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Refrigerator space


radtek
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I have a 21cu Frigidaire. The shelving arrangement has been optimized and organized. When it wasn't arranged properly the interior cooled poorly and stayed in the low 40's. Problem fixed with some reorganization.

 

So I got good storage for everything but vegetables. There are two humidity controlled bins at the bottom that look like they could hold a lot but that's an illusion... They simply do not have enough space for the basics without cramming.

 

Any ideas? Vegetables stored out of the bins fare badly in my experience.

 

 

Also, how about refrigerator organization? Most people's fridges that I've seen are a nightmare chaos. 

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We've solved our fridge storage problems.  ....long pause..... we have two fridges.  Sorry.  I couldn't resist.  :raz:  We had our son living in the house for a couple of years and bought him his own fridge.  He's long moved out but we still have the fridge.  Makes life much simpler.

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Darienne

 

learn, learn, learn...

 

Life in the Meadows and Rivers

Cheers & Chocolates

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lol folks... I already have the aforementioned fridge, a 4.7cu fridge (holds beer or kegs), a kegerator and three chest freezers... My first instinct was to get another but I just lack produce space. Thought you guys might have a solution or a special container or whatnot.

 

Then I remembered my parents had this set of tupperware they used to store lettuce, green onions and celery with paper towels. One was a bowl lid combo designed for a head of iceberg and the other a deep rectangular combo that a large bunch of celery could fit in. I should have grabbed them.

 

Went for more produce and also picked up a couple 3"deep rectangular Rubbermaid Takealongs. I got some open bagged baby bok choy and green onions in one and the lid isn't fully snapped down. Stored outside the bins on the bottom shelf. 

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So I had one of these same Frigidaire's with the two separate humidity control bins and also ran into the same problem.  Here's what I did to solve it.

 

1.  Use small plastic tupperware containers to create additional 'zones' for veggies.  

2.  I would do a hack to control humidity by opening the microwave vent and adding in a sealed desiccant package inside.

 

I would just have a collection of desiccant sizes.  The only thing you need to remember is to dry out your desiccant package after use, so keep a collection of them in a dry area to rotate them out.

 

Just save desiccant packages from foods that have them in the package.

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My 'other' fridge is a specially designed 'garage refrigerator', made for cold environments.  I had to replace my older model because it would stop working when the temp in the garage got too low.  The new one works fine and I ordered it from Sears.

The garage model is only available with the most basic features.  The shelves are wire, not glass and the drawers are wire also so they are not the 'crisper' type and there is no freezer section.

To my surprise,I have found that the produce I keep in the garage lasts longer than what I keep in my fancy side-by-side with the double crisper drawers!  It may be that the produce I keep in the garage is somewhat different than what's in the kitchen, but I don't think so. 

By the way, I've recently begun using http://www.amazon.com/Freshpaper-Produce-Saver-Sheets-Set/dp/B00QUDOG92/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1428067418&sr=8-1&keywords=fenugreen and my produce last much longer now (see the many positive reviews at Amazon.  (No affiliation.)

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Actually, our garage fridge is not a special fridge but when it's really, really cold we simply put a 40 watt bulb inside it and it works fine and so does the freezer.  Right now it's going up to plus 8 today and there's a 25 watt bulb in it.  Then in the summer, out comes the light altogether.  And all is well.

 

ps. Note that we live in East Central Ontario.

Edited by Darienne (log)
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Darienne

 

learn, learn, learn...

 

Life in the Meadows and Rivers

Cheers & Chocolates

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So I guess that settles the question of whether the light goes out or not when the door is closed!  :laugh:  

 

I may look into the paper that sounds interesting. Also finding some specialty produce containers with adjustable vents online.

 

Next fridge I buy (hopefully not too soon) produce storage will be a big factor. Surprising that the bins aren't bigger on contemporary models.

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My 'other' fridge is a specially designed 'garage refrigerator', made for cold environments.  I had to replace my older model because it would stop working when the temp in the garage got too low.  The new one works fine and I ordered it from Sears.

The garage model is only available with the most basic features.  The shelves are wire, not glass and the drawers are wire also so they are not the 'crisper' type and there is no freezer section.

To my surprise,I have found that the produce I keep in the garage lasts longer than what I keep in my fancy side-by-side with the double crisper drawers!  It may be that the produce I keep in the garage is somewhat different than what's in the kitchen, but I don't think so. 

By the way, I've recently begun using http://www.amazon.com/Freshpaper-Produce-Saver-Sheets-Set/dp/B00QUDOG92/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1428067418&sr=8-1&keywords=fenugreen and my produce last much longer now (see the many positive reviews at Amazon.  (No affiliation.)

Hi Lindag, I just went to Amazon's site to check out this product, and here's the thing that stopped me cold: "Once in use, FreshPaper sheets last for about 3 weeks (or when its delicious maple scent starts to fade)." I don't think I want maple-scented produce. That seems so bizarre. Does this bother you at all? Or maybe it's not that strong. But it has to be strong enough to be able to "start to fade," right?  :unsure:

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Bed, Bath and Beyond (and likely other places)  carries these green plastic bags that are "breatheable" and are allegedly wonderful to store produce in the fridge. I have a friend who has a large garden and swears by them. They're reusable.

Don't ask. Eat it.

www.kayatthekeyboard.wordpress.com

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Radtek,

Is it possible you are refrigerating items that don't need refrigeration that is taking up space?  

 

Are you buying produce too far in advance?  

 

Of course I don't know your household size which could explain why your fridge is crowded.  

 

I buy my produce the same day, or sometimes the night before, I cook/eat it.  In Europe and Latin America, this is the norm where fridges are often quite smaller than your 21 cu foot.  

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This^^^ indeed is a pertinent question!

 

IMO it's not practical or wise to run by the grocery store every day in suburbia and the closest is 3 miles. My situation.

 

In my ideal world I buy and stock the bulk of dry goods once a month or so and then have a corner store within easy walking distance where I can pick up fresh produce such as onions conveniently as needed on a daily basis. Unfortunately this is not possible- as I'm likely to find only bananas and perhaps an orange in any corner store in my neighborhood. Beer and lottery...

 

Most of the year it's too warm to store bulky onions and potatoes etc at ambient temp, even when it is cool- I've tried and have found refrigeration in the bins is the best choice for my environment. 

 

Primarily it's the leafy stuff such as salad mix or cilantro and parsley that I have to contend with spoiling so fast. 

 

 

Every spring I have a crop of short-day onions. A real pain in the rear to store I always lose some to rot and mold so it's best to use them rapidly.

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With regard to the Green Papers: I haven't detected any scent from the sheets themselves or on any of the produce I tried (I have tested many different types of veg, including green onions, strawberries, sweet peppers, parsley, etc.)

And in reading the Amazon reviews I didn't find anyone else who reported an odor.

 

DARIENNE.

I wish I'd know about your trick with the light bulb!!!

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Will onions and potatoes go bad in two weeks?

 

Long-day usually fares better than short-day and I might get two weeks out of them. Potatoes will turn green on the counter but will start to  quickly sprout in warm darkness such as in a cupboard. Not big news obviously...

 

Stuff out of my garden tends to last much longer than the equivalent from the store.

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When I purchase cilantro, Italian parsley, the bunches are too big for use up quickly.  I trim their bottoms then stick them upright in a bit of water in a heavy glass in the fridge (I use my old pyrex measuring cups for stability).  Not only do they keep well, the cilantro will continue to grow!  Of course, this does take up room in the fridge, though I usually put them on the door shelves.  I have also rolled up the herbs in a damp paper towel then put in a ziplock bag....sometimes it works great, sometimes not-so-great.  

 

Yes, it's easy for me as a retiree with a bicycle and a very nice Produce Stand under a mile away, to buy last minute produce and herbs.   When I worked/lived in DC suburbs I shared your pain of going to shopping centers any more than I could stand.  

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Long-day usually fares better than short-day and I might get two weeks out of them. Potatoes will turn green on the counter but will start to  quickly sprout in warm darkness such as in a cupboard. Not big news obviously...

 

Stuff out of my garden tends to last much longer than the equivalent from the store.

I am not saying this will work for you but it certainly improved the shelflife of my potatoes and onions. I punch holes in brown paper bags, put potatoes in one and onions in another, roll them closed and secure with a bulldog clip and store them in a cupboard.

I can only dream of shopping daily!

Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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I'll try the paperbag trick but am not confident it'll work. Worth investigating though! Already quite warm here in Texas the AC got turned on Thursday.  :shock:

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My sister was living in DC last year and I went to visit for a couple weeks. She had a place right in front of the Zoo on Connecticut Ave. What with the Metro (seriously badass) and the walking and the small local grocers I found it ideal. Hop off the metro, stop by the store and pick up what's needed (at a premium of course) and walk a short distance to the apartment. 

 

I loved it in DC. There's a decent Farmer's market off the Silver line East of the capitol and it was packed.

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