Melon is a favorite honey treat that can be enjoyed fresh for several months a year. The melon culture has a drawback - poor keeping quality. But if you know the secrets of how the melon is stored at home, you can use the honey culture until the New Year.
Can melon be stored
Many housewives on New Year's holidays want to please household members with beautiful and original dishes. Fresh, sweet melon will decorate the table, filling the winter air with a honey scent. But in order to preserve freshness for a long time, you need to know all the intricacies of storage.
Melon storage times in a cellar or basement:
- fruits of late varieties can be stored for up to six months;
- summer - 1 month;
- mid-season - 4 months.
Important! Melon can stay in the refrigerator for no more than 30 days.
What varieties of melon are suitable for storage
Melon is a vegetable from the pumpkin family. It contains vitamins and trace elements, is easily absorbed by the body, helps in the digestion of food, and is considered a valuable dietary product. Fiber, contained in it, rid the body of bad cholesterol and improves digestion.
Not all varieties are suitable for long-term storage. Good keeping quality is observed only in those with dense pulp and a pectin content of at least 4%.
Summer melon varieties are not suitable for long-term storage. Therefore, they are consumed or processed immediately. To keep it fresh for several months, slightly unripe fruits of late varieties are chosen.
Winter varieties for long-term storage:
- Walking around;
- Turkmen woman;
Important! Since late-ripening varieties are removed from melons in an unripe state, their taste and aroma are not pronounced. But when stored, they acquire a honey flavor and a sophisticated smell.
How much to store cut melon
Since some varieties are large in size, it is difficult to consume a whole vegetable right away. It cannot be left at room temperature, as the cut slices will quickly become weathered and begin to rot. There are several ways to store a melon: freezing, drying, conservation.
How long does cut melon keep in the refrigerator?
The cut melon can be kept in the refrigerator for up to 48 hours. Since during long-term storage, it loses its beneficial properties, loses its taste and aroma, and releases ethylene, which is harmful to health. Even when stored in the refrigerator, the vegetable begins to dry out and deteriorate.
How to store cut melon properly
Many housewives make a gross mistake by storing the cut melon in the refrigerator, after wrapping it in plastic or putting it in an airtight container. A melon culture in an enclosed space actively releases ethylene, which leads to rapid drying out and accumulation of substances harmful to the body. To preserve the cut slices for a longer period, cover them with a cotton cloth or paper napkin.
Advice! In order not to harm the body, the cut melon cannot be stored; it is better to eat it right away or put it into processing.
If it is not possible to consume the fruits fresh, they can be dried or frozen. Frozen melon does not lose its useful qualities, and when defrosting, it fills the apartment with an unforgettable aroma.
Freezing is a simple and effective way to preserve freshness and flavor. The dense pulp is cut into involuntary pieces, laid out on a baking sheet and put into the freezer. After they freeze, they are packed in bags or sealed containers. The frozen product can be stored for about 1 year.
The sliced wedges can be dried. For this:
- The prepared fruit is cut into 2 cm thick slices.
- They are laid out on a baking sheet so that they do not come into contact with each other, and sent to an oven preheated to 200 ° C.
- After 15 minutes, the temperature is lowered to 80 ° C and the door is opened for better air circulation.
- After 6 hours, melon slices are finally dried in a well-ventilated room for final moisture loss.
- Store the prepared product in a glass jar with a tightly closed lid or in bags made of natural fabric in a dark, dry room.
How to keep a melon for the winter
Melon is a melon culture that does not have a high keeping quality. But in order to preserve it for a long time, it is necessary to choose the right fruit and create favorable conditions for it.
How to select fruits suitable for long-term storage
When buying a melon for long-term storage, you need to consider the following nuances:
- A light but dim mesh on the peel should occupy no more than half of the surface. This indicates an average degree of maturity and good quality.
- The ripeness stage can be determined by the pronounced aroma.
- Melon intended for storage should have a firm spout. In overripe fruits, the nose is soft and the melon will not last long.
- The peel must be free of mechanical damage. If the fruit has dents, black spots or the stem is missing, then they will quickly begin to deteriorate and rot.
If the melon crop is grown on a personal plot, then it must be prepared for long-term storage in advance.
Medium late varieties are planted in early June so that the harvest ripens in early September. Irrigation and top dressing are not carried out 2-3 days before harvesting, since potash fertilizers shorten the shelf life. 7 days before harvesting, it is necessary to break the stalk to stop the outflow of nutrients.
The crop is harvested in dry, sunny weather, early in the morning, so that the fruits do not have time to heat up in direct sunlight. I remove the melon culture from the vine along with the stalk. The harvested crop is laid out under a canopy for 10-14 days. Drying is necessary to evaporate excess moisture. In dried fruits, the flesh becomes firm and the skin is rough.
Important! The harvested crop must be regularly turned over, leaving the side in the sun for longer, which was in contact with the ground during growth.
A properly harvested crop, subject to storage rules, can last until the New Year holidays.
In what conditions can you store
Long-term storage can only be achieved when favorable conditions are created:
- temperature and humidity conditions - the storage temperature of the melon should be within + 2-4 ° C, air humidity 60-85%;
- air circulation - fruits are stored in a container with holes in a dark, well-ventilated, dry place.
Before storage, the fruits should not be washed, as excess moisture will lead to rapid decay.
Melon quickly absorbs odors. Therefore, it should not be stored next to fruits and vegetables. Apples, beets and potatoes release a volatile substance that ripens quickly, so this neighborhood is undesirable.
How to store a melon in an apartment
Melon is a melon culture that cannot be stored for a long time at home. If it is not possible to keep it in a cellar or basement, it is better to recycle it. A sweet vegetable makes delicious, aromatic jam, compote, candied fruits and healthy melon honey,
You can save a melon in an apartment for no more than 7 days. The main condition for good keeping quality is the absence of sunlight, since ultraviolet light accelerates the ripening process. Therefore, the best storage space would be the closet, closet, and under the bed. For better preservation, each fruit is loosely wrapped in paper or cotton cloth.
Melon can also be stored in the refrigerator on the bottom shelf. But if you do not use it after 15 days, then at high humidity and low temperature, the fruits will begin to rot, the pulp will lose its elasticity, and the taste will not change for the better.
Important! Fruits with signs of rot are not recommended to be consumed, as they can cause serious harm to the body.
How to save a melon until the New Year
Melon storage for the winter is possible only in the cellar or basement. There are several ways to keep fresh:
- In a net - each fruit is placed in a vegetable net and suspended above the floor so that they do not touch each other. Every 30 days, an inspection is carried out, rejecting rotten and softened specimens.
- In boxes - boxes are filled with sand or sawdust. The melon is placed vertically, stalk up, dividing each fruit with loose material. To preserve juiciness and freshness, the melon is dipped ¾ of its length in the filling.
- On shelves - if a lot of fruits are removed for storage, then this method is ideal. The shelves are covered with soft linen, sawdust or hay. The fruits prepared for storage are placed in one layer, leaving an interval of at least 30 cm. For better preservation, a separate soft nest is made for each specimen, which will avoid the appearance of bedsores, which lead to rapid decay. Once a month, the melon is inspected and turned over.
Important! Before laying for storage, the fruits are treated in a 25% solution of chalk or lime.
The melon is kept in the refrigerator, cellar and basement. But in order to keep it for a long time, you need to know certain skills. Observing simple rules, the fragrant fruit can be served throughout the winter, while it will not lose its taste and aroma.