Harvesting and Preserving Blueberries

June 27, 2016

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Summer means garden fresh blueberries from your backyard or pick-your-own farm.  Get the best flavor with proper harvesting, storage and preservation. 

Watch as the berries turn from green to completely blue. Then wait a few days for them to fully ripen and spring back when gently squeezed. Taste a few ripe berries so you begin to know what a fully ripe blueberry looks and feels like.

Carefully remove only the ripe berries from the plant by gently rolling the berry between your thumb and forefinger with palm facing up to catch any dropped fruit. Store berries in shallow layers in covered containers in the fruit or vegetable drawer of the refrigerator.

Wait to wash berries just prior to using or preserving. Wet berries are more subject to mold and don’t last as long. Properly handled blueberries can last up to 14 days in the refrigerator,

A bit more information: You can preserve blueberries by freezing them. No need to blanch. Just wash and spread on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper until frozen solid. Then place in a freezer bag and store in freezer until needed.

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