HOME > Chowhound > General Topics >
What are you cooking today? Share your food adventure
TELL US

what to do with fruit that refuses to soften/ripen?

m
MarkG Mar 16, 2012 12:28 PM

pears in recent times but also peaches. can anything be done to get them to soften??

  1. w
    wyogal Mar 16, 2012 12:35 PM

    Put them in a brown bag, with a banana.

    4 Replies
    1. re: wyogal
      m
      MarkG Mar 16, 2012 02:25 PM

      brown bag with a banana?? sounds like a bad joke but i'll try it

      1. re: MarkG
        w
        wyogal Mar 16, 2012 05:48 PM

        Ethylene gas, it's what ripens fruit.

        1. re: wyogal
          s
          StringerBell Mar 23, 2012 09:40 PM

          It helps ripen some fruit, but not all. Many fruits are non-climacteric and do not respond to ethylene (and C02), e.g. citrus, strawberries, pineapples, lychee, cherries, and grapes. Even within a given type of fruit there are climacteric and non-climacteric cultivars sometimes.

          I've never heard of a banana that wouldn't ripen. That's just bizarre.

          1. re: StringerBell
            w
            wyogal Mar 24, 2012 09:15 AM

            Yep, should have said some fruit. I knew that, oops. :)

    2. s
      Spice_zing Mar 16, 2012 01:09 PM

      When it’s clear that the fruit will NEVER soften, I cut it up and put it in juice. For pears I would use pineapple juice and for peaches, orange juice. Frozen juice concentrate works well because you can control how “syrupy” you want your juice. After a few days the hard fruit will absorb the juice and become soft and sweet. Then you can eat it like you would canned fruit or use in a smoothie.

      1. f
        ferventfoodie Mar 16, 2012 04:46 PM

        Poach them or bake them into something - pear crisp, peach cobbler. May require a little
        extra sugar.

        2 Replies
        1. re: ferventfoodie
          r
          rochfood Mar 16, 2012 05:31 PM

          I have bunch of bananas that have stayed green and rock hard for over a week. It will soon be equal to that McDonalds hamburger that suppposedly never decomposed.

          1. re: rochfood
            w
            wyogal Mar 16, 2012 05:49 PM

            Put them in a brown paper bag with a peach.
            ;-)

        2. q
          Querencia Mar 16, 2012 05:54 PM

          A couple of posters have mentioned the brown bag. Use a regular grocery bag and make it as airtight as you can---roll the top over several times and clip it shut. This method works especially well with melons and papayas. Check every day as the fruit can ripen too far in a hurry. I am glad to know about using a banana---will try that---I just put the fruit in the brown bag. Keeps the gases in and hastens ripening.

          1. pdxgastro Mar 16, 2012 06:36 PM

            Pickle it!

            2 Replies
            1. re: pdxgastro
              Vetter Mar 17, 2012 09:15 PM

              I keep meaning to make Saving the Season's piquant pickled pears... They look lovely!

              1. re: pdxgastro
                t
                thegforceny Mar 21, 2012 09:10 AM

                Or... put a bird on it! ;)

                (Had to after seeing you're from PDX)

              2. c
                critter101 Mar 17, 2012 01:05 PM

                Grill it

                1. weezieduzzit Mar 17, 2012 01:13 PM

                  Poach it in red wine with some sugar, cardamom pods and a half of a cinnamon stick, when the fruit is soft take it out and reduce the wine to a syrup. Serve over good vanilla ice cream.

                  1. b
                    BrightRedMud Mar 21, 2012 10:42 AM

                    I had bananas once that wouldn't ripen, even though I tried putting them in a paper bag. Apparently if bananas get too cold (accidentally, in storage), they will never ripen. So I took them back to the store and got a refund.

                    1. r
                      rochfood Mar 25, 2012 11:46 AM

                      My bananas were so hard I made mofungo with them.

                      Show Hidden Posts