Freezing fuit tipsSummer berries and peaches are great for freezing. Freezing will allow you to be able to enjoy smoothies, muffins, pancakes and pies all winter. Select fruit that is firm, not mushy. You also can choose between freezing them with sugar or syrup or without.
By: Herald Staff Report, Grand Forks Herald
Summer berries and peaches are great for freezing. Freezing will allow you to be able to enjoy smoothies, muffins, pancakes and pies all winter. Select fruit that is firm, not mushy. You also can choose between freezing them with sugar or syrup or without.
Here’s how to get started:
• Peaches: Wash, cut out any bruised parts, then peel and slice. Mix 23 cup sugar into 1 quart prepared peaches, stirring until dissolved. Mix 1 teaspoon crystalline ascorbic acid, such as Fruit Fresh, with ½ cup water; add 1 tablespoon of solution to each pint of peaches. Package and freeze. Sugar-free: Wash, peel and slice peaches. Pack into freezer containers. Cover fruit with solution of 1 tablespoon cyclamate-type artificial sweetener, such as Sweet’N Lo, and ¼ teaspoon ascorbic acid dissolved in 1 cup water.
• Strawberries: Wash, cut out the hull and leave whole or cut large berries into halves or quarters. Use tray pack method (instructions follow).
• Blackberries, raspberries: Wash, then spread out on towels to dry thoroughly. Use tray pack method.
• Blueberries: Pick over to remove woody stems, but don’t rinse until thawing or cooking with them. (The hazy blue cast protects the berries.)
Tray pack method
To freeze without sugar, place any of the fruit above in a single layer on a metal sheet, such as a cookie sheet or jellyroll pan, then place in the freezer. Freeze until fruit is hard then transfer the fruit to a freezer bag and press out the air. This process will prevent the fruit from freezing into one big lump.
To freeze berries with sugar, prepare the berries and toss with sugar, then freeze. Or prepare fruit, place in a freezer container and cover with a simple syrup of ½ cup sugar dissolved in 1 cup boiling water. Cool syrup before pouring over fruit.
Note: Don’t forget labeling tape or a pen, such as a Sharpie, that will write on freezer bags. Dating and labeling the bags will save you a lot of “mystery meals” in December.