The kiwi is like a quick-change artist, going from rock-hard and sour one moment to juicy and aromatic the next. We explain why kiwis keep ripening after harvest and the best way to ripen them at home.
Ripe kiwis have a delicious, velvety green flesh with a pleasant tangy flavour. Here are a few tricks that let you control the degree of ripeness of the fruit and get the most out of your shipment.
Why do kiwis continue to ripen after harvest?
Kiwis are a climacteric fruit, like bananas and avocados. This means that they only become ripe for consumption after they have been harvested. Although the fruits are still rock hard and inedible when picked, they gradually develop their full aroma.
This is a clear advantage when it comes to transport. By controlling the temperature, ripening can be delayed, and the fruit can be transported over long distances. Our supplier from Greece stores the fruit after harvesting and during transport in humid conditions at temperatures around 0°C. This keeps the kiwis hard until they arrive at your door.
How do I ripen kiwis at home?
Our kiwis from Greece are delivered to your home in a box containing 8 kilos of fruit. If you store them correctly, you can keep the fruits for up to three months and enjoy them one by one – if you don’t eat them all before then.
The key is to store the fruit at the right temperature. The cooler the conditions, the longer the kiwis stay hard. The cellar or the vegetable compartment of your fridge are ideal places to store them. During winter, you can even keep the fruit in a Styrofoam box outside on the balcony. Remove the kiwis from the plastic bag beforehand to avoid condensation. Too much moisture will cause the fruit to spoil.
Kiwis stored at room temperature will ripen faster. You can keep the fruits you want to eat soon in a fruit bowl or on the kitchen counter. They'll be ripe within two to five days. You can tell they're ready if the flesh gives slightly when you press on it. Once the kiwis are ripe, you can store them in the fridge for up to two weeks to prevent them from becoming too soft.
How can I ripen them faster?
You want to use the kiwis soon, but they're still hard? To speed up the ripening process, you can store your kiwis alongside other fruits that produce a lot of the ripening gas ethylene. Just put a few kiwis together with an apple, pear or ripe banana in a paper bag and store it at room temperature. The kiwis should be ripe in a day or two.
Too many ripe kiwis?
If too many kiwis have ripened at once, there are many ways you can use them up or preserve them. Blend them into in a shake or smoothie or use them to make a refreshing sorbet. You can also turn them into a delicious compote or jam.