Bananas staying fresh for longer with home hack 'as soon as you get in'

Fresh fruit in a wooden bowl
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Bananas, a common fixture in our kitchens, often succumb to browning too swiftly depending on their storage conditions.

Yet, there's a nifty little trick that can extend their shelf life, ensuring you enjoy them at their freshest rather than resorting to baking banana bread (tempting as that may be). The secret? Wrapping the stem ends of your bananas with cling film or foil, which hampers the release of ethylene gas, reports the Express.

Dee's Kitchen's short-form content creator, Devanshi Shah, explained to Newsweek: "Usually the banana starts to ripen when the head of the banana bunch is exposed to more moisture in the air. By tightly wrapping the head of the bunch, the bananas will last longer."

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She also offered a tip for all produce, advising: "Make sure to store your veggies and fruit separately in your fridge." Contrary to popular practice, bananas shouldn't be lumped together in a fruit bowl if you want them to last weeks without spoiling.

Banana stems emit ethylene gas, a plant hormone that transforms hard green bananas into soft, sweet yellow ones ready for consumption, but this same gas accelerates the ripening process. However, Brenda Anderson, a farmer, cook and the brains behind Little Lost Creations, suggests that once ripe, bananas should be kept in the refrigerator to maintain their freshness.

Brenda shared: "Then a friend of mine told me something she had tried. I thought it sounded a little crazy, but I thought I would give it a try. She said to put the bananas in a brown paper grocery bag closed tightly, and put them in the crisper in the refrigerator. She said the peel would go black but the banana would taste good."

Contrarily to popular belief, bananas don't necessarily spoil when stored in the fridge, despite their peels turning black due to the cold. In fact, if a ripened banana is refrigerated, the ripening process will stop, keeping the fruit fresh and edible for an extended period.

After testing this method for over two weeks, Brenda reported: "The peelings don't look like the banana is going to taste good but when I peeled the banana it had not gone mushy like I thought it would. It was still firm and tasted just a little riper than when I put them in the brown paper sack."