Luca Rutigliano, Executive Chef at CordeValle Resort, in San Martin, said “Strawberries are such a healthy and versatile fruit to serve and prepare, but it’s important to take the proper steps to take full advantage of their freshness.”
Watsonville, CA (PRWEB) June 23, 2010 –
A record number of California strawberries are coloring markets and filling shopping baskets across the nation, and consumers everywhere want to know how to make the most of this summertime opportunity.
The growers of 38,000 acres of California strawberries are producing a record average of more than 7 million trays a week during this peak season - the equivalent of 63 million pounds. And that means that there are lots of this popular super fruit available to strawberry lovers everywhere since California produces about 87 percent of the nation’s strawberries.
With this kind of availability, a question growers, chefs and retailers are hearing across the country is, “What’s the best way to store strawberries?”
Luca Rutigliano, Executive Chef at CordeValle Resort in San Martin, said, “Strawberries are such a healthy and versatile fruit to serve and prepare, but it’s important to take the proper steps to take full advantage of their freshness.” He recommends the following tips to enjoy strawberries immediately or store for use at a later time.
- Choose strawberries with a vibrant and consistent red color from the bottom of the berry, all the way to the top.
- Make sure the stem is green and supple and the texture of the skin of the berry is relatively firm and shiny.
- Inspect the berries in the clamshell to make sure there is no sign of bruising or mold.
- Refrigerate strawberries immediately after purchasing.
- When ready to enjoy fresh, rinse strawberries thoroughly under cool water. The stems should not be removed prior to rinsing to protect the berries from absorbing too much moisture.
- Lightly pat dry.
- After rinsing, gently blot dry.
- Slice stem off at top of berry.
- Place cut side down on a cookie sheet lined with waxed paper.
- Place uncovered in freezer for 24 hours.
- Transfer strawberries to a freezer bag or container.
- Frozen strawberries can be stored frozen for several months.
When served fresh, California strawberries are most flavorful at room temperature. They can be enjoyed just as they are or sliced in cereals, salads and served with any meal, any time of day.
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