Thursday, July 18, 2013

Flash-Freezing Blueberries

I love flash freezing.  The basic premise is to spread food items out on a tray, freeze them until they are solid, and then store them in freezer bags.  Even though you have a whole bag of food, it is easy to use as much of the food as you want at a time - be it one blueberry or one cup of blueberries - because each piece of food is frozen individually!  The technique of flash freezing works for fruits, vegetables, and baked goods.  Today, we are going to flash freeze blueberries.

The washed and dried fresh blueberries resting on the cookie sheet.  It is important to have one single layer of food.  




The trays of blueberries in the freezer.  Make sure they are good and firm before bagging!



One thing I have learned about bagging frozen blueberries is that those little guys are cold!  This year, through experimentation, I found that if I hold my canning funnel in the plastic bag, and use my handy little plastic bowl scraper to "shovel" in the berries, the process works well to a) bag the berries and b) protect my fingers. 




It is important to get as much of the air out of each bag as you can.  I like to use a straw and suck the air out (just make sure to take some breaks so you don't pass out).  (I am serious). 

Also, it is important to quickly jot the date on each bag.  I have found this out through trial and error - of course I know I froze these blueberries this year, but when next year comes around, I can't remember if this bag is new, or one or two years old (or more?)!




Now, you can use your blueberries all year long to make muffins, pies, scones, smoothies..... the possibilities are endless!

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