Freezing prolongs the shelf-life of many of our favourite foods. Fresh produce should be frozen soon after harvesting. Cooked food should be fully cooled before freezing. Some foods such as green vegetables, require blanching (brief exposure to boiling water or steam) followed by rapid cooling. This will help to retain the colour and nutrients of the vegetables.
Some foods undergo textural change from freezing. This occurs because fruit and vegetables are largely made up of water. The water is frozen, it expands, and the ice crystals break down the plant cell walls. This process renders the fruit/vegetable softer and mushier. This makes a difference for food that would be eaten raw but for food that will be cooked, it makes little difference.
Here are some handy tips about freezing you may not already know:
Sauces & Stocks – Just put them in ice cube containers.
Grapes Frozen – Grapes make a great icy treat!
Peppers & Onions – Dice them up and pop them in freezer bags.
Flour – Store flour in the freezer to make it last longer.
Cheese – In blocks or grated, cheese can be frozen.
Eggs (no shells) – Freeze in bun trays, thaw and use as normal!
Cooked Pasta – Cook a batch, freeze in a bag, save time cooking!
Nuts – Keep nuts for longer in the freezer.