Hi! I’ve been reading articles on how to extend the shelf life of perishable items like fruits. They say that sugar is a fundamental ingredient, but I’m concerned about placing too much sugar in my food. Is it recommended to use sugar in freezing fruits? Are there any alternatives I can use? And how can I avoid discoloration with frozen fruits?
There are many ways on how to preserve fruits, especially seasonal ones. Producing jam has been a traditional way of doing this, but freezing is another alternative.
The latter is easier and takes minimal effort. When it comes to freezing fruits, sugar is optional. The addition of a sweetener is often to ensure that the flavor and texture of the fruit is maintained even for periods of prolonged storage. Also, sugar plays a role in delaying the oxidation process that causes discoloration.
Can you freeze fruit?
Sugar substitutes may also be used to preserve fruits. For best results, follow the standard amounts stated in the manufacturer’s recommendations.
It should be noted that despite being effective preservatives, substitutes do not carry the other benefits that sugar possesses.
Fruits naturally darken as they age. This is due to the oxidation process that occurs as the fruit is exposed to air.
Apart from sugar, you can also use acidic mixtures to prevent discoloration. Lemon or lime juice are popular choices used in kitchens.
Another means of preventing discoloration is by cooking the fruit prior to freezing. Cooking may involve caramelizing, like jam production, or other methods like steaming, blanching and sautéing.
One way to ensure optimal frozen quality is to select fruits that are at the peak of their freshness. Get the best by inspecting each item you place in your grocery basket. Avoid blemishes and dull-skinned fruits.
How to freeze fruits
Freezing fruits is a simple and economical means of saving not just seasonal, but also regularly produced fruits. Also, it can help you save fruits that are prone to getting overripe quickly. Here are a few easy to follow steps on how to preserve fruits right in the comfort of your own kitchen:
- Prepare your fruits as you would if you were to consume them. Core, slice and chop pieces into manageable sizes.
- For small fruits, you may package them as is.
- Take an airtight resealable bag and group the fruits into manageable serving sizes. Make sure that you use high-quality freezer bags because generic ones tend to get brittle after some time in the fridge.
- Make sure that all packages are dry prior to sealing.
- Label the packs properly and store in the fridge.
- To prolong the shelf life of your fruits, you may opt to use a vacuum seal. This ensures minimal moisture and keeps the fruits free from ice crystal formation that can affect texture and flavor.
A creamy and healthy blend of fruits and yogurt for a power packed smoothie.
Fruit Custard Recipe
A fruit festival packed in a cup. This recipe is a quick and easy custard recipe fit for any occasion.
No Bake Fruit Tart Dessert
A rich and creamy flan made with a variety of mixed fruits for a burst of flavor in each bite.