How to Store Fruit

Print

fruit_cHere are advices and rules for storing different fruit: apples, apricots, avocado pears, bananas, blackberries, blueberries, coconut, cherries, crab apples, cranberries, currants, damsons, dates, figs, gooseberries, grapefruit, grapes, greengages, guavas, kumquats, lemons and limes, loganberries, mangoes, melons, nectarines, oranges, peaches, pears, persimmons, pineapple, plums, pomegranates, quinces, raspberries, rhubarb, strawberries.


Apples

Preparation and packing Peel, core and drop in cold water. Slice medium apples in twelfths, large apples in sixteenths. Slices may be blanched for 3 minutes and cooled before packing. Use:

  1. Dry sugar pack, using 1/2 lb sugar to 2 lbs fruit, with 1/2 inch head-space. Use containers, or pack in polythene bags.
  2. 40% syrup pack. Quarter-fill container with syrup, slice in apples, finishing with more syrup; cover with cellophane, leaving 1/2 inch headspace.

Thawing and serving Use frozen pie slices for pies and puddings, adjusting sweetening to taste.

Storage time 8-12 months.

Special notes Use firm crisp apples for pie slices; apples which fluff and burst may be frozen as puree or Apple Sauce. Baked Apples and Fruit Pies may be ready-cooked before freezing.

Apricots

Preparation and packing Freeze unpeeled halves or peeled slices. Prepare in small quantities to avoid discoloration. Half apricots should be washed and stoned; drop in boiling water for 1/2 minute to prevent skins toughening, then chill in iced water. Use a dry sugar pack (4 oz sugar to 1 lb fruit) or 40% syrup. Sliced apricots should be peeled quickly and sliced directly into containers holding a 40% syrup; they should be covered with cellophane, allowing 1/2 inch headspace.

Thawing and serving 3 1/2 hours in pack at room temperature.

Storage time 12 months.

Special notes Lemon juice or citric acid can be added to give a better colour. Very ripe fruit can be frozen as puree to serve as a sauce or for making ice cream.

Avocado pears

Preparation and packing Prepare as halves, slices or pulp. Halves should be rubbed with lemon juice, wrapped in foil, and stored in polythene bags. Slices must be dipped in lemon juice and frozen in waxed or rigid plastic containers. Pulp should be mashed, allowing 1 tablespoon lemon juice to each avocado, and should be packed in small containers.

Thawing and serving 2 1/2 to 3 hours at room temperature. Use immediately when thawed. Mix pulp with onion, garlic or herbs for a dip or spread.

Storage time 2 months.

Special notes Subtlety of flavour is lost in freezing and fruit discolours very quickly. Pulp is more successful than halves or slices.

Bananas

Preparation and packing Mash fruit in chilled bowl, mixing with 8 oz sugar to 3 breakfastcups banana pulp and 3 tablespoons lemon juice. Pack in small containers which can be used quickly.

Thawing and serving 6 hours in unopened container in refrigerator. Use for sandwiches or for bread and cakes.

Storage time 2 months.

Special notes There seems little reason to freeze bananas since supply and price vary little with the seasons. The fruit must be prepared very quickly as it discolours rapidly, and must also be used quickly on thawing. For children, Chocolate Covered Bananas freeze well.

Blackberries

Preparation and packing Wash in chilled water and drain dry on absorbent paper. Pack whole berries in waxed or rigid plastic containers or polythene bags. As to sweetening:

  1. Unsweetened berries may be fast frozen in a single layer on trays, then packed in bags.
  2. Use a dry sugar pack, 8 oz sugar to 2 lbs fruit, leaving headspace in containers, or packing in polythene bags.
  3. Use a 50% syrup pack, leaving headspace. Crushed berries may be sieved and sweetened, allowing 4 oz sugar to 1 pint crushed berries. Stir until dissolved, leaving 1/2 inch headspace.

Thawing and serving 3 hours at room temperature, Berries may be eaten raw with sugar, or cooked, or used in pies or puddings.

Storage time 1 year.

Special notes Dark glossy, folly ripe berries are best, preferably cultivated varieties. Berries with woody pips or green patches should be discarded.

Blueberries

Preparation and packing Wash in chilled water and drain thoroughly. The skins toughen on freezing, so crush fruit slightly first or hold over steam for 1 minute before cooling and packing. As to sweetening:

  1. Unsweetened berries may be fast frozen in a single layer on trays, then packed in bags.
  2. Use a dry sugar pack. 4 oz sugar to 4 breakfastcups berries is best, with berries slightly crushed and mixed with sugar until dissolved. Pack in containers or polythene bags.
  3. Use a 50% syrup pack, leaving headspace.

Thawing and serving 3 hours room temperature. Fruit in syrup may be served cold; unsweetened or dry sugar packed berries may be cooked with water or used for pies.

Storage time 12 months.

Coconut

Preparation and packing Grate or shred fresh coconut, moisten with coconut milk, and pack into waxed or rigid plastic containers, or polythene bags. For sweet dishes, add 4 oz sugar to 4 breakfastcups of shredded coconut. Shredded coconut may also be toasted, cooled and packed.

Thawing and serving 2 hours at room temperature. Use for fruit salads or icings, or for curry dishes. It is best to drain off coconut milk immediately after thawing and before use.

Storage time 2 months.

Cherries

Preparation and packing Firm up cherries in chilled water for 1 hour; dry and remove stones which flavour fruit in freezing. Use glass or plastic containers as cherry juice acid tends to remain liquid and may leak through cardboard during storage.

  1. Use a dry sugar pack. 1/2 lb sugar to 2 lbs pitted cherries, packed in containers or polythene bags, is best for pie-making.
  2. Use a 40% syrup pack, leaving headspace, for sweet cherries.
  3. Use a 50% or 60% syrup pack, leaving headspace, for sour cherries.

Thawing and serving 3 hours at room temperature. Use sugared cherries for pies; syrup-packed cherries may be served cold.

Storage time 12 months.

Special notes Sweet and sour cherries freeze equally well, but red varieties do so better than black. Lemon juice or citric acid prevents darkening and helps flavour retention.

Crab apples

Preparation and packing Prepare as apple slices to use later for crab-apple jelly.

Storage time 1 year.

Cranberries

Preparation and packing Discard shrivelled or soft berries. Wash in cold water and drain.

  1. Unsweetened berries packed dry in bags or containers are the most useful, for later conversion into sauce or pies.
  2. Puree berries by cooking gently in very little water until the skins pop; then sieve and add 8 oz sugar to each pint of puree. Allow 1/2 inch headspace in containers.

Thawing and serving 3 1/2 hours at room temperature. Unsweetened berries can be cooked in water and sugar while still frozen.

Storage time 12 months.

Special notes Only firm, well-coloured glossy berries without mealiness should be used.

Currants

Preparation and packing Strip fruit from stems with a fork, wash in chilled water and dry gently. As to sweetening:

  1. Unsweetened berries may be packed dry in polythene bags for later use in jam-making.
  2. Use a dry sugar pack, 8 oz sugar to 1 lb prepared berries; mix until almost dissolved, and pack in containers or suitable polythene bags.
  3. Use a 40% syrup pack in containers. Blackcurrants are also excellent if made into a puree, sweetened and packed into small containers to use for drinks, ices and puddings.

Thawing and serving 3/4 hour at room temperature.

Storage time 12 months.

Special notes Black, red and white currants all freeze successfully by the same methods. Boskoop Giant and Wellington are good varieties of blackcurrants for freezing.

Damsons

Preparation and packing Wash fruit in chilled water, cut in half remove stones, and use 50% syrup. The fruit is better as a puree, since the skins toughen during freezing and the stones flavour the fruit. Thawing and serving 2 1/2 hours at room temperature.

Storage time 12 months.

Dates

Preparation and packing Wrap block dates in foil or polythene bags. Remove stones from dessert dates and Pack in polythene bags or in waxed or rigid plastic containers.

Thawing and serving 1/2 hour at room temperature. Serve as dessert, or use for cakes and puddings.

Storage time 12 months.

Special notes Dates stored in boxes dry out and develop off-flavours; so since they have a limited season, they are worth freezing.

Figs

Preparation and packing Wash in chilled water, remove stems with a sharp knife, and handle carefully to avoid bruising.

  1. Unsweetened figs may be frozen whole and peeled, or unpeeled, in polythene bags.
  2. 30% syrup pack may be used for peeled figs.
  3. Dried dessert figs may be wrapped in foil or polythene bags.

Thawing and serving 1 1/2 hours at room temperature. Unsweetened figs may be eaten raw, or cooked in syrup.

Storage time 12 months.

Special notes Both green and purple figs can be frozen successfully. They should be fully ripe, soft and sweet, with small seeds and slightly shrivelled but unsplit skins.

Gooseberries

Preparation and packing Wash in chilled water and dry. As to sweetening:

  1. Unsweetened fruit can be frozen in polythene bags without sweetening. For pies, fruit should be fully ripe. For jam, fruit may be frozen slightly under-ripe.
  2. 40% syrup may be used, but skins tend to toughen in storage.

Puree made by stewing fruit in very little water, sieving and sweetening to taste is useful for fools and mousses.

Thawing and serving 2 1/2 hours at room temperature. Fruit may be put into pics or cooked with sugar and water while still frozen. Puree should be used as soon as it is thawed.

Storage time 12 months.

Special notes The best variety for freezing is Careless.

Grapefruit

Preparation and packing Peel fruit, remove all pith and cut segments away from pith.

  1. Use a dry sugar pack, 8 oz sugar to 2 breakfast cups segments, in waxed or rigid plastic containers.
  2. Use a 50% syrup pack.

Thawing and serving 2 1/2 hours at room temperature. Storage time 12 months.

Grapes

Preparation and packing Seedless varieties can be packed whole; others should be skinned, pipped and halved. They are best packed in 30% syrup.

Thawing and serving 2 1/2 hours at room temperature.

Storage time12 months.

Special notes Grapes should be firm, ripe, sweet and with tender skins. For decorative purposes, a perfect bunch of grapes may be frozen in a polythene bag and stored up to 2 weeks; the grapes look full and rich and taste excellent.

Greengages

Preparation and packing Wash in chilled water and dry well. Cut in halves, removing stones, and pack in 40% syrup in waxed or rigid plastic containers.

Thawing and serving 2 1/2 hours at room temperature.

Storage time 12 months.

Special notes Skins tend to toughen during storage, and the stones flavour fruit, so an unsweetened dry pack is not recommended.

Guavas

Preparation and packing Wash fresh fruit, cook with a little water and puree. Cooking in pineapple juice improves flavour. Fruit can also be peeled, halved and cooked until tender, then packed in 30% syrup. Canned guavas can be packed in their own syrup.

Thawing and serving 1 1/2 hours at room temperature.

Storage time 12 months.

Kumquats

Preparation and packing Wipe whole fruit in foil, or cover with cold 50% syrup in waxed or rigid plastic containers.

Thawing and serving 2 hours at room temperature; use unsweetened fruit immediately after thawing.

Storage time 2 months if unsweetened; 12 months in syrup.

Lemons and limes

Preparation and packing Peel lemon or lime slices and freeze in 20% syrup in small packs.

Thawing and serving 1 hour at room temperature, to use as garnishes or in drinks.

Storage time 12 months.

Loganberries

Preparation and packing Treat as Blackberries.

Thawing and serving 3 hours at room temperature. Fruit is particularly good for ices and mousses.

Storage time 12 months.

Mangoes

Preparation and packing Peel ripe fruit and slice into 50% cold syrup, having added 2 dessertspoons lemon juice to each quart syrup. Canned fruit can be frozen in syrup.

Thawing and serving 1 1/2 hours at room temperature.

Storage time 12 months.

Melons

Preparation and packing Cut flesh in cubes or balls and toss in lemon juice before packing in 30% syrup.

Thawing and serving Thaw unopened in refrigerator and serve while still a little frosty.

Storage time 12 months.

Special notes Cantaloup and honey-dew melons and watermelons are all good frozen; but seeds make preparation of watermelon difficult.

Nectarines

Preparation and packing Treat as peaches, peeling or not as desired.

Thawing and serving 3 hours in refrigerator.

Storage time 12 months.

Oranges

Preparation and packing Oranges may be treated as grapefruit in sections; but they are better in slices. Peel fruit and remove all pith, cutting flesh in 1/4 inch slices. As to sweetening:

  1. A dry sugar pack, using 8 oz sugar to 3 breakfastcups of orange pieces, can be packed in containers or polythene bags.
  2. Use a 30% syrup in waxed or rigid plastic containers; covering with cellophane, leaving 1/2 inch head-space.
  3. Slices may be packed in slightly sweetened fresh orange juice.

Thawing and serving 2 1/2 hours at room temperature. Segments are most useful for breakfast, slices for other meals.

Storage time 12 months.

Special notes Navel oranges develop a bitter flavour when frozen.

Peaches

Preparation and packing Deal with peaches one at a time as they discolour quickly. Peel, halve and slice, and brush with lemon juice. They are best peeled and stoned under cold running water, as boiling water used for skinning will cause them to soften and brown.

  1. Use 40% syrup for halves or slices. Pack in waxed or rigid plastic containers and cover with cellophane, leaving 1/2 inch headspace.
  2. Puree peeled and stoned peaches, by crushing with a silver fork and mixing 1 tablespoon lemon juice and 4 oz sugar to each lb of fruit.

Thawing and serving Thaw slowly in refrigerator to prevent discoloration on exposure to the air. If to be used for cakes or with cream, use half-thawed so they will be ready by the time preparation of the dish is finished. Use puree for sauce or ice cream.

Storage time 12 months.

Pears

Preparation and packing Peel and quarter, remove cores and dip pieces in lemon juice immediately. Poach pears in 30% syrup for 1 ½ minutes, drain and cool, and pack in cold syrup. .

Thawing and serving 3 hours at room temperature.

Storage time 12 months.

Special notes Pears discolour badly during freezing, and do not retain their delicate flavour. The best pears to use are ripe, but not over-ripe.

Persimmons

Preparation and packing Peel fully ripe fruit and freeze whole in 50% syrup; add 1 dessertspoon lemon juice to 1 quart syrup. Puree may be sweetened, allowing 1 breakfast cup sugar to 4 breakfast cups of puree. Whole unpeeled fruit may be wrapped in foil.

Thawing and serving 3 hours at room temperature. Use whole unpeeled fruit when barely thawed as it darkens and loses flavour when standing.

Storage time 2 months if raw; 12 months if in syrup or as puree.

Pineapple

Preparation and packing Peel fruit and cut into slices or chunks.

As to sweetening:

  1. Unsweetened slices may be packed in boxes with double thickness of cellophane to keep slices separate.
  2. Use a 30% syrup in waxed or rigid plastic containers, including any pineapple juice resulting from preparation; cover with cellophane, allowing 1/2 inch headspace.
  3. Crush pineapple, allowing 4 oz sugar to 2 breakfast cups of prepared fruit.

Thawing and serving 3 hours at room temperature.

Storage time 12 months.

Special notes Pineapples, to freeze well, should be fully ripe with golden yellow flesh.

Plums

Preparation and packing Treat as greengages. Dried prunes may be frozen as dates or figs.

Thawing and serving 2 1/2 hours at room temperature.

Storage time 12 months.

Pomegranates

Preparation and packing Cut fully ripe fruit in half, scoop out red juice sacs and pack them in 50% syrup in small containers. Juice may be extracted, sweetened to taste, and frozen in small containers or ice cube trays, each frozen cube being wrapped in foil for storage.

Thawing and serving 3 hours at room temperature.

Storage time 12 months.

Quinces

Preparation and packing Peel, core and slice and cook in boiling 20% syrup for 2 minutes, then pack in containers and cover with cold syrup. A better flavour is retained if the peel is simmered, with just enough water to cover it, and the juice of 1 orange and 1 lemon, until the peel is tender, this juice being used for making the syrup As quinces take a long time to cook, they can be simmered until completely tender to save later preparation.

Thawing and serving 3 hours at room temperature.

Storage time 12 months.

Raspberries

Preparation and packing Pick over fruit very carefully, discarding hard, seedy fruit. As to sweetening:

  1. Unsweetened fruit may be packed in cartons or polythene bags.
  2. A dry sugar pack, 4 oz sugar to 1 lb fruit, is suitable for cartons or polythene bags.
  3. 30% syrup may be poured over the fruit. Pack into containers, cover with cellophane and allow 1/2 inch headspace.
  4. Puree may be made by sieving fruit and sweetening with 4 oz sugar to each pint of puree. Pack in containers or in ice cube trays, wrapping each frozen cube in foil for storage.

Thawing and serving 3 hours at room temperature. Puree may be used for sauce or drinks, or used as a basis for ice cream.

Storage time 12 months.

Special notes The best varieties for freezing are Norfolk Giant and Lloyd George.

Rhubarb

Preparation and packing Sticks should be washed in cold running water and trimmed to required length.

For ease of packing, sticks can be blanched for 1 minute, which makes them limper and helps to retain colour and flavour. Pack in cartons or foil or polythene bags. As to sweetening:

  1. A 40% syrup pack can be used for rhubarb cut in pieces. Pack in waxed or rigid plastic containers.
  2. Stewed rhubarb may be sieved, sweetened and frozen as puree.

Thawing and serving 3 1/2 hours at room temperature. Unsweetened sticks can be cut while still frozen and cooked in the usual way.

Storage time 12 months.

Strawberries

Preparation and packing Pick over fruit, removing husks, and using fully ripe, mature but firm strawberries. As to sweetening:

  1. An unsweetened pack is recommended as strawberries are then less pulpy when thawed. They are best graded before packing. Pack in polythene bags.
  2. A dry sugar pack, 4 oz sugar to 1 lb fruit, may be used with whole strawberries, or sliced or lightly crushed ones, packed in containers or polythene bags.
  3. A 40% syrup can be used for whole or sliced fruit.
  4. Strawberries may be sieved and sweetened to taste, then frozen as puree in small containers to use for ice cream or mousses.

Thawing and serving 1 1/2 hours at room temperature. Unsweetened fruit may be sugared before thawing.

Storage time 12 months.

Special notes The best varieties for freezing are Cambridge Vigour, Cambridge Favourite and Royal Sovereign.

Add comment

Security code
Refresh

FDRPolls

Your best fast-food restaurant is