Fresh berries, yum! Too bad they go mushy or mouldy the minute you look at them sideways. Or, more accurately, the minute you store them incorrectly. Follow these tips for longer-lasting berry goodness:
*Remove stems and leaves, or any berries that are squished, discoloured, shrivelled, or covered in mysterious spots.
*Store berries in the container they came in, or, if not, in another breathable container.
*Keep them dry; only wash before using. Moisture is a berry’s mortal enemy!
*Don’t blast your berries clean with a strong stream of water from the tap. You might bruise them. The somewhat-fussy-but-very-gentlest method of washing is to place the berries in a colander, and dip them into a bowl of water. (Just don’t leave them to soak for long.)
*In the fridge, keep berries out of the crisper—there’s typically poor air circulation in that drawer, especially if it’s packed full.
*Avoid stashing them in the back of the fridge—it’s often too cold. And you might forget about them.
*If you don’t plan to eat the berries within a week, freeze them.
*Don’t handle warm, straight-from-the-farm-stand berries before sticking them in the fridge for an hour. Slightly chilled, they’ll be firmer and won’t crush as easily.