Guide to freezing and defrosting vegetables
The recent vegetarian and vegan revolution has changed the way we cook. Far from a mere side dish, vegetables of all kinds are now regarded as culinary marvels in their own right. Earthy aubergines, sweet carrots, and flavoursome greens such as spinach and kale provide a whole world of culinary inspiration – from field to plate.
Freezing vegetables is a great way to preserve them for future use. Most vegetables taste better when they are in season; for example, pumpkins and swede are at their nutty best in the autumn, whereas artichokes and purple sprouting broccoli are most crunchy and delicious in early spring. Freezing veg when they are in season allows you to enjoy them at their best all year round.
Whether you are tucking into a steaming plate of Portuguese chicken with ratatouille or whipping up a quick tray of roasted vegetables with mixed herbs, this handy guide covers simple techniques for freezing and defrosting vegetables – so you have them to hand whenever you need them.
How to freeze fresh vegetables
It’s no great secret that vegetables are vital for good health, but the problem is, fresh produce tends to have a very short shelf life. There’s nothing worse than buying a bag of seasonal runner beans or a bunch of beautiful chantenay carrots only to forget about them, then find them languishing at the bottom of the fridge weeks past their use-by date.
To keep your favourite ingredients at their best for longer and cut out potential food waste, why not consider freezing vegetables? You can freeze almost any type of vegetable, but smaller veg like sweetcorn, broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, and runner beans tend to freeze best as they have low water content. Winter greens such as spinach and kale also freeze well for the same reason.
First of all, wash and prepare your fresh vegetables (for example, you might like to cut broccoli into small florets or dice swede or root vegetables into chunks). Next, wrap in cling film, then a layer of tin foil to prevent freezer burn.
How to defrost vegetables
It’s a good idea to label your frozen vegetables with the contents and date – it’s best to eat them within three months to ensure they taste just as good as the day you bought them. You might like to partially defrost vegetables prior to cooking, but most vegetables thaw during the cooking process, and cooking vegetables from frozen can help you achieve the best texture.
How to freeze potatoes
From fluffy and floury Maris Pipers to light and delicious King Edwards, the many different potatoes on offer provide us with endless recipe inspiration. Whether you’re making homemade chips with our classic chip seasoning for dinner or tucking into a simple jacket potato with barbecue beans for lunch, the humble potato is the most versatile ingredient of them all.
Many of us wonder ‘can you freeze potatoes?’ but the general consensus is that potatoes don’t freeze well raw because of their high water content. If you want to keep a stock of potatoes to hand, you’ll need to cook them or at least partially cook them before freezing to ensure they taste their best.
Whether you dice and bake parmentier potatoes or slice them thinly to prep potatoes dauphinoise, freezing potatoes will also save you time in the long run. Just be sure to double-bag your cooled, cooked potatoes in cling film then another layer of tin foil to prevent freezer burn and eat them within three months to ensure they taste great.
Now you know how to freeze fresh vegetables and potatoes, it’s time to put your skills to practice and try out one of these delicious vegetable recipes.
Our CLASSIC CHIP SEASONING is expertly blended with paprika, onion and garlic for perfectly seasoned chips.
Ah, there's nothing better than the sweet and savoury spice of the perfect chip seasoning. Bringing you memories of long summer days and fish dinners by the sea, this beautifully sunny chip seasoning blend is a delectable combination featuring spicy paprika, sweet onion and earthy garlic. Despite the name though, you can actually boost the flavour of any dish with this handy and versatile mix of herbs and spices.