For almost all of us, bananas are one of the most popular and economical fruit globally. This is one of the most popular and inexpensive fruit in the world that can help improve the health of a person in many ways by regular consumption. It is also known as ‘leathery berry.’
Know that transporting and keeping bananas fresh is very hard. As they have a fragile external body, they ripen pretty fast. The process starts when the bright-yellow skin turns brown as plenty of brown spots almost cover the skin. The fruit tends to become softer as it ripens, and loses its charm. Babies, patients, or even elderly people of your family are allowed to have this fruit. Usually, peeled bananas turn brown within a few minutes, because of a simple oxidation process.
Many of us try to prevent this from happening. If you can maintain these tips we are sharing below, you will be capable of slowing down the process of banana ripening.
Table of contents
- How can you keep bananas fresh from ripening?
- What to do with the peeled bananas?
- Frequently asked questions
How can you keep bananas fresh from ripening?
Purchase green bananas
To avoid over-ripening, you can try to buy greenish bananas which are slightly ripe, instead of buying yellow bananas (fully riped). You are allowed to store them at room temperature. After that, they will gradually develop within a few days.
Meanwhile, remember that when you buy ripe bananas, you need to eat them up within 2-3 days. You should pick firm green bananas with no dark spots or scratches on the peels. They won’t need to be kept in a freezer as they have maximum storage life.
Store the bananas in the right way
Whenever you reach home, you need to take out the bananas from the plastic bag. Any kind of delay will only make their condition worse. According to many studies, bananas that are covered in green bags or paper bags would ripen faster. If you keep these fruits exposed at room temperature, they will ripe slower than usual.
Try to keep an eye on the process, where they are not exposed to direct heat or sunlight. Always place them a bit far from the stove, heater, and window. You can store them in a well-ventilated, cool, dark place. If your bananas are resting on your kitchen countertop, chances are they are likely to get crushed.
Keep them in basket
As this picture is showing, you can keep the bananas in a basket. The exterior of the material will protect the delicate fruit from bruising. You will find plenty of fruit baskets in the market with hooks to hang bananas. Know that hanging these fruits on a hook is the best way of storing them.
Keep them isolated from other fruits and veggies
Don’t forget that fruits and vegetables give off a gas that speeds ripening. According to studies, ripe fruits produce ethylene, and unripe fruits ripen faster when exposed to ethylene. Also, it is stated that ethylene speeds up maturation and the abscission of fruits. Keep these reasons in mind and place the bananas away from other ripe fruits.
Wrap the stems of the bananas
Another way is wrapping the stems (the crown) in plastic wrap, as it prevents the departure of ethylene from the stems.
Try to place some tape over the plastic wrap. Also if you want, you can wrap the stems with foil. In this way, every time you remove a banana from the bunch, you will have to wrap it back again cautiously. To keep the fruits fresh for a long period, this course will help without any doubt.
Keep in mind that, if you want to stop ripening, you have to slow down the chemical reaction. On that note, keeping them in the freezer will be a help. As cold temperatures will slow down the reaction, delaying the banana fruit from ripening. You shouldn’t get worried when you see that your banana peel is turning completely black, which is most likely the case. This thing happens due to the pigment of the peel turning black. It also does not have anything to do with the actual freshness of the banana. It should still taste good and remain slightly firm.
What to do with the peeled bananas?
Use airtight plastic container and keep them in the freezer
Know that peeled bananas have no protection against air exposure. The airtight sealing works in a way to limit the amount of fresh air that the bananas get. The temperature of the freezer will slow down the process of ethylene emission more than simply refrigerating it.
On a different note, frozen bananas will not be edible for you right away. To get that, you will have to leave bananas at room temperature for about an hour to allow them to get warm.
Did you know?
Vitamins and minerals are essential to good health. Bananas are a great source, however, there are a lot of vitamins they can not provide. Check out our article on how to stay healthy here!
Brush with lime or lemon juice
You should know that the acid coating works as a preserving agent and keeps the banana yellow longer. You will not need to saturate the banana in lemon juice. Keep in mind that using more lemon does not produce better preservation. Because too much of it will make your banana taste sour.
If you want something sweeter then you can replace lemon juice with pineapple, orange, or apple juice. Though all these are acidic enough to slow down the browning process without needing to be reduced. Meanwhile, apple juice is also mild enough to be nearly unnoticeable. And remember this fact for the other juices too, if you have a plan to mix the banana later with any other fruit.
Vinegar water solution
Using a vinegar waler solution is also a way to slow down the ripening as this also uses acidity to preserve the banana just like lemon or any other fruit juice. Though we recommend you to use vinegar instead of any fruit.
Know that if you use vinegar, it will be a nice alternative if other fruit juices are changing the taste a bit much. You can easily add ¼ cup of vinegar for every cup of water. Then try to dip the banana, sliced or whole, into the water for about three minutes.
Try to refrain from leaving bananas in the vinegar-water solution for longer than three minutes. Dousing the banana can act in a way where it becomes too soft and can impart a strong vinegary taste, which is likely less delicious than lemon or lime juice.
It’s alright if you do not possess any other fruits or vinegar. You can use vitamin C, as it can achieve a similar effect when dissolved in water.
At first, try to crush a single vitamin C tablet with a spoon and sprinkle it in a glass of water. Then mix up the solution with a spoon and dip your bananas in the water for a while.
Vitamin C tablets work particularly well for this condition. You can put one tablet in a glass of water. When the foaming stops, don’t stir anymore and dip your bananas in the water right away.
Frequently asked questions
How are bananas imported and stored?
Usually, the bananas that Americans eat are imported from countries like Costa Rica, Guatemala, Honduras, Panama, and Mexico.
These fruits can last 3-4 weeks as they are harvested green and unripened. Also, this time range is perfect to get them into grocery stores. In the meanwhile of processing, they are divided into bunches, labeled with those little stickers, and boxed up to protect them during their shipping.
Is storing the bananas in the refrigerator okay?
According to so many people, it is neither recommended nor it is denied. The intention behind not recommending the storage of bananas in the fridge is that the skin will blacken and as a result, they will look bad.
Also, they stop ripening because the particular enzymes break down below 4ºC. Meaning if the bananas are already as ripe as you would like them to be and you don’t mind the skin is blackened, then you are allowed to store them in the refrigerator.
Studies have shown that many people like unripe banana flesh, so they are not easily bothered that it will not ripen any further. Remember that the optimum storage temperature for bananas is about 10ºC.
What do the little black spots in the middle of the banana called?
They are called vestigial seeds. This is a common question asked by general people. Yes, bananas are cultivars even though there are seeded ones. The kinds we eat are common and from the store which is not seeded or viable. However, the remains of the seeds can still be found there.
Don’t forget that banana plants are grown from vegetative separation or cloning. Once a banana plant has made fruit or flowers, that part of the plant will die off, and a new plant will grow. And the process of growing flowers and fruit will go on.
In the case of green bananas, they wide-open to air. So they ripen faster than the bananas that are somehow sheltered from the air. Remember that the wrapping and packaging of bananas in 100-150-gauge polyethylene bags keep them appealing, fresh, and tastefully flavored ripe fruit compared to those packed in 200 of these bags.
Also in this article, we have talked about a few ways by which we can slow down the process of ripening of this everyday fruit we consume. We hope you will find these steps handy and we urge you to contact us if you have any more queries.