Many of us have heard more than once about the excellent taste of eggplants, about their vitamin benefits and multiple recipes for dishes from this amazing vegetable, which almost no one will refuse. But the approach of cold weather makes many housewives seriously think about how to preserve eggplants in the winter season. To do this, you should know a little about the characteristics of this vegetable and the methods of its winter storage at home.
Before starting harvesting eggplant for the winter, it is first of all important to determine the quality of vegetables that will be subject to long-term storage. They must be fresh. There are certain rules, thanks to which you can select suitable fruits that will not deteriorate for the first months of their wintering.
So, it is important to remember the following:
After the vegetables are properly prepared for the storage process, it is important to decide in which way they will be stored throughout the winter. There are several of the most common ways to preserve eggplant during the winter at home.
In order to save the harvest for a long time in the cellar, basement or storerooms, eggplants should be placed in a cardboard box, while they should not be folded in bulk, but carefully packed individually and separated from each other with a dense paper partition. There should be from one to two or three layers in such a box. It is not worth putting a lot on each other, because the lack of air circulation will lead to spoilage or delight of vegetables. Instead of paper, you can use straw or hay, but in this case, the eggplants are laid out in one layer on a straw bedding and covered with burlap for about two weeks to isolate the vegetables from excessive weather and exposure to humid air.
After a two-week period, the eggplants are sorted. For further storage, only whole and intact vegetables are left. After sorting, the eggplants are put back on a dry straw mat and remain in storage throughout the winter. Also, another well-known method for storing eggplants in the basement is to fill them with wood ash in deep wooden boxes, followed by aging at a temperature of +7 ° C. Hanging is an original way to store eggplant in basements or dark places. To do this, at home, use a regular mesh. It is pulled at some distance from the floor, and then the eggplants are laid out in one layer. To avoid souring and rotting vegetables, the room should be ventilated with a mandatory temperature of +3 ° C.
In addition to keeping eggplant fresh for the winter, drying is also practiced. As a rule, vegetables are dried in two ways: naturally or artificially. If you dry eggplants in the open air, then it must be borne in mind that this process can last for several days. To dry the fruits naturally, you need to prepare them in advance - wash them from dirt and dust. Eggplants can be dried whole or cut into several pieces. Having decided on the type of drying, you need to spread the prepared material on a baking sheet or oilcloth with a small distance from each other and place the eggplants in the open air, the main thing is not to get direct sunlight. In addition, you can cut the eggplant into rings and, by stringing them on a string or fishing line, hang them in a well-ventilated room, or outside.
The artificial method involves drying vegetables in the oven. Its advantages are that it is faster and more practical. And also less dangerous to human health, since it not only guarantees the absence of the production of solanine in the fruits, but also excludes the infection of the drying by the larvae of various insects, including flies that land on eggplants dried outside. Drying eggplants in the oven is quite simple. They should be pre-prepared and cut into medium-sized pieces. They must be laid out on a baking sheet and placed in the oven for about 6 hours, keeping at a temperature not exceeding 50 ° C. After the specified time, the drying must be removed from the oven and allowed to cool for 1 hour. If moisture remains in the vegetables, and the pieces are not dried, but dried, then the process should be repeated, reducing the stay of the eggplant in the oven to 1.5-2 hours.
This video shows how to dry eggplant for the winter.
This is the easiest way to store eggplant. It requires a minimum of effort and expense. In addition, frozen vegetables do not lose their beneficial properties than when they are dried. The process of preparing eggplant for freezing is no different from preparing it for drying. The only difference is the size of the slices into which you can cut the eggplant. Since the vegetable does not dry out when frozen, you can cut the eggplant into small cubes, strips, rings, etc.
To get rid of the bitterness of raw eggplant, sprinkle it with salt before freezing, wait about 20 minutes and rinse with water. Putting unsalted eggplants in the freezer, later, they will taste unpleasant.
Also, to preserve the taste of frozen eggplant, after salting, you need to blanch the chopped pieces in boiling water and immediately immerse them in cold water. After a series of procedures, all this is laid out on a plate or tray, covered with polyethylene and placed in the freezer for 3-4 hours. Further, frozen eggplants are taken out of the freezer for packing in bags, packed and put back for storage for a long time.
The correctness of freezing eggplant for the winter is described in detail in this video.
Now you will not surprise anyone with eggplants in the garden, they are found in almost every experienced summer resident. This incredibly tasty vegetable, which from a botanical point of view is a berry with a mysterious name, Dark-fruited nightshade, has long secured its place in Russian cuisine. However, despite the thick peel, there are some nuances and subtleties in eggplant storage.
In our article we will tell you how to preserve and use these wonderful fruits with benefit.
To start preparing eggplants for winter, you need to take a lot of time and patience, because this is a difficult, troublesome and not in a hurry process. The best option for long-term storage is growing and picking vegetables in your garden, as you will know all the nuances:
All of the above conditions should be adhered to, because they will help ensure a long shelf life of the fruit.
If fresh eggplants have a bitter taste, then most likely this is due to the sun's rays, which are formed in them by solanine.
The shelf life of eggplant is on average 10-12 months. It is recommended to store frozen vegetables at temperatures of -18 degrees and below. Do not allow secondary placement in the chamber after defrosting. It is unacceptable to take out, take out into the street, return. Any fluctuations, even a drop in temperature, negatively affect the taste and quality of the workpieces.
Another rule is absolute tightness. Containers with tight lids are used. Thick plastic bags are used. It is important to pack in portions or close securely each time. The best option is double packaging. It reliably protects frozen vegetables from foreign odors and air.
Any, even thin bags are perfect as a second package. It is allowed to use cling film, foil.
The key to a tasty good stock is also how to store dried eggplant properly. If household appliances were used for drying for the winter, then the eggplants should cool. Storage of the finished product for the winter is carried out in large glass containers, cotton bags or small cardboard boxes. The main thing is to cover them tightly to avoid contact with the environment. You can leave containers with eggplant at room temperature in kitchen drawers.
Before preparing caviar, it is necessary to carry out special processing of eggplants. To do this, choose fresh, young fruits with smooth, intact skin.
Caviar is most delicious when the vegetable is pre-baked in the oven or on the grill. To do this, it is necessary to pierce it with a fork in different places and constantly turn it over. If the vegetables are not young, their skin is thick, then it is better to peel it right away. After baking, the eggplants are cut into cubes.
When processing a vegetable on charcoal, a fragrant product with a smoke is obtained. Such caviar will definitely turn out delicious.
Watch the video to get a better idea of how to store garlic in a city apartment:
Young mother, wife and hostess. She prepares tasty and, most importantly, healthy dishes for household members. Therefore, he seeks and tests various options for preserving the beneficial properties of fruits and vegetables at home. The experience gained and the results of experiments is ready to share with readers.
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