Freezing mango slices on trays before packing in freezer bags keeps them from sticking together!
If you’ve been following Crowded Earth Kitchen for a while, you know that we do a lot of canning. You also know we do a lot of shopping at Aldi. It won’t surprise you, then, that the ridiculously inexpensive summer fruit prices at Aldi have us giddy with delight!
Whole pineapples for $1.39! Mangoes for $0.49! Pints of blueberries for $0.69! Nectarines, peaches, and plums for $0.78 per pound!
It’s enough to make cooks passionate about food preservation dance for joy… but here’s the conundrum:
Who wants to stand over a canning pot all day in July???
Use a straw to suck the air out of your freezer bags before sealing. This helps prevent ice crystals and freezer burn!
Not us, not even with those prices dangled before our eyes. July is for swimming with the kids, reading romance novels on a hammock, and sipping mojitos (great recipe coming up for those) with friends. So what’s a frugal cook to do?
All you need to do in order to take advantage of these prices without sacrificing pool/hammock/mojito time is place whole berries and/or bite size chunks of pineapple, mango, nectarines, peaches, and plums in a single layer (not touching each other) on a baking sheet or small tray. Place the baking sheet in the freezer for a few hours. As soon as the fruit is frozen, transfer the fruit to quart size freezer bags. Finally, use a straw to suck the air out of the bags before zipping completely closed. Tuck those bags back in your freezer, as quickly as possible.
The individually frozen fruit slices in these airtight bags will taste like fresh summer fruit when allowed to thaw!
When winter arrives, you’ll be able to easily scoop individual pieces of fruit from your freezer bags and enjoy summer goodness long after the warm sunshine is gone!
Now, back to my romance novel… ;)
Berries may be frozen whole, but should still be individually frozen on baking sheets before packing into freezer bags.