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Why You Should Never Refrigerate Tomatoes


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  • Storing a tomato at room temperature (68 degrees F) allows it to maintain its existing volatiles (substances that give it its flavor) as well as produce more of them
  • Storing a tomato at refrigerator temperature (39 degrees F) causes its volatiles to break down
  • Volatiles associated with green and grassy notes were those hardest hit by colder temperatures, which explains why refrigerated tomatoes lack that fresh-picked flavor
  • Storing tomatoes below 50 degrees F may also lead to changes in texture, premature softening, surface pitting, and increased decay (this is true even prior to harvest)
  • If you want your tomatoes to ripen quickly, put them in a brown paper bag; they will release ethylene gas that will help them to ripen quickly (this also works for green tomatoes)

By Dr. Mercola

There's not much in the produce world that can compare to the flavor of a fresh-picked tomato. But this flavor – that to some portrays the very essence of summer – is extremely vulnerable.

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