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Best Storage for Your Bread

Do you get frustrated when your bread goes stale before you can enjoy it? Do you freeze your bread to make it last longer, only to end up with soggy crust when you thaw it out? There are lots of different bread boxes and storage solutions for sale in kitchen stores, but very few get consistent good reviews. Instead of forking out tons of money to find that your new gizmo doesn't do much more than take up space on your counter, try these tips to preserve your bread.

Any bread:

  • Don't store your bread in the refrigerator. It will get stale quickly.
  • If you're worried about part of a loaf going bad before you eat it, freeze half and leave the other half out to eat.
  • Allow bread to cool to room temperature first if you're going to put it into a bag or into the freezer.

Store-bought sliced bread:

  • Use the plastic bag from the store and keep your bread right on the counter or in a cupboard. Try to keep the bag tight to the bread so not as much air gets in to dry it out.
  • Store your bread in a plastic bag with a piece of fresh celery. You will be amazed at how your bread will stay fresh much longer. It won't go stale nearly as fast as usual.
  • Tuck a paper towel into each bag of bread you're going to freeze before you pop bread in the freezer. When you defrost a loaf, the towel will absorb the moisture, and your bread will be good as new. (Allow 2 hours or more for a full loaf of bread to thaw out.)

Artisan bread:

  • Crusty bread (like French bread) should be stored in paper, not plastic. Some say that a cloth bag or tight cloth wrapping will preserve artisan breads longer, but I haven't had much luck with that method of storage.
  • After you've cut your bread, set the cut side down on a cutting board or clean counter. You don't even have to worry about covering it.
  • These breads are supposed to be crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside, so they don't keep well for more than a day or so.
  • Buy your bread on the same day you will eat it, and only buy as much as you think you will eat.
  • The crumbs made when cutting your bread and the pieces that get too dry or to eat are great for breadcrumbs. (See our tip about breadcrumbs, croutons, and stuffing.)
 

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