Strawberries are favorite among people of all age groups. Be it in ice creams, cakes or be it the fruit in original form, strawberries are used in variety of food items, confectionaries and dessert recipes as well. But strawberries can go bad really soon if not stored properly and under favorable conditions. All us want our strawberries to stay fresh and juicy so that we can enjoy them for a few days. So, here are a few hacks to keep your strawberries fresh for longer time.
- The first and most important step, carefully select the strawberries while buying. Choose fresh, unmolded and firm strawberries. If a large number of strawberries in the pack are not fresh, chances are that the entire batch would mould soon. Also, throw away the moulded strawberries away immediately.
- Soaking strawberries in water and vinegar bath also increases their life and retains freshness. For the vinegar bath, mix ¼ cup vinegar 1 ½ cup water. Soak the strawberries for 3-5 minutes. Strain the strawberries and wash thoroughly under running water to eliminate the smell and taste of vinegar. Dry the strawberries properly on paper towel. This process can keep the strawberries fresh for upto 2 weeks. Though this method kills the bacteria on the strawberries but storing them after this process can make the strawberries a bit mushy, so it is advisable to wash the strawberries only before consuming. This method can be done if you want to consume the strawberries within a few days. But if you want to keep them longer, this method shouldn’t be done. Also, it is very important to properly dry the strawberries before storing them.
- If the room temperature is not too high, you can keep them in a bowl lined with paper towels on your countertop. But you have to make sure to consume them within a few days, so do keep them within the eyesight of your family so that eat a few on the go.
- Another way of retaining the freshness of the strawberries is storing them in the fridge. For this, layer paper towels in a flat airtight container, place the strawberries in not more than a single layer and refrigerate. An ideal temperature of storing the strawberries is 0-2 degree Celsius. The paper towels soak up excess moisture keeping them firm and fresh. For longer storage, freeze ripe firm strawberries.
- You can also put them in freezer safe bags and freeze them. This process can keep them fresh for up to 2 months. These frozen berries can be used to make smoothies, jam, tarts and cakes. Do not completely thaw the strawberries or else they will become mushy.
- If you don’t mind some extra sweetness in your strawberries you can cut them into halves, wash them thoroughly and mix sugar. After the sugar dissolves completely, drain the excess water and freeze in an airtight container. Your strawberries will stay juicy for almost 12 months.
Now that you have these tips and tricks at your disposal, you wouldn’t have to worry about moulded and mushy strawberries and will be able to enjoy your berries as you like it.