Monday, November 15, 2010

Tips and Tricks

We love pears at our house and have been  so pleased to be receiving them in our basket the last few weeks. The only problem with pears is that sometimes they take forever to ripen and when they do, it's all at once. So, today I'd like to share a tip that will help solve this problem. Maybe you all know this little "secret," and have been eating perfectly ripened pears for weeks now,  but just in case, the secret is...

A brown paper bag. 

That's the big secret. Wow. I know. (a little anti-climatic huh?) But none-the-less if you put your pears in a brown paper bag it will help them ripen. And if you put them in with an apple or banana, they'll ripen even faster.

Here is a snippet of an interesting article that explains the science behind it:
"As ripening begins, pears produce ethylene gas, a ripening hormone, inside the fruit," explained Sugar. "This speeds the ripening along. The ripening time gets shorter as the time since harvest passes."
Pear lovers can "kick start" the pear ripening process by putting freshly bought or newly harvested pears in a paper bag with a ripe banana or an apple, both of which give off copious quantities of ethylene gas. The bag keeps the gas near the pears, which soak it up and quickly begin producing their own."

Oh, and you might be interested to know what the same article said about the best way to eat a perfectly ripe pear...
"After years of study, scientists have found that a really juicy pear is best eaten while naked, in the bathtub, so that you needn't be concerned about the abundant juice streaming down your chin," he laughed.

One more tip. Want to know the best way to keep your celery from going bad? Wrap it in tin foil! My grandma taught me that trick and it really does work. I'd say my celery stays good in my fridge for up to three weeks when wrapped in tin foil. Cool huh? Give it a try.

And while digging for the "why" behind this phenomenon (can you call it that?!!?!) I learned that cucumbers last longer in foil as well and strawberries will last two weeks if kept in a glass jar! Anyone else have some great tips and tricks?


cindy. said...

sister! these are great tips. although, i did already know the pears in a paper bag and celery in a tin foil trick (probably because we have the same grandma! duh.). BUT - who knew about strawberries and cucumbers? i can't wait to give it a try!

Tiana Larsen said...

Your paper bag trick works great for persimmons too! They seem to take forever to ripen up... while I was doing research about the interesting fruit I found that neat trick to be able to enjoy them faster!