Tag Archives: frozen fruits and vegetables

Why Your Homemade Frozen Vegetables Do Not Taste as Good as Their Pre-Packaged Varieties

Some people swear by food cooked at home. They consider it the healthier and tastier alternative to the food prepared in restaurants and commercial kitchens. However, beating the taste and flavours of food prepared in commercial kitchens can be tough. The chefs in commercial kitchens have superior-grade appliances that aid in the food preparation and cooking process. They also possess years of expertise in preparing and presenting a myriad of dishes. These factors contribute towards making a dish more flavourful and sumptuous.

Similarly, some people do not purchase frozen fruits and vegetables from malls and supermarkets. Instead, they buy these food items from the markets and pack them appropriately. Thereafter, they store these packed fruits and vegetables in their freezers for use in the near future. However, these people invariably find that the pre-packaged frozen vegetables sold at supermarkets tastes much better than the frozen vegetables these individuals have packed at home. The reasons behind this occurrence will not be difficult to ascertain and understand.

When you visit the local farmer’s market, you will come across various fruits and vegetables. More often than not, farmers would have picked this produce within the last 24 – 72 hours. During that time, the transportation of the produce would have taken place from the farm to the local grocery store. You could confirm this by consulting the farmer or the seller at the store. Some people shop for vegetables and fruits at a supermarket or big box store. In such situations, it could be more than likely that the harvesting of the fruits and vegetables could have taken place up to two weeks beforehand.

This time gap from the time of harvesting to the time the produce reaches the market holds true for most conventional and organic fruits and vegetables. It goes without saying that with each passing day between the time of harvest to consumption, the nutritional value of the fruit or vegetable will deteriorate. In addition, the taste and overall texture of the produce will deteriorate as well. Therefore, when you buy these fruits and vegetables and freeze them, you will be dealing with old or dated produce. Such fruits and vegetables will hardly taste great when you defrost them subsequently.

In contrast, you will probably find an enviable range of dried and frozen food products at any reputed fine food supplier’s facility in the country. In the case of frozen produce, farmers will harvest the fruit or vegetable. Thereafter, without any delay, farmers will steam blanch the produce. The exposure of the produce to high heat levels serves to prevent the enzymes from making the produce ripen any further. It also serves to kill off any harmful bacteria and microorganisms. After blanching the produce, the farmers will flash-freeze it. Oftentimes, the blanching and flash-freezing takes place within hours of each other. Both activities will usually take place within 24 hours. Because of this, the preservation of the taste and nutritional value of the fruits and vegetables takes place at its peak.

In many cases, farmers use commercial flash-freezing techniques to preserve the taste and nutritional value of their produce. Naturally, these appliances and equipment cost thousands of dollars. As such, regular homeowners and consumers will not be able to afford these appliances. These appliances and equipment enable farmers to slow freeze or cryogenically freeze their produce. These freezing techniques keep the produce in extremely cold temperature ranges. The instantaneous freezing results in the emergence of tiny ice crystals in the produce. These crystals play an essential role in ensuring that the fruit or vegetable maintains its cellular structure. Thereafter, farmers will package and store the frozen produce in airtight containers. This ensures that the produce retain their taste and texture. In contrast, not many homeowners will pack and store their homemade frozen vegetables and fruits in as careful a manner. For these reasons, pre-packaged frozen produce will always taste superior to its homemade variety.

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Which Fruits and Vegetables Offer Best Value When Purchased Frozen?

Frozen food items have been staging a remarkable comeback throughout Australia. Their increased accessibility and convenience have made them hard to ignore for many consumers. The immense diversity of frozen foods means that you will always find something that suits your specific tastes and objectives. In addition, consuming frozen foods does not mean that you’re consuming foods with lower nutrition levels either. In fact, many people will opine that frozen fruits and vegetables pack a lot more nutrients in them than their fresher counterparts. Moreover, eating out or ordering a takeaway will inevitably cost you more than purchasing frozen produce. Portioning and preparing frozen foods can be easier as well. For these reasons, more and more people have been including various frozen food items in their diets.

Some of the most popular frozen produce that people typically purchase include:

  • Raspberries: Farmers typically pick these berries and freeze them at peak levels of freshness. So, when you purchase them, you will get berries filled with all the nutrients they contain.
  • Broccoli: Many people will be aware that broccoli contains a myriad of nutrients. From calcium and fibre to vitamins C & A, it contains them all. But, if stored in the fridge for some days, it can lose its nutritional value. Therefore, buy frozen broccoli and use it in appropriate portions.
  • Spinach: Spinach ranks among the most nutritious green foods. However, it can deteriorate quickly and lose much of its nutritional value. Thus, buy frozen spinach and use it in all your meals. Frozen spinach will yield the same antioxidant, vitamin and mineral benefits that its fresher variety offers.
  • Blueberries: People often buy frozen blueberries rather than fresh ones. This will usually be the case because at the time of picking, the antioxidants present in the berries will freeze and thus, remain preserved. In contrast, transporting fresh blueberries across the country can cause the berries to lose their nutritional value.
  • Bell Peppers: Dietitians and health experts opine that frozen bell peppers contain more antioxidants and vitamin C than fresh ones. This will especially be so if the freezing takes place immediately after picking.
  • Avocado: Frozen avocadoes can be among the bestselling fine food products the world over. People typically like adding avocadoes to their smoothies. Alternatively, they use them in dressings and sauces. Waiting for fresh avocadoes to ripen can make them spoil. However, frozen varieties can help you get the desired creamy texture with minimal fuss.
  • Brussels Sprouts: These vegetables can be quite pricey. And, the price can increase even more significantly if these vegetables happen to be out-of-season. But, frozen varieties can be more affordable. Some people avoid defrosting brussels sprouts to prevent them from becoming watery or mushy. Instead, they roast them in olive oil for 30 – 40 minutes and brown them before use.
  • Carrots: You might find fresh carrots available in the markets throughout the year. But, these carrots will not last for long. After only a few days in the fridge, the carrots could begin losing their nutritional value. In contrast, farmers freeze carrots shortly after the harvest. Thus, they remain rich sources of fibre, vitamin A and beta-carotene nutrients.
  • Cauliflowers: This versatile vegetable can taste just as good when frozen as it does when fresh. However, purchasing frozen cauliflower can be more convenient and cheaper. The snap-freeze process locks all the nutrients inside the vegetable. So, you will get all the vitamin C benefits you need whenever you sauté, steam or boil the frozen cauliflower.

Besides the fruits and vegetables listed above, you could also find dozens of others on sale in your local supermarkets and big box stores. Reputed suppliers of frozen produce will also stock frozen peas, corn etc. By incorporating these fruits and vegetables in your diet, you can rest assured about giving your body the recommended amount of nutrients it requires.

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Adopt Frozen Fruits and Vegetables in Your Diet to Stay Fit and Healthy

Consumers the world over look for the best food products when they go shopping. These individuals will usually pick the healthiest food products on offer. But, they will also ensure that these foodstuffs do not compromise on their taste. Some people might think that healthy food will inevitably be boring. Or, they will harbour the misconception that healthy foods cannot be tasty. However, these notions remains misplaced. Consumers today have an enviable plethora of options when it comes to tasty and healthy food. As a result, you will always be able to find food items that suit your specific requirements. This will be regardless of whether you want to gain or lose weight.

Most people will be aware that fruits and vegetables remain integral parts of a balanced diet. Health experts believe that people need to consume two servings of fruits and vegetables twice each day to obtain the recommended level of nutrition their bodies need. Unfortunately, not many people pay attention to this fact. In some cases, many fruits and vegetables will be seasonal. Hence, finding these products out-of-season will not be easy. In case you do happen to find them, you could find that their prices remain beyond your budget. In such instances, turning to the frozen foods section could be beneficial. For, despite the claims of some people, frozen fruits and vegetables can be as healthy (if not healthier) than their fresher counterparts.

Of late, increasing numbers of Australians have taken to purchasing frozen foods because these food items:

  • Can Be as Nutritious as Fresh Produce: Consuming frozen fruits and vegetables doesn’t mean that you’re consuming a lower proportion of nutrients. It can be worth highlighting that freezing does not reduce the number of vitamins or minerals present in fruits and vegetables. In contrast, frozen vegetables and fruits could be more nutritious. Farmers typically pick these items at peak freshness levels. Then, they flash freeze them to prevent degradation.
  • Contain Minimal Additives: Buying frozen fruits and vegetables can be convenient. But, these food items will usually not contain any, if at all, additives either. Pick frozen foods with labels that do not feature any additional ingredients. These will be both natural and healthier.
  • Can Offer Out-of-Season Produce: Not all places can offer fresh produce throughout the year. In some locations, finding fresh fruits and vegetables can remain confined to the in-season produce. But, fine food suppliers can stock a myriad of frozen food items. Thus, you will no longer need to consume in-season fruits and vegetables only. With frozen produce, you will be able to enjoy out-of-season fruits and vegetables too.
  • Can Be Cost-Effective and Convenient: Buying frozen produce can save you a lot of money. Many grocery stores offer frozen produce at competitive rates. In addition, purchasing these items can be very convenient too. Almost any supermarket or big box store will stock an enviable range of frozen fruits and vegetables. Lastly, using these frozen items in dishes can be simple and easy.

It can be worth highlighting that frozen fruits and vegetables can last for up to 10 months in the freezer. But, you will need to seal them in air-tight bags. This will enable them to retain optimal levels of freshness. Similarly, you will need to avoid frosted or icy-looking fruits and vegetables. Therefore, only take out the amount you need for cooking and place the remainder back inside the freezer. This will eliminate the hassles that accompany thawing and re-freezing foodstuffs. For more information, visit Takin Today !