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in Fruit & veg
I've just picked and podded some peas. There are too much for tonights dinner. I'm thinking that freezing the rest would be best. Is it preferable to blanch them prior to freezing or not?
I always blanch them, just a minute or 2 in boiling water then leave them to dry on kitchen towel on a tray and when cool remove kitchen towel, put tray in freezer and bag up when frozen so that peas stay separate. But you didn't ask for all that. Sorry! Being bossy!
I wouldn't blanch them for so long. As soon as they come back to the boil is long enough.
For large quantities: Put a washing-up bowl (or whatever you can fit in) in the freeezer with water in the bottom. Freeze the water. Blanch the veg and after draining pour onto the ice to which you have added some water - not too much.
For smaller quantities pour into ice cubes and water.
Blanched vegetables should be cooled completely in the same time they were blanched for.
For blanching times I use a book from the Reader's Digest, "Food From Your Garden" that I've had for over 40 years, it always works perfectly. The enzymes that spoil frozen food should be destroyed without over blanching. I use it for making jams and jellies as well.
I'm with Welshonion. As soon as they come back to the boil at an absolute maximum. I usually don't even wait that long. All you want to do is stun the pea's growth enzyme and contact with the boiling water is usually enough for that.