How can fresh green beans be stored in the freezer?

green beans fresh beans

If summer were a dish, it would most likely be tender green beans cooked in a pot with fresh tomatoes, herbs from the Greek countryside, and, above all, love and homemade care.

Fortunately, during this period, we can easily look for fresh beans at the local market or grocery store stalls and include them in our daily summer table, accompanying them with appetisers in Mediterranean flavours and meat for a more satisfying and complete menu.

But what happens when we want green beans in our kitchen all year round? Why do we need to deprive ourselves of them in the seasons when nature does not offer them to us in time, and how can we enjoy them in winter and summer?

green beans

The answer to all these questions is hidden in our freezer.

We can store them there (starting now in the summer) by buying them fresh, and when the moment finally comes to throw them in the pot, their taste will take us back to that day that we bought them from the shop (or even better when we collected them ourselves from our garden).

Learn how to freeze green beans step by step properly

green beans

The process of freezing beans, as foreign or complex as it may seem in our minds, is as simple and easy as a process proves in practice.

1. Rinse the beans. Then, if you want, leave them whole (removing their edges and possibly cleaning them of any threads they may have); otherwise, cut them evenly into pieces.

2. Fill a large pot with salted water and let it boil. According to some studies, salting the water can preserve the vitamins and minerals that are usually destroyed when the vegetables are boiled.

3. Fill a deep bowl with ice while waiting for the water to boil.

green beans

4. When the water begins to boil, add the larger beans first and the smaller ones after about 30 seconds (if you have chosen to keep them in different sizes). Leave them in the water until the beans acquire a bright green colour. Only then do we remove them from the stove, strain them, and, without delay, plunge them into the bowl with ice and add some cold water from the refrigerator.

5. When they cool down, spread them on absorbent kitchen paper and let them dry.

6. Close them in plastic food preservation bags, seal them and store them in the freezer. Every time we want to defrost them (all or part of them), put them in the strainer and rinse them with cold water until they start to soften. Another equally safe option is to transfer them from the previous day from the freezer to preservation.

However, in exceptional cases, you can even use the microwave's quick defrost program when you are in a hurry. Whichever method you choose, remember that what is thawed should not be returned to the freezer.

Loukia Chrisovitsanou is a columnist for Cantina. Translated by Paul Antonopoulos.

READ MORE: Why Kalamata Olives are one of the healthiest foods on earth.

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