10 foods you never knew you could freeze

Naomi Gordon
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From Prima

As we're being advised by the government to shop for essentials as infrequently as possible so that we stay at home to avoid accelerating the spread of coronavirus – now is the time to take advantage of our freezers.

There are plenty of essential food items that can you freeze, which you may not have realised such as cheese, butter and carrots. Angela Tella, chair of the Freelance Dietitians Group Committee and Tap Warehouse have shared tips on how to do it and how long these essential ingredients will last in your freezer.

How to freeze cheese

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Hard cheeses can be grated and put in a food bag; required amounts taken as and when needed. Soft cheeses including mozzarella can be frozen. Cottage cheese however does not freeze well. Both hard and soft Cheese lasts for six months.

How to freeze bananas

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Don't throw out those over-ripe bananas in your fruit bowl – you can chop them up into slices and place them in a freezer-safe storage bag. They can be used in future for a banana loaf or smoothies. Bananas can last for up two months in the freezer.

How to freeze potatoes

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Potatoes have a high water content and so need to be blanched first before freezing. Peel and blanch them by placing them in boiling water for 3-5minutes for chopped potatoes or up to ten minutes for whole potatoes.

Transfer them into ice cold water for the same amount of time you put them in hot water. Drain and place into an airtight container and freeze. Homemade mash can be pre-portioned and frozen. Chips can also be frozen. They can last in the freezer for 12 months.

How to freeze eggs

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If you've managed to track down eggs - congratulations, as they are proving as elusive as loo roll on supermarket shelves as people continue to panic buy and stock pile. To freeze an egg whole, crack them open and beat gently to combine yolk and egg and then freeze in bags. Or you can freeze them in ice cube trays or individual pots. Eggs can last for 12 months in the freezer.

How to freeze milk

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Milk freezes well, just be aware that it expands as it freezes. Once thawed, shake well before use for the solids and liquid to mix before pouring. Milk can also be frozen in ice cube trays for use in individual cups of tea or coffee. Alternatively, long-life milks (both animal and plant-based) have a long shelf-life and do not require freezing. Milk can last for three months in the freezer.

How to freeze butter

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If you have any spare packs of butter from your shopping mission, you can bung them in the freezer. They can last inside you freezer for 9 months.

How to freeze broccoli

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Wash well and cut into florets. Blanch the florets before draining, bagging and freezing. To blanch them you need to put them in boiling water for two to three minutes before plunging in ice cold water. Broccoli can last 12 months in the freezer.

How to freeze onion

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Peel, chop and pre-portion before freezing. Use portions as required. Chopped onions can last for 12 months in the freezer.

How to freeze carrots

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Wash carrots well and chop into required size. Blanch, drain, bag and freeze as with the broccoli. They can last in the freezer for up to 12 months.

How to free yoghurt

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Yogurt near its use-by date can be frozen and grated over cereal. Natural yoghurt can be frozen and thawed when ready to use in cooking. Alternatively, freeze yogurt in ice cube trays for use in smoothies. Yoghurt can last up to a month in the freezer.

The information in this story is accurate as of the publication date. While we are attempting to keep our content as up-to-date as possible, the situation surrounding the coronavirus pandemic continues to develop rapidly, so it's possible that some information and recommendations may have changed since publishing. For any concerns and latest advice, visit the World Health Organisation. If you're in the UK, the National Health Service can also provide useful information and support, while US users can contact the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.

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