My freezer and I are BFF (best friends forever.) Seriously. She opens her arms and says, “Anna, what do you have for me today?” She knows how much my garden harvest means to me and over the years, has gone that extra, extra mile to delivers delectable thawed vegetables. So, I bet you have a freezer just like mine and don’t know it. Give her a try. So, here are six foods that you can freeze that I bet you have never considered. Say good-bye to spoilage and wasting money.
Every year I grow a bumper crop of tomatoes. My preference is canning tomatoes. (See my tutorial HERE.)
I am not a big fan of canned whole tomatoes. But, what if you want whole tomatoes to plop into your sauce?
Simply place them on a tray side by side in your freezer for 24 hours. Remove them and store them in your preferred container. The tomatoes won’t stick together.
I use the above freezer method to can tomatoes. After, you defrost the tomatoes, you can easily peel off their skins. I am not a huge fan of boiling water to remove their skins. (I know. Call me lazy. I will take the title.)
I caused a stir on Pinterest about freezing cucumbers. People pinned it numerous time. (You can read my article HERE. )
I must confess. If you freeze cucumbers, then once you defrost them, they will not be crunchy. They will be soggy and looking a little lost.
However, they are still usable for many different recipes including cucumber soup, tzatziki sauce, etc.
P.S. There is a way to freeze cucumbers without the seeds that make the cucumbers more palatable. You need to read the article.
In the past, we bought raw milk. In New Jersey, you can’t buy raw milk; however if you can buy raw milk in Pennsylvania. Since Pennsylvania is over an hour away, we buy a couple gallons of milk and store them in the freezer until we need them.
Here are some tips on how to store milk:
- According to Still Tasty, milk should only be stored in the freezer for three months. (I love this site since it tells you when to toss and when to eat.)
- Don’t freeze the milk if it is past the sell date.
- The Dairy Association of California says milk expand when stored in the freezer. Be sure to leave room for expansion. StillTasty advises leaving an inch to one and half inch head space depending on the bottle. (The narrower the bottom, the larger the head space.)
- Thawed milk tastes different. You may not want to use it to drink but to make other food items like cream soups.
- Freeze a small amount and then try it just to see if you like thawed milk.
- Be sure to shake your milk before using it.
- Transfer the milk to smaller containers so you can use smaller batches without the huge lag time to defrost.
Hold on. There are more foods you can freeze. Stay with me.
#4 Basil and Herbs
I am sure you heard you can store herbs in the freezer using an ice cube tray. Just in case you haven’t, some people store in water by making a slurry. Alternatively, store the leaves in oil. (If you want to use this route to store your herbs, be sure to purchase a durable stainless steel ice cube tray. Most trays are plastic. I am just not a plastic fan. Read why HERE.)
Back to storing basil. I don’t bother with the oil or water method. Remember, I am lazy.
I simply wash the basil. Pat dry, and then store it in a glass container in the freezer.
So, when a recipe calls for fresh basil, I simply open up the freezer, and she hands me the basil. (I told you I had the best freezer.)
You can do the same thing with other herbs too.
I honestly don’t see a difference in taste.
I adore peaches! However, sometimes I just don’t have time to skin them, or I picked them unripened, so I throw them in the freezer for future uses. I can the rest of the peaches that are easier to remove their skins.
Unlike tomatoes, if your peaches aren’t ripe, once you freeze them, the skins are still hard to get off. So I use them in recipes that it doesn’t matter if you use the skin.
Conversely, if they are ripe, they aren’t hard to remove. I am not a blanch-type girl and find the freezer method easier to remove skins. Read HERE on how I remove the skins.
You can store peaches in the freezer for 10 to 12 months according to StillTasty.
Yes. You can freeze lettuce. Just like cucumbers, don’t expect the crunch. It is not going to happen.
However, you can use the defrosted lettuce in recipes like smoothies. Read HERE how I use my defrosted lettuce. The trick to freezing your lettuce is don’t wait until it is slimy. Normally, if you don’t want to eat it, freezing it won’t make it better.
I tend to use this trick when I am going on vacation and don’t want to toss my lettuce.
As I am typing this article, I realized I am writing a small book. I have seven more foods to add to my freezer loving post. So, stay tuned for part II this week.
Join the Conversation:
Did you realize you can freeze the above foods? If so, what are your tips?
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