Freezing Foods 101
Thanks to freezers we’re able to stock up on great deals on everything from fresh meat, poultry, and seafood to flash frozen produce to heat-and-eat dishes. But there are some foods that should not be placed in the freezer, such as hard-boiled eggs (they’ll get rubbery), eggs in shells (they’ll expand and crack), egg-based sauces (they’ll separate and curdle), and salad greens (they’ll wilt), just to name a few. Foods that are good to freeze include most breads, butter and margarine, and meat, poultry, and fish.
Here are some tips on packing and preventing freezer burn. When packing foods to freeze, pack them tightly in airtight containers or freezer bags. Squeeze air from bags before sealing and leave some space in containers in case food expands. If moisture escapes, frozen food can become dry and may develop “freezer burn.” To prevent moisture loss, wrap foods well in heavyweight aluminum foil, plastic-coated freezer paper, or freezer-safe bags. Freezer burn does not make foods unsafe, but it causes grayish-brown spots to appear on frozen food, due to chemical changes in the food’s pigment caused by air reaching the food’s surface. And freezer burn may create an odd smell in the freezer.
Before placing food into the freezer, don’t’ forget to label and date the packaging. Rotate foods in the freezer so that the older frozen foods are at the front of the freezer and the new foods you’re placing into the freezer are in the back.