12 Storage Tips for Frozen Foods

General tips:

  • Do not try to freeze or store food at less than 0°F.
  • Keep a freezer thermometer handy and check freezer temperature from time to time.
  • Never put hot food in a freezer.
  • Never refreeze frozen food that has thawed.

Commercial frozen foods:

  • Transfer at once from shopping bags to freezing surface of 0°F. freezer and leave there several hours.
  • In any packages were ripped in transit, overwrap in plastic food wrap, slip into plastic bag, press out air, and seal.

Home-frozen foods:

  • Always cool hot food before setting in freezer.
  • Spoon cooled food into 1-pint and 1-quart freezer containers, filling to within 1/2 inch of top.
  • Snap on lids, label, date, and set on freezing surface of 0°F.
  • When solidly frozen, move to upper freezer shelves.

Freezing fresh herbs

  1. Mince herbs, then spoon 1 tablespoon into each compartment of an ice cube tray, keeping different herbs separate.
  2. Add 2 to 3 tablespoons water to each compartment and freeze.
  3. Pop frozen "herb cubes" into plastic zipper bags, label, date, and store in freezer. Maximum storage time is 3 months.
  4. To use, drop solidly frozen cubes into sauce, soup or stew, remembering that 1 cube = 1 tablespoon freshly chopped herb or 1 teaspoon dried herb.

Freezing Fresh Ginger

  1. Wrap unpeeled "hand" of ginger in plastic food wrap.
  2. Slip into plastic zipper bag, press out air, seal, label, and date.
  3. Store on freezer door shelf. Maximum storage time is 4 months.
  4. To use, cut off the amount you need. A 1-inch square = 1 tablespoon minced ginger.

From Dinners in a Dish or a Dash by Jean Anderson. Copyright 2000. New York: William Morrow.

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