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Get Real: Sometimes Freezing Can Be Better

**This post is part of the Get Real series. Please remember that this is meant as a learning community. We know that many of you are passionate about what you do and we want you to express that, just please do so in a way that will be an encouragement and aid to others making a transition. We want this to be a “safe space” for participants to learn. For that reason, we reserve the right to delete any comments that are not handled in this manner.

This month of canning was quite educational for me.  I have always been intrigued by canning, and felt like since I am a “Whole Foodie” I should venture further into it.  I love the tradition, and the rich history of canning; how our foremothers passed down the tips and tricks of preservation and sustainable living.  I was so sad when my last zucchini pickle was gone hat I almost stood at the kitchen sink and drank all the pickle juice.  Almost.

I do love canning, and I will do it more now that I have some of the basic knowledge.  I picture beautiful little jars of raspberry lemon balm jam with red satin bows at Christmas time.

But for now, I am an always-on-the-run mother of two little boys, and freezing is my game.  Yes, freezing requires that I have room in my freezer, and that I pay for electricity.  But in return I get raspberries in the dead of winter that look and taste like they are freshly picked from the field.  And I get veggies that are just as crunchy and delicious as they were when I placed them in that container and into the freezer six months ago.

For now, I like the time I save when I simply pop a zip top bag full of a prepared meal into my freezer, knowing that meal will be ready for me to pull out and cook whenever I come back for it.

Freezing gives me whole foods with very little change to freshness, nutritional value, color, texture, and taste.  I love that, too.

Do you have any particular foods you prefer frozen over canned?  How about canned over frozen?  Let us know in the comments.

Fresh Freezer Salsa
Adapted from ehow.com

10 fresh medium size tomatoes
2 fresh medium size onions
2 fresh medium size jalapenos (or more if you prefer a hotter salsa)
1 fresh medium size green pepper
1 fresh lemon
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon salt

Wash and remove the stems of the green pepper, jalapenos, onions, and tomatoes; roughly chop into chunks. For milder salsa, remove the seeds of the jalapeno peppers.  Place them in a large food processor, or blender. Process on low until the ingredients are well chopped. Juice the lemon. Add lemon juice, salt and garlic powder to the mix and process again. Process on low until the salsa reaches the desired consistency. Enjoy immediately or transfer to freezer safe containers and freeze.  Remember to leave a fair amount of head space if you are using glass jars to freeze.

Freezing Fruits/Vegetables Resources:

August Week Four Action Item:

Each week we will try to give you some simple action steps to put this journey into practice. It is important that you start this journey by understanding yourself, your goals and perhaps your obstacles.
  1. Give this very simple recipe for freezer salsa a try and see what you think.  Eat it now or save it for winter time, when you are longing for the freshness of a perfect summer tomato.

August Get Real:

Please take a moment to thank our guest authors by clicking over to their sites and/or liking them on Facebook and/or Twitter.

Sponsor:  Once A Month Mom

Guest Author: Marisa of Food In Jars

5 Responses to “Get Real: Sometimes Freezing Can Be Better”

  1. GeorgiaRee says:

    Hi there! I’m fairly new to the eating of whole foods. It’s like a slow adaption for us. I’ve never been a very knowledgeable cook. I like to freeze things at this point. Canning is a bit daunting. I’m afraid of bacteria and spoiledge in the jars. I might experiment with it later… maybe. I’m actually about to freeze some pre-prepared smoothies for our back to school week. :D Your site has been especially helpful. Thanks!

    • Heather says:

      Canning is perfectly safe if you follow canning rules and guidelines for sterilizing jars, cooking the food and process times based on elevation. I don’t let my jars go more than a year most of the time before I consume it. There are many sites on the internet that have great advice. I personally like http://www.bernardin.ca for recipes and help. Occasionally, things can go wrong and a jar can break but that’s not that common.

  2. Heather says:

    I like freezing for berries and cherries- as with canning you have to add sugar to preserve them and maintain their color and texture. I like canning for salsa, jam, tomato soup concentrate, pears, and peaches.

  3. tbeth11 says:

    I began canning this year, but grew up watching (and helping ever so slightly) my mother and grandmothers when they canned. And we also have a new, larger freezer. I like both, for different reasons. I like having some things like pasta sauce or jam made and canned to capture the flavor of locally-grown produce rather than buying similar things in cans or jars at the store. I like other things canned, like soups, as a backup plan against power failures or failed appliance . For us, I think it will be a wonderful blend.

  4. Kathy says:

    I come from a long line of “canners”, but just cant bring myself to sweat in the kitchen in the hotest time of the year for food that I just don’t care to eat in the method I just don’t like.
    I am a “freezer”, I have always been the one to freeze everything whenever possible. It’s just me now, so canning just doesn’t make sense. But freezing does. I can put one cup of berries in a snack size zip bag and take out what I need.
    I try to freeze in one or two portions then bag like items in a bigger bag. Same goes for made ahead meals, and left overs.
    I love the freshness of frozen, I also believe that more nutrients are left when frozen (don’t KNOW, but I’m guessing), and its just plain easier with a hectic schedule to pop stuff in the freezer when you come across a great bargain, I don’t have to stop my life to spend two days in the kitchen.
    I have frozen any and all fruits, tomotillos, tomatoes, avocados, celery, onions, potatoes, just about anything you get at the grocery store frozen.
    Life is good in the freezer.

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