“How in the hell do you hull a strawberry?”
That was the question my sister asked me while we were sitting in the pediatric ICU waiting room at the Children’s Hospital at Montefiore. My nephew, David Caleb, has been through a lot in the past few months. I spoke about it in this post. He’s on the mend, but we spent torturous hours in that family lounge during those initial days.
Strawberries are David’s favorite fruit, and my sister was desperate for anything that made her feel close what was once her norm. We were bored, antsy, and delirious. So, we thought, what better time to show my sister how to hull a strawberry? There aren’t a lot of culinary tools in the family lounge of the pediatric ICU. We found that out the hard way. You can totally hull a strawberry with a plastic butterknife. I didn’t say it is easy…it’s doable, though.
Strawberries are pretty much the only fruit you’ll ever need to hull, so knowing how to do the deed is important. Most of us don’t need to be concerned about how much waste we produce when prepping our fruits. I, however, think it’s important to be as conservative as possible when doing anything that involves food I paid for. There’s a lot of berry that is wasted when we just lop off the top. It’s totally unnecessary and not fiscally responsible. When you hull a strawberry, you remove the least amount of inedible food product as possible, thus saving yourself a few coins. A penny saved is a penny earned, you know?
So, how do we do it?
Well, we could buy one of those gadgets that promises to hull a berry in under three seconds, but WAIT!! There’s more!!…They’re crap. It’s also a tool that is only useful for one thing. So, I discourage even owning them, and every other tool, that only has a single purpose. Now, a knife? We all have those, and we all use them for more than one purpose. You can also hull a strawberry in under three seconds with a knife. I’m going to teach you how.
Grab a berry in your non-dominant hand. Try to expose the underside of the calyx (or the green stem and leaves). You see that white part rimmed in red? That’s where we’re going.
Insert the tip of your sharp paring knife right were the red meets the white. Go in about an eighth of an inch with the tip of the knife.
Anchor your knife by placing the thumb of your dominant hand on top of the stem. This will keep your knife from going all over the place.
Using your non-dominant hand, twist the berry counter-clockwise while keeping your knife at a forty-five degree angle. Make a complete three-hundred sixty degree turn of the berry and the stem of the strawberry should come away with the knife.
You’ve just hulled a strawberry in less than three seconds. Keep practicing and you may get down to less than three. Pin and share this technique with your friends and family!
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Need a recipe to use your hulled strawberries in?
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