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Old 07-27-2009, 11:01 AM   #1
swoop
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how long will fresh vegetables keep?

i was wondering if anyone knows approximately how many days will fresh (not dehydrated) vegetables like spinach, carrots, onions, etc. keep in a back country trip? all the items will be stored in its own sealed zip lock bag.

i'd like to invest in a food dehydrator but that's not possible at this time. the reason is i'll be going on a 5-day trip and would like to expand beyond the freeze-dried meals. but with fresh items, spoilage comes into play. one problem i foresee with spinach is they'll be kept in a sealed ziplock bag, which will be subjected to temp changes in the backpack, so wouldn't all the moisture sweat out of the spinach?

thanks
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Old 07-27-2009, 11:07 AM   #2
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I have kept cabbage, onions and carrots for 2 weeks during a late August canoe trip.

I wouldn't give spinach more than 2 days.
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Old 07-27-2009, 11:21 AM   #3
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carrots and onions keep very well. In my experience, vegetables which grow underground last much longer than their above ground cousins. Besides onions and carrots others which travel and last well: potatoes (smaller is better), parsnips, turnips, and beets. Leafy veggies like spinach, lettuce do not last very long. Green peppers last a few days, as does cauliflower. Mushrooms do not last very long at all. Use them quickly (day 1). Dried mushrooms are easy to come by in stores (check asian gorceries for special ones). Of course all of this is dependent upon weather (temp/humidity) and how you pack it. Frozen chunks of meat can be used to maintain a "cooler" and then you have fresh meat for the first 2 days. Bring fresh and dried. Use fresh first of course switching to dried as the trip progresses. I tend not to bring much fresh for longer treks only due to weight. But for the 1st or second day dinner fresh is great and it helps me get my trail legs.
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Old 07-27-2009, 12:05 PM   #4
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One thing I've done in the past for light weight greens during long trips is to soak sprout seeds (I used mung beans) a couple of days before I go in a zip lock bag. These will pack well when drained.

Once at camp, rinse regularly and once they start to sprout, fill the bag with air and seal to cushion the sprouts while traveling. A few on a lunch wrap or on your dinner make a huge difference.

Editted to add that string beans keep pretty well.
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Old 07-27-2009, 12:06 PM   #5
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If you want greens, learn to recognize wild edible greens. Once you recognize them, they're everywhere you look. Some taste better than spinach.
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Old 07-27-2009, 04:33 PM   #6
Bob K
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Another vegetable that packs fairly well is zucchini squash. I have it either sliced the long way and grilled or diced and in an omlette. For those considering eggs, either use eggbeaters or scramble them at home and place into a small jar. In a small cooler (packed with a frozen water bottle or meat) they keep for a few days.
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Old 07-28-2009, 10:42 AM   #7
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I wonder if freezing certain softer veggies would make a difference, like tomatoes, etc. Not sure how they will react when thawed. Sounds like an experiment is in order!!
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Old 07-28-2009, 11:04 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by na_hayes View Post
I wonder if freezing certain softer veggies would make a difference, like tomatoes, etc. Not sure how they will react when thawed. Sounds like an experiment is in order!!
I would guess that the freezing of a tomato would destroy the structural integrity of the fruit and when it thawed you would be left with a mushy result. Probably could use it for sauce or stew, but I wouldn't want to slice it for a sandwich or salad.
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Old 07-29-2009, 08:11 AM   #9
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I would guess that the freezing of a tomato would destroy the structural integrity of the fruit and when it thawed you would be left with a mushy result. Probably could use it for sauce or stew, but I wouldn't want to slice it for a sandwich or salad.
Yeah... probably. And it would un-define the 'fresh' designation too.

My wife has introduced me to frozen grapes. Not sure what makes them so good but they're like candy on this humid Philadelphia days.
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