Here is an excerpt from their results:

As expected, the potatoes stored in the cool, dark place were firm, had not sprouted, and were crisp and moist when cut. There were no negative marks on the potatoes stored in the refrigerator, either. Although some experts say that the sugar level dramatically increases in some potato varieties under these conditions, we could not see or taste any difference between these potatoes and the ones stored in the cool, dark but unrefrigerated environment.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2014 at 3:54PM
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romy718

The handled containers are from The Container Store, 2 sizes & fairly inexpensive ($4-$5). I find the handles especially useful on upper shelves in the pantry & laundry room.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2014 at 7:22PM
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carolssis

I always store my onions and potatoes in fridge. Onions don't put out so much juice when I cut them, so I rarely suffer from watery eyes when slicing. Potatoes have to be stored there, no "cool" places in Az. even in winter. Have not noticed any difference in taste.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2014 at 10:16PM
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gabbythecat

I've always stored potatoes and onions in the fridge. Our house often gets very warm due to our wood stove (for heat), and porches are too cold a good part of the year...I've honestly never thought about doing it any differently. Although many of the storage solutions are nice looking, I don't know what I'd do with them!

    Bookmark   April 6, 2014 at 11:18PM
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susanlynn2012

I always store my onions and potatoes in my refrigerator. I even store bread in the refrigerator and freezer as I take some out to freeze so it will not go bad.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2014 at 11:26PM
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olivertwistkitchen

That was a big concern for me as well so I made sure to have pull out bins in my (new) pantry for onions and potatoes. They are in the wicker baskets (both of which have plastic liners).

    Bookmark   April 7, 2014 at 9:24AM
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olivertwistkitchen

But I also wanted space for my apples and bananas and bagels that always seem to take over the counter. So I did this.

    Bookmark   April 7, 2014 at 9:26AM
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andreak100

I've almost always stored onions and potatoes in the fridge. Garlic too. (I tend to keep bread items in the fridge as they will stay fresher longer there and bread comes to room temperature pretty quickly or I'll heat it up briefly if needed.)

I've always been curious as to others keeping them out instead of in the fridge and figured that it was a throwback to the days before fridges and particularly before the days of the giant fridges we tend to have in our homes. No doubt, if I were in a European country and had one of the small fridges, I'd have to find another location to store those items, but being as I'm not, they just stay in the fridge. :)

    Bookmark   April 7, 2014 at 10:48AM
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scpalmetto

I believe these veggies were always stored in root cellars in days gone by. Cold but not as cold as today's fridges. I generally swear by Americas test kitchen but there seems to be far more research against storing these items in the fridge than the other way round. Personally, I just don't like the taste of potatoes after they have been refrigerated and my vidalia onions store much better in a cool, but not cold, dark spot, they get mushy if I refrigerate them.
Love the idea of some of those baskets, hope I can find something similar. .

    Bookmark   April 7, 2014 at 11:07AM
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sjhockeyfan325

Easy, I only buy as much as I need right away!

We had a root cellar of sorts in our previous house - it was an outdoor closet that had a mesh air vent.

    Bookmark   April 7, 2014 at 11:54AM
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scpalmetto

There you go! That would be the perfect solution. My MIL lived right off a main street where she could walk to buy all her groceries. She never had many totes, she only bought enough for that day. Those were the days, I have to drive 8 miles just to get the basics.

    Bookmark   April 7, 2014 at 3:09PM
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desertsteph

I've seen the bins with handles at W.

    Bookmark   April 7, 2014 at 5:55PM
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sjhockeyfan325

What is "W"?

    Bookmark   April 7, 2014 at 6:35PM
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