Summers here on Long Island are filled with tons of family friendly activities: going to the beach, festivals, boating and one of our favorites, picking berries. We have lots of fresh strawberry, blueberry, raspberry and blackberry farms to pick the freshest berries right off the vine to enjoy back at home. Once home, most people will just pop their berry treasures in the refrigerator hoping to eek out a few more days out of their bounty only to find that dreaded mold by day two or three. Luckily, there are a few simple tricks to extend the life of these summer jewels using our favorite ingredient…vinegar!
Normally, it is best to NOT wash our produce before storing it but in this case, washing it in a white vinegar and water solution helps destroys bacteria and mold spores, helping the berries last longer.
- First, carefully submerge berries in bowl containing 1 cup white vinegar and 3 cups of water. Move the fruit around, then let them soak for a minute or two. Pour berries into a colander and give them a rinse under cool running water (don’t worry, you will not taste the vinegar at all…promise!)
- Now that we have killed off those nasty spores it is time to dry our fruit off before storing properly. Strawberries and blueberries can be dried in a salad spinner lined with paper towels. Delicate blackberries and raspberries should be spread out on a towel and air dried.
- Once completely dried, store berries a sealable container lined with paper towels. Keep lid slightly open to allow excess moisture to escape.
There you have it. Now go out and enjoy all those delicious berries any time you want!