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(Columbia) November 2, 2006 - We eat a lot of fruit in my house so when I first saw the ad for the Miracle Food Storage ContainersTM I thought what a great product - if it works!
I've got to tell you when I first saw the containers I was impressed. I loved the locking system (the lid snaps down on each side), they're very durable and they're dishwasher and microwave safe.
The only thing I don't like is the price. At $29.95for a 4-piece set and $69.95 for a 12-piece set they are expensive.
But, I thought if these containers really keep food fresher, longer and I don't have to throw out as much spoiled fruit they just might be worth the price.
In our test I filled the Miracle Food StorageTM containers and regular ZiplocTM containers with fresh strawberries, blueberries, blackberries and grapes. After 8 days I was truly surprised to see that the regular Ziploc containers performed just as well as the Miracle Food Storage containers.
All of the fruit looked exactly the same, except the blackberries. The blackberries had mold - in both containers! It could be while the blackberries looked good, they weren't so fresh after all.
I did receive an e-mail from a viewer who says her son-in-law is using the Miracle Food StorageTM containers out in the field in Iraq. She says they're great for keeping out the moisture, bugs and sand.
My advice, if you're sending care packages to the troops for the holidays the Miracle Food StorageTM containers are a good deal, but for everyday use at home I'm sticking with my regular plastic containers.
By the way, if you do decide to give them a try they can be purchased at Sharper Image. They'll also try to sell you a replacement guarantee for $5.95 - $11.95. Essentially if something happens to one of the containers they'll give you a free replacement.
My advice, don't waste your money on the replacement guarantee. Hold on to your receipt and if you have a problem with the containers, get your money back!
Tips to keep your fruit fresher longer
First and foremost, to make sure you're buying the freshest, best fruit call your grocer to find out when they get their fruit and produce deliveries. That way you can time your shopping to when they have the best selection.
Berries Berries are among the most perishable of fruits. The most important step for keeping berries fresh is to place them in a container that will retain their moisture and refrigerate them as soon as possible after picking or purchasing. Do not rinse berries prior to refrigerating because they will deteriorate much faster. Check for bruised berries. Remove soft, overripe berries from the container and use them immediately. When stored properly berries are best served within a week to 10 days. If you don't intend to eat them all while they're still fresh, berries can easily be frozen. For strawberries, first remove the green caps, freeze whole on a cookie sheet until hard, and then transfer to a sealed container.
Blueberries Storing fresh blueberries can be tricky, so the best way is to place them between layers of paper towels in a shallow container with holes punched in the lid. Stored this way, blueberries should keep up to two weeks in the refrigerator. It's important not to store blueberries in a tall, upright container, since the weight of the blueberries can crush the bottom layers of berries. Once these blueberries become squashed, the others will quickly rot in their juices. Want to ripen your blueberries? Place an apple in a bag with your blueberries. The ethylene from the apple will cause the blueberries to ripen faster. Blueberries also freeze very nicely.
Other fruit For peaches, nectarines and plums use a brown bag to help them ripen. For grapes, firmness counts, but look closely at the stems. They should be green, which is a sign there is still plenty of water around to keep the grapes fresh.