Freeze Fresh Produce for Zero-Waste Meal Prep

ALL ABOUT ME 125 SEPT 2018 Final

Harvesting is hard work. Yeah, I love the kale, cucumbers and tomatoes we grow every year but let’s face it, picking, cleaning and cooking freshly grown veggies takes a lot of time.

Every spring we plant a slew of outdoor plants and herbs in our garden and every summer morning I water and prune them, but by the time fall arrives and we can finally eat what we’ve nurtured for months, well… I’m kind of burnt out!

Pasta with BasilDon’t worry, I don’t leave our hard work to die on the vine. I usually gather all the tomatoes, onions, eggplants and basil I can and I make a big pot of “gravy” (that’s American-Italian for sauce) but finding a way to preserve the other veggies we’ve worked so hard to grow can be more of a challenge.

So, I asked a few chef friends for their help on how to keep our summer veggies alive all winter and they gave me some easy tips.

Take a look below at some of our favorite ways to use and save our fall harvest:

Herb Meal Starters

Freeze Fresh Herbs Veggies in Olive Oil The KitchnThis summer, our herbs grew like crazy. We have tons of Rosemary, Oregano and Sage. These firmer herbs are perfect for freezing to use all year. Just follow these quick steps:

How to Prep

1. cut, wash & chop herbs

2. pack openings of clean ice cube trays about 2/3rds full

3. fill openings to top with Extra Virgin Olive Oil or melted unsalted butter

4. put trays in freezer (You’ll love how your freezer will smell!)

How to Use

Drop the squares into a sauté pan before making an omelet, sautéing vegetables, making soups or your favorite pastas.

Summer scents will flood your kitchen as soon as you pop these into a pan, I promise!

Note!

If you want, freeze some of that Rosemary with water instead of oil. It’s perfect for dropping a square into hot tea or homemade soup.

Rosemary is a natural anti-inflammatory too, making this use a double-bonus for cold weather and cold season.

Freezing Green Beans, Corn & Sugar Snap Peas

Low acidic veggies are the best for freezing. Here’s the best way to keep them for winter use without having to go thru a big canning process:

How to Prep

1. blanch veggies by tossing them into boiling water & removing them quickly

2. immediately drop veggies into ice water to stop from cooking (This gets rid of any cooties like micro-organisms that may make you sick after thawing!)

3. dry veggies well on dish towels

4. store veggies in heavy, reusable silicon plastic bags, making sure all air is out before sealing

The Picolli Short_Labyrinth_Lifestyle_Square INSTA

How to Use

These veggies can go from freezer to pan fast! They retain their color, flavor and most of their nutrients thanks to the blanching done before freezing. You can cook them the same way you would when using them fresh out of the garden.

Note!

If you’re freezing corn or larger vegetables, cut off the husks or excess before storing so it takes up less space in your freezer.

Freezing Kale

Fresh kale has become a staple in our smoothies this summer and it’s not too hard to freeze.

How to Prep

1. wash leaves & remove from stems (Stems can be frozen too, but they’re best when frozen separately from leaves.)

2. blanch leaves by tossing them into boiling water & removing them quickly

3. dry leaves well on dish towels

4. store veggies in bunches or individual servings in heavy, reusable silicon plastic bags, making sure all air is out before sealing

How to Use

Frozen kale can get bitter, but it’s great in smoothies, soups and other dishes where it isn’t the star.

How to Use

The kale stems are great in smoothies or perfect for adding into winter soups.

A Healthy Outside Starts from the Inside Quote

The whole point of growing veggies all summer is to put them to use. Fresh vegetables and herbs are loaded with vitamins and minerals and freezing them for winter use preserves those nutrients we’ll crave when the days get shorter and darker.

At MAJAMAS EARTH, we aim for zero-waste production processes and practices that follow us into our personal everyday routines.

Join ME in living a more sustainable lifestyle that keeps you and the planet healthy, happy and beautiful, inside and out!

Get out there this weekend and redeem all the hard work you put into gardening. It’s a great way to keep that healthy diet going when we start to crave comfort food, and all that food you grew won’t go to waste!

– Germaine Caprio, Company Owner & Designer

#CAREWHATYOUWEAR


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Do you have any tips, tricks or hacks?

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