Did you know that blueberries are the only fruit with an original blue color? The distinctive color makes it have a wide loan of health benefits. It is said that people have been eating blueberries for more than 13000 years.
Blueberries are grown in different parts of the country under different conditions requiring the consumer to wash thoroughly before eating; this is to get rid of dirt and pesticide residue on the blueberries. Blueberries have the same properties as raspberries and strawberries. There are different techniques for cleaning blueberries; washing them with clean water, cleaning them with vinegar, and drying them.
Blueberries exist in different varieties that are used to make different recipes as well. Below are important details you should know on how to clean them and storage and their benefits.
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How to clean blueberries
Blue berries can be cleaned in three methods as discussed below.
Cleaning blueberries with water
- Pick the sour blueberries from the rest
It is always essential that you make a good selection of the good blueberries from the rest. In most cases, if you have bought the blueberries from a farm or harvested them yourself, you may realize that there are sour berries covered with mold. Always ensure that you have proper lighting in the room while picking out the sour blueberries, because they tend to look like time. Most of the blueberries bought from a fruit store have blueberry stains, and this may be in the form of dirt or rot; this is why you need to be very careful.
There are many reasons why you should pick the sour blueberries before washing them;
- There are blueberries with mold on them, which leads to allergic conditions
- There are rotten fruits that contain worms and other kinds of bacteria that can cause gut-related problems.
- There may be stems and blueberries green in color that can spread the mold to other blueberries when stored.
- Put the blueberries in a colander.
Putting your blueberries in a big colander that can accommodate them all is very important. It helps them not get too much squeezed or even fall off the floor. With the blueberries in a colander, you should make sure that you pick out any remaining debris. It is essential to make sure that you use a colander with reasonably functioning spacing to ensure that all the water is drained when washing the blueberries.
The colanders exist in different shapes and sizes; always ensure that you have the best to have your blueberries adequately washed.
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- Run the blueberries in cold water
It is always essential for one to run a calm stream of water while washing the blueberries; this is to ensure that they do not crush. It should be cold and chilly if possible, and this is because blueberries have a soft covering and will peel off if not handled properly. The best way to protect your blueberries from crashing is by putting water in a strainer and adding them in.
Always ensure that you properly rinse the blueberries; draining should be appropriately done, especially if you need to store the blueberries for future consumption.
The technique of cleaning blueberries through drying is meant to take off the moisture in them. It is always essential that you lay your blueberries on a dry surface and pat them with paper towels. It would help if you were gentle while patting the blueberries to ensure that you do not apply a lot of pressure and crush them.
If the paper towel becomes absorbed with water, it is essential to replace it to ensure that it does not become soggy. You can use a dry sheet to lay your blueberries on or still put them on a filter or a plastic cutting board. Make sure that all the moisture is removed and it is ahead of it by consuming or storing it.
Cleaning blueberries with vinegar or lemon water
- Remove all the mold and stems that may be traceable in the blueberries; you should do this gently to ensure that you do not interfere with the condition of the blueberries. If the dirt in the blueberries fails to complete, get off. It would help if you did not worry but be sure to clean them in water. The vinegar helps in stain removal technique, more than water could.
- Fill a bowl full of water and put the blueberries in it. If you have the blueberries in bulk, you should wash them in a sink.
- Mix vinegar in cold water; this is meant for future blueberry preparation procedures. The vinegar should kill all the bacteria to make the fruits safe from any mold that your eyes cannot trace.
- Put the blueberries in the bowl with the vinegar mixture. Always ensure that they are all accommodated in the mixture; if they do not do this in turns until all the blueberries are washed. Some people tend to use detergent or hydrogen peroxide, which may tamper with the safety of the fruit.
- Use your hands to stir the blueberries around the bowl. It would be best to do this for one to two minutes to ensure that they are well soaked up in vinegar.
- Ensure that you do not let the blueberries in the bowl stay there for an extended period. Put the blueberries in a strainer and rinse all the water from them.
- Rinse the blueberries in cold water and do it calmly to ensure that you maintain the condition of the blueberries.
Benefits of eating blueberries
- They have low calories and have a vast load of nutrients; fiber, vitamin C, manganese, and Vitamin K.
- They reduce DNA damage, which helps protect the consumer from aging fast as well as cancer.
- It helps reduce cholesterol in the body, giving no room for heart-related problems, blood sugar, and high blood pressure.
- Improves memory and activates the functioning of the brain.
- Helps prevent diabetes
- As cranberries do, blueberries help prevent urinary tract infections.
- It helps reduce muscle damage, especially for people who work out frequently.
Blueberries storage tips
- Blueberries tend to last for as long as you prepare them well. One needs to consume blueberries after washing immediately because they tend to change their color as time goes by and their taste changes.
- Always ensure that you pick molded blueberries as soon as they get from the store; having them in the rest of the bunch would make the rest go wrong very fast. You also need to pick off any dry leaves or stems in the blueberries to give them a good presentation.
- If you do not have a refrigerator, it would be best to store them in a breathable container, and getting rid of any moisture on them before storing them is essential to avoid rot.
- Frozen blueberries tend to last for long and do not have any health impacts when consumed after a set date. All you do is ensure that they have no moisture when putting them in the freezer.
- Ensure that you have a sticker on the freezer bag indicating the name of the preserved food, which is the blue berries and the date that they are due.
Should you have blueberries in bulk, there are very many ways that you can make positive use of them, and this is by making cocktails, frozen yogurts, shortcakes, barbecue sauce, and salads. You can also make your own blueberry liquor, which is done through a fermentation process.