I have a bumper crop of french beans, runners, and (earlier in the summer) peas. I know that we're supposed to blanche vegetables prior to freezing and my general purpose cookbooks tell me how long to give each vegetable.
I believe that blanching helps retain flavour, colour and vitamins. But I don't understand how or why. It seems counterintuitive that the best way to preserve the vegetable immediately prior to freezing, as close to its natural state as possible, is to apply heat via boiling water.
You would think that just picking the vegetable and bundling it into your freezer as fast as possible would be the best way to preserve colour, vitamins etc.
To prevent the vegetable from going 'off' in the freezer.
Blanching is the scalding of vegetables in boiling water or steam. Blanching slows or stops the action of enzymes. Up until harvest time, enzymes cause vegetables to grow and mature. If vegetables are not blanched, or blanching is not long enough, the enzymes continue to be active during frozen storage causing off-colours, off-flavours and toughening. Blanching time is crucial and varies with the vegetable and size of the pieces to be frozen. Under-blanching speeds up the activity of enzymes and is worse than no blanching. Over-blanching causes loss of flavour, colour, vitamins and minerals.
We have cut off our corn & immediately frozen it for years with no blanching. Guest at our table ask how our corn taste so fresh. We tell them: immediately freezing the cut off corn stops the enzyme growth continuing. Zero degree freezer does the same thing. The color and taste even 2 yrs. later is perfect. Save yourself a lot of work - don't blanch. Many do it just because Grandma always did - Grandma didn't have a freezer, she canned!
We do the same for our green beans too. They come out of the freezer in the winter months just like garden fresh...with no blanching. Do the extra work of blanching if it makes you feel better, or try this once and you'll be amazed at the ease and good taste of unblanched frozen corn & greenbeans.
I hear some chefs saying on TV: "Don't cut your vegetables in the salad too small, because the smaller you cut them the more vitamins are lost." Is that true? and if it was really true, what is a way to make vegetables keep their vitamins while being cut into small pieces, becasue I like salads to be eaten when each vegetable slice is around a bite in size.
Commercial soy milk is fortified with lots of different vitamins. Is it possible to add these vitamins to homemade soy milk? If so how would you do it? I'm not sure if we absorb the vitamins or if they are important or whatever, but just curious about how this would be done in a home kitchen. Edit: Found some links, neither of which gives a great answer considering both only really cover.../soya-milk-benefits/should-you-fortify-your-soy-milk But commercial soymilk can include a ton of others (A, C, D, E, K, B6, Iron, Riboflavin, Folate, Phosphorous, Magnesium, Zinc, Selenium
Possible Duplicate: How long can I store soaked beans before cooking? Can you preserve canned kidney beans so that they still have their shape? If I pre-soak/cook a large amount of dried beans in advance, what is the best way to store them for future use? If freezing is an option, do I freeze them in the cooking water, or drain them and put them in an airtight container?
I buy kidney beans in a can, but the amount is always too big. Normally, I throw away the leftover beans, thinking that freezing them will turn them into mush (thinking the water will expand and make the membrane tear). Is there a way to avoid this? Or another way to preserve them longer than a few days (preferably a few months)? Note: I haven't actually tried this, so if they hold their shape nicely after freezing, please inform me.
Possible Duplicate: Is there any way to remove stains (e.g. from curries and pasta sauces) from plastic containers? I find that when storing curries or tomato based sauces in the freezer they stain the tupperwear and also leave a lasting smell. Is there a tupperwear that avoids this and how do I best clean tupperwear to get rid of the colour and smell?
When using strawberries to make a preserve (canning process), they become limp and lose colour Is there a way to avoid this?
to use the seitan to make sandwiches after bringing up to temp while smoking on the grill and then slicing. I have seen storage options including freezing, refrigerating wrapped in cling wrap, refrigerating while submersed in the simmering liquid, and a few variations in between. Three days is long enough that I would be concerned about spoilage, as well as picking up stray odors (I will be doing a bunch of bulk cooking of different foods). It is at once short enough that I don't think the texture would necessarily be compromised, but definitely see it as possible if stored in liquid
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Possible Duplicate: Why is it dangerous to eat meat which has been left out and then cooked? I left raw steak on the cement floor for 18 hrs. Should I not eat it because the meat has gone bad? If not, is there a way of saving it? I froze it immediately. Does freezing stop the bacteria from growing?