How to Freeze Leeks – Blanch yes or no?
Leeks, those long white/green strips that smell like onion, are available all year round. For there is winter leek, which has thick strips, and there is summer leek, which has thin stumps. Leek smells like onion and is therefore related to the onion. The white part of the leek has never seen the sun and that’s where all the flavor is. But can you also freeze leeks?
How to Freeze Leeks?
Remove a large part of the green leaves and cut the leek into rings. Wash the leek under the tap. Then put the leek in boiling water for 2 minutes and then rinse under the cold tap. Now prepare portion packs and place them in the freezer. You can keep it for 12 months.
Leek is widely used in Dutch cuisine. You can prepare and prepare it in many ways. Read our blogs about leek wok and leek stew . That is something different from the traditional cooking of vegetables. Now on to freezing leeks.
Freeze Fresh Leeks
To freeze leeks, you should only use fresh leeks that have been thoroughly cleaned. Leek has been in the soil and there is usually a lot of sand between the leaves. And sand contains bacteria, so playing is definitely desirable.
Always buy fresh leeks if you want to freeze them. It is always fresh green and white in color and feels solid. A leek with brown leaves has usually been there for a while and it is better to leave it alone. At home, you can store the leeks in a dark place outside the refrigerator. You can keep the leeks in the fridge for at least two weeks. You will notice that the leeks will become softer.
Before freezing leeks, we first remove the brown and withered leaves and discard them. You also cut off a large part of the greenery. This is the bitter part of the leek. However, it is also edible and can be used in, for example, a vegetable soup.
Now cut rings of the leek. Start at the top and cut towards the roots. Now put the leek in a colander and clean it well with running water. Let the leeks drain in the colander.
Now you can do two things, blanch leeks or freeze leeks without blanching.
As mentioned, leeks come from full sandy soils and contain a lot of dirt and sand. There is a good chance that it will contain bacteria. That is why blanching leeks is an action that is often done when leeks have to be stored for a longer period, including freezing. Blanching is briefly cooking the leek and then cooling it quickly to stop the cooking.
- Place a pan of water on the heat source and bring the water to a boil.
- Prepare another pan with (ice) cold water or place your colander under the tap.
- When the water is boiling, the sliced leek can be put in the water, use a slotted spoon.
- Now cook the leek for 2 minutes.
- Then put the leek in the colander and immediately in the pan with cold water or rinse the leek under the cold tap.
Afterward, you can put the leeks in portion packs, use sealable freezer containers or freezer bags for this. Do not forget to write the date on the containers. You can now store the leeks for at least 12 months in the freezer at -18 degrees.
If you want to use this leek again in your dish, take it out of the freezer and put it straight into the pan. Do not let it thaw, because then the leek will become very limp and lose its texture. You can flavor leeks with herbs, read our blog ‘ Which herbs for leeks? ‘.
The leeks that we freeze can no longer be used for cold dishes such as a salad. The thawed leeks become limp, lose flavor and texture. Only use for hot dishes!
Leek Freezing Without Blanching
You can also freeze leeks without blanching. You can, but I don’t recommend it. The leek has many bacteria that do not die in the freezer. This can only be done by blanching and by blanching color and texture are preserved.
If you still want to freeze leeks without blanching, rinse the sliced leeks very well under the tap. Remove all dirt and sand. Then make portions of it and put it in a freezer container or freezer bag, put the date on the package and place it now in the freezer. Even now you can store the leeks for 12 months at -18 degrees.
If you want to use the leek, look, smell and taste if the unblanched leek is still good. This way you can be sure that you are not preparing any spoiled vegetables.
These are the options for freezing the leek. You can keep it for 12 months in the freezer at -18 degrees, but I hope you eat it sooner!