Talley Farms Box produce handling tips
Produce will last longer if it’s stored correctly. Some fruits need to be left out on your counter to ripen, some need to be refrigerated. Some vegetables want to be stored in bags and some can be stored loose. The following tips come from our own experience and usage and produce storage tips will be included in each Talley Farms Box specific to the items in your box.
The best way to store strawberries (and all berries) is to NOT WASH THEM UNTIL YOU USE THEM. When you get your strawberries home in your box, take them out of their plastic containers. Pour them into a plastic bowl or container with a lid and put them in your refrigerator. This is especially important when you purchase a large quantity like a half flat of berries from a grower. If you leave your berries exposed to the air in your fridge, they will start to dry out and shrivel up.
Carrots and Radishes
Carrots and Radishes will become limp and soft if you store them loose in your refrigerator. When you get your Talley carrots or radishes home, cut the tops off and store them in a zip lock bag or sealed plastic container in your refrigerator where they will stay fresh for weeks. Talley carrots are sweeter than store-bought carrots and we usually grow special purple radishes which are milder than the red variety.
Talley Farms Lettuce
Whether it’s Romaine, Green or Red Leaf, or Butter, our lettuce is very fresh and has been pre-cooled to take the field heat out. For convenience, take your lettuce out of your box, cut off the butt, and place the head in a strainer in your kitchen sink. Open up the head and wash the leaves under running water, pulling the leaves apart. If you use a veggie wash, spray the leaves and rinse. If you have a salad spinner, use it. Then, place the leaves in a plastic container (a rectangular crisper or bread box size works best). Turn the container upside down to drain out excess water.
Wash the outside of all your melons before placing them in your fridge or on your counter. Remember, melons grow sitting on the ground, outside where critters and birds roam and dust blows with the wind. Just use hand soap to rub over the melon, rinse thoroughly, dry and place in your fridge or on your counter.
We harvest our avocados a week before you get them, but still, they are very hard. It may take another 7-14 days before they are ready to eat. Leave them out on your counter and keep an eye on them. When they turn dark and soften, wash with soap and water and put them in your refrigerator or eat them right away. We know it would be great to have them almost ripe when you get them, but they are freshly harvested and if you get some every week, just rotate them and you’ll always have ripe fruit ready for that fresh salad.
Don’t refrigerate your tomatoes. Leave them on your counter to ripen. They lose their flavor when they get too cold! If they come in your box not as red as you would like, leave out on your counter and they will continue to ripen.
Cilantro and Parsley
Cilantro and parsley will stay fresher longer if you trim the stem ends and wrap wet paper towels around the bottom of the stems. Place the bunch into the plastic bag and store in your vegetable crisper. To bring life back to bunches that are "wilty," trim stems ends and stick the bunch in a cup or bowl of water for a few hours. Then store as recommended above.
Beets will stay fresh for weeks if stored correctly. Did you know you can enjoy the beet tops too? Cut the tops off your beets and store the beets themselves in a bag in your refrigerator. Wash the beet tops and store them in a plastic container with a lid in your refrigerator. Beet tops are super nutritious and are a great addition to smoothies or stir fry recipes.
Broccoli and Summer Squash
Usually broccoli and summer squash are placed loose in our Talley Farms Boxes. To store in your refrigerator, place the broccoli or squash in a baggie or container, close and store in the refrigerator. If you place these vegetables loose in the refrigerator, they will become dehydrated and turn soft and squishy. Be sure and always wash these items before cooking them.