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Fresh figs: refrigerator or countertop?

  • j

Just bought some delicious figs at Costco. How do I store them?

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  1. Eat them. They are going to go bad fast. No matter how I store them, within a day or so they go moldy.

    I can't wait to see what other people say. I'm hoping someone has some secret tip!

    1 Reply
    1. re: sivyaleah

      Same here- eat them fast and enjoy. not much more delicious food than fresh figs. can use in so many ways.

    2. If they're already ripe I store them in the refrigerator crisper drawer in a single layer (I have a tree and put them on a recycled styrofoam tray). In any case they won't hold for more than 3-4 days, even when just picked. If underripe they hold a bit longer and are still good cooked, but theu don't have that same soft texture like the ripe ones.

      1 Reply
      1. re: mlgb

        My friend with fig trees used to deliver the ripe figs stored like eggs in cardboard egg cartons. They would last a few days in the frig that way. Not that long storage would be required, 'cause we would eat 'em up.

      2. The ones I was buying at Costco last month were a bit underripe so I could keep them in the fridge for several days. I think the packaging Costco uses helps them hold a bit longer since they're each in their own little dimple(not the most eco friendly packaging unfortunately but the figs do seem to ship well in it).

        Lately I've been getting them at Trader Joe's...these are smaller and riper and don't keep more than a couple days.

        My kitchen here in Phoenix gets way too hot so I keep mine in the fridge or they'd go bad the afternoon I bring them home.

        This really isn't an issue in my house though...we can easily go through a pound box of them in a day. mmm...figs!

        1. Not sure how much you have, but I've been making fig jam with what my neighbors give me. I refrigerate and they stay longer, it is so warm, they will turn bad super quick on the counter.

          1 Reply
          1. re: chef chicklet

            I was going to say similar: I got a deal on three quarts this weekend (@ Isabella,3 qts for $5 at market in NYC). I made fig tapenade and froze it, fig mostardo which I canned, and then picked out the most perfect dozen and grilled them with gorgonzola and proscuitto for dinner. When you buy figs, you have to be quick on your feet! These were perfect when I bought them, I left them on the counter for the morning and had to cut a bit of mold off almost every one.

          2. Well, it depends. How cool is your house?

            This method works with figs I pick, but would work as well with store bought figs.

            Just out of curiosity - what size container did you get & how much $ ?

            Here's what I do:

            Bring cardboard trays (get these free at the grocery - the ones that canned milk comes in are great) & line with paper towels. I bring these to the house where I am picking the figs.

            Don't crowd the figs. Place them on the tray with lots of room to breathe. Keeps them from getting moldy & allows them to dry a little.

            I live in New Orleans, so we have air conditioning.... my house is cool. If you didn't have A/C & your house is warm (over 75 degrees), I might not use this method.

            I can keep figs like this for about 3 days. It allows them to only get sweeter! There is nothing like a fig that has never seen the insides of a refrigerator!
            And if there are any left after 3 days, they go into the fridge.

            If you are going to keep figs for more than a day, never, ever, wash the figs until you are ready to eat them!

            I also keep a very close eye on them. If I happen to see any fuzzy mold, that one gets tossed right away. Any squishy ones get eaten right away & are never stored out of the fridge.

            2 Replies
            1. re: Isabella

              I have ac running all day long and we are usually at 74-76 degrees, it varires, but I am using fresh picked figs, that might mean that they are further along in the ripening than a purchased fig that might of been picked sooner for transport and marketing.
              Mine will perish on the counter within a few days, been there and done that.
              Absolutely agree, try to keep from touching each other, mold happens quickly even in the fridge.

              1. re: chef chicklet

                keeping them dry is essential. papertowels, airation (sp) - maybe a fan would help.

            2. Refrigerate in a large ziplock bag unwashed. Mine from my fig tree look like little pears, huge. Believe it or not they last about 1 month.

              1. My fresh figs last one month in a large ziplock bag unwashed till you eat them and they are almost as big as small pears lol

                1. Wish I'd known this about figs last summer! A friend gave me a bag of about 40 lb of figs on a Wednesday evening, and by Friday morning when I was all set to make jam, I opened the bag to a bubbling, fermenting mass of ooze.
                  If I had known then, I would have picked through them and refrigerated them that night.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: jmcarthur8

                    In case anyone's still looking for storage tips, I'm having pretty great results storing my figs this year by using with the same method I used to keep my raspberries from sprouting mold too quickly: a quick dunk (I wouldn't recommend soaking them) in vinegar and water. I use about 1 part apple cider vinegar to 4 parts water, allow them to dry completely on a paper towel on the counter, then pop them in the fridge in a paper-towel lined container (not sealed or air tight). Where last summer they began to mold in a day or two, with this method, so far they've all kept exceedingly well for at least 3-4 days (alas, I can't say I've tested any past that point; I'm a huge fig fan, and they definitely get eaten!) This has worked so far even on figs that were quite ripe and soft on purchase - no mold in sight, and the quick vinegar dunk does not leave any aftertaste at all that I can perceive.

                    Give it a shot, and report back if it works for you as well - I'm curious if this really is a workable solution to the dreaded mushy, furry fig!

                    1. re: Involution

                      This year the figs were so bloated from all the rain, they weren't even sweet. A friend gave me some Sunday, and I washed them off and immediately made jam out of them. They weren't any good for eating fresh.

                  2. People make frozen banana bites all the time. I'm wondering if a FIG would be fine in a freezer environment as well. Chocolate covered figs can't be half bad.

                    1. Still at Costco, $6.49 for a box of 24, a steal! I eat them real fast as they're very delicate and perishable. I try to keep them I n a cool place but, not the frig.