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I love the Kirby Cucumbers (I've seen them called "Pickling" or "Salad" cukes in the midwest) available over the Summer, but they tend to get slimy in the fridge quickly if not consumed within days.

Does anyone have a good method of storing this type of Cuke in the fridge? In plastic? No plastic? In a wet paper towel? I don't use them for Pickling so "in liquid & jarred" is not my option here.

Thanks for the answers.

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1 Answer

According to the New Cookbook, from Better Homes and Gardens (p. 106), pickling cucumbers should be picked and used in the same day. Standard salad cucumbers last about ten days. Trying to get from 1 to 10 is a bit of a stretch, and storage considerations can vary.

Some people recommend the standard washing and wrapping in paper towel, others indicate plastic bagging without washing. The slime and mushiness seems to be a result of the loss of moisture through the skin. Perspiration is inhibited by waxing, this is likely the reason behind the prohibition on washing (assuming you have a waxed cuke). If you are getting the cuke from a stand it is likely fresh*er* and unwaxed.

First, ensure you are picking ideal cucumbers by verifying that the skin and flesh feels firm and without shriveling or soft spots. Then, in my experience with unwaxed cukes, you will likely get 3-5 days with them stored in a breathable container (to prevent pooling of moisture, and slime; a similar humidity issues arise from the high perspiration of grapes). Waxed, which seem unlikely to encounter, stored in a plastic bag it may last longer.

A breathable container could be one of the paperboard crates they come in (that's how I keep them), a basket, maybe a plastic perforated grape bag, or perhaps a so-called Green Bag ("breathable" bags, however absorbing ethylene is not terribly necessary here).

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Good answer. Can you suggest a "best" type of breathable container? –  jfpOne23 Jul 27 '12 at 18:48
    
@jfpOne23 I added some suggestions, the first two being the only ones I have tried personally and they both work; the latter two I added for the sake of completeness. I do not foresee the "ethylene absorbing" bags being of much use but the manufacturers tend to generalize their claims to usefulness. A grape bag would help because it might inhibit accumulation of moisture somewhat, but being in contact with the plastic walls would still be a point of contact where the moisture would cling. Remember, you don't want to draw the moisture out, but if you do you don't want it to hang around. –  mfg Jul 27 '12 at 19:51
    
Thank you MFG, great info. I have only just subscribed to this particular SE forum, so I can't vote you up yet. If I could I would. –  jfpOne23 Jul 27 '12 at 22:35
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