Using Your Freezer
Have you ever thrown out food nearing its use-by date, nearly 80% of us have, do you know a good percentage of it could be frozen.
Follow these tips to cut down on waste.
Freezing the basics
- Food should always be at room temperature before you freeze it, if you put hot food into your freezer it will bring the temperature down and cause the rest of your food begin to defrost
- Label everything and add a date- be caution of using stickers, these can tend to fall off in the freezer, leading to boxes and bags of unidentifiable foodstuffs
- Always try and defrost in the fridge not at room temperature
- Plastic boxes are brilliant but take up a lot more space than freezer bags designed for the purpose- then normally have a handy space to write contents and date on too!
- Food will expand once it is frozen so make sure you allow a little room to accommodate it
- Prevent freezer burn by wrapping everything well, particularly meat
Let your freezer help you
- Busy all the time- batch cook foods that are easy to scale up, stews casseroles and pasta sauces, just add a little water when you reheat
- Freeze bags of mixed chopped fruit, berries, kiwis, mangoes, stoned nectarines and peaches all freeze brilliantly and are great when used from frozenwhizzed with yoghurt or milk to make smoothies
- Use ice cube trays to freeze smaller portions, thing like mixed herbs – pack into the tray and fill with a little water, freeze flavoured butters pesto or houmous already portioned for you to pop out of tray when needed – ideal for baby food too!
Did you know you can freeze?
- Grapes, wipe them freeze in single layer on a try and pop into freezer bags when hard- great for chilling down that warm wine.
- Cake sponges, when you have baked and your sponge is cool, wrap well and freeze, they can be stored for up to 3 month great for unexpected guests at tea time.
- Bananas, don’t throw away those over ripe brown bananaspeel slice and freeze, when frozen blend for great homemade banana ice cream
- Grate leftover cheese. YEAH RIGHT LEFTOVER! But why not buy cheese in bulk, grate and freeze then when you want to top a dish with grated cheese it is ready to go, sprinkle on top heat away you go.