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What is the best way to store fresh fruit at home?

For the best flavour, you should buy or pick fruit that is ripe and ready to eat. But as fruit cannot always be bought daily, storing it under the right conditions will help to keep it fresh longer.

Grapefruit, lemons, melons, bananas, oranges and pineapple will keep well for several days in a fruit bowl at room temperature, especially if bought or picked just before they are ripe. However, you must be sure to keep these fruits away from direct sunlight.

Slightly under-ripe apricots, nectarines and peaches can be stored at room temperature to help them ripen, but fruit that is already ripe should be refrigerated. Apples and pears should be stored in the refrigerator to retain crispness.

Loose lemons, limes and passionfruit can be kept for several weeks in the refrigerator. Place them unwrapped in the salad drawer with enough room so that air can circulate around the fruit.

All berries are highly perishable and should be refrigerated as soon as you get them home. Put strawberries in a shallow colander standing on a plate and cover the top with another plate or foil. The holes in the colander will allow air to circulate around the fruit, keeping it dry. When berries become wet, their decomposition accelerates. Blackberries, loganberries and raspberries are best spread out on a large plate. Cover loosely with a lid, some foil or plastic wrap.

Cherries will keep for up to ten days in the refrigerator. Keep them wrapped loosely in a green, long-life storage bag. Ripe, exotic and tropical fruits and grapes are also best kept refrigerated. All refrigerated fruit should be brought back to room temperature before eating to bring out its full flavour.

Some supermarkets now sell fruit such as avocados labelled "ready to eat now". However, if you do intend to serve the fruit that very day, it is still best to test it for ripeness before purchase.

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08:00:16 on 11/27/06 by Webmaster - Questions and Answers -