Another Swing of the Magic Wand

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I teased you earlier this week when I told you that I had learned another use for vinegar.  I’m telling you, the stuff is a must have for any household.

My newest reason for loving vinegar is that I took my boys, including our nephew, berry picking.   Christopher has been berry picking many times.  Even his Majesty went a few times last year (although he didn’t so much PICK berries, as much as he did EAT berries).  However, unbeknownst to me, my nephew, who physically lives–and has grown up in– the middle of farm land in the midwest, has never gone berry picking.  Furthermore, he has a limited understanding that food comes from farms… a fact which actually rendered me momentarily speechless.

Have no fear, we’re breaking him in.  And taking him berry picking for the first time was even more fun than it would have been on an ordinary visit.

Except for one thing…

We picked a lot of berries..

8 pounds of strawberries and 2 lbs of blackberries to be exact.  They were having so much fun, and were so intent on picking “good” berries, that I didn’t have the heart to tell them to stop…

That is, until it dawned on me that I only had $31 in small bills, and that unless the farm could change a large bill on a day when we were the only people there picking produce, we were going to have to perform some manual labor if I didn’t put an end to things soon.

So, 10 lbs and $28 worth of berries later, we headed home, the kids with purple and red fingers, and myself wondering how we were going to keep all of these berries in edible condition long enough to polish them all off.

And then, I remembered this pin, which links to a great blog post by FoodLush, about how to use a vinegar rinse to keep berries from molding. It was really quite simple.

Combine 1 part vinegar to 10 parts water in a bowl or in your sink.  I did 1/2 cup vinegar and 5 cups water.  Then add your berries, a little at a time, and gently swish them around.

I did less blackberries at a time, because they’re more delicate than strawberries, and I didn’t want to damage them when I was swirling them around in their vinegar bath.  I changed the water out after every few batches.

After you dip them in vinegar, drain them, and  put them in the fridge.  You can rinse them with plain water afterwards, but I tasted them directly from the vinegar bath and didn’t notice a taste difference, so you don’t have to.

Or just start eating them.  Preferably with homemade whipped cream, made in 2 minutes in your “OMG-howdidIeverlivewithoutyou” Kitchen Aid Mixer.

I can’t speak for the blackberries, as we ate those the same day that we picked them, but I can tell you that 5 days later, the strawberries that were left were still nice and firm and perfectly delicious in homemade strawberry ice cream.  Ooh baby! Summer is here!

So yeah, like I said.  Vinegar is magic.  Why don’t you give it a try?

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