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06 May 2008 @ 10:13 am
Tricks to keep fruit from turning brown  
Hi I have a quick question about whether people take steps to keep fruit like apples and pears from turning brown by lunch time? My thought would be to give them a quick soak in water with some lemon juice in it. Would this work for banana's too?

I made a first attempt at onigiri following the recommendations on the just bento site, I thought the rice would be crunchy because I usually use a 2:1 ration of water to rice but it worked like a charm. My three year old and I had made the sesame salt the previous night (wow that takes a long time to toast)using the same website's instructions. It tasted absolutely delicious, the balls stayed in shape beautifully and were a lovely accompaniment to the salmon we had for dinner.
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Evaevaelisabeth on May 6th, 2008 12:37 pm (UTC)
Thank you for the tip :-)
premium_shadaypremium_shaday on May 6th, 2008 11:36 am (UTC)
you've got the right idea with the lemon juice, but never soak your cut or peeled veggies in water!! IT SUCKS ALL THE NUTRIENTS OUT!! If you don't beleive me, peel a carrot and then stick it in a glass of water. The water will turn oragne from sucking out everything from the top layer of the carrot. Imagine letting it soak!! That would just pull out even more nutrients!!

Water is great for keeping things crunchy, but only do it before you peel your fruits and veggies. Unfortunately this doesn't work well with apples and other thick-skinned fruits, so it's best to use those when they're fresh.
Evaevaelisabeth on May 7th, 2008 08:31 am (UTC)
Good point.
alicelisle on May 6th, 2008 11:45 am (UTC)
My mum used to put salt on our apples when i was kid to stop them from going brown. It tastes so good, too. hah.
Also, I wouldn't put banana in with any thing other than fruit - banana and orange have a tendancy to make everything else in the box taste like banana, and warmed up cheesy banana pizza isn't good, trust me, i know. :)
Evaevaelisabeth on May 6th, 2008 12:38 pm (UTC)
banana, and warmed up cheesy banana pizza

The mind boggles ;-)
merilisa on May 6th, 2008 04:03 pm (UTC)
Mmmm...I am thinking warmed up banana pizza sounds really, really good if you skip the cheese and use a sweet dough, bananas, caramel sauce and just a sprinkling of slivered almonds.

I guess I can mentally turn anything into a desert!
proudlyfallenproudlyfallen on May 6th, 2008 12:54 pm (UTC)
I use my handy-dandy ziploc baggie. Put a little lemon juice in the bottom, drop any fruits in there, and shake. Take fruits out. Quick, easy, and works wonders! And yes, it works for bananas, but bananas also have that "it's hot... I think I'll be mushy now" quality, so they have to be kept cold on top of that. Not all that good at room tempurature.
Evaevaelisabeth on May 6th, 2008 01:35 pm (UTC)
Ziploc, that's a great idea.
Biggiess_biggie on May 6th, 2008 02:16 pm (UTC)
I wrote a post on how to prevent fruit from browning in a bento lunch here at Lunch in a Box: http://lunchinabox.net/2007/05/30/sukiyaki-lunches-preventing-fruit-from-browning/
tiarellatiarella on May 6th, 2008 02:46 pm (UTC)
Fruits and seeds
I take whole fruits on top of my bento box in the drawstring bag. We have knives at work.

You can buy pre-toasted sesame seeds at an Asian market; it's a big time saver as they're good in so many things including stirfries, vegetables, rice dishes, & cookies. Yum.
Evaevaelisabeth on May 7th, 2008 08:33 am (UTC)
Re: Fruits and seeds
I couldn't find any pre-roasted ones, I live in the wilds of Co. Kildare in Ireland and the availability of Asian markets is severely limited ;-) It was actually fine, my little girl and I had a great time listening for the popping to start. We would listen intently and then shake our heads "no, no pop yet", it was a lot of fun. Once they were popping and I had put the water in it went very quickly.
E. K. Bede Masonpertyrosedizeez on May 6th, 2008 05:12 pm (UTC)
You can also buy pre-sliced apple pieces in the supermarket. I get them at Whole Foods or Trader Joe's. They're treated with vitamin c to prevent them from browning. They hold up really nicely with out any special treatment.
Evaevaelisabeth on May 7th, 2008 08:35 am (UTC)
I don't usually buy my veggies and fruit at the supermarket, we tend to pick everything up at a weekly Farmer's market in the area. It's more expensive but the quality is head and shoulder above anything you can get at our local grocery store. It's also a fun weekend activity for the whole family to go on which a trip to the supermarket really isn't :-)
zeegirlzeegirl on May 6th, 2008 05:50 pm (UTC)
thanks guys and dolls! this was really helpful, since i'd been contemplating this very question