I don’t know about you, but nothing makes me sadder than realizing I let produce spoil before I got to it. One main culprit I’m really bad about letting go is any berry. Strawberries, raspberries, blackberries —they have a 50/50 shot when they get to my house.
I’ve started using a trick my grandmother and mother told me about for years and I’m sure you’ve seen a TikTok video or two about this recently. Now, some of these videos show a mass exodus of bugs coming out of their berries, but I don’t really ever have that issue. What problem I do have is mold on the berries that start out as spores. So how do we fix this issue? Well, the answer is very simple: white vinegar and water.
I use 1 cup of vinegar and 3 cups of water for one container of strawberries or 2 cups of vinegar to 4 cups of water for two containers. I combine those in a large bowl. I cut off the tops of the strawberries, place them in a colander and then submerge them in the vinegar-water mix bowl. (Keeping them in the colander makes them easy to drain.)
I toss them around and then let them sit for about 5 minutes. Once they have soaked, I remove them berry by berry and dry them with a paper towel. I then place them in a container with layers of paper towels and make sure to leave the container open so air can circulate in the refrigerator.
This simple wash extends the life of the berries by a few days so that I can either use them in the recipe I had planned or my family can snack on them. Try it out! I hope this hack helps you as much as it has me.
Keep in mind, if you know you won’t get to use your produce in time, freeze it! There are different freezing techniques for a variety of produce. I highly recommend researching the best methods for what you are trying to preserve.