Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Preserving my produce

I try to buy and use fresh fruits and vegetables every week. As I transition my family off of processed foods to healthy whole foods, I am discovering new ways to preserve/freeze fresh produce for future use.

When I find a fresh item on sale at a really good price, I try to stock up. Lately, this has been happening with potatoes, strawberries and onions (I got carried away with an onion sale at Aldi recently and wound up with 20 pounds of onions that I had to do something with!)

Below are items that I regularly cut up and freeze. These items can all be cut/diced and placed in a freezer bag for storage. Flatten out the freezer bag so that they don't freeze into a clump and it's easier to store
Onions - Go here to see my post about freezing onions without smelling up your freezer.
Bell Peppers

Other items that can be frozen:
Corn on the Cob - Go here for the method I use for blanching and freezing the corn. It's a little time consuming, but after you do it once or twice, you get the hang of it and it goes much quicker.

Potatoes - they can be frozen, but they must be cooked first. Below are some links to recipes I use and then freeze the results. My favorite is steak fries - they're so easy to make and such great alternative to frozen frenchfries from the grocery!
Twice Baked Potatoes (I leave out the bacon)

Strawberries - the best way to freeze strawberries is to cut them up. Lay them on a wax paper covered cookie sheet and put them in the freezer for about an hour or two, then take them out and put them in a freezer bag or plastic container. This way they do not freeze up into one big clump. They are great in all kinds of recipes like smoothies, desserts, etc. Right now is the time to do this because strawberries are very cheap. They have been on sale at Aldi for .99 cents for several weeks.
These are the items I've experimented with, I know there are many other fruits and vegetables that can be frozen.

This works for me, what about you? What have you frozen? Let me know!



Blogger Andrea said...

I have been trying to buy more veggies too and I love this post! Great tips! I will be sure to try them out! Thanks.

April 28, 2010 at 5:54 PM  
Anonymous Diane said...

I froze corn on the cob still in the husk last year, and it was still fresh-tasting after six months. You husk off the bigger outer leaves, then peel back a little of the husk from the end of the cob. Cut an inch or two off the pointy end of the corn, just enough so you can cover the end of the cob by overlapping the husk ends, then tie shut. We froze these just like this in the freezer, then stored them in a plastic bag.

April 29, 2010 at 4:42 PM  
Blogger Niki Jolene said...

Hi there! I am stopping over from Works for Me Wednesday. I enjoyed your post about freezing produce. I am psyched to read on about doing the onions without stinking up my freezer. I frequently freeze chopped up onion, celery, and green peppers so I can "save" them before they go ogg.

When you get a chance, stop by Free 2 Be Frugal.


April 29, 2010 at 10:11 PM  
Blogger Tara said...

Diane - that's a great idea about freezing corn still in the husk. I've cooked corn still in the husk and it was okay. When we get into "corn season" I'll give the freezing in the husk a try.

April 30, 2010 at 2:55 PM  

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