Everyday Meals

Store bananas with kitchen essential to prolong freshness by ‘several days’

Bananas spoil rapidly because they are climacteric – meaning they continue to ripen after harvest – but fortunately, a savvy storage hack can prolong their freshness by over a week.

According to content creator Merry (@flavorblendz), the fruit can keep for “several days or weeks” preserved when it is cut at the stem and placed in a container lined with paper towels.

The paper towels will absorb excess moisture expelled through the flesh, helping keep the bananas fresher for longer, the website Slurpp explains.

TikToker Sarah, who handles the account @momthoughts, argues that the shelf-life of bananas can also be prolonged by controlling the ethylene gas they emit.

The content creator’s interest in banana storage started as she grew tired of sending perfectly decent bananas to school with her children, just for them to return looking unrecognisable due to browning.

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“While I’m not an expert at much, I do know these things,” she noted. “Bananas release ethylene gas which hastens the ripening process.”

The internet is rife with storage hacks to prevent potatoes from sprouting or vegetables from spoiling, but bananas aren’t as easy to handle.

Because most ethylene is released through the stem, finding a piece of tin foil to cover the tip of the banana. In a previous conversation with Express.co.uk, Ga, the director at CE Safety, explained that the fruit should be stored alone to prevent contact with ripening gas ethylene.

“One […] rule with bananas is to keep them away from other produce,” the expert noted. “Fruit bowls with banana hangers over the top of them may look pretty, but these are just going to make your bananas ripen faster as they are near other fruits.”

Ellis also pointed out that contrary to popular belief, the fruit can be placed in the fridge if caution is exercised; placing bananas in the fridge can extend the shelf-life of bananas only if they are already ripe at the time.

It should be noted that if they go in while they’re still green, they’ll stay that way. If they go in too late, on the other hand, they’ll turn brown and mushy.

The moment a banana turns yellow is the moment to move it into the cool of the refrigerator so it lasts longer.

The only mistake to avoid when storing bananas is to leave them lying in a warm spot, as this will speed up the ripening process considerably.

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