Some people are intimidated by the thought of picking out fresh fruits and vegetables. Even if you are not one of them, you may be unsure about the way you should store them, when and how to wash them, or how to freeze them so you can enjoy them all year long and not just during the fresh, growing season. Here are some tips to help.
Buying Georgia Blueberries:
- Look for firm, plump, dry berries with smooth skins and a silvery/hazy sheen
- Stay away from soft or shriveled fruit, or any signs of mold. If the container has juice stains, its an indication that the fruit may be bruised
Storing Fresh Georgia Blueberries:
- Refrigerate as soon as you bring them home, either in the original package or in a storage container
- Don’t wash berries right away – wait until you’re ready to eat them. When my kids want a snack I grab a handful and wash them and then drop them in a bowl or sandwich bag that they can tote around.
- As with any fresh food, you should eat them as soon as possible. The fresher they are, the more nutrients they will have. Generally, blueberries will last about a week to 10 days in the fridge.
Freezing Blueberries (It’s Different than Other Berries!)
- When blueberries are in season, why not stock up? You can freeze them and enjoy year round!
- Unlike with other berries, you should not wash them before freezing, especially if you plan to thaw and eat them without cooking. Supposedly, if you wash blueberries before you freeze them, they have tougher skins.
- If you plan to bake the berries in a pie or cobbler, or make a sauce or topping with them by cooking them, you can wash before freezing if you want to - just make sure you dry the berries thoroughly before putting them in the freezer and you shouldn’t be able to tell a difference.
- Place the dry berries on a cookie sheet or other flat dish that fits in your freezer. Place the tray/dish/cookie sheet in the freezer and allow the berries to freeze until hard, preferably over night.
- Place frozen berries into freezer storage bags, containers or vacuum sealing bags. To prevent freezer burn, try to get as much air out of the storage container as possible.