At this time of the year when fresh, local veggies are available I love to buy extras and freeze for use over the winter. I’ve been stocking up the freezer with homegrown and local goodness.
Beans and peas grown in the garden are cut and blanched and frozen into serving sizes.
Sweet onions from the local farm get diced up and frozen on a cookie sheet and then bagged for use in soups and casseroles all winter long. Just take out as much as you need.
I recently got a 10 lb bag of local grown carrots and I was busy making soups and veggies for the freezer.
First up was cooking a big pot of diced turnip (rutabega) and carrots. Once mashed it was put into muffin tins to freeze in serving portions. Once frozen it was bagged and labelled and added to the freezer. This is a great way to enjoy this veggies throughout the winter by just popping out one serving and heating in the microwave.
I have even froze mashed potatoes and mashed sweet potatoes this way.
Sweet potato and carrot soup is absolutely delicious. The sweet potatoes were grown at our local farm, Willowcreek Farms. Follow the link for the recipe.
Carrot and squash soup was next. The freezer is getting full. Follow the link for the recipe.
Carrots that are chopped and steamed and then bagged go into the freezer. When I use them I add seasoning and herbs or the package goes straight into the crock pot when I cook a meal.
When rhubarb was in season I cut and stewed and froze lots of it for use in cooking during the winter. I love to add it to homemade apple sauce.
Lemons and limes were next. Although not a local produce items I do buy them when they are a good price.
After washing, the lemons and limes are cut into sections and placed in an ice cube tray with water. When frozen they are bagged.
To make my daily number of glasses of water taste better, I pop in a frozen cube and heat in the microwave to give the water a delicious lime or lemon taste.
Lemons and limes are a good source of Vitamin C, and help with digestive health and added to hot water helps keep you hydrated.
Fruit in season is also frozen for the winter. Peaches, strawberries raspberries and blueberries are good fruits to add to oatmeal, yogurt and smoothies when frozen.
Fruit is put on a cookie sheet to freeze before bagging. I do cut up the peaches before freezing.
Freezing the taste of local grown veggies and fruits is a wonderful way to extend the season right through the winter. It also means that in the winter I won’t have to be buying these items that have been trucked in for hundreds of miles.
Do you freeze local goodness?