Broccoli is a vegetable of the cabbage family and is an integral part of everyday home cooking.
Used in many appetizers and entrées some dishes just don’t taste the same without broccoli.
Broccoli is a great vegetable to have in terms of the nutrition it provides, its cooking time, and its versatility. It is extremely essential to store and freeze broccoli away as it tends to go bad in a short period.
Freezing broccoli is a pretty easy task if you follow the right steps. Otherwise, you’ll be wasting time freezing something that’s only going to go bad and give out a bad smell. So, here is a simple guide to help you freeze broccoli properly and without any hassle.
Freezing broccoli isn’t just putting them in the fridge or the freezer; rather, you need to follow a few steps in order.
The steps are easy to implement and won’t take much of your time.
Step 1: Separate and Wash Broccoli’s Florets
There is a minute chance that small insects could be wedged in the florets of the broccoli. So it’s important to flush them out unless you are comfortable with having them in your stomach (Which we really hope you’re not). Separate the florets and the thicker stems of the broccoli and soak them in a brine solution for thirty minutes.
It is to be noted that to trim the broccoli into smaller pieces, you should use a vegetable peeler that won’t just ensure smaller pieces of your broccoli but they will also be neatly trimmed as well.
Step 2: Blanching
The implementation of this step is to ensure that the broccoli you are using is clean. Many small insects tend to reside in the broccoli – as we mentioned in the previous step.
Blanching is boiling up water and putting fruit or vegetable in it; in this case, it’s broccoli. Submerge the broccoli in boiling water then take it out after a brief period.
After it has been taken out, put the broccoli under cold water in order to cool it down. This step will also ensure that the quality of your broccoli such as its taste, texture, and color isn’t lost in a short period of time and rather upholds it.
Step 3: Cooling and Draining
After the broccoli has been cooled down in cold water, it’s vital to ensure that the broccoli is dry after it has been taken out.
The leftover water will freeze which would consequently form a large mass and will make it harder to separate the mass from the broccoli. To perfectly freeze broccoli, it’s important that you drain all the excess water.
You can use a salad spinner to ensure all the excess water has drained out; it tends to force out water out from its florets. You can also use a colander which is just as effective.
Once the broccoli is dry, store it in your freezer as soon as possible. You can either use a plate or a parchment paper-lined sheet tray to lay your broccoli in and store it in the freezer or you can make sizable portion sizes in an airtight plastic bag and put in your freezer.
Either way, you will be able to freeze your broccolis effectively. And BAM! You are good to go.
Step 4: Freezing Stems
Even though the stems are not majorly different from the florets, it’s better that you store it in a different bag; separate from the other pieces of broccoli.
It’s more likely that the stems are used differently than the florets. After drying the broccoli, just cut the inner soft layer into small sizes and put them in an airtight bag.
Using Frozen Broccoli
You can use your broccoli anytime you want. Once you need to use it, just take it out of your freezer and put it in your fridge overnight or put it in boiling water for a minute or two.
In both cases, it will thaw and you will be able to use it in your dishes. Don’t worry about the taste of the broccoli; it will taste the same as it tasted before you froze it (provided that you followed our steps).
Why Freeze Broccoli?
Nowadays, it has become a necessity to freeze food in order to store it.
By using this method, you would have the advantage of using the frozen broccoli for an indefinite amount of time without worrying about the fact that it will go bad.
This method has proven to be economical as you save both time and money by storing it rather than going out to buy it time and again. Don’t worry about the nutrients; frozen food is as nutritious as fresh vegetables. So go on and freeze your broccoli without any hesitation.