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Video:How to Blanch and Freeze Green Beans

with Jesse Rosado

Blanch and freeze green beans to prolong the life of your fresh beans. Here are some tips on how to blanch and freeze green beans.See Transcript

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Transcript:How to Blanch and Freeze Green Beans

Hi! I'm Jesse Rosado for About.com, and today I'm going to be talking about how to blanch and freeze green beans.

Use Salted Water to Blanch Green Beans

So the first thing you want to do when you're getting ready to blanch some green beans is you want to get a nice pot of water and get it boiling. You also want to get it a little bit salty.

They used to say in school, "make your water salty like the sea." While you're waiting for your water to get boiling, you go ahead and clean up the green beans. These hang from the vine, just like this. And this little piece here that they hang by, I take that off; and then down at the bottom, there's this little nub, and I also like to break that off as well.

Rules for Blanching and Freezing Green Beans

There's two important rules to remember. The first rule is that you want to race the temperature of the vegetable from cold to very, very hot very, very quickly. You also - when you go to cool them - you want to race them down that temperature zone by using ice.

The second rule is that you have to make sure that you don't overcook them. And you don't want to put anything away hot. Otherwise, your vegetables can become mushy.

Boil, Then Ice to Blanch Green Beans

We've got a nice rolling boil. Now you'll notice that I'm going to put in about half of my green beans at a time. The reason I do that is because as soon as I put my green beans in, those cold green beans just cooled my water down, and I want to give my water a chance to recover to a good rolling boil before I throw the rest of them in.

You'll want to blanch these for about two to three minutes. Any longer than that, and you'll start to border on getting mushy green beans.

Now we're ready to move onto the next step. I need to drain off the very hot water. These are well blanched green beans. So now they're in a colander there in the sink. And then I'm going to take my bowl of ice, pour it over the top. And I'm just going to toss these around in that ice.So now we've got these beautiful bright green green beans.

They've been blanched, and they're cold to the touch. Got them cooled down so that'll protect their color.

Cut Beans Before Freezing

And there's three ways that you can do it. This is just a whole green bean - some people like to serve that as a side. You could cut them into smaller chunks, just like this. Or you can do them French-style, which I like to do sometimes at dinner. And so after you're all blanched, just make long, julienne-style cuts with the green beans.

Place the Bags in a Storage Bag to Freeze

So now I've got out my storage bag. Take the green beans, and just kind of load them up right in here. Fold all the air out of them, close them up, and that right there is ready for the freezer.

You could just take them and boil them for 8-10 minutes in half a cup of water with a little bit of salt, and that's a good, heart-healthy way to make the vegetables while avoiding the butter and sautéing and those kinds of things.

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