Save yourself from bad dates by properly storing these fruits when fresh. These mature fruits have a short shelf life due to the high amount of sugar in them. Dried dates last longer in storage than fresh, but the taste of fresh dates cannot be matched by sweeter, darker dried dates.
Put the dates into a resealable plastic bag.
Store the dates in the bag in the refrigerator for up to two weeks or in the freezer for five to six months.
Remove the dates from the refrigerator or freezer to a counter one hour before preparation to come to room temperature and make cutting them easier.
Cut a slit down the length of the thawed date and pull the pit out with your fingers before eating, stuffing or chopping the dates.
Dates are sold in three forms: soft, semi-dry and dry. Semi-dry dates contain 50 percent sugar by weight and fresh (soft) dates have slightly less sugar, while hard (dried) dates contain the most sugar, up to 70 percent of weight. The most common date varieties include the highly prized Medjool dates and the standard Deglet Noor. Select fresh dates that are plump with tight, smooth skin.