Malanga is a vitamin-rich, high fiber root vegetable native to South America and the Caribbean. It is very similar to other root vegetables like potato and taro, but actually, they are not the same. It has an earthy and nutty flavor. As malanga is high in fiber, it is proven beneficial in regulating high cholesterol levels in humans.
Like other vegetables, malanga can also go bad if it is not placed in a well-ventilated, dry, and dark place. Moreover, it should be used immediately after peeling/cutting because leaving it after cutting for a long time at room temperature can make it more prone to develop brown spots or soft texture.
How To Store Malanga
To make the most out of malanga, we have to make sure that it should be stored properly. It can be kept at room temperature of around 79o F for up to 3 weeks.
As malanga has the same texture as potatoes, it can be stored the same way as we store potatoes. Some of the ways are listed below through which you can extend the shelf life of malanga tubers.
Keeping It In Well Ventilated Place
Malanga should be placed in an open area where air can be easily available because keeping them in a less airy environment can make them soft quickly, just like potatoes. By doing so, the shelf life of malanga can be extended, and they remain fresh.
Store Them Away From Direct Sunlight And Heat
Malanga should be kept away from sunlight and its heat because it can make malanga more prone to spoil. You can keep it in a hanging basket in your kitchen where adequate air is available.
If malanga is refrigerated, it can extend its shelf life by twice. Some confusions regarding refrigerating malanga can make them less flavorful and plain in taste, but it is not exactly true.
If we peel and cut malanga, rinse them with cold water, put them in a bowl covered with a plastic sheet, and then store it in the refrigerator, this way we can slow the process of browning in malanga, and they can remain flavorful and fresh for few weeks.
Place at Ideal Humid Environment
Malanga should not be placed in very high or low humid environments. Rather, you should place it at humidity levels of around 70-80%. This is believed to be the best humidity for storing malangas and other root vegetables. It can also provide them a balanced environment that is slightly humid and dry.
Can You Freeze Malanga
Freezing malanga can increase its shelf life, and it can be used for a longer period; to freeze malanga, cut it into small chunks and then put it into a wire basket, now put this basket into boiling water for five minutes and then remove it in the way that all boiled water drained out of it.
After removing from boiling water, immediately put the wire basket into a bowl full of cold water and ice because we want to cool the malanga completely in five minutes; when it is cooled down, dry them and then put them into the freezer enclosed in freezing bags immediately.
How Long Does Malanga Last
Malanga can be fresh and flavorful for 2-3 weeks if kept at room temperature, but you can make use of them for longer if you store them properly. Putting it into the refrigerator can help increase its shelf life, but it needs to be in a proper manner like it should be in the form of small chunks, boiled for at least 5 minutes. The bowl in which malanga is kept should be adequately wrapped with a thin plastic sheet.
If precautions mentioned above did not follow, it could not last for long because root vegetables can easily be dried out if not taken care of properly.
How To Tell If Malanga Is Bad
Normally malanga looks firm throughout its length and gives an earthy aroma. But if they are gone bad, then there are certain changes in the structure of malangas that can be seen easily.
Some key pointers are listed below; by recognizing the following changes in malangas, you can easily tell whether they have gone bad or not.
- Cracked Skin: Healthy malangas have smooth and firmer skin with no wrinkly texture, but if they have gone bad, then cracks start to appear on their skin.
- Texture: If malangas are soft to touch and have blemishes all over their skin’s surface, you should throw them out because these are the main signs of spoilage in malangas.
- Moldy odor: Fresh malangas give a pungent earthy aroma, and it is the sign of a healthy vegetable, but if this smell changes to a moldy smell that is more like the smell came from mildew, then your vegetable’s time is up, which means it is rotten and it can no longer be used for eating.