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Almost all consumers have had fruits go bad between the time they take them home from the grocery store, and the time their family consumes them. Here are some tips to help you prevent your fruits from going bad. In fact, the tips will help you keep them fresh until your next purchase.
Take Fruits Out of the Plastic Bag
Never leave your fresh fruits in the plastic bag that you put them in when you purchased them from the grocery store. The plastic bag should be a temporary use item until you get home and remove your fresh fruits. The plastic bag holds moisture that will affect the fruits.
Remove fruits from the plastic bags and store them in the vegetable bin or on a lower shelf in your refrigerator.
Keep Fruits from Spoiling
Fruits like strawberries and grapes will spoil if they are close together in a container. The best thing to do is to remove the moldy fruit from the basket it comes in before it contaminates the others.
Place a paper towel on the bottom of the basket. Then add a layer of fruit. Place another paper towel and add another row of fruit. This will prevent one moldy piece of fruit from spoiling the other fruit that is in the container.
After you have layered the fruit and paper towels, put the container in the vegetable bin or on a lower shelf in the refrigerator. Do not place it on a compartment on the door, because the temperature will change every time you open and close the door.
Where to Store Your Fruits
Where you store your fruits will have a big impact on how long they stay fresh. There will also be a difference in texture and taste if they are not stored in a proper place. Most fruits can be stored in the refrigerator except bananas, lemons, and limes. They should be kept in a cool, dry area, but not in the refrigerator.
If you store bananas in the refrigerator, the ripening process stops. The skin will turn dark, but the flesh will still be edible. Feel free to put them in the refrigerator if they are as ripe as you want them to be.
If you have too many bananas on hand, you can put them in the freezer and use them for a banana shake. Put the frozen bananas into a blender along with cold milk, ice, and a sprinkle of cinnamon. Another option is to use the extra bananas to make banana bread.
Delicate fruits, like strawberries and raspberries, should be stored in the refrigerator to keep them as fresh as long as possible. Store unripe fruits like pears, peaches, plums, kiwis, mangoes, apricots, avocados, melons, and bananas on the counter. Once they're ripe, move them to the refrigerator.
Citrus fruits such as oranges, tangerines, lemons, and limes, will stay fresh up to a week in a cool, dark place if they are kept away from direct sunlight. They will stay fresh much longer if they are stored in the refrigerator in a mesh or plastic bag with holes punched in it.
How to Wash Your Fruits
Hard fruits, such as apples and pears, can be cleaned and put into the refrigerator or left in a bowl or basket on the counter or table for your family to grab to snack on.
Delicate fruits, like raspberries, strawberries, grapes and cherries, should be rinsed just before eating and not before.
According to the Food and Drug Administration, you should not use soap or dish detergent to wash any fruit. It is acceptable to wash fruits with hard skins that are textured like cantaloupes and melons with a vegetable brush as you hold them under running water.
You can also use a paper towel or your hands to gently rub the fruit to clean the skin. For delicate fruits like berries, it is a good idea to put them in a colander. Run cool water over them and move them around so each one can get rinsed off.