Sunday, June 13, 2004

What's the best way to
store fresh strawberries?

Helpings - Q & A

Compiled by Chuck Martin

Most believe berries keep longer if stored - unwashed - in a single layer on a paper towel in a moisture-proof container in the refrigerator. They should keep two to three days, depending on their ripeness. Here's a more unconventional storage method from The Food Lover's Tiptionary (Hearst; $15): Wash and air-dry the berries, leaving stems intact. When berries are completely dry, put them in a large, screw-top jar. Put a paper towel on top of the berries to absorb excess moisture, seal jar tightly and refrigerate.

Bonus berry tip: When making strawberry pie, Food Lover's Tiptionary suggests, always wash and then hull the berries, allowing them to drain upside down on a paper towel for 30 minutes. This eliminates excess moisture, helping prevent a soggy pie.

On the shelf: The hardworking editors of Cook's Illustrated magazine have released another book - Steaks, Chops, Roasts, and Ribs (America's Test Kitchen; $35). The book features more than 300 meat recipes, shopping tips and equipment ratings and tests.

Hot Date: Author Patricia Wells (right) signs copies of her new The Provence Cookbook (Harper-Collins; $29.95) beginning at 7 p.m. Wednesday at Joseph-Beth Booksellers in Norwood's Rookwood Pavilion. 396-8960.

Tube Food: Host Bobby Flay makes Cuban-style beef and tuna burgers at 2 p.m. today on Boy Meets Grill on the Food Network.

Opera hitting high notes
Fantasy & Tragedy
Cincinnati Opera's Festival season
Summer renews Opera's tradition

Charles' music was 'America'
Oxford 'Idol' emerges as soap star
Electronic music, video add to 'King' premiere
Fall calendar raises profile
Theater vet nails Tonys
Numbers jump at music festival
Film contest dictates delivery in 48 hours

Mixed Media: Channel 19's LaRosa heads home to Philly

Going Out: Italianfest

Cucumbers cool hot summer foods
Helpings: Fresh strawberries
Picnics for the lazy gourmet