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Preserving Vegetables: These Methods Exist

Garden owners certainly know it: the zucchini seem to literally explode, and at the same time the first beans are ripening and the tomato harvest exceeds all expectations. So that the vegetables do not spoil, you can preserve them and stock up for the winter yourself. There are various methods for this, which we would like to briefly introduce to you in the following article.

Boiling and canning

In these processes, foodstuffs filled in jars are sterilized by heat. This renders harmless microorganisms that would lead to spoilage.

A distinction must be made between boiling and canning:

  • When preserving, the food is layered in the glass, poured over with a broth or syrup, and boiled down in the alarm pot or oven. The air in the glass expands due to the heat. When it cools down, it contracts again and a vacuum is created that seals the containers airtight.
  • When preserving, the food, for example, jam, is filled into jars while boiling hot and these are sealed without reheating. This only works if the preserve has a high sugar or acid content.

Freeze

When frozen, almost all healthy ingredients are preserved. For storage, the vegetables are cleaned, chopped up, and, depending on the variety, briefly blanched. You can then freeze it in portions in containers or special freezer bags.

Drying

This process has been used to preserve food for thousands of years. A classic is dried tomatoes, zucchini, or apple rings. During drying, the liquid is almost completely removed from the food, so that mold and rot no longer find a breeding ground.

Vegetables and fruits you can:

  • in the air,
  • in the dehydrator,
  • or in the oven
  • dry.

Insertion

Vegetables such as peppers, onions, or celery can be preserved by pickling them. The classic of the foods preserved in this way is probably the pickle, which should not be missing from any snack.

The process is very simple: the vegetables are layered in a glass and poured over with a hot or cold broth. Stored in a dark and cool place, the pickled food will keep for many months.

Ferment

You are probably familiar with lactic acid fermentation from the popular sauerkraut:

  1. The cabbage is cut into thin strips with a cabbage slicer.
  2. An earthenware pot is lined with cabbage leaves.
  3. A few centimeters of shaved cabbage is placed in it and pounded with a wooden masher until juice comes out.
  4. A salt and spice mixture is sprinkled over it and a new layer of cabbage is added.
  5. Again, pounding and seasoning.
  6. Finally, cover everything with cabbage leaves, put the lid on, and weigh it down.
  7. In the cool cellar, the herb ferments within three to six weeks.
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Written by Emma Miller

I am a registered dietitian nutritionist and own a private nutrition practice, where I provide one-on-one nutritional counseling to patients. I specialize in chronic disease prevention/ management, vegan/ vegetarian nutrition, pre-natal/ postpartum nutrition, wellness coaching, medical nutrition therapy, and weight management.

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