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I know that I can easily freeze shredded zucchini for long-term storage if I stored it in a vacuum sealed freezer bag. However there is a recipe that I really want to make over the winter that requires chopped zucchini. So I am wondering if I can use the same method for freezing zucchini when its chopped like I do when it is shredded. So all I have to do is :

  1. chop it
  2. fill freezer bag
  3. extract air and seal it

Would this method work? Am I able to freeze chopped zucchini and have it taste the same when I thaw it? Is there a better method? Is there an ideal size for the chopped zucchini?

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3 Answers 3

up vote 2 down vote accepted

The basic idea is you want to reduce the ice crystals formed while freezing the food. Here is what I would suggest.

  1. Put a metal pan in your freezer for 30 minutes to cool
  2. Prep your zucchini, trying to get the most surface area possible
  3. Spread out, trying to not overlap on your pan and place back in the freezer for about an hour
  4. Place in your freezer bag and seal with as much air out of it as possible.

An completely ideal way to freeze almost all veggies or fruits is to get a cooler and some dry ice, play your cut pieces in a metal bowl inside your cooler and leave it while the dry ice does it magic. You will have minimal ice crystals giving you the closest taste from the original.

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It is generally recommended to "blanch" vegetables before freezing them. Blanching is heating the vegetables (by boiling or steaming) for a specific number of minutes. You typically follow blanching immediately with an ice-water bath, to stop the cooking process.

From The National Center for Home Food Preservation:

Blanching slows or stops the action of enzymes which cause loss of flavor, color and texture. Blanching cleanses the surface of dirt and organisms, brightens the color and helps retard loss of vitamins. Blanching also wilts or softens vegetables and makes them easier to pack.

For vegetable-specific instructions on blanching, see this list.

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The taste will be fine, but it will certainly weep water when you go to cook it. So it depends whether that is disastrous for the recipe you have in mind.

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