Can I Freeze My Freshly-Picked Broccoli?

broccoli

Freezing is a great way to prolong the life of broccoli – it gives you the privilege of serving this healthy vegetable on the table long after the harvest season is over.

How do you properly freeze freshly-picked broccoli to make it last but still safe to eat?

First, rinse the broccoli thoroughly. If rinsing seems to fail from removing the insects present in the head, you can soak it for half an hour in salted water. After 30 minutes, rinse it again using fresh water.

Once clean, cut the broccoli florets according to your desired size. Remove all the leaves and tough ends to prepare your broccoli for blanching.

To blanch, put water in a pot and wait for it to boil. Once the water is boiling, drop your broccoli in and let it boil for about three minutes. If you are blanching small florets without the stalks, blanch for just two minutes. Peeled or halved broccoli stems must be scalded in just a minute.

After blanching, soak your broccoli in cold water to immediately stop the cooking process. Let it sit there for about three minutes. After that, drain your broccoli. Make sure to remove all excess water.

You can use containers or freezer bags to store your broccoli. But whatever you decide to use, make sure to remove as much air as you can from the container. Remember not to leave any headspace when packing this vegetable. After packing, seal tightly.

Frozen broccoli is very simple to use – there’s no need to thaw it. You can use it the way you normally would a fresh broccoli. But remember that you have blanched the broccoli already before freezing so it’s partially cooked. This means there’s no need to cook it longer than usual. Remember this to avoid overcooking your broccoli and inadvertently losing its nutrients, texture and taste.

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