If you’ve been keeping up with the HDT harvest, you’ve seen that this year has been particularly good for us. We’ve been inundated with a bumper crop of Scarlett Nantes, or in other words, we’ve got a load of carrots!
With wheelbarrows overflowing, our campus chef, Chris G. has the pleasure of making use of these flavorful root veggies, and not just through salads and roasting. He’s been treating us to rare forms of carrot use, and we couldn’t be happier.
But, wouldn’t it be great if you could get the fresh carrot treatment all year long? We talked with our food production coordinator, Dave W, and he says that carrots harvested during the fall can last all the way through until the end of spring. You just have to prepare and store them properly.
First, you gotta get ’em nice and clean. Chop off the green tails down to a nub. Next, wash off all the dirt.
Second, grab a container that is resistant to moisture. We use wax boxes, but you can use any box if you line it with a plastic bag first. Line the bottom with damp sawdust or wood shavings. The damp shavings help keep your carrots happy and cool during the winter.
Third, top the sawdust with a single layer of carrots, lining them up side by side. Top those carrots with another layer of damp sawdust, alternating until your container is full.
Once you’ve got your boxes filled up, you can place them in a cooler (if you have one), or you can store them in a root cellar. You can store your carrots in two different methods this way:
- If you only need them to last 4-5 months (or through February), keep your storage area at 33*F and around 90-95% humidity.
- If you want them to last longer, at around 7-9 months (or through May), you’ll have to be a bit more strict with your environment. Carrots can last this long if they are stored at 35*F and the humidity stays between 95-100%.
The sawdust helps keep the humidity that high.
Let us know if you’ve done this before. We love to share ideas.