Strawberries are a delicious and nutritious fruit that are enjoyed around the world. While they are in season, they are often plentiful and affordable, but what can you do if you want to enjoy strawberries out of season? Fortunately, there are several ways to store strawberries so that you can enjoy them for weeks or even months after they are picked.
The easiest way to store strawberries is to refrigerate them. To do this, rinse the strawberries in cool water and then pat them dry with a paper towel. Next, place them in a single layer in a container or on a tray lined with paper towels. Cover the container or tray with plastic wrap or a lid and place it in the refrigerator. Stored this way, strawberries can last for up to 1 week.
Another way to store strawberries for a long time is to freeze them. To do this, rinse the strawberries in cool water and pat them dry with a paper towel. Remove the stems and cut the strawberries into slices or quarters. Place the sliced strawberries in a single layer on a tray lined with parchment paper and freeze them for 1-2 hours. Once they are frozen, transfer the strawberries to a freezer-safe container or bag and label it with the date. Frozen strawberries can last for up to 8 months.
If you want to store strawberries for an even longer period of time, you can dehydrate them. To do this, rinse the strawberries in cool water and pat them dry with a paper towel. Remove the stems and cut the strawberries into thin slices. Place the sliced strawberries on a dehydrator tray and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for dehydrating. Once they are dehydrated, store the strawberries in an airtight container in a cool, dry place. Dehydrated strawberries can last for up to 1 year.
Another option for storing strawberries is to preserve them in jars. To do this, rinse the strawberries in cool water and pat them dry with a paper towel. Remove the stems and cut the strawberries into quarters. Place the strawberries in a pot with sugar and lemon juice and cook them until they are soft and the liquid has thickened. Once they are cooked, transfer the strawberries and liquid to sterilized jars and process them according to the instructions for your canning equipment. Preserved strawberries can last for up to 1 year.
Preserving strawberries is a great way to enjoy them long after the growing season has ended. This method involves cooking the strawberries with sugar and lemon juice and then canning them in sterilized jars. Here’s how to do it:
- Rinse the strawberries in cool water and pat them dry with a paper towel.
- Remove the stems and cut the strawberries into quarters.
- In a pot, combine the strawberries with sugar and lemon juice. The amount of sugar and lemon juice you need will depend on the quantity of strawberries you have. A general rule of thumb is to use 1 cup of sugar and 2 tablespoons of lemon juice for every 4 cups of strawberries.
- Cook the strawberries over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until they are soft and the liquid has thickened. This can take anywhere from 10-20 minutes, depending on the size of your pot and the amount of strawberries you are cooking.
- Once the strawberries are cooked, remove the pot from the heat and allow the mixture to cool for a few minutes.
- While the strawberry mixture is cooling, sterilize your jars and lids according to the instructions for your canning equipment.
- Once the jars are sterilized, carefully spoon the strawberry mixture into the jars, leaving about 1/2 inch of space at the top.
- Wipe the rims of the jars with a clean, damp cloth to remove any excess strawberry mixture.
- Place the lids on the jars and tighten the rings until they are just snug.
- Process the jars in a boiling water canner for 10 minutes (adjust the time if you are at high altitude). Be sure to follow the instructions for your canning equipment.
- After the processing time is up, remove the jars from the canner and allow them to cool on a towel or rack. You should hear a “pop” as the jars seal.
- Once the jars are cool, check the seals by pressing down on the center of the lids. If the lids do not move up and down, the jars are sealed properly.
- Label the jars with the date and store them in a cool, dark place for up to 1 year.
Preserving strawberries in jars is a great way to enjoy the taste of summer all year long. Just be sure to follow proper canning procedures and safety guidelines to ensure that your strawberries are preserved safely and correctly.