What’s The Best Way To Preserve Food On Display?


There are a number of industries which typically keep items of food on display. This is a great way to catch people’s attention as they pass by a restaurant, hotel or other food-related establishment. It can also give potential customers an idea of what’s on offer inside. However, one thing that may worry you is that food left to the elements is likely to cause certain food safety and hygiene issues and therefore you will be better of preserving any real foods you decide to put on display. Preserved foods can be used for displays just about anywhere and you may even consider decorating your home with certain items. This post will introduce you the best way to preserve food that will be going on display.

Preservation Instructions

You will initially want the food to actually go stale and become dried out, although the method you will use will vary for different items of food. A prime example of this is in order to dry out bread and bread rolls you should put them in the oven, which has been turned on to its lowest possible temperature setting. Leave the door open, so as not to burn or actually overcook the bread and then remove once it appears dried out.

However, if you are looking to dry out foods, such as cakes, cookies and pastries, these are best left out at room temperature. You should cover the food with something such as a mesh, as this will ensure that pests don’t get to the food, whilst still allowing air to circulate around these sweet items. Within a couple of days they will have the desired effect.

Once the food has completely dried out you will need to apply a layer of lacquer or varnish. It is these substances that will preserve the food, obviously making them unfit for human consumption, but perfect for display purposes. You will also notice that it gives the items a great shine and this works especially well with foods which are already shiny in appearance, e.g. apples.

The lacquer or varnish should then be allowed to dry onto the food, typically overnight and at least for a 24 hour period. Try not to touch the food items until the varnish has completely dried, as you don’t want any streaks or fingerprints to show on your display items. Remember the reason you are looking to preserve these items is because they are being used for a very different reason to fresh produce displays. A “preserved” display can be left out for far longer and may even become a permanent fixture in your home or business.

Once you are sure the food has dried completely then add a second layer of lacquer or varnish and ensure that you cover the items in their entirety. This will simply enhance their overall appearance and will also make the items even more durable, thus meaning your display can last even longer. As soon as the second coat has dried these items are now ready to be added to your display.

About the Author

Anna David is a consultant at Fresh Produce Displays, a trusted name in fresh product displays. She enjoys writing about her work and personal experiences with the intention of helping others through her suggestions.

Author: guest blogger

This is a guest article on The Chefs Cookbook.

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