Q:

What are some good ways to preserve food?

A:

Quick Answer

Freezing, canning and drying are all effective ways to preserve food. All of these methods are useful for extending the shelf life of many kinds of fresh foods, including fruits, meats and herbs.

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Full Answer

Frozen foods should be kept at 0 degrees Fahrenheit. At this temperature, bacteria are unable to function, and the enzyme activity of the food is slowed, reducing natural deterioration.

Canning calls for raising the temperature of the food to kill any micro organisms that are present. The food is placed in a jar along with a brine. The jar is then sealed and boiled in a canning kettle or a pressure canner. After several hours, the jars are removed, cooled and ready for room temperature storage.

Drying food involves removing all the moisture from it, which prevents the growth of mold and bacteria. This process requires heating the food for several hours to a temperature that dehydrates it without cooking it. This can be done in either an oven or an electric dehydrator.

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