In or Out of the Fridge?

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Eggs - in

Butter - in and out (un-used sticks are in and butter dish is out)

Peanut Butter - out

Vegetables - in and out (leafy greens and most veg are in but potatoes, onion, garlic are out)

Fruits - in (except for bananas and dried fruit)

Condiments - in (when opened)

Bread - out

Nuts - in (frozen) unless in a can or are peanuts... then out.
 
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I like to err on the safe side and refrigerate.

 When I'm asked this question I usually go with refrigerate to lessen the chance of attracting bacteria. Some people don't even know when they have had a bout with food poisoning. They chalk up the symptoms like nausea, fever, chills,cramps, vomiting and diarrhea, etc. as some type of bug they caught. Most of my family has a weakened immune system so we like to reduce the chance of food poisoning. It can come on in 30 minutes and can be severe for 5-6 hours. It can move on and become deadly. It can come from many things like cleaning and washing hands, proper cooking etc. What a lot of people don't realize is that a weakened immune system can be the result of many common factors.

Stress, nutrient deficiency, not eating proper foods, not drinking 6-7 glasses of water, not taking vitamins, 30 minutes of exercise a day,

8 hrs. sleep gosh, need to jump off the soap box
 
1,086
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Joined Jun 6, 2007
 
Eggs - in

Butter - in and out (un-used sticks are in and butter dish is out)

Peanut Butter - out

Vegetables - in and out (leafy greens and most veg are in but potatoes, onion, garlic are out)

Fruits - in (except for bananas and dried fruit)

Condiments - in (when opened)

Bread - out

Nuts - in (frozen) unless in a can or are peanuts... then out.
I Agree with @BrianShaw

I would add tomatoes as out, I would add whole melons as out.

citrus fruits for juicing do well when frozen (no need to bag) then release more juice when thawed.  I leave citrus to eat out.

Eggs must be refrigerated in the Americas because they are washed and sanitized (the cuticle is removed), Europe and most of the rest of the world they can stay out.

general rule for any packages foods, you should follow the manufacturers instructions: Mayo out if unopened and in once opened.

Luc H.
 
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There are many exceptions: 

• Sliced multi-grain bread goes in the fridge, 

• Potatoes and onions stay out of the fridge.

• Fruits that are getting ripe too quickly such as peaches, nectarines, avocados... go in the fridge to slow down ripening. 

• Some delicate fruits like strawberries always stay in the fridge. Keep in mind SoCal is usually HOT and things spoil quickly. 
 
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857
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Joined May 27, 2013
Eggs - If they are farm fresh - a same day or 24 hours old out of the bird - out of the fridge for 5-7 days. Then in. Commercial eggs are washed, and the protective coating is removed. Ones from the grocery chain, when I buy them, go straight into the fridge. 

Butter - technically, you don't have to store refrigerated, but if you don't use it often, it can go stale. 

Peanut Butter - Same as butter, but oils generally go stale unless cold. My nuts(!!) are always refrigerated. Peanut butter, when cold is hard to spread, so many keep it out. We don't eat it that often, and might last months in the refrigerator.  I like the nuke machine for that. Works for ice cream too. 

Vegetables - which ones? Generally IN, except tomatoes, but they are technically fruit. Also depends if it's organically grown or commercially manufactured. Each is different in my experience. Commercial baby spinach in the plastic crisper lasts longer than my farmer's market spinach. Not sure why. 

Fruits - again, which ones? Generally IN. Anything that isn't ripe stays out. Apples can hang out a while, I think. 

Condiments - which ones? How often do you use them? Mustard? Mayo? Ketchup (don't eat the stuff. At. All)

Much of this depends on how ripe the fruit is/ are. 

Bread - Depends on the quality of the bread, and if I bought it freshly made or a day old. It also depends on what kind of bread. Sour dough gets sour fast. Refrigeration slows it down, as far as I understand. Generally, it goes in after about 4 days to slow the mold process. Sometimes I'll freeze bread in portions. 

In the end, I live in a smallish apartment with limited space, so most of what I buy gets eaten rather quickly. Also, each thingie has different method of refrigeration. My lettuce last forever wrapped in a cloth napkin and placed in a produce bag in the "crisper." With the root, I should say. 

P.S.What's up with the text boxes? No auto correct, and I can't use left click to spell check? Nicko!!! what did you do?!? What did I do?!?
 
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965
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Joined Apr 4, 2012
Eggs IN

Butter IN --I use it more to bake than to spread, anyway, so it needs to be cold and I don't go through it that quickly.

Peanut Butter--OUT. I buy the kind that separates and it gets too hard in. Plus, I eat it almost daily, so a jar doesn't stick around long enough to get nasty.

Vegetables--half & half. IN for Tender ones except for tomatoes which never go in. Root vegetables and hard squashes OUT.

Fruit--Stone fruit OUT until it is ripe, then IN. Berries, IN. Apples OUT. Pears & Melons, OUT until they are ripe. Citrus IN.

Condiments- Mostly IN but I count pickles, jams, olives and numerous Asian soy and chili preparations as condiments. Don't ever have ketchup or Mayo in the house. The French's yellow mustard in there must be going on 2 years old now. Dijon mustard also IN. Fish sauce OUT. It gets salty crystals when left in.

Bread--baguettes never, ever IN. Whole grain sliced and pita breads always in. They get moldy too fast otherwise. Tortillas--these I understand some people leave out. I always keep them IN.

Most nuts and whole grains I keep in the fridge or freezer, especially whole grain flours. Almonds and peanuts I leave out because they get eaten fast.
 
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Potatoes? What do you guys do with potatoes? Onions/shallot? Garlic? Carrots? Those are way more interesting and IMO up for serious debate.

Bread in my experience goes bad if refrigerated. I never met a tortilla that went mouldy outside of the fridge but I've seen a boatload of mouldy ones in line coolers/walkins. This could be because I'm an unabashed wrap addict at home.

I believe in europe people don't keep eggs in the fridge.

Tomatos will ripen very slowly if at all in the fridge, so I like to get em 80% of the way out of the fridge and then put them in.
 
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"Potatoes? What do you guys do with potatoes? Onions/shallot? Garlic? Carrots? Those are way more interesting and IMO up for serious debate."

Potatoes, garlic. shallots, and onions are stored out, usually in a bin and never together.
 
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I keep my onions in the fridge - less potent when processing.  Garlic is tough I leave it out, but should have moved mine to the basement where it's cooler.  That spell of heat we went through really did a number on them.  
 
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I keep sliced bread in, fresh bread out. English muffins and tortillas are in.

Potatoes are in a lidded basket lined with brown paper bag. Onions in a basket.

Over the past couple of months I've been using peeled garlic that I store in the freezer. I had heard Bridgette from Americas test kitchen say that she does the same so I tried it. It saves me a whole bunch of time peeling and cleaning garlic and it tastes great. That's in a minute. Except when a dish calls for raw garlic like tzatziki or a dressing I use fresh.

I keep all fruit except bananas in the fridge but only because I like to eat it cold.

I keep peanut butter in the fridge.

My mother keeps vegetables like potatoes onions and tomatoes in small crates under her bed. Lots of old timer Greek farmers do this. No clue why.
 
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My mother keeps vegetables like potatoes onions and tomatoes in small crates under her bed. Lots of old timer Greek farmers do this. No clue why.
Ok. If this is true, I'd like someone to speak to this.

If not, then I am on a mission to find out why. /img/vbsmilies/smilies/lookaround.gif  
 
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according to mcgee refrigerating potatoes causes some of the starch in the potato to convert (magically?) into sugar, which I think I've tasted before. Almost every resto I've worked in has stored pots in the fridge, whereas I never do at home. So the AB comparison between home and work seems like a no brainer... but maybe it's just psychological. :p
 
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Nothing magical about it, when the long starches freeze they break down into shorter starches which are sweet, freezing a raw potato will make it pretty sweet, so I'm sure some time in the fridge starts the process.
 
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My grandmother told me that during WWII the Italian soldiers would steal food and the German soldiers would walk right into the house and demand that food would be given to them. Maybe they thought that if they hid food it wouldn't be taken. Or maybe it keeps better in a cool dark place.
 
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Chefross--I'm interested in why you never store the potatoes, garlic, shallots, etc,. together. I keep them together in a bowl but I feel like the garlic sprouts too quickly--is there something about storing those things together that I should know?
 
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Chefross--I'm interested in why you never store the potatoes, garlic, shallots, etc,. together. I keep them together in a bowl but I feel like the garlic sprouts too quickly--is there something about storing those things together that I should know?
Terry...Onions and Garlic give off gasses that can hasten sprouting in potatoes. I keep the onions and garlic in baskets on the counter and the potatoes in the drawer under the stove.
 

cerise

Banned
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Whenever possible, but not always, I refrigerate most items because I have limited space, hate cluttered countertops,  and want to avoid bugs.  (I had a fruitfly problem once, and there was no fruit in the house.) I also don't buy in bulk (i.e. 5-10 lb bags of potatoes, onions, etc.).

Recently I started a thread "Yolanda's Fridge." I would love to own one of those. ;-)

http://www.cheftalk.com/t/85825/yolandas-fridge

Meanwhile lol

Potatoes, onions, garlic, oil go in the pantry

Most Bread products in the fridge (I had thought about buying a cool-looking breadbox (below).  But, again, have limited space, don't like clutter, and eat fresh products within a few days (when possible).

Butter - in the fridge

vegetables - usually in the fridge

Fruit, it depends - Berries in. If it needs to ripen (i.e. avocado, bananas)  - out

I keep pasta in clear lidded  glass jars in the pantry or counter

I keep lemons and/or limes in a glass apothecary jar (similar to the one below) on the countertop

I may not go by all the "rules" since I go by my eating/shopping habits/necessities and personal preferences.


Thought about something similar, but don't have space & again, don't like food left out
 
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Joined Nov 15, 2012
Most of the stuff mention so far is in.

Potatoes in, I like the starch conversion this causes

bread in cause it sits too long

onions and garlic in because they can sit too long

eggs in, they are lumped in along with dairy after all

Nuts stay out because they disappear fast, but a lot of nuts will develop mold if left out too long

A chef around here suggested tomatoes loose their flavor if fridged, so for heck of it I now buy them in lower quantity and they are out

On that last note I can say for sure that Cape Gooseberries loose a lot of their wonderfulness eaten right out of the fridge, and since they also have good shelf-life they are out

Rick
 
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why the potato sweetens is not clearly understood but it has to do with 2 enzymes:

Unless it rots, a potato is living tissue in stasis.  It's actually a battery of energy to start a new plant in spring.

When the plant prepares for hibernation a starch making enzyme takes over assembling glucose (sugar, monosaccharide) into starch (saccharide polymer or polysaccharides). To be ready for the next spring, another enzyme is activated which breakdown starch into glucose (sugar). 

In low humidity and cool temperature, the starch and glucose enzymes stay in stasis, one stops the other from working. In near freezing cold temperature, the starch enzyme becomes weaker and the glucose enzymes wins over the tug of war which releases glucose (sugar).  It is thought that the glucose serves as antifreeze to prevent the flesh from freezing.

In spring, warm and humid soil actually activates the enzyme for glucose and inhibits the starch enzyme.  The sugar is released quickly and serves as energy source to build enough roots, stems and leaves to reach the sun so that the plant switches to sun power (photosynthesis) to make sugar (energy).

Seeds are also batteries and work on on a similar process but sweetening in cold is somewhat unique to potatoes.

Luc H.
 

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