How to freeze fresh green beans?
Freezing green beans is a great way to have them on hand whatever the season! Discover all our tips for freezing them fresh or already cooked.
When is the season for fresh green beans?
The green bean season is short. This vegetable, which serves as the basis for many daily dishes, is only present on the stalls from July to September. Take advantage that it sells at advantageous prices to freeze some in anticipation of winter! While green beans are available frozen or canned year round, they will be much better if they have been frozen by you in good weather.
Choose them thin (they become stringy as they grow), very green and firm . The good technique to know if they are fresh is to break one by hand, if a drop of water escapes, go for it!
Fresh green beans : should they be blanched before freezing?
To blanch means to scald. This method, commonly used in the process of freezing vegetables, prevents the flavor, texture or color of a food from altering. However, it is possible to freeze raw green beans. Each of these methods has advantages and disadvantages:
- if you prefer crunchy green beans , freeze them raw . However, they will have to be consumed more quickly.
- if you want to keep your green beans longer (up to 12 months), blanch them. This will eliminate microbes and preserve them from degradation caused by the cold.
In any case, freeze your beans as soon as possible after picking or when you return from the market. This is the key so that all their flavors are preserved! Rinse them with clear water, stem them and pull the threads before putting them in the freezer. You can also cut them into sections, they will be cooked faster!
How to blanch green beans?
The duration of blanching varies from vegetable to vegetable. For green beans, count 3 to 5 minutes depending on the size.
Remove them from the pan using a slotted spoon and plunge them into a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking and preserve the beautiful green color of the vegetable. Drain them.
How to freeze green beans blanched or not?
To prevent ice crystals from appearing and altering the flavor and texture of the beans, it is essential to dry them well before packaging them. You can pat them dry with a clean towel after draining them.
Also note that the faster the vegetables freeze, the better they are preserved. It is therefore preferable to distribute the beans in several bags. Ideally, fill each sachet with a portion: ie the quantity that you are used to cooking (for 1, 2, 4…). Leave to cool then squeeze out as much air as possible before sealing the bag tightly and placing it in the freezer.
Good advice: Don’t forget to write today’s date there!
How to properly freeze cooked green beans?
You can also freeze cooked green beans. You just have to fill a bag and slip a portion into it. You will no longer have to heat them in the pan for a few minutes before enjoying them. Very handy when you’re short on time!
The extra trick: you can, in anticipation of a meal, thaw the sachets of cooked beans by placing them several hours in advance in your refrigerator.
How to thaw plain green beans?
Green beans can be cooked while still frozen. Immerse them for between 10 and 15 minutes in boiling salted water (or 10 minutes in a pressure cooker) depending on the desired texture: crunchy or melting. If your green beans have not been blanched beforehand, consider plunging them into ice water at the end of cooking. This fixes the chlorophyll, and therefore the color.
You can then brown them in a pan with butter, a little garlic or a few mushrooms, gather them in bundles before surrounding them with a slice of bacon or serve them cold in a salad .