We Found Out Which Foods We Should and Shouldn’t Wash Before Cooking

year ago

Some people think the kitchen should be spotless — the dishes should be washed, and all fruits and vegetables should be sorted by size. However, some foods, including vegetables, shouldn’t even be washed. We decided to find out what we should clean and soak and what we shouldn’t. And in the bonus section, we’ll explain why we ought to wash soda cans before drinking out of them.

Don’t wash eggs.

Eggs should be washed just before cooking, but if you are going to use them later, don’t do it, even if they were bought in a supermarket or from a farmer. They are stored better this way. Unwashed eggs can be stored at room temperature for several weeks, and washed ones are put right into the fridge.

Tip: Eggs can be stored longer if they are marinated. You can store them in the fridge for up to 4 weeks.

Don’t wash raw meat.

Our mothers and grandmothers taught us to wash raw meat. In the past, meat would often be bought from other people, so there could have been dirt, sand, and grass present. These days, we buy meat from stores and farms where strict rules are always followed, and poultry, pork, and beef are washed during production.

Another reason not to wash meat is that the bacteria living on the surface can spread on the skin and the kitchen countertop, potentially ending up in your meals. If you cook unwashed meat, all the bacteria will die because of the heat.

Tip: Wash any knives and cutting boards thoroughly after cooking meat.

Don’t wash onions.

Onions are covered with a peel, so there’s no need to wash them. But if dirt or soil is on them, you can wash them quickly. Do it in tap water, don’t use soap.

Tip: Don’t wash garlic, either.

Don’t wash mushrooms.

Few people know that mushrooms shouldn’t be washed before cooking. They will fall apart and lose their taste if too much water gets on them. It’s better to cook them right away if no chunks of soil are on them. You can remove any dirt with a dry towel.

Tip: You can just cut off the chunks of dirt.

Don’t wash rice, but soak it in boiling water.

Many people think that before cooking rice, it should be washed until the water becomes transparent. But the thing is, all the natural starch that is good for you will also be washed off.

This is why scientists have come up with a way to remove the dirt and preserve all the good properties: put unwashed rice into boiling water, and 5 minutes later, remove the water, add fresh water, and cook the rice until it’s done.

Tip: Sometimes, the rice should be washed if a recipe calls for it.

Wash greens.

Greens should be washed in several steps. First, wash them with cold tap water to remove all the visible dirt. After that, soak them in water and wait for the sand to settle on the bottom. Wash greens right before cooking.

Tip: To clean the greens better, add vinegar or soda to the water when soaking.

Wash nuts.

Dried fruit and nuts should be washed and even soaked in some cases. It would help if you did it with the nuts in the shells. They are often stored in bags and then put into individual packages. There, nuts and dried fruit are sprinkled with special chemicals that prevent the appearance of mold.

Tip: Nuts can be soaked overnight.

Wash mussels.

We should wash mussels, even when we buy frozen or in a vacuum package. It’s not about viruses and bacteria: it’s just that they may have leftover shell pieces that might damage your teeth or mouth.

Tip: Only eat mussels that open after 5-7 minutes of heat treatment.

Wash canned vegetables.

Few people know this, but canned peas and corn should be washed before cooking. The thing is, they contain a product with too much salt and starch. Washing will help get rid of the taste of iron.

Tip: You don’t have to remove the liquid from the can — you can use it for other things.

Bonus: Wash your soda cans.

Cans are stored in warehouses without any additional packaging. This is why there’s dirt and dust on them. So before opening a can, clean it.

Tip: If you buy a can in a store or a café and can’t wash it, it’s best to ask for a glass to pour the drink into.

Which of these points surprised you the most?


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