Swiss chard is a green vegetable consisting of tender and fleshy leaves with thick stalks. Swiss chard resembles spinach, but they are nothing the same except for the appearance of leaves. The vegetable leaves have a slightly bitter flavor and a strong aroma.
Swiss chards have different stalks; some are white, golden orange, while others might be red, also known as rhubarb chard. Sometimes all these varieties may be found together and labeled as rainbow chard. Its stalks are also edible, and the Swiss chard as a whole provides a sufficient amount of minerals and vitamins.
How To Store Swiss Chard
When it comes to storing vegetables, the key factor to be considered is the quality and stability of the vegetable you wish to store. Good quality, fresh vegetables are stored well and easily as compared to the poor quality ones. Therefore, it is necessary to pick the right Swiss chard, so you can keep it stored without any worries.
This article will help you to vouch for some tips before storing your vegetable; follow the steps well, and you might be able to save your vegetable from going bad.
Selection Of Swiss Chard
When you are out buying Swiss chard, look for firm stems and deep green leaves. Young and small Swiss chard leaves can be eaten raw by using them in salads. Avoid Swiss chards that seem wilted or leaves turned yellow or brown. Also, pass on those Swiss chards that have taken pest damage like small holes in the leaves.
Do Not Wash The Swiss Chard
When you bring home a bunch of Swiss chard, it is recommended not to wash them. You may have a habit of washing every vegetable you bring home but avoid doing it with Swiss chard. The leaves need to be dry before you store them; washing will only decrease its shelf life. Wash the Swiss chard only when you are ready to consume them
Keep Inside The Refrigerator
Wrap the Swiss chard loosely in a slightly damp paper towel to keep the required moisture. Transfer the wrapped Swiss chard to a perforated plastic bag and store it in the fridge’s crisper drawer.
Make sure you don’t expose it to too much cold, as the Swiss chard leaves will develop dark spots and might wilt at a very low temperature.
How To Freeze Swiss Chard
If you wish to freeze the Swiss chard, make sure to do so within 6 hours of picking or 1 to 2 hours after buying fresh Swiss chard from the market. Cut the stems from the leaves and set them aside to freeze them separately. Chop the leaves and transfer them to boiling water for blanching.
Blanch the leaves for 2 minutes, and then transfer them to ice-cold water to let them cool. Once cooled, dry the leaves by patting them with a kitchen towel. Keep the blanched Swiss chard in freezer bags and freeze. Stalks can be blanched and stored similarly, separately.
How Long Does Swiss Chard Last
The short and precise answer to this question depends on how the Swiss chard is stored and kept. It is important to keep the vegetable in a cool place to make it last up to its shelf life. When kept at room temperature, at the counter, Swiss chard can last no longer than a day, as the leaves start to wilt and turn soft due to unrequired heat and moisture from the surroundings. Hence, to increase its shelf life, it should be kept in the refrigerator at all times.
When you store Swiss chard following the steps mentioned above in the article, your Swiss chard is likely to stay good for five days to a week, depending on the quality of the vegetable. After blanching and sealing it properly, Swiss chard stored in the freezer will keep its quality and taste for ten months to 1 year.
How To Tell If Swiss Chard Is Bad
It is important to know and identify your vegetables for signs that might be the reason for you to throw them out. Anything consumed after it has gone bad can be hazardous to health. Swiss chard needs attention and needs to be inspected from time to time, even when stored in the refrigerator.
The things to look for in Swiss chard include:
- Appearance: The leaves that contain dark spots over them are the ones that need to be discarded. It is not necessary that all the Swiss chard in a stalk is spoiled. Just remove the leaves with visible dark spots on them.
- Color: The Swiss chard loses its taste and nutrition once it changes color. The leaves turning pale yellowish or wilted are a sign that it will not do you any good.
- Smell: If there is an off smell coming from the stalk of Swiss chard, it may be time to discard it.