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Produce Pointers – Strawberries

Choose locally- grown strawberries during the harvesting season; they will be the freshest and the most flavorful. When picking strawberries, try to pick early in the morning or later in the day when the fruit is cool.  Strawberries are best used within 2-3 days of picking.

 

Uses & Preparation

Freezing Whole Strawberries;  Spread a single layer of prepared fruit on shallow trays and freeze.  When frozen, promptly package (to avoid freezer burn) and return to freezer.  The fruit pieces remain loose and can be used as needed.

Strawberries from Fresh off the Farm event. Taken 04-12-2019 (Photo source: UF/IFAS Camila Guillen)

Freezing Sliced or Crushed Strawberries;  Prepare berries: Using ripe berries, wash gently and remove caps.  Slice or crush partially or completely.  To 1 quart berries add 3/4 cup sugar.  Mix thoroughly.  Stir until most of the sugar is dissolved or let stand 15 minutes.  Pack into containers, leaving 1/2″ headspace.  Seal and freeze.

Storage

Sort and remove any bruised or damaged berries as soon as possible and use in sauces, purees or jams. Place the berries in cool, well-ventilated containers.  The moisture content of fresh strawberries is high, so store them unwashed and uncovered, or loosely covered.

Quantities

1 pint = about 3 1/4 cups whole berries (12-36 depending on size of berries) or about 2 1/4 cups sliced berries.  1 cup sliced fresh berries = One 10-oz. pkg frozen, sweetened berries.

MERRY FRESH STRAWBERRY PIE

1 9- inch pie crust, baked

1 cup white sugar

3 tablespoons strawberry flavored gelatin mix

2 tablespoons cornstarch

¼ teaspoon salt

1cup boiling water

2 pints strawberries, cleaned and stemmed

2 cups whipped topping (optional)

Combine sugar, gelatin, cornstarch, and salt in a medium saucepan.  Stir in boiling water. Boil mixture for 3 minutes over high heat, stirring constantly. Cool completely.

Arrange whole strawberries in pastry shell. Pour gelatin mixture over berries.  Chill before serving. Top with whipped topping, if desired.

Nutrition Information:  Low in calories – High in Vitamin C – Good source of folate, potassium & fiber
Available Fresh:  April – May

To learn about fresh Florida strawberries, please read our fact sheet: Panhandle Produce Pointers – Strawberries.

.For more delicious produce preparation tips, please visit: http://www.panhandleproducepointers.com.