#4 Save Some Cash
Using the blanching and freezing method can save you not only time, but money too!
If you see organic spinach on sale, buy a load of it. Follow the step-by-step instructions above and make that spinach last for months in your freezer.
It’s a great way to make healthy eating more affordable and lets you use the fresh greens in your fridge for fresh meals like salads.
#5 Preserve Seasonal Favorites
Do you have a raspberry bush in your yard? Do you go strawberry picking in the summer? Do you hunt for wild blueberries?
Even if you hunt for them in your nearest grocery shop…
Finding fresh fruits in season is easy, and they are usually on sale too. But when the seasons change, so do the prices and you can quickly find yourself paying a premium for those berries that were abundant a few months ago.
Freezing fruits while they are summer fresh means you can enjoy them all winter long, without paying too much.
The Art and Science Behind Freezing Vegetables
Freezing vegetables is an amazing strategy to prolong their life and maximize their nutrients.
It also removes harmful compounds, and helps some people with digesting them.
So, how does it work?
As vegetables age they lose valuable nutritents. This is because of enzyme activity in fresh vegetables. The same thing that causes your kale to start turning yellow, also causes your kale to lose nutrients – and you are forced to throw it away.
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When vegetables are cooked, it stops some of the enzyme activity that would naturally occur in raw vegetables. Without these harmful enzymes, blanched vegetables can be stored in the freezer for 8-12 months without losing nutrition or flavor.
Even though the enzymes are destroyed, most of the nutrients stay alive, and in some cases the vegetables may become even healthier!
For example, Cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, cabbage, brussel sprouts, cauliflower, bok choy, and kale provide remarkable health benefit, but unfortunately they also contain goitrogenic compounds that can harm the thyroid.
However, once they are cooked, these harmful compounds are destroyed. This means you can eat more of them without worrying about your thyroid health. If you’re adding 2 cups of kale to your green smoothie every morning, blanching is definitely good news for you.
Blanching vegetables also makes them easier to digest because it helps break down the fibers and fermentable carbohydrates in raw vegetables.
Some people who are not able to digest raw broccoli, can often tolerate it after blanching.
Freezing veggies and fruits for smoothies is a game changer for me. It saves tons of time to be able to skip the process of setting up, washing, peeling and other preparations necessary to make the smoothie happen.
It’s like “automating” everything, only the end result is a healthy homemade beverage, handcrafted by you.
So, are you going to start freezing your vegetables to save time and money?
After I learned that blanching and freezing could make my vegetables healthier I started doing it once a month.
In the morning, I simply toss the frozen pieces into my blender and in just one minute, I have a cool, refreshing smoothie!
I also find myself enjoying things like rhubarb and fiddleheads even when the grocery store has long forgotten about them!
If you have any tips that you have discovered, let me know in the comments below.
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