Freezing Preserves Berries Without Adding Sugar

As tempting as it was to eat both pints of freshly picked raspberries I bought this week, I decided to try freezing some. Here’s a link to detailed freezing instructions that I found helpful: http://www.pickyourown.org/freezingblueberries.htm. And here’s my summary:

Ingredients and Equipment
• fresh berries – any quantity
• a strainer or colander
• a pan or tray that will fit in your freezer
• vacuum food sealer or freezer bags with a zip lock

Steps
1) Buy berries – fresh, plump, firm ones with good color
2) Wash and drain the berries well
3) Spread the berries in a single layer in a pan (I used a cookie sheet with a lip)
4) Put them in the coldest part of the freezer and leave them over night to freeze solid
5) Label the bags with the date (important if you are doing batches at different times)
6) Bag the berries (I used a freezer bag with a zip lock, removing as much of the air as possible to minimize “freezer burn”)
7) Put the bagged berries in the freezer (I don’t have a stand-alone deep freeze. So mine are in the coldest part of my refrigerator’s freezer drawer. I also put the bag in a plastic container because I tend to rummage through my freezer rather roughly when searching for things, That’s probably overkill, but I want those berries to stay whole.)

That’s it. If I can keep from eating them first, I’ll have some lovely red raspberries to use in December.

I plan to freeze blueberries next – and probably more of them. Some recommend freezing blueberries without washing them and then washing before using.

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