Just because you don't have time to head to the farmers market each week, that doesn't mean you're stuck with frozen peas and microwavable dinners. Simply stock up on fresh foods and freeze them for later. Here's how you can.
All about fruits and veggies
As far as veggies go, there are certain rules that you should follow so your produce doesn't prematurely rot or morph into an odd texture. The Design Mom blog dished on a number of pointers to freeze veggies efficiently and properly. Some of the takeaways include the following.
- Place items in freezer bags or plastic containers.
- Invest in freezer tape so you can reinforce the seals on plastic bags.
- Wash everything prior to preparation.
- Keep in mind that some fruits, like strawberries and raspberries, freeze and defrost better if stored whole.
- Slice up certain fruits and veggies, like bell peppers, melon and pineapple.
- Blanche or semi-prep most veggies prior to freezing them.
What meats can you freeze?
These tips can get you started on freezing fruits and veggies, but unless you're a vegetarian, there's more you need to know. Freezing meats is slightly different than produce. The Dessert Now Dinner Later blog offered up some suggestions for storing chicken and ground beef in the freezer. Here are some of the source's helpful tips.
- Buy meats in bulk and on sale because the expiration won't matter if you're freezing them.
- Cut chicken breasts in half before putting them in the freezer.
- After cutting, stack chicken two per plastic bag.
- Wear protection over your hands so you don't come in contact with raw poultry.
- Write the date and type of meat on every bag prior to putting each one in the freezer.
Thaw and enjoy
When you're ready to eat some of your frozen meals, defrost the items as you would any other frozen goods. Select the meats and veggies you'd like to reheat and place the entire plastic bag in lukewarm water to fast track the process. Remove the bags from the water after about an hour and saute, roast or fry as you typically would.
You could also transfer the frozen items from the freezer to the fridge before you head off to work. Then, remove the food from the plastic and prepare it as you wish. Freezing your foods saves you time, money and trips to the grocery store while also making it easier to eat healthy, enjoyable dinners even during the busiest of times.
The information in these articles is intended to provide guidance on the proper maintenance and care of systems and appliances in the home. Not all of the topics mentioned are covered by our home warranty or maintenance plans. Please review your home warranty contract carefully to understand your coverage.
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