Some foods are a lot better than others when it comes to freezer storage. Fried foods are not one of those “better” foods as they’ll lose their crispness and get soggy. The reason freezing works well for some and not others is due, in part, to the water content of the stored food.
Generally, as the water content goes up, freezing quality goes out the window. Just think about an orange or watermelon that has been frozen, kind of gets that mealy taste. Let’s take a look at a few of the best foods to freeze.
There is nothing like pulling some hamburger patties out of the freezer the day before, firing up the grill and getting some close friends together for a good dose of laughs and entertainment. The reason this is possible is because meat is a great food for freezer storage.
Meat freezes so well because they are incredibly dense. Because there are few places for air to hide in a piece of meat, a high quality steak, or even a low quality steak, will last for at least 4 months if kept frozen and wrapped well. While meats do freeze alright pre-cooked, they will preserve the best in their uncooked format.
Fruits & Vegetables
Believe it or not, frozen vegetables are usually fresher than fresh vegetables. This is because they are frozen at their peak ripeness. Many of us do not have a flash freezer in our homes, which is what the giant corporations use in order to chill their fruits and veggies, so the best procedure to follow is to blanch in boiling water for 1-2 minutes, allow cooling and then freezing.
Blanching allows the full bright color to come out as well as the nutrients. Once frozen, all activity will stop and resume upon thawing and cooking. It is also important to remember to freeze fruits and veggies individually, until slightly frozen, then bag them so they do not freeze in a massive block.
Right now you might be thinking to yourself, well, if meat and fruits and veggies are all good to freeze, what types of foods are not good to freeze? You seem to have all the bases covered with those three categories. The best way to figure out if foods will freeze well is to take a look at their liquid content.
If the product is not normally watery, such as milk or lettuce, then the thawed product will not be of the highest quality. Soups, on the other hand, are made up mostly of water, so the ice melting when thawing, just re-liquefies the base stock. The best way to think about which foods freeze the best is to think about the quality when it is thawed.
If foods have high water content, imagine that water turning into ice, stretching out the bonds that hold the food together, and then melting when thawed. Will your food act like a piece of meat, or a piece of lettuce? If all else fails, try freezing a small batch and see how well it thaws and reheats.
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