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Frozen potatoes?

Posted by
Holly in WI
(booya@palacenet.net) on
Sat, Mar 31, 01 at 20:40

Often I have read that potatoes that have been cooked and then frozen do not hold up well. Mealy? Why is this? Why do the potatoes in those frozen packages hold up so well? ie. Skillet Sensations, Create a Meal, etc...Those packages are fully cooked meals just needing to be warmed.
Any help would be appreciated.
TIA,
Holly in WI


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Frozen potatoes?

I have never had a problem with freezing potatoes
I do it all the time.

So freeze away!!!


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RE: Frozen potatoes?

elaine, what is the process that you use to gfreeze your spuds?


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RE: Frozen potatoes?

When I freeze potatoes they either turn to mush or turn black - what am I doing wrong?


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RE: Frozen potatoes?

One-ring-a-dingie..hello? hello? Elaine? are you there?
Fess-up. What do you do? PLEEZE?


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RE: Frozen potatoes?

You can partially cook potatoes and they turn out better than fully-cooked ones.
I guess it would be similar to blanching, but you do it in the deep-fryer instead. Just cut as you normally would for french fries and just cook for a couple of minutes, cool and then flash-freeze and bag them up.
You can also blanch (with boiling water) grated potatoes and use them for hash browns.
And you can also freeze mashed potatoes. They will kind of separate upon reheating, but stirring really well helps return them to the correct texture.
That's all I have experience with.
Lisa


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RE: Frozen potatoes?

Holly,
I always have mashed potatoes in the freezer. I usually either freeze them as twice baked potatoes or make mashed potato patties that I can pull out and quickly brown in a little butter. In both cases, I put these on a cookie sheet, uncovered, for several hours in the freezer until frozen and then pack them in freezer bags for storage.


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RE: Frozen potatoes?

Found this info. on the Internet on several sites:

Freezing Potatoes

Date: May 1989 (Revised April 1995)

Source: NDSU Extension Service Nutrition Specialists

You can make frozen French fried potatoes at home. The mealy type potato is best. Use mature potatoes you have stored for at least 30 days. Potatoes with a higher sugar content will brown excessively and will be less attractive.
To make frozen French fries, pare and cut potatoes lengthwise into 3/8 inch strips. Rinse in cold water to remove surface starch. Dry thoroughly on a towel.
Fry strips in deep fat or oil at 360 degrees about 4 minutes or until cooked, but not browned. Remove from fat and drain on absorbent paper. Do not overload the French fry basket. If you do, the fat temperature will drop and the potatoes will absorb more fat. Use just enough potatoes to cover the bottom of the basket.
Cool French fried strips to room temperature and pack in cartons or other airtight containers. Seal, freeze and store at 0 degrees or lower. Homemade French fries have a short storage life, so use them within 2 to 3 months.
When you use them, fry in deep fat without thawing. For skillet crisping, brown the French fries in one tablespoon of oil. A 475 F oven may be used to finish cooking and browning.

For hashed browned potatoes, prepare as you would to serve. Brown only to the brown-and-serve stage, cool and package for freezing. Store frozen for one to 2 months. When you want to use them, finish cooking and browning as for regular preparation.

Prepare mashed potatoes as for serving. Cool, then pack in airtight containers and freeze. Slice when ready to use and fry without thawing. You can also make mashed potatoes into mounds. Freeze on a tray and then package. Store for one month. To use, take out as many mounds as you need to fry or put on top of a casserole. They can also be reheated in the microwave.

To stuff baked potatoes, remove the cooked potato from the skin, mash it and add seasonings. Return to the skin, piling lightly. Wrap each potato in airtight packaging and freeze. When ready to use, remove wrap and put directly into a 425 oven. Bake for 30 minutes. After 15 to 20 minutes in the oven, top each potato with grated cheese.

FREEZING POTATOES:

The best potatoes for freezing are those that have been
cooked, such as mashed potato patties, baked stuffed
potatoes, or french fries.

Raw potatoes or potatoes in combination dishes such as
soups and stews do not freeze well. Upon thawing and
reheating, they tend to disintegrate, especially if the
potatoes are whole or cut in large cubes. If you are
preparing a combination dish for freezing, omit the potatoes and add them instead during the thawing/reheating step before serving.

Partially Cooking is the Trick:

Make and partially cook fries, homefries, and whatever other style first. Then freeze in portions (big or small - size doesn't matter). The real "trick" to freezing potatoes is cooking or partially cooking them first. Raw or new potatoes just don't freeze well. I think it has something to do with their water content -they turn mushy!
Though it takes a little time to cook before freezing, you make up the difference on the other end, and, in my experience, don't lose any flavor. Certainly better and less expensive than commercial products.


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