During my trips to the farmers’ market, I always see vegetables like broccoli on sale. I’d like to purchase in bulk to save time and money since the market sellers often offer great deals. However, I’m hesitant to do this because the broccoli might just get spoiled. How do I keep them for longer?
Broccoli is a healthy and tasty vegetable that can be used in a lot of dishes. It would make sense to buy them in bulk then just preserve them until needed.
You can freeze both store-bought broccoli and those that you grew in your yard. The freezing process preserves the nutrients found in broccoli for an entire year. Storing them properly will make sure that you can enjoy them for quite some time.
Can You Freeze Broccoli?
Make sure to blanch the broccoli to destroy any microorganisms or enzymes that may still be present in the vegetable. They may cause ripening and decomposition of the broccoli.
Frozen broccoli can taste bad if it wasn’t blanched before freezing. The blanching process should take place after cutting up the vegetables to avoid the unpleasant flavor.
Broccoli can be stored in the freezer for up to 18 months. However, for best results, use your frozen broccoli within the year. This is to prevent the flavor from deteriorating.
Frozen broccoli will have minimal differences in flavor, texture, and quality from the fresh ones. The frozen vegetable will still be a good substitute for any recipe that requires fresh ones.
Avoid freezing broccoli heads that show signs of opening. Choose those that have tight and firm heads, as the best results can be achieved with the ripest broccoli heads.
If you’re harvesting from your own garden, it is best to pick the broccoli during cool mornings. Quality can be preserved the best if they are blanched and frozen within two hours.
How to Freeze Broccoli
Broccoli is one of the vegetables that can be easily frozen without compromising its quality. To be able to enjoy broccoli with any dish at any time of the year, here are the steps to freeze broccoli.
- First, ensure that the broccoli is washed thoroughly. Use running water to remove any dirt.
- Next, cut the heads into florets, maintaining equal sizes for convenience. You can also use the stems if you want.
- Place the broccoli in boiling water to remove any microorganisms and to preserve its flavor.
- After two minutes, drain the water then plunge the vegetables into an ice bath.
- Dry the broccoli on paper towels, and remove any extra water to prevent moisture and bacteria growth.
- Place the broccoli inside freezer-safe containers or freezer bags, removing excess air to keep the container tightly sealed.
- Label the container with the date of preparation, and place inside the freezer.
- Use the broccoli within one year for best results. To thaw, simply place inside the refrigerator overnight.
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