How to Store Beets from the Garden?

How to Store Beets from the Garden?

Harvesting beets from your garden can be a rewarding experience, but what do you do when you’ve collected more beets than you can use immediately? Properly storing your beets ensures that you can enjoy their earthy, sweet flavor in your dishes throughout the year. In this comprehensive guide, brought to you by Garden Mentor Insights, we’ll walk you through the steps to store beets from your garden so that they remain fresh and delicious for an extended period.

How to Store Beets from the Garden?

Harvest Your Beets

To store beets successfully, the first step is harvesting them at the right time. Wait until the beets are mature, with the roots reaching the desired size. The leaves should be about 1 inch above the root. Harvesting beets at the right stage ensures their optimal taste and longevity.

Remove the Greens

Once you’ve harvested your beets, it’s essential to remove the greens. Leave about 1 inch of the stem attached to the root. The greens can continue to draw moisture and nutrients from the root, affecting storage quality. However, you don’t have to discard the greens; they can be used in various recipes like salads or saut├ęs.

Avoid Washing the Beets

One crucial aspect of storing beets is to resist the urge to wash them immediately. While the dirt and soil may not look appealing, washing the beets can compromise their storage life. Many vegetables have a natural protective waxy layer, and washing can remove this layer. Instead, gently brush off any excess soil with your hands or a soft cloth.

Store Beets with Soil On

For successful beet storage, transfer the beets into plastic bags while keeping the soil on the roots. This layer of soil helps protect the beets from excess moisture and air. It acts as a natural barrier that keeps the beets fresh and crisp during storage. Place your beets in plastic bags, leaving enough space for each beet to breathe.

Create Air Holes

To ensure that your beets stay fresh, it’s essential to create a few small holes in the plastic bags. These holes allow excess moisture and humidity to escape. Keeping your beets dry during storage is crucial for preventing mold and rot. Seal the bags partially, leaving enough room for ventilation.

Find the Perfect Storage Spot

Now that your beets are properly prepared for storage, it’s time to find the ideal spot. Store the bags of beets in the back part of the lowest shelf in your refrigerator. This spot maintains a stable and slightly humid environment that’s perfect for beet storage. Stored this way, beets can remain hard and sweet for five months or even longer.

An Alternative: If your refrigerator lacks the space, you can also pack your beets in a container filled with moist sand or sawdust. Make sure to layer the beets, ensuring they don’t touch each other, and store them in a cool, dark place.

FAQ’s

Q: How long will beets last in storage?

A: Beets can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 months, or in a root cellar or other cool, dark place for up to 6 months.

Q: How do I prepare beets for storage?

A: To prepare beets for storage, cut off the tops and roots, leaving about 1 inch of stem attached. Rinse the beets gently under cold water, but do not scrub them. This will remove the natural wax coating that protects the beets from moisture loss.

Q: How do I store beets in the refrigerator?

A: To store beets in the refrigerator, place them in a perforated plastic bag or container. This will help to keep the beets from getting too moist.

Q: How do I store beets in a root cellar?

A: To store beets in a root cellar, pack them in a layer of damp sand or sawdust. This will help to keep the beets moist and prevent them from shriveling.

Q: How do I know when a beet has gone bad?

A: Signs that a beet has gone bad include:

  • A soft or mushy texture
  • A slimy or slimy coating
  • A moldy appearance
  • A foul odor

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