Keeping Your Fruit Baskets Lasting Longer

Small Fruit and Gourmet Gift Basket

Gift Basket Storage Once you have received this wonderful fruit basket or any gourmet basket containing fruit, storing the fruit may be an issue. Below is a list of the most common fruits in fruit baskets and how to store them. These tips come from Oregon State University.

Apples and Pears Each variety has its natural ripening period and nothing in the home is likely to extend the life of early ripening varieties. However, assuming that a cool garage or shed and an old refrigerator are available, the useful life of late ripening varieties can be extended by many weeks using polythene bags. Select unblemished fruit. Don’t mix varieties – this is important!

•Place in polythene bags, tie and pierce the bags with a pencil point several times.
•Pack in fridge and maintain temperature a few degrees above freezing.
•Make regular checks and remove any unsatisfactory fruit.
•Late ripening eating apples will last well into the new year. Bramleys don’t need this treatment. Conference pears will last an extra 4-6 weeks after which quality will deteriorate.

Plums, Cherries and Peaches Placed in a fridge these will keep for an extra week or so. To keep throughout the year these can be frozen as for soft fruit (below). Peaches and plums are best de-stoned.

Soft Fruit Easily stored for use during the following year by washing, bagging, adding sugar to taste and placing in a deep freeze. Strawberries do not hold their shape and texture but are excellent stewed. Raspberries will hold their form if not washed and placed in rigid containers.

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