Freezing Vegetables And Other Stuff

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morningmuse morningmuse
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Freezing Vegetables And Other Stuff

I do a lot of preserving and some things are just better frozen- like corn....
Does anyone have suggestions of something to use other than freezer bags? They just make so much waste. I've been thinking of using jars in the freezer, but wouldn't that let too much air in? I guess not if I packed them full enough.... The other concern is that I like to cook up a big batch of dried beans and then freeze them in 2c increments to use for meals later. Its as convenient as canned beans, but for them to thaw fast enough, they need to be flat in a plastic bag. If I could get them out of the jar before they're totally defrosted that would work, but I don't think I could.

Any suggestions?

Thanks so much for any thoughts! I apologize if this has been asked before, I tried searching and didn't get exactly what I was looking for. :)
Jay Jay
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Re: Freezing Vegetables And Other Stuff

I know this is a late response, but I'd suggest doing a search from the Forum's main page using "freezing", "freezer", etc. This is, indeed, a thorny issue for folks, and there's been a fair amount of discussion at various times.
The only new thought is regarding the beans: I use a Silpat to freeze things individually before packing in a container, and I wonder if, somehow, you could spread out the beans, let them freeze, then break up, or stack into your container of choice. Just a thought!

Enjoy reading through all the various posts/threads, lots of great ideas here!
Jay Jay
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Re: Freezing Vegetables And Other Stuff

Oh, and yes you could use jars. Pack in serving sized jars so you can fill and have less airspace; just allow room for expansion as the product freezes.
Helen Helen
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Re: Freezing Vegetables And Other Stuff

i was wondering if anyone could help me ...I have been freezing in glass jars for more than a year now, I like to pour the food in the jars when the food is cold, I even put it in the fridge to really cool down. I leave enough room at the top so it's not jammed packed and gently put them in the freezer.
BUT I am finding half of them break or crack down the side, or at the bottom. I really enjoy using glass, but finding the bottom completely cracked off is somewhat off putting and creates more waste...... I can't use food bags anymore or plastic .....does anyone have any tips as I am finding I am recycling too many glass cracked jars at the moment. I successfully use cloth bags to store dry foods, I need something for sauces and homemade ice cream!
OneHotMomma OneHotMomma
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Re: Freezing Vegetables And Other Stuff

I have learned that in my freezer, I have to leave the lids off until the liquids are frozen and make sure to leave about an inch of space empty at the top of the jar.  For some reason when I left the space and put lids on, my jars would break.  Maybe, try it this way? Let us know how it goes.
Jay Jay
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Re: Freezing Vegetables And Other Stuff

Agree that you need to let everything freeze before tightening. The other thing, maybe obvious, is to use only glass that can "handle" the extreme temperatures, i.e., real canning jars (Ball, Le Parfait, Weck, etc), pyrex or other tempered glass. You also have to be absolutely sure there are no cracks or chips, as those weaken the glass as well. Overall, glass is a bit scary especially if you store so they often bump into each other.
An expensive option is stainless steel, with a silicone gasket.

 
Alexa Alexa
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Re: Freezing Vegetables And Other Stuff

In reply to this post by Helen
Try ceramic or stoneware crocks. Both are thicker and less breakable than glass and are actually intended for cold storage or hot cooking. A bit pricier than glass and usually harder to find. But worth it to stop the breakage. Also, for ice cream, Sur la Table and William Sonoma have nice ice cream containers crocks, which work really well, but are even pricier than ceramic and stoneware crocks.
Helen Helen
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Re: Freezing Vegetables And Other Stuff

In reply to this post by OneHotMomma
That's a great tip! I guess thinking about it I have been leaving room at the top but sealing them straight away I will try it out and let you know!  Leaving the lid off until frozen does makes sense if you think about it!Thanks for the advice - there is hope!
Helen Helen
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Re: Freezing Vegetables And Other Stuff

In reply to this post by Jay
Jay - Great advice too! unfortunately Ball jars are way expensive here in Australia and rare to find secondhand, I think I need to watch out for pyrex it seems to be thicker and maybe get some stainless steel pots.
Jay Jay
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Re: Freezing Vegetables And Other Stuff

Includes some plastic, but have had great luck with Lock & Lock products, and since there seems to be an Australia connection, might be able to find a piece locally to experiment with. Boroseal pretty much equals Pyrex. Not cheap, though. I looked at the Redback Trading Co. website. They carry lots of supplies, jars, but you're right, they're expensive.
Ideally, as mentioned elsewhere, the Le Parfait wide mouth, straight sided jars work the best, with the least waste/plastic, unfortunately probably really expensive locally.
I guess it will ultimately depend on how many foods it makes economic sense to freeze vs making fresh, buying more frequently. I know I've been trying to limit storage, but always seem to have a freezer full!