How Long Do Plums Last? Can they Go Bad?
Which is your favourite summer fruit? Do you love taking plums fresh or dried? Plums are undoubtedly fruits to be envied for their numerous purposes. You can use them in pastry, making salads, smoothies, jam, sauces or eat them as plain fruits.
They have an exceptional taste, and you can choose to eat them with their skin on or peeled. Their skins have a slightly bitter taste while their pulp is sweet. So, if you eat the fruit with its skin on, it tastes sweet and bitter.
The lifespan of plums can either be short or long, depending on how you store them. Plums can be bought from the food stores or supermarkets when ripe or unripe.
How Long Do Plums Last?
Putting unripe plums in a refrigerator is a no. So, you should keep your fruits in a pantry or a cupboard at room temperature. Here, they take about 2-3 days before ripening. However, do not expose them to heat to avoid having overly bitter plums when ripe.
When ripe, the maximum they can stay at room temperature is 2 days. After that, they become overripe and can go bad any time.
After your plums have ripened, we recommend transferring them into a refrigerator. Arrange them neatly in storage bags or storage jars. Then, make sure you seal them tightly to prevent air from passing.
Arranging the plums instead of heaping them allows even cooling to all your fruits. If you heap them, those in the middle do not cool enough, and they can cause spoilage to the rest.
When all your fruits are evenly refrigerated, they can stay fresh for 3-7 days. Although they can still look fresh past these days, their taste changes to something unappealing. Freezing plums can prolong their life for 6-12 months when adequately frozen.
Can Plums Go Bad?
Plums, like any other fresh fruits, go bad. But, they do not go bad immediately after purchasing unless you bought them when overripe. So, you have some time to store them properly and enjoy while still fresh.
If you keep them near a source of heat for long or in damp storage space, you encourage their spoilage.
Also, if you buy plums that have cuts or have been attacked by insects, they go bad quickly leading to wastage.
Poor storage at the refrigerator does not give your plums a chance to stay long while still fresh. Instead, they spoil sooner than the average days they are expected to retain their freshness.
How Can You Tell That Plums Have Gone Bad?
Fresh and healthy plums have glossy and firm skin. These fruits come in different colors, depending on where you are located.
You can check whether your fruits are still edible by looking at their skin texture. If it looks wrinkled and feels too soft, your fruits have started going bad. When wrinkled, it means their juice is drying. When too soft, your plums are almost getting rotten, and it is possible to find worms inside.
Another visual sign of spoilt plums is color change. If they have turned from their usual color, they have gone bad.
You can also realize spotting on your fruits. Mostly, when they start rotting from inside, they form black or grayish blemishes.
Mould is another common feature for spoilt plums. It mostly happens when your fruits have been exposed to moisture for long. It can be whitish or grayish.
You can feel the texture of your plums by pressing them softly. If they cannot withstand a soft press, they have gone bad. Be careful when using this method, otherwise you can end up messing your clothes.
How Do You Store Plums?
If you are using a pantry or a storage room, spread your plums so they can have enough air and prevent over ripping. Your pantry should not be too warm. It should have proper ventilation too.
If you are storing your unripe plums to accelerate ripping, use a bag and put them in a chest or corner where they will not be disturbed. Alternatively, you can mix them with other fruits. This way, they ripen naturally. Ethylene chemical that is produced by fruits such as bananas accelerates ripping.
If you are using a refrigerator, there are several ways you can store your fruits. First, you can store them whole in storage bags or jars. Make sure they are dry when putting them in these packs, so they do not go bad while under refrigeration.
Another way is by slicing them into wedges, cubes, or any other shape you prefer. Seeds are not refrigerated with these cuts. The cuts are then arranged in layers in a sealable storage bar or an airtight jar. You can decide to freeze or refrigerate them, depending on the time you intend to use them.
Plums can also be roasted for storage. This method aims at removing as much water from the plums as possible. When you are done roasting, allow them to cool, and then pack them in jars for storage. Your jars should be closed tightly to prevent air from getting inside. Roasted plums can be stored in a pantry for approximately 6 months.
Is it Okay to Eat Spoilt Plums?
You cannot afford to eat spoiled plums. A single bite will make you throw the remaining part of your plum. It is too bitter to swallow.
Also, if spoilage is making your fruits too soft, they become watery. The taste is awful, and you are likely not to continue eating the fruit.
If your fruits have gone bad, accept it and take them away from your house. Include them in your compost heap or put them to the trash bin.
Stomach pains are common in people that insist on taking spoilt plums. The pain may be accompanied by diarrhea and vomiting. So, choose the safe side and avoid the temptations of having these fruits when spoilt.
What Can You Do with Over Ripe Plums?
Some people cannot withstand the taste of overripe plums. Since they are yet to go bad, they can be made useful instead of discarding them.
A brilliant idea is to convert them into jelly or plum jam. When making these, sugar and some water are added to remove bitterness in the final product. You can also use commercial sugar syrup to make the same product.
For freshness, these products should be refrigerated once they cool. They are best served chilled.
Another way of utilizing over ripe plums is making jam sauce. If you are serving sweet pastries or savory meals, jam sauce can turn a dining experience into a magical one. But, you have to make the jam first and then proceed with the sauce.
Can Spoilt Plums Be Useful?
Absolutely! In this case, you should be an organic farming enthusiast. Otherwise, get rid of them. When plums pass the over ripping stage, they start rotting. In this state, they produce worms that feed on the rotten fruit.
These worms can be handy in your compost. They accelerate the decomposition so you can plant your crops in a nutritious spot.
What Can You Do with Plum Seeds?
Do not throw them yet. You can use them for a few creative ideas. For example, you can make beautiful jewelry from them. You will need a little creativity and decoration to make your products look adorable.
You can also use them to make syrups that can help in turning boring meals into finger-licking ones. These syrups can stay for about 3 weeks under refrigeration.
The most exciting one is re-planting. There are several ways of planting these seeds. A few people dry them first before planting, and others soak them in water for a few days to fasten germination.
Whichever method you like, make sure you have enough space to allow branching for your tree. Also, do not plant them very close to your neighbor’s hedge to avoid trespassing.
Are Plums Available Throughout?
No. Plums are seasonal fruits. They cannot be available during all seasons because they take time to reproduce other fruits after harvesting.
During summer, these fruits can be found in almost all food outlets. However, they start reducing as summer nears its end. After summer, you can find a few late boomers in the market, but after that, they run out.
How Can You Prevent Plums from Becoming Bitter?
Bitterness is a sign of spoiled plums. Another reason plums become bitter is refrigerating them when unripe.
So, the best solution is to stop storing your plums when unripe in the fridge. Even under refrigeration, they continue ripening, but their juices do not change. That is when you end with very bitter fruits.
You can also avoid keeping your plums for long before consuming them.
Do you love your plums fresh or dried? Whichever state you love them in, you can enjoy them for some reasonable period before going bad. Ensure you store them properly. If it is impossible to have the right storage conditions, buy them in small quantities.