Best method to ‘properly’ store potatoes so they stay fresh for ‘six months’

TikTok user asks viewers if potatoes belong in the fridge

Potatoes are arguably the most versatile and comforting vegetable there is. However, there are three common battles that households may face when storing potatoes—potatoes growing sprouts, turning green or wrinkling.

To avoid this, food experts at Tesco have shared how to store potatoes “properly” so they last “for up to six months”.

They claimed that potatoes can even have a “great shelf life, lasting for six months”, if people know how to “store potatoes properly”. The experts have shared their “easy-to-follow” tops to stop spuds from “going green, sprouting, or wrinkling”.

A couple of weeks after the weekly shop, potatoes will start to sprout, shrivel, shrink, and soften, especially if kept in the wrong conditions. 

Potatoes need air circulation, so don’t suffocate them in a plastic bag. They’re “best kept” in a mesh or paper bag. 

READ MORE: Best tip to store bread to retain flavour’ – avoids it going ‘stale’ or ‘mouldy’

The experts added: “It’s also crucial that potatoes are stored away from other fresh produce, particularly onions, as they release ethylene gas.

“This means that your fruits and veggies will ripen one another too quickly, so your potatoes should be stored separately to stop this.”

Instead potatoes “must be kept” in a cool dark place, otherwise the light will cause them to “photosynthesise and sprout”. 

Plus, the temperature must be below 10°C. The food pros said: “If you want your spuds to stay in tip-top condition, we recommend popping them in a paper bag and stashing them away in a dark place of your choosing.”

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A porch cupboard or garden shed are all “great options”, and households can always use their fridge to store potatoes.

How to keep potatoes from sprouting

In order to extend the lifespan of potatoes for up to six months, the experts recommended that households cure their potatoes.

Curing potatoes is the process of allowing air to dry the potatoes for 10 to 14 days. 

This will toughen the skin and heal any minor cuts or bruises before long-term storage.

To cure potatoes start by picking the right ones. Aim for bulky potatoes with thick skin, like brown potatoes, but these must have “no large puncture marks, soft spots, mould, blemishes, or shovel damage”.

The next step is to brush the dirt off of them instead of washing them. It’s important not to wash the potatoes, as this “adds moisture that can encourage them to sprout”. 

The third step is to “toughen them up” by putting the potatoes on a sheet of newspaper in a dark place – it’s important they don’t touch, as air needs to circulate between the spuds. Leave the potatoes here for a couple of weeks.

Finally, store them in a well-ventilated, cool, dry place below 10°C. Check every few weeks to ensure that there aren’t any sprouted or spoiled spuds in the batch, as “they can ruin all your hard work”.

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