How Do You Keep Fruits Fresh Longer?

How Do You Keep Fruits Fresh Longer?

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Want to keep your fruits fresh for longer? It is everyone’s dream, but how can you achieve that? Of the numerous varieties of fruits grown in many countries, apples and pears are about the only ones that can be kept for any length of time without artificial means.

General Tips to Store Fruit to Keep them Fresh

As soon as the fruit has attained its maturity, a gradual change or breaking down of tissues begins. In some fruits this process follows rapidly; in others it is gradual. There is a certain point at which the fruits are best suited for use. We call it mellowness, and say that the fruit is in “good eating condition.”

When this stage has been reached, deterioration and rotting soon follow. In some fruits, as the peach, plum, and early varieties of apples and pears, these changes occur within a few days after maturity, and it is quite useless to attempt to keep them; in others, like the later varieties of apples and pears, the changes are slow but none the less certain. To keep such fruits we must endeavor to retard or prolong the process of change, by avoiding all conditions likely to hasten decay.

Even with ordinary care, sound fruit will keep for quite a length of time; but it can be preserved in better condition and for a longer period by careful attention to the following practical points:

  • If the fruit is of a late variety, allow it to remain on the tree as long as practicable without freezing.
  • Always pick and handle the fruit with the greatest care.
  • Gather the fruit on a dry, cool day, and place it in heaps or bins for two or three weeks.
  • Carefully sort and pack in barrels, placing those most mellow and those of different varieties in different barrels; head the barrels, label, and place in a cool, dry place where the temperature will remain equable. Some consider it better to keep fruit in thin layers upon broad shelves in a cool place. This plan allows frequent inspection and removal of all affected fruit without disturbance of the remainder.
  • Warmth and moisture are the conditions most favorable to decomposition and should be especially guarded against.
  • The best temperature for keeping fruit is about 34° F., or 2° above freezing.
  • Another method that is highly recommended is to sprinkle a layer of sawdust on the bottom of a box and then put in a layer of apples, not allowing them to touch each other. Upon this pack more sawdust; then another layer of apples, and so on until the box is filled. After packing, place up from the ground, in a cellar or storeroom, and they will keep perfectly, retaining their freshness and flavor until brought out. Cover with the chaff and then with straw two or three feet deep. The advantage of this is that covering and bedding in chaff excludes cold, prevents air currents, maintains a uniform temperature, absorbs the moisture of decay, and prevents the decay produced by moisture.”

To Keep Grapes Fresh for Longer

Select such bunches as are perfect, rejecting all upon which there are any bruised grapes, or from which a grape has fallen. Spread them up on shelves in a cool place for a week or two. Then pack in boxes in sawdust which has been recently well dried in an oven. Bran that has been dried may also be used. Dry cotton is employed by some. Keep in a cool place.

Some consider the following a more efficient method: select perfect bunches, and dip the broken end of the stems in melted paraffine or sealing wax. Wrap separately in tissue paper, hang in a cool place, or pack in sawdust.

To Keep Lemons and Oranges Fresh for Longer

Lemons may be kept fresh for weeks by placing them in a vessel of cold water in a very cool cellar or ice house. Change the water every day. Oranges may be kept in the same way. The usual method employed by growers for keeping these fruits is to wrap each one separately in tissue paper and put it in a cool, dry place.

To Keep Cranberries Fresh for Longer

Put them in water and keep them in a cool place where they will not freeze. Change the water often, and sort out berries that may have become spoiled.

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