Frost and freezer burn?

alisonFebruary 23, 2004

Since I cook for one, I like the idea of freezing extra portions of meals. A few months ago, I thought I would get a little more organized, and bought a lot of Glad/Hefty type freezer containers to store meals, so I can simply grab one and take it to work for lunch, or pop it in the fridge to start defrosting for dinner. I also like to buy meat on sale, and re-wrap it in small portions to pull out as needed.

The problem is, they don't seem to freeze well. Even though I allow cooked food to cool completely before I package it up to freeze, when I pull it out a week or so later, it's bristling with frost. I wrap chicken, for example, in saranwrap or tinfoil, then put several packets in a heavy-duty Ziplock freezer bag. But when I pull them out and thaw them, they meat has that dry, splotchy skin I associate with freezer burn. And frozen meat never seems to cook up very well. (Fish is the only exception.)

Is there something else I can do? It's frustrating to spend the money on the ingredients, or the energy on the cooking, only to end up pitching it because it's not palatable. I hate to go back to my old ways of making a pan of lasagna and eating nothing but till it's gone....

(It's a small, frost-free freezer, and is usually packed with food, so I doubt anything ever has a chance to warm up.)

Would appreciate any advice you have!

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I'm fairly new to this, but just wondering if you try to get the air out of the freezer bag once you put the packets of chicken in. I've also read where some folks flash freeze items in liquid.

I recently defrosted some turkey that was in large chunks and I noticed that it seemed a little dry on the outside, but the turkey that I cut up into smaller pieces and used in a casserole was delicious. But, I let it thaw out first.

Maybe a sauce would help. But, I agree that if it's not good-tasting---it's not good eating! Hope this helps.

    Bookmark   February 25, 2004 at 12:36PM
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To eliminate or minimize freezer burn it's better to use a vacuum sealer. In the absence ofthat, here's a couple of tips. Place in plastic bag, like raw meats (firm items) and immerse the bag in water to get all the air out keeping the water out of the bag and seal the bag with a twist tie. Or, freeze your food then take it and wrap it tightly with foil, then place it inside a plastic bag, foil tears easily. Be sure to label it well, otherwise we're always guessing. I've frozen raw meats in water and that eliminates freezer burn but they are messy defrosting. Ready to eat I usually do in foil if I'm not using them real soon.

    Bookmark   February 26, 2004 at 1:19AM
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I have found that the pasta dishes do not freeze and reheat well. When I have reheated a pasta dish, I think it works better to add fresh sauce just before serving. Somehow it doesn't seem so much like leftovers. If I find some meat that seems freezer burned, I make home made soup. Since I hate eating all those veggies like we are supposed to, I enjoy eating my veggies in soup form. The meat is just for flavor. Also, don't forget chili for your freezer touched meat. It's great for little bits of different meats also. By the way, I cook for one also.

    Bookmark   March 20, 2004 at 10:57PM
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We just bought a FoodSaver at Costco and love, love, love it. Great for fresh, dry or frozen foods. Yes, they are a bit pricey, but nothing beats being able to take a half finished bag of parsnips, peel and cut them, seal/freeze, and they are as good as fresh when I need them a month later.

Try ebay for supplies.

    Bookmark   March 30, 2004 at 5:37PM
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you do need to look into buying a is worth it's way in will not be dissappointed......2 years later, and the leftovers and anything you seal in it won't have any freezer burn

    Bookmark   June 9, 2004 at 2:46PM
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I may have to break down and do it. It seems like a lot of fuss for one person (not to mention I have no idea where I could put it in my tiny kitchen!) but I really hate throwing stuff away, and it would be nice to just pull out a bag for dinner, or stack some in the freezer at work.

I'll check the threads on food savers, but it there a kind people woould recommend, say with boilable/microwaveable bags?

    Bookmark   June 11, 2004 at 12:56PM
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The special bags that you would use with the Foodsaver are boilable/microwavable. When I freeze broccoli (for example), I add a pat of butter before sealing. In this way I just pop the bag into some boiling water. Works fine with green beans too, or just about any vegetable you choose.

    Bookmark   June 11, 2004 at 3:31PM
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