Strawberry fruit is one of the favorite fruits of most people. This is considering that strawberries have a distinctive taste, delicious, and has a myriad of benefits for health and beauty. In addition to consumption, strawberries are also often used to sweeten other foods, as decoration on cakes or puddings, and as ingredients for other foods such as jam, juice, or ice cream.
In order to enjoy the first real ripe, juicy, and fragrant strawberries, we buy them in the spring, when their season begins. Strawberries are the juiciest and tastiest from April to June. In the southern regions, strawberries appear as early as March, while in the northern regions, the strawberry season lasts until August. Strawberries should be bright red in color and green stalks: if the strawberry has white and green parts, it is a sign that the fruit is still unripe, and therefore usually less sweet. Strawberries are very often bought in plastic baskets, so we should take a good look at them.
Strawberries and nutrition
There is more to strawberries than you think: the red fruits are real vitamin bombs. Just 150 g of fresh strawberries cover an adult’s daily requirement of vitamin C. Strawberries are also rich in phytochemicals such as flavonoids and anthocyanins, to which they owe their bright red color and at the same time have an antioxidant effect. Strawberries also contain potassium, folic acid, ß-carotene, calcium, and magnesium.
Due to their high water content of almost 90%, they have only 32 kcal per 100 g and are therefore real slimming products. If you don’t want to do without the little power fruits out of season, then you should go for frozen strawberries. By freezing quickly after harvesting, strawberries retain most of their vitamins.
How to identify well-preserved strawberries?
Well-preserved or freshly picked strawberries have a bright, homogeneous red color. They are not dark and soft but still, have a juicy and inviting appearance. Make sure that there is no liquid or mold on the fruit in the tray. Any bruising and an overly strong scent are indications that the strawberry is too ripe. In all these cases, our efforts to keep them well in the refrigerator will be of no use.
The three key steps to preserve strawberries
The conservation of strawberries will depend not only on how they are stored at home but also on how they are purchased. At the time of purchase, those with a bright red color, fresh aroma, and green stems should be selected. It is also recommended to get hold of those that you intend to consume in a few days to prevent them from becoming overrun and spoiling. And it is that the damaged strawberries decompose very quickly. Conversely, those that have a pale color or some green or white part, are damaged or have dry stems should be avoided. Once at home, we must not forget that it is a very soft fruit that can be easily spoiled if it is not properly cared for. To get the best life from strawberries, it is advisable to follow these three steps:
1. Avoid moisture. They should only be washed before consuming; If done before and then stored, they will absorb moisture and increase the risk of spoiling with mold.
2. Leave the stems. It is advisable to keep the stems for as long as possible, and only remove them before eating strawberries. Doing so improves its conservation.
3. Remove the damaged strawberries. If there is a damaged part in the tray, it must be removed so that the closest ones are not damaged.
Storing strawberries correctly without vinegar
Strawberry fruit that we usually encounter grows in mountainous or highland areas with cool temperatures. The little red fruit has become an idol of many people, besides having many benefits such as maintaining eye health, preventing cancer. And maintaining heart health this fruit is loved because it practically can be eaten immediately. In fact, by consuming strawberries that have vitamin C daily, 160% of your vitamin C needs are met. If you want to make processed strawberries like juice or smoothies, surely they must maintain the quality of this fruit. So here are some ways with which you can maintain the freshness of the fruit.
1. Choose fresh berries
Food storage begins with a purchase. When you pick strawberries, carefully examine the berries themselves and the container in which they are stored. If the strawberries darkened, became soft, and pieces of pulp remained on the box walls, then the berries had already begun to deteriorate. When you pick strawberries from your own farm, remove the completely reddened, but still hard berries, without waiting for them to soften. They should be completely red, but dense, without dark spots. This applies to both purchased and strawberries harvested from their site.
Of course, it is impossible to inspect the entire purchase in the market or in the store, so at home immediately sort through the berries and remove the darkened or soft ones. If there is no mold on such specimens, they are best used immediately, for example, for baking or eating. On your own site, collect strawberries in the morning when the dew dries. It is advisable to do this in dry weather, but even after rains the crop should not be left in the garden for a long time, otherwise it will deteriorate.
2. Sort strawberries immediately after purchase
Even if you really want to put the box in the refrigerator and get it out, just to fill the berries with cream, you need to make an effort and sort through all the berries after the purchase. In the cleanest, freshest batch of berries from the store, there may be a pair of moldy ones as well. You need to get rid of them immediately, otherwise, this will spoil the entire barrel of fruit. The same applies to products stored nearby: mold spoils strawberries quickly, so keep only fresh fruit in the refrigerator.
If you notice that some strawberries in the tray have a moldy part, do not throw them out! Simply cut off the damaged part to prevent mold from spreading to other fruits. Thanks to this trick, all the other strawberries in the tray will keep without any worries. And don’t worry, you can eat the rest of the strawberry without worrying about your stomach. It’s still better than throwing it away, isn’t it?
3. Remove the tail of the strawberries
The problem with buying strawberries is that they have been picked for several hours or even days. And when you know that a strawberry will keep for about 5 to 7 days, there is not much time left to eat them. To keep them for a few more days, simply remove the tail and leaves of the strawberries. Why? Because it allows the strawberry to keep its water instead of using it to feed its leaves and wilt faster. Remember to remove the tail of the strawberries-only after washing them, otherwise, they will get wet with the washing water.
4. Choose the right container for storage
In a good package, strawberries will stay fresh longer, and a good package for berries is a box of durable cardboard or wood with ventilation holes. Plastic may do, but holes must be made in it too. The thinner the layer of berries, the longer they lie in the refrigerator. Transfer layers of strawberries with paper towels to absorb excess moisture.
5. Do not wash all berries at once
Strawberries need to be washed only before eating it. If you leave the berries moist, they will deteriorate faster, so put off the water treatment before deciding to use strawberries. When it is required to store pure berries, lay them on a paper towel after washing and dry them.
6.Store berries in a special compartment of the refrigerator
In the past few years, almost all refrigerators are produced with special compartments, the temperature in which does not exceed 2 ºС. This is where you need to put the berries.
Strawberries can be stored in the freezer for up to 1 year, but since this berry is 90% water, there is a risk that it will lose its shape after complete thawing. Many are dissatisfied with this method, because after defrosting the berries sprawl and turn into porridge. To prevent this from happening, send only strong berries to the freezer and only after you remove the leaves, stems, and dry the strawberries after washing.
If you freeze whole strawberries, be creative. For example, dip the berries in melted chocolate or yogurt before freezing. Follow certain rules: to keep the berries in beautiful shape, first lay them out one at a time (for example, on chopping boards), and then pour them into bags or boxes. There should be room in the bags so that the strawberries do not turn into an ice ball. Strawberries can be frozen like this:
- Whole: In this case, you can simply serve it on the table or use it for chocolate fondue. Since thawed berries are softer than usual, they are more difficult to cut into neat slices, but it is easy to mash. To protect the pieces from deoxidation, you can pre-dip them in yogurt or melted chocolate – you get a finished candy.
- Chopped into slices: Neat pieces are well suited for decorating pastries and other desserts. In addition, in this case, the strawberries more evenly and freeze faster.
- In the form of mashed berries: It is used for smoothies or cocktails, as a filling for baking, etc. Even soft berries are suitable for such a piece. Whole berries or slices can be laid out in plastic or glass containers suitable for freezing, or in bags on a clasp. For storage of mashed form use molds for ice or ice cream, as well as portioned cups.
8. Freeze strawberry puree
If the berries do not stand the test of frost, and eating them right now does not work, do not resist the circumstances. Make mashed strawberries, and send it to the freezer. Then you can add crushed berries to cocktails or make a filling for pies from them.
9. Defrost correctly
Do not put the berries in the microwave or under running water, as they are guaranteed to soften. Let them thaw in the refrigerator and eat while ice crystals are present in them. Fully thawed strawberries still lose their shape.
10. Store strawberries in sugar syrup
This is a reliable way to preserve berries, but, in fact, you will get almost jam. 800 g of berries will require 400 g of sugar and three glasses of water. Rinse the strawberries and dip them in boiling water for 30-60 seconds. Then transfer to sterilized jars. Pour boiling syrup from water and sugar, cover with sterilized lids.
11. Pour strawberry with pectin syrup
This is not the most common way, because pectin powder is rarely on the shelves of ordinary stores. But you can buy it. Pectin is a natural stabilizer, most often it is obtained from apples. Put clean berries in sterile jars and pour them with boiled and cooled pectin syrup (the proportions of the preparation vary depending on the manufacturer, so follow the instructions on the package). Strawberries will not become too cloying and preserve the natural taste, but not for long – such conservation is not too reliable. In pectin, berries can also be frozen for better preservation.
12. Preservation of Strawberry
Preserving strawberries is the most popular and very good way to lock in the flavor. Strawberry is a high natural acid fruit, this makes it well preserved. This method requires that you wash one strawberry for 30 seconds, then dry immediately with a paper towel. The strawberries are then stored in containers covered with paper napkins and do not close them so that air continues to flow. Next, store strawberries in the refrigerator.
You can save strawberries for the winter without cooking and freezing using sugaring. You can prepare the fruit as follows:
- Sprinkle pure berries with sugar in a ratio of 1: 0.8 to 1: 1.5. The longer you plan to store the product, the more sugar you need.
- Large fruits are preferably pre-cut. Put the strawberries in a cool place overnight. From time to time, the berries to be mixed.
- Mash the strawberries with a blender or pestle until smooth. Sterilize and cool the glass jars. Fill the jars with strawberry puree, about 1 cm before reaching the top.
- Fill the remaining space with sugar. In this case, you need to store strawberries in the refrigerator or cellar, and in the winter – on the balcony. At a temperature not exceeding +6 ℃, the berries will remain edible for 6 months.
- In edges, you can pour 1 tbsp. Of vodka. It will allow you to save the berries longer, but the child can not be given such a product.
14. Ice cubes
You can also preserve strawberries by making them into ice cubes. To make your drinks fresher and more colorful, place small strawberries, or just a few pieces of fruit, in an ice tray, and cover with water or tea. Let it freeze for a few hours and then use the strawberry cubes as you like. They are perfect for lemonade.
Strawberry jam is the most classic of the preservation methods of this fruit. It is prepared by cooking in a high pot a kg of strawberries washes very well and deprived of the stalk with 500 gr of sugar. The mixture should be stirred continuously for about an hour and then placed in sterilized glass jars for 30 minutes in boiling water. The jars should be immediately closed and turned upside down until they cool. This creates a vacuum. To flavor the strawberry jam you can add a sprig of rosemary at the end of cooking.
16. Strawberry syrup
Cut 500 g of strawberries into small pieces and put them in a pot (not on the fire) and macerate with 250 g of sugar for three hours. After the time, blend the mixture obtained and filter it with a strainer. Put everything back in the pot, add the water, and put on the fire until the mixture reaches a boil. At this point, pour it into sterilized glass jars and close tightly. This syrup is erected on ice cream or in the dough of cakes and donuts.
17. Strawberry liqueur
For a slightly different after-dinner offer your guests a homemade strawberry liqueur. To prepare it you need 1 kg of strawberries, 1 liter of 90 ° alcohol, 1 kg of sugar, and 1/2 liter of water. Wash the strawberries and remove the green part. Collect them in a bowl and mash them until they are reduced to mush. Place the mixture in a large glass jar and add the alcohol. Close the jar and leave to infuse for at least 10 days.
After these days, dissolve the sugar over low heat with half a liter of water, stirring it continuously. When the sugar is completely melted, turn off the heat and let it cool. Add the water and sugar syrup directly into the container with the alcohol and strawberries, mix well, and close the jar tightly. Leave to infuse for another 20 days and remember to shake the jar at least once a day. After the necessary time, you can bottle the liqueur.
How long can we store strawberries in the fridge?
Strawberries are highly sensitive fruits that cannot be stored for long. Even in the fridge, the tasty, but very sensitive, fruit only lasts about a day or two before it starts to spoil. By reducing possible sources of moisture, you can prevent the strawberries from becoming mushy or moldy during this time. Fresh strawberries should ideally be kept in the fridge’s vegetable compartment. Under no circumstances may strawberries be washed and then stored after purchase, the water no longer makes the fruit more durable, but only more susceptible to mold spores and the like. In addition, they lose their aroma. You should therefore only wash and free the strawberries from style and leaves when the fruits are eaten or processed immediately.
It is best to store the strawberries in a sieve in the refrigerator so that cool air can get to the fruit from all sides and any residual moisture can drip off. You can also put newspaper or kitchen paper in the vegetable drawer to prevent the strawberries from getting damp from condensation. The paper absorbs the moisture and the strawberries last longer.
Methods for storing strawberries longer in the refrigerator
After a careful examination of your strawberries, you will have slightly damaged strawberries and those in perfect condition. Keep it up:
- Dab the strawberries with paper towels, if they look wet.
- Place them in a rather large plastic container, in which you will have placed some absorbent paper. The attention you must store the strawberries at a distance from each other to make the air better, the container must also not be closed.
- Do not mix healthy strawberries with slightly bruised ones, as the latter could be damaged first by causing the mold to proliferate (also eliminate the bruised part if it has mold, but it has not compromised the whole fruit).
- Now you can put your strawberries in the refrigerator having the security that they will last a few more days. Have the foresight to consume the most damaged strawberries first and then the healthy ones.
- Also remember to check your whole strawberries a lot, if you find any of them, immediately delete them by replacing the absorbent paper, to avoid the onset of mold that could also compromise the other strawberries.
- Strawberries stored in the refrigerator with this method should last at least 4-5 days.
- Finally, when you decide to eat your strawberries, then you can wash them , only with water or with a soak.
Tips to refrigerate strawberries for a longer time
If you want to eat, keep the expensive strawberries for longer in the refrigerator, from 3 to 7 days, you can choose one of the 3 tips. You will only need things that you already have in your home. First of all, never wash the strawberries before taking them to the refrigerator. Nor remove the sepal, the green part of them.
Tip 1: plastic wrap
They are usually stacked in two layers in the plastic package. The ideal is to divide them. Take another package, it can be a plastic one you have at home, and apply a layer to it, always with the green side facing down. Then cover with plastic wrap or the lid of the packaging.
Tip 2: paper towels
Take small portions of the strawberry – without washing – and wrap it in paper towels, always with the green part down and without stacking. Do this gently. Then place the packages in a plastic bag and refrigerate.
Tip 3: aluminum foil
Choose a plastic package and line it with aluminum foil just to format. Place the strawberries with the green part down. Remove the foil and cover it with the same material, taking care not to damage the strawberries. Refrigerate.