Keeping Strawberries fresh....

  1. #1
    stefani2's Avatar
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    ....any ideas or tips how to keep strawberries fresh for longer? Use FreshWash? .... Store in a crisper? .... Store at room temperature? .... what do you suggest? - Mine DO NOT keep long AT ALL

  2. #2
    cathyskitchen's Avatar
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    The only thing that works for me is my FridgeSmart container from Tupperware. They're awesome for strawberries and blueberries. But, it's usually best to eat them right away, or freeze them for later.

  3. #3
    bsaxman's Avatar
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    Strawberries will stay fresh longer if you:

    1. Keep the green caps ON
    2. Don't wash them until you are getting ready to EAT THEM

  4. #4
    chefann's Avatar
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    I got a great tip from Cook's Illustrated magazine.

    Put 1 cup white vinegar in 1 quart water. Add your strawberries (do NOT hull them). Agitate to remove lose dirt. Rinse berries briefly under running water. Place in a salad spinner lined with paper towels (keeps the berries from getting smashed against the basket) and spin until the berries are completely dry. Store in the fridge in an air tight container.

    The vinegar kills any spores that may cause mold, and drying them completely before storing prevents rot. I've had berries last a week or two when I do this. (And storing them in Fridge Smarts from TW helps, too.)

  5. #5
    reba515's Avatar
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    Quote Quote by cathyskitchen
    The only thing that works for me is my FridgeSmart container from Tupperware. They're awesome for strawberries and blueberries. But, it's usually best to eat them right away, or freeze them for later.

    I just got some similar containers at Target (by Rubbermaid) they have a little "grid" in the bottom to keep fruit and veggies from sitting in their own moisture.

  6. #6
    Intrepid_Chef's Avatar
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    I do not have the Fridge Smart but I have loads of other tupperware ... do you think that it would work to take the spinner basket and put it in another bowl?

    I am thinking of doing this at a show but think it might be too much to demonstrate at the time ... I may quickly demonstrate how I did it.

  7. #7
    pampchefrhondab's Avatar
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    I wonder how those fruit/vegi bags would work? They showed them on one of the morning news programs and they worked for a lot of other fruits and vegis.

  8. #8
    bsaxman's Avatar
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    Quote Quote by pampchefrhondab
    I wonder how those fruit/vegi bags would work? They showed them on one of the morning news programs and they worked for a lot of other fruits and vegis.
    The green bags do work- and I have noticed at Wal-Mart you can get them for free in the produce section! I noticed that my tomatos and fresh veggies stayed good longer and I was really impressed! I think they also have them at Food Lion now, but I haven't seen them anywhere else yet... BUT I have never tried it with strawberries

  9. #9
    AnnieBee's Avatar
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    My director suggested storing washed fruits and berries (like grapes) in the small colander, and putting in the small bowl that goes with it, so any drips don't sit around the fruit making them soggy.

    I'm not sure, but is the tupperware thing a bit like that? (I've never heard of it before). My grapes especially get mold after washing them if they stay wet. Sounds like Ann's point about getting them very dry would help a lot too.

    I'm going to try the vinegar thing too!

  10. #10
    dannyzmom's Avatar
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    I just got this today - it came down the pike from Darla Oehlmann:

    There's nothing that says "Hello Summer" quite like eating a juicy vine-ripened strawberry right out of the summer sunshine. Here'ssome interesting information to share with your guests this summer!


    BUYING:

    · One pint of fresh strawberries equals about 3 ¼ C whole berries, or 2 ¼ C sliced berries, or 1 2/3 C pureed berries.

    · In the store, shop with your nose. Always pick the plumpest and most fragrant ones. They should be firm, bright, and fresh with no mold or bruises. Caps should be bright green, fresh looking and fully attached.

    · Strawberries DO NOT ripen after they have been picked, so choose ones that are fully ripened.

    · Local strawberry season lasts only 3-4 weeks.



    STORING/HANDLING:

    · Store strawberries in a colander in the refrigerator or allow cold air to circulate. Do not cover them.

    · Remove caps only AFTER washing. Caps keep the water from breaking down the texture & flavor inside.

    · Prepare by rinsing with caps still attached under a gentle spray of cool water; pat dry with paper towel or use Salad Spinner. Wash them just before you plan to use them. Patting dry keeps them from absorbing excess moisture.



    NUTRITION:

    · Great source of vitamin C (ascorbic acid). One cup of fresh strawberries provides about 88 milligrams of vitamin C, which more than meets the Recommended Daily Allowance of 45 milligrams for adults.

    · Strawberries are low in calories: One cup of unsweetened strawberries has only 55 calories.



    FREEZING:

    · Twelve pounds or 8 quarts of fresh berries will yield approx. 13 pints of frozen berries.

    · Freeze using a "dry-sugar" or a "syrup" pack. You can freeze unsweetened, but they will not be as high in quality as sugar packed berries. The dry-sugar pack gives the best flavor and color retention for sliced or crushed berried. For whole berries, a syrup pack is recommended because it produces a plump, well-shaped berry after thawing.



    · Dry Sugar Pack: Halve, quarter or slice clean berries into a bowl or shallow pan. May also be crushed. Sprinkle sugar over using 1/3 to ¾ cup sugar for each quart of fruit. Gently turn berries over and over until sugar is thoroughly dissolved. Package and freeze.

    · Syrup Pack: Make a syrup using ¼ cups of (hot or cold) water to each cup sugar. Dissolve sugar. If using hot water, be sure to chill the syrup before using or it will damage the strawberries. Use about ½ to 1/3 cup of syrup for each pint container. Place whole or sliced berries in containers and cover with cold syrup. Freeze.

    · Unsweetened Pack: Pack whole, sliced or crushed berries in containers. Cover whole or sliced berries with water or berry juice. For better color retention, add ascorbic acid to water, juice or crushed berries. Cover crushed berries with their own juice.



    · When freezing, use only firm, fully ripe berries. To avoid bruising, wash only a few at a time in cold water, drain thoroughly on paper towels or in Salad Spinner. Remove the hulls with Cook's Corer and chill in ice water to lower its temperature for fast freezing.

    · In containers, allow a head space of ½" for pints, ¼" for half pints and 1" for quarts. Freeze and store at zero degrees F or below.



    STRAWBERRY STARS: Remove caps with Cook's Corer. Cut a deep X in the top of each berry, but not all way thru. Gently spread berry apart to make "petals". Use EAD to fill with one of the following fillings:

    Cream Cheese Filling: Mix together 8 oz. cream cheese, ½ cup powdr'd sugar, 2 T light cream, 2 T orange juice, 1 tsp. orange zest.

    Peanut Butter Chocolate: Mix together ½ cup creamy peanut butter, 5 T. milk chocolate chips, melted & cooled, 2 T. Cool Whip.

  11. #11
    lacychef's Avatar
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    Thanks for those tips Carolyn!

  12. #12
    KellyTheChef's Avatar
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    Darla is the BOMB! Thanks for sharing those tips Carolyn...I haven't seen that yet!

  13. #13
    PampMomof3's Avatar
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    Weird Carolyn, I was just going to post this!

  14. #14
    Intrepid_Chef's Avatar
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    I haven't gotten these from Darla either ... but my AD is usually good about passing on stuff she sends!

    I mentioned the vinegar tip to my roomate, who is very concerned about the vinegar affecting the taste. Honestly ... so am I.

    Also ... after reading these tips, I am a bit concerned ... should I rinse, spin and store ... or store, rinse and spin?

    I have a show this weekend that uses strawberries, so tips would be most helpful!

  15. #15
    c00p's Avatar
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    I have a friend that swears by the green bags for all of her produce and fruits. I haven't used them yet, but she loves them!!

  16. #16
    chefann's Avatar
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    Quote Quote by Di_Can_Cook
    I mentioned the vinegar tip to my roomate, who is very concerned about the vinegar affecting the taste. Honestly ... so am I.
    I had the same concern about the vinegar, but it's a weak enough concentration that you can't taste it. I've had fantastic luck with the technique I outlined above (vinegar rinse, water rinse, spin, store).

  17. #17
    stefani2's Avatar
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    WOW! Thanks everyone!

    The vinegar WOULD NOT stick to the strawberries - especially after you quickly rinse them off....

    I have never used my TW FridgeSmart Container for strawberries b4

    I have also been curious about the Green Veggie Bags - I had heard they worked, but I gotta try them for myself. I have seen ads and, now that I think about it, strawberries are ALWAYS in the bags.

  18. #18
    Chef Endora's Avatar
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    I'm gonna print up the strawberry tips for my Patriotic Theme Shows.

    Thanks!

  19. #19

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    Those Strawberry Stars recipes sound yum! Can't wait to try them!

  20. #20
    Jamie's Money's Avatar
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    I am all about the Fridgesmart from Tupperware!! I've had strawberries last for 2 weeks in there and they look like they day I bought them. I line the bottom with paper towels also.

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