Food quality after freezing
The freezer can be a parent's best friend. You can avoid wasting twice as much food by thinking ahead and freezing food that you plan to use at a later date. Here's what you need to know about maintaining food quality in the process:
- While the freezing process can’t destroy a food’s nutritional content, it can effect its composition – particularly if the food has a high water content.
- If you plan to freeze some food, it’s always best to do so when it’s in its freshest state – don’t leave raw meat in the fridge for two days before freezing as the delay will affect the stage of the food when it has been defrosted. Freezing certainly won't improve the quality of your food.
- Meat and fruits need no preparation for freezing, but vegetables do best if you partially cook them (blanch) for 30 seconds and then plunge them into iced water before freezing.
- Protect your frozen foods from freezer burn by ensuring that they properly packaged. Using freezer bags will prevent air from circulating around the frozen food and will keep the food in better condition for longer.
- All recommended storage times for freezing foods are based on maintaining the quality of the food, as opposed safety.
- Cool food down before freezing - freezing hot food will cause the temperature of the freezer to rize and may affect other frozen foods.
Freezer burn doesn’t make food unsafe – instead it affects the texture and composition of the food. Freezer burn occurs when frozen food has become damaged by ice crystals, because of air reaching the food. Frozen food is more prone to freezer burn in an automatic defrosting freezer because of the fluctuating temperatures inside the freezer.
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