Brisbane Local Food

Growing local

To cure or not to cure - Sweet potatoes, that is.

I've just harvested my pot of sweet potatoes. (YAY) I notice that authors from America seem to advocate curing the tubers for some weeks at specific temperature and humidity (a lot of fuss, it seems to me), yet Aussie authors pay little attention to the idea of curing them. Does anyone have specific experience in the harvesting and storing of sweet potatoes? Is 'curing' all that important? I tried curing mine in the sun last year, and ended up damaging the tubers.

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Comment by Sophie on January 8, 2021 at 18:49

if you eat them when you pick them they taste like regular potatoes. If you wait 2 weeks (but dont let other creatures get to them!) they taste like sweet potato! Nothing fancy, just leave them on the counter.

Comment by Valerie on January 7, 2021 at 20:46

If I was lucky enough to have a big harvest to have storage issue, I'd just leave them in the ground and dig as I go. Same for most root vegetables. 

Comment by Barbara Tealby on November 27, 2020 at 12:01

In many parts of North America, people store their root veges in root cellars for the winter. Maybe that is where all this curing stuff eventuated. We don't really need to do that, although it is true that pumpkins are a summer crop even for us.

Comment by Dave Riley on November 27, 2020 at 0:26

Why cure?

The answer seems shallow: curing "will heal any damage that occurred to the tubers during harvest so they store longer, and it will also kick off the sugar production process to give you sweeter sweet potatoes."

Since Americans candy up their sweet potatoes for culinary reasons I find abhorrent,  maybe the sweeter the better. For them, anyway.  But here, why bother?

I'd like to know why you'd 'cure' pumpkins tho...

Aside from increasing their shelf life...

Comment by Barbara Tealby on November 26, 2020 at 6:02

And they taste OK?

Comment by Doug Hanning on November 25, 2020 at 21:18

I have just started pulling them out when I need aome to cook.

Comment by Barbara Tealby on November 25, 2020 at 19:04

They are the orange coloured ones, Christa. I'd never bothered too much about curing them, till I read those American sites. Storage hasn't been an issue so far, as I've only been growing a few in pots, but now I have put in more in the ground, and expect to get enough to store for a short while at least.

Comment by Christa on November 25, 2020 at 17:39

Are they the orange coloured sweet potato?  We heve never worried about curing and use them fairly quickly.

Comment by Barbara Tealby on November 23, 2020 at 11:27

That does seem reasonable, thanks Jeff.

Comment by Jeff Kiehne on November 23, 2020 at 5:51

If live in Brisbane temperature and humidity in summer is going to cure naturally as long as do not refrigerate or keep in air conditioned area.

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