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 Post subject: Freezing – what works, what doesn’t
PostPosted: Wed Mar 20, 2013 1:55 am 
Huffs Nutritional Yeast
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I freeze loads of stuff to usually-successful results HOWEVER yesterday I defrosted a batch of precious Butternut Alfredo that was definitely off.

Pretty sure I did everything right (freezer temp okay, sauce hadn’t been in there too long, defrosted in fridge overnight), so what gives?

Have you guys found that certain things can’t be frozen? What are your go-to freezer staples?


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 Post subject: Re: Freezing – what works, what doesn’t
PostPosted: Wed Mar 20, 2013 7:57 am 
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what else goes into the sauce? How long of a time was it between when you made it and when you froze it?
I find when I freeze pasta/spaghetti, the texture always goes a little bit mushy, but that could be because I nuke it to oblivion...
Stuff I love to freeze, is bananas- always got loads of peeled and chopped ripe bananas, ready for banana ice cream, or if you let it defrost it turns into a mush which is good for oatmeal and banana bread and such. A tofu block in the freezer is always a good bet too. I like to freeze Lancashire hot pots, soups, curries, chilli and rice. Uhhhh generally things I make in big batches and get sick of eating days in a row.
Uhhh, silken tofu does not freeze well at all, I froze some slices of it, and it seemed to separate itself into layers of tofu-y skins.
I just stuck it on a roll with some vegg though and pretended it was egg whites.


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 Post subject: Re: Freezing – what works, what doesn’t
PostPosted: Wed Mar 20, 2013 8:07 am 
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Lasagna freezes great, cut into individual squares and tightly saran wrapped. (i guess i say saran wrap!) I've never tried to freeze pasta because it does seem that it might sort of lose its integrity upon reheating, especially now that I use rice pasta, which is slightly finicky. I read that risotto freezes well but that was a lie - it came out very gummy. Curries freeze well, like veg curry or saag, and soups.
I also always have frozen bananas in the freezer for ice-cream-like banana peanut butter chocolate shakes.


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 Post subject: Re: Freezing – what works, what doesn’t
PostPosted: Wed Mar 20, 2013 8:13 am 
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I mostly freeze soup and things like curry also. I also used to freeze pasta based casseroles, but I've never frozen just plain pasta.

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 Post subject: Re: Freezing – what works, what doesn’t
PostPosted: Wed Mar 20, 2013 8:41 am 
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I usually cook the whole bag of Penne and then portion out into ziplocks and freeze the noodles. I reheat them by throwing them into boiling water for a minute and they turn out pretty well perfect. Saves me lots of time when making fast dinners.


Cilantro cubes - in ice cube tray covered with water to protect them and then transfer to baggie. Defrost a single cube for use.

Veggie stocks in ice cube trays and then baggies for 1-2 oz portions.

Parboiled Parsnips freeze well.

Homemade bread slice and frozen.

Bean, lots of different varieties of beans portioned to 1/2 cup servings in ziplocks.


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 Post subject: Re: Freezing – what works, what doesn’t
PostPosted: Wed Mar 20, 2013 11:17 am 
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Ginger freezes ok as long as you do not let it defrost before you use it! Highly important discovery by me the other day! It turns into a ginger mush which cannot be put in a curry.


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 Post subject: Re: Freezing – what works, what doesn’t
PostPosted: Wed Mar 20, 2013 3:28 pm 
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Hmm, I've frozen lots of pasta/lasagna types before and haven't had a problem. That's awful! I usually wrap in plastic wrap, then foil, then seal in a freezer bag.

My staples are soups and homemade pizza dough in plastic bags (the dough is wrapped too). Beans in bags in 1 1/2c. portions and lots of bananas. Oh, and chickpea cutlets and veggie burgers wrapped in parchment then thrown in a bag.

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 Post subject: Re: Freezing – what works, what doesn’t
PostPosted: Wed Mar 20, 2013 4:07 pm 
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Beans are awesome for freezing. I usually cook twice as many as I need and freeze half in a tub. If I'm making anything like chilli, curry, stew, bolognaise or pizza sauce I always make double so I can stash some in the freezer for homemade ready meals. Everything goes in tubs, then there's a little tetris stacking but they fit really well and I can see everything pretty clearly.

Bananas usually live in my freezer but I've had awful luck with a lot of fruit that I've frozen from fresh. Strawberries in particular. They're fine if I'm sticking them in the blender frozen, but turn into little balls of slime if defrosted. My current "will it work" experiment is a half pack of cheatin' ham slices. The pack says it's ok for freezing but I remain skeptical.

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 Post subject: Re: Freezing – what works, what doesn’t
PostPosted: Wed Mar 20, 2013 4:47 pm 
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I love that trick about freezing cilantro because I ALWAYS buy that huge bunch from the grocery store and never use the whole thing at once!

Aside from the usual suspects, I also freeze cooked veggie burgers and chickpea cutlets (separated by parchment or wax paper) and then let them thaw all day (if i can) and quickly crisp them up in a pan or the oven. I've also put cooked empanadas and other similar types of food items (samosas, etc.) in the freezer and reheated in the oven.


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 Post subject: Re: Freezing – what works, what doesn’t
PostPosted: Wed Mar 20, 2013 7:11 pm 
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NomiMalone wrote:
I freeze loads of stuff to usually-successful results HOWEVER yesterday I defrosted a batch of precious Butternut Alfredo that was definitely off.

I've had things with sauces (like Alfredo) that separate when thawed. And if you used tofu in the sauce, freezing could definitely change the texture and consistency. Like everyone else I freeze batches of beans. Plus home-made hummus, and sometimes whole lemons or limes if I've bought a bunch in a good sale.

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 Post subject: Re: Freezing – what works, what doesn’t
PostPosted: Thu Mar 21, 2013 7:42 am 
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Jill wrote:
NomiMalone wrote:
I freeze loads of stuff to usually-successful results HOWEVER yesterday I defrosted a batch of precious Butternut Alfredo that was definitely off.

I've had things with sauces (like Alfredo) that separate when thawed. And if you used tofu in the sauce, freezing could definitely change the texture and consistency. Like everyone else I freeze batches of beans. Plus home-made hummus, and sometimes whole lemons or limes if I've bought a bunch in a good sale.


When you freeze lemons/limes do they defrost ok?


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 Post subject: Re: Freezing – what works, what doesn’t
PostPosted: Thu Mar 21, 2013 7:51 am 
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vixki wrote:
Jill wrote:
NomiMalone wrote:
I freeze loads of stuff to usually-successful results HOWEVER yesterday I defrosted a batch of precious Butternut Alfredo that was definitely off.

I've had things with sauces (like Alfredo) that separate when thawed. And if you used tofu in the sauce, freezing could definitely change the texture and consistency. Like everyone else I freeze batches of beans. Plus home-made hummus, and sometimes whole lemons or limes if I've bought a bunch in a good sale.


When you freeze lemons/limes do they defrost ok?


I'm also super curious about this!

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 Post subject: Re: Freezing – what works, what doesn’t
PostPosted: Thu Mar 21, 2013 8:33 am 
Drunk Dialed Ian MacKaye
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I freeze tons of stuff. Homemade veggie stock, left over homemade pizza sauce, left over any kind of homemade sauces like yeast gravy or isa's sunflower mac n cheeze sauce. Beans. Tofu. I've frozen leftover portions of the brocolli chowder from AFR and it froze, defrosted, and reheated beautifully. And now that I've learned to make steamed seitan sausages, those freeze quite well to in their aluminum wrapping. I've since defrosted one and cooked it and it was great.

I tend to do my freezing in small plastic containers and do them in individually servings or in two servings. With my veg stock, I tend to do the majority as 1 cup, and then a couple that hold 2 cups. The containers stack well in the freezer and look all nice and organized. Plus it's easier to see what I have on hand rather than rummaging through a pile of stuff frozen in bags.

With baked goods like muffins or quick breads, I wrap individually in plastic wrap and then put in a freezer bag.

The only things I have found in my experience that don't freeze well are curries that have cauliflower and greenbeans in them (everything was really mushy) and ministrone soup that had elbow noodles in them (the noodles were pretty mushy).

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Last edited by bookwormbethie on Thu Mar 21, 2013 8:35 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Freezing – what works, what doesn’t
PostPosted: Thu Mar 21, 2013 8:34 am 
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Jonny Guitar wrote:
.....

Cilantro cubes - in ice cube tray covered with water to protect them and then transfer to baggie. Defrost a single cube for use.

.....


this is genius! i always buy cilantro and then sadly the rest just wilts and get pitiful looking in the fridge until I sadly have to dispose of it :( are you pureeing the cilantro? or just freezing the leaves? tell me more!

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 Post subject: Re: Freezing – what works, what doesn’t
PostPosted: Thu Mar 21, 2013 9:13 am 
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Oh, I do a lot of veggie stock, in the same way, lots of one cup portions and a couple big'uns for soup.

I have to do the frozen herbs thing. I almost never buy fresh because they go bad.

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"Well! Fruit is stupid! These onions taste nothing like fruit!" -allularpunk


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 Post subject: Re: Freezing – what works, what doesn’t
PostPosted: Fri Mar 22, 2013 11:43 am 
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I'm definitely interested in anything that freezes well besides the basics: beans, soup, lasagna. Let me know! Falafel freezes well too :)

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 Post subject: Re: Freezing – what works, what doesn’t
PostPosted: Fri Mar 22, 2013 1:03 pm 
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Sausages from vegan brunch- I defrost, slice and fry for indulgent breakfasts. Home made breadcrumbs, Artisan Vegan Mozerella, pizza sauce, chopped up chillies (I grown them in summer and freeze on a sheet before bagging)- use from frozen, pizza dough, other doughs, banana definitely, apple cores and orange peels to make into jelly when I have enough/can be arsed, soups and stocks...


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 Post subject: Re: Freezing – what works, what doesn’t
PostPosted: Sun Mar 24, 2013 1:55 am 
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VanillaDoe wrote:
what else goes into the sauce? How long of a time was it between when you made it and when you froze it?
I find when I freeze pasta/spaghetti, the texture always goes a little bit mushy, but that could be because I nuke it to oblivion...
Stuff I love to freeze, is bananas- always got loads of peeled and chopped ripe bananas, ready for banana ice cream, or if you let it defrost it turns into a mush which is good for oatmeal and banana bread and such. A tofu block in the freezer is always a good bet too. I like to freeze Lancashire hot pots, soups, curries, chilli and rice. Uhhhh generally things I make in big batches and get sick of eating days in a row.
Uhhh, silken tofu does not freeze well at all, I froze some slices of it, and it seemed to separate itself into layers of tofu-y skins.
I just stuck it on a roll with some vegg though and pretended it was egg whites.



It was the PPK Butternut alfredo so cashews, butternut, nutritional yeast, lemon juice and was in there about a month. I noticed it separated a bit while freezing, so won't try freezing this sauce again. Thanks!


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 Post subject: Re: Freezing – what works, what doesn’t
PostPosted: Sun Mar 24, 2013 2:08 am 
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What's usually in my freezer: Leftover tomato paste (single servings in ice cube trays), peeled and chopped ginger, bird's eye chilis, homemade BBQ sauce & ketchup (sometimes in single-servings also), curry paste, giant jars of marinara, hummus, cooked beans, cooked lentils, cooked rice, loads soups and stews, chopped celery for soups, cooked onions for slow cooker meals, extra bread, homemade breadcrumbs or graham cracker crumbs, seitan, veggie burgers, and all the cold cuts from VSSTD. I need a second freezer!

What doesn't work for me: homemade mayo or anything mayo based, food that is starting to go off (continues to spoil in the freezer), frosted cupcakes.

I've given the pizza dough a shot based on your recommendations! Do you defrost overnight?


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 Post subject: Re: Freezing – what works, what doesn’t
PostPosted: Sun Mar 24, 2013 5:07 am 
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I get it out in the morning to cook for supper


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 Post subject: Re: Freezing – what works, what doesn’t
PostPosted: Sun Mar 24, 2013 12:54 pm 
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We've had lots of success making pizza pockets/breakfast pockets in bulk, then freezing individually for later. Also kimchi mandu - they're dumplings with tofu, kimchi, etc. They steam/fry up perfectly! One package of tofu and a set of wrappers makes TONS. And of course, soups, chilis, lasagna, etc.

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 Post subject: Re: Freezing – what works, what doesn’t
PostPosted: Sun Mar 24, 2013 1:10 pm 
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We tend to freeze a lot of individual meal elements, but not complete dishes. Well, I guess we keep a stock of veggie burgers, tamales, dal, cinnamon rolls, pancakes, waffles, and chili. Other things that occupy our freezer: par-baked pizza crusts, marinara, enchilada sauce, steamed sausages, cooked beans, cooked rice, pesto, peeled ginger, bulk-purchased earth balance sticks, and fruit.


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 Post subject: Re: Freezing – what works, what doesn’t
PostPosted: Sun Mar 24, 2013 7:08 pm 
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I remember reading Bryanna Clark Grogan saying that using sweet rice flour (mochiko?) flour instead of wheat flour in sauces stops them separating when frozen and thawed.


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 Post subject: Re: Freezing – what works, what doesn’t
PostPosted: Sun Mar 24, 2013 7:48 pm 
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Yes, that is great advice, Mattomic! It's also known as glutinous rice flour and is much better than cornstarch for freezing, too.


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 Post subject: Re: Freezing – what works, what doesn’t
PostPosted: Sun Mar 24, 2013 7:49 pm 
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agreed the steamed sausages from vegan brunch freeze and defrost beautifully..... i have some daiya shredded cheeze portioned out in the freezer, i'm confident that will defrost well too....

i just froze some left over mori-nu silken soft tofu in an ice cream tray but a couple of others in a different post told me i'd get disasterous results :( bummer. i only needed a bit for a recipe and didn't have plans to immediately use the rest so i figured i'd try freezing it.

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