Amazing Ways to Preserving Summer’s Berries
If you’re like me, one of your favorite things about summer is berries. Whether you forage for wild berries, harvest them at a pick-your-own farm, or buy them from a farmer’s market or the grocery store, summer is definitely the time to indulge in sweet, nutrient-packed berries.
But if you want to preserve those delicious berries for winter, it’s easy to do.
You don’t have to know how to can, and no previous experience with any type of food preservation is needed.
The easiest method of preserving berries for winter is to freeze them.
- Gently wash the berries. Do not soak; instead, place them in a colander and run water over them. Drip dry.
- Once dry, place the berries in a single layer on a baking sheet. Pop the baking sheet in the freezer.
- When the berries feel hard, place them in freezer bags. Berries will keep for up to a year in the freezer.
Frozen berries are perfect for desserts. I toss them (still frozen) with whatever ingredients are called for in a fresh-berry recipe and bake. I rarely need to add to the baking time.
Another idea is to take a handful of berries out of the freezer in the evening and let them thaw; in the morning, sprinkle them over cereal or yogurt.
Another easy way to preserve berries is to dry them. The easiest way to do this and ensure high quality is to use a home food dehydrator. And inexpensive one works just fine as long as it has an adjustable temperature control and a good fan.
- Wash the berries, as outlined above.
- Place the berries in a single layer on a tray and dehydrate at 135 degrees F. until completely dry. To test for doneness, pinch a berry. No sign of moisture should appear.
If you don’t have a dehydrator, you can use the warming drawer of an oven, at its lowest temperature setting, or even the oven itself, also at its lowest temperature setting. Begin by placing a wire cooling rack over a baking tray. ,
Place a sheet of parchment paper over the wire rack, then top with a single layer of berries.
Store dried berries in a glass jar with a metal lid in a cool, dry, dark location. Dried berries may be eaten as is, or you may soak them in water for up to 30 minutes before using as you would fresh berries.
Check out the video version of this article on YouTube : Amazing Ways to Preserving Summer’s Berries