When It Comes to Storing Bananas, Don’t Believe Old Wives’ Tale

November 10, 2015  
Filed under Blogs

bananasBY MARY HUNT

 

For years, I believed an old wives’ tale that bananas will turn black and spoil almost instantly if you put them in the refrigerator. In fact, I even passed this notion on to you. Whoops! Hearing from reader Lin made me reconsider, test and now I must recant. I’ve tested this and Lin is right. I was wrong!

BANANAS IN THE FRIDGE. I read in your column a while back about how to keep fruit fresher longer. You said not to put bananas in the refrigerator. I beg to differ. We put fresh bananas in the fridge and they may turn back and ugly on the outside but inside, even after seven days or longer, they are as fresh and firm as new. Try it. — Lin

Readers: I have discovered that if I put the bananas in a plastic bag and tie or seal it tightly, and then place this in the crisper drawer, the bananas retain their yellow color. There’s something about black bananas (even if the are totally fine inside) I find to be somewhat off-putting! — Mary

 

BABY BATHTUB. If your baby is too big for the infant tub but too small for your bathroom tub, buy a 10-gallon plastic storage tub and a rubber bath mat with tiny suction cups. For about $5 your baby won’t slip and fall, but will be able to splash and play and have a great time. This size “tub” should last a few years, and when Baby has outgrown it, you have an instant storage bin. Just remember to stash the lid in a place you won’t forget! — Beth

Readers: Please, never ever leave a child alone in any amount of water for any length of time. — Mary

 

PICKLED ANTS. I have used vinegar as a weedkiller for over 10 years. A couple of weeks ago I found out it is also an excellent ant killer. Simply spray it on them. There is very little odor, and if there is any odor at all, it disappears quickly. I have had a longtime problem with ants in my kitchen and bathroom and do not like to use insecticides for many reasons (e.g., my cat and dogs, it’s poisonous, it smells, is oily and gets on my skin). Now I don’t have to worry about it! — Ann

 

ASPARTAMED ANTS. Next time there’s an invasion of ants, spread a single packet of NutraSweet (or other sweetener that contains aspartame) over part of the trail. One treatment gets rid of all the ants in less than a day, and I have yet to see them come back. Try it and see. Then reconsider whether you want to use the stuff in your drinks. — Howell

 

CLEANING CONCRETE. Years ago you published a tip from a reader for spot removal from concrete. I found that bleach (preferably Clorox brand) sprayed on the spots works great. Let it work for about five minutes, and then rinse. I have a stone retaining wall in front of my place and this makes it look like new. — Carl

Readers: Please exercise extreme caution whenever handling liquid chlorine bleach. Above all, do not mix it with anything but water to avoid mixing up a batch of deadly chlorine gas. — Mary

 

HANDY-DANDY DRY MILK. When I purchase powdered milk, I immediately pour the contents into a large sealable container such as Tupperware. When I used to leave it in the box it comes in, it just sat in the pantry because I could never measure accurately when it poured from the box. I find that I use a lot more powdered milk in cooking when I can easily put the extra product right back in the container. — Brenda

 

FREE FRAGRANCE TRIAL. I tear out the fragrance sample strips on the pages of major magazines and tuck them in my bra (one at a time!) and that way I can try different expensive perfumes without buying them. The fragrance lasts the full day, sometimes longer. — Fiona

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