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How to Hull Strawberries

How to Hull Strawberries video

Since I evidently have just a TON of time on my hands and am a super boring person, I decided to do some comparing of different ways to hull strawberries and really get to the bottom of this age-old question: How to hull strawberries the absolute best way. Can you handle it? Things are about to get really geeky and possibly very unexciting.

Method 1: Use a paring knife

This was the way my great granny taught me to hull strawberries way up yonder in the Appalachian mountains. You get a strawberry and you use a paring knife to cut a little “V” shape from the top. This removes the stem and leaves while only removing a small amount of strawberry meat.

Method 2: Use a potato peeler

Pamela commented on my Facebook page that her family always used the pointed end of a potato peeler to scoop out the strawberry hull. Since I only have those new-fangled peelers that are meant to be “safe” and therefore have no pointy digging end, I thought I was gonna be S.O.L. but then I remembered some special treasures that were left behind by the previous occupants of my house, including a slightly rusty old-fashioned potato peeler with digging end! (Some other items, if you’re curious: 1 ladle; 1 fork (found in yard); 1 butter knife (also found in yard); 4 used floss-picks; 2 partial cans of gasoline; 1 unopened roll of copper wiring; innumerable cigarillo butts; many empty spray paint cans; 1 box of (used) mouse traps. I should maybe also mention, every single interior door jam showed signs of having been kicked in one or more times.)

Method 3: Use a churchkey

Also on Facebook, Rich said he always used the pointed, can-opening end of a “churchkey” to scoop the hull out. You know what I mean, right? I never knew if everyone called them that or just my family, plus Rich.

Method 4: Use a straw

I found this new-to-me technique on a strawberry info website. You use a straw, jabbed up from the tip of the strawberry, to push the hull out. Honestly, it seemed like total bullshit. But I had straws so I had to test it. That’s the mind of a scientist, folks.

Conclusion:

Ultimately, the classic “V-cut” out the top with a sharp paring knife is the “best” way to hull a strawberry, I think: no special tools, and if you do it well there is very little waste. The old-timey potato peeler is cool, if you still own one of those. Churchkey trick is good to know about if you’re in a pinch. And the straw method is super cool if you want to get young kids involved, though! No sharp objects.

how to hull strawberries

7 Comments

  1. pat Soltis on May 8, 2016 at 7:11 pm

    I’ve always used the paring-knife method. I’m sure that really good strawberries have been in season in LA for a while now, but we won’t have them in northeastern Ohio until Memorial Day or early June.

    I make a salad that we (siblings and me) all love: strawberries and spinach with a lemon and poppy seed dressing. The recipe is in a Florida-theme cookbook that I’m sure is still under copyright, but I’ll send you the reference/footnote if you’d like.

    Glad to hear that Flint seems to have outgrown his allergy to eggs.

    as always,

    ps

  2. Jen on May 12, 2016 at 12:08 am

    Hilah! I have a vegetable peeler just like that! And a…churchkey…can opener…thingy…and I use both of them regularly in my kitchen! I mean, how else would I peel my potatoes or open all those cans of coconut milk I cook with?

    I’ve always used a pairing knife to hull strawberries but I use it like you used your churchkey method, by sticking the tip of the knife in near the hull and cutting in a circular motion to cut the hull/stem out. It drives my husband crazy when he watches me do it, because I hold the berry in one hand and the knife in the other and at the end of the motion, the blade of the knife is resting against my thumb and he’s always afraid I’m going to cut myself. I also slice small fruits and vegetables this way if I don’t want to bother getting a cutting board out. And for what it’s worth, I’m pretty sure I’ve never actually cut myself doing this.

    • Hilah on May 12, 2016 at 12:04 pm

      I do the same thing with small fruits and veg like when I’m slicing berries or radishes. And the way I do mangoes and avocados is also a little dangerous but I’ve never cut myself yet! 🙂

  3. Suzanne Swartz on May 12, 2016 at 2:44 pm

    Hilah,

    Love my fruit especially in the Spring (and Fall).. ( Rhubarb) and Tomatoes in the summer.

    After seeing the picture on this e-mail, I have a suggestion. I use the tomato cans when they are empty to grow my herbs. They look so pretty and the colors are so vibrant…. ( Especially the Cento ( yellow and red, and the Joseph Russo ( blue and Red. )

    I just put very small holes in the bottom 2 or 3 ) and put some small pebbles or rocks in as well.

    They look so pretty and country in my kitchen. Oregano, dill, rosemary etc.
    Love your e-mails….
    Sue

    • Hilah on May 15, 2016 at 2:54 pm

      Great idea, Sue. I bet that does look really cute. Thank you!

  4. Glenda Ricord on July 21, 2016 at 11:35 am

    I’m lazy so I use the straw method. Quick, Easy and not a lot of mess.

    • Hilah on July 21, 2016 at 11:36 am

      IT’s definitely the most interesting method, too!

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