There are many food items which would become stale after a few hours, but there are certain foods which may last forever without the need to can them or freeze or dehydrate. If an individual is new to the field of food storage, these staples can be an excellent way to begin.
- White rice: There are numerous researchers who have found that polished or white rice keeps up their nutrient content and flavour for almost 30 years if it can be stored in oxygen-free containers in temperatures that range below 40 degrees Fahrenheit. Brown rice, on the other hand, doesn’t last more than six months owing to the availability of natural oils in the bran layer.
- Honey: Honey is preferably the only food that would last forever due to the perfect chemistry and the handiwork of the bees. The nectar extracted from the flower gets mixed with the enzymes present in the bees’ bodies which alter the composition of the nectar. The nectar is further broken down into simple sugars and is accumulated in the honeycombs. The processing, as well as sealing of the honey, is primarily responsible for the incredible shelf life.
- Salt: Since sodium chloride is a mineral which is taken from the natural components of the earth, its shelf-life should come as a natural consequence. It is used for centuries as a means of preserving other food products as it can extract out all the moisture. But this doesn’t indicate that the table salt would last forever. Experts say that the addition of the iodine to the table salt reduces the shelf life of the salt which means that if the label says that it is an iodized salt, it will not last over five years.
- Soy sauce: When left unopened, a container filled with soya sauce would last for a significantly long period. But it is also dependent on the type of soy sauce and the additives used. Even if the soy sauce has been opened, this salty condiment will last for many years if stored in the refrigerator.
- Sugar: Quite similar to many items, the storage process of the sugar determines whether the sugar is going to last for long or not. Granulated and powdered sugar must be kept under an airtight condition to steer clear of moisture. Although retailers are needed to provide the manufacturing dates of the sugar, manufacturers say that the sugar remains edible even if it has hardened and become brown.
- Pure maple syrup: Pure maple syrup, as well as commercial sugars such as granular sugars and honey, has an irresistible life owing to its shield against any kinds of microbial growth. Unopened maple syrup shall last forever, and in case there is the formation of mould, boiling it to a certain degree and skimming the surface and ultimately pouring it to a clean and air-tight container would eliminate all the problems.
- Clarified butter: This kind of butter is boiled unless the total moisture is extracted, which is the reason that it doesn’t go bad. As long as the clarified butter or ghee is stored in sealed container under cool temperature, it would last for about 100 years. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a dietitian-nutritionist.