Raspberries are a popular edible fruit that can be snacked on and also used as an ingredient in various recipes. You can use raspberries as an ingredient in a smoothie, raspberry pie, yogurt parfait, muffins, and lots more. In addition to being delicious snacks, raspberries also provide many health benefits.
Although raspberries have minimal calorie content, they are still rich in vitamins, minerals, fiber, and antioxidants. Eating raspberries can potentially contribute to reduced risk of obesity, diabetes, certain cancers, arthritis, and more.
You can fit a portion of raspberries into the breakfast, lunch, or dinner parts of your diet. If you’ll be eating lots of raspberries, it will be best to stock up on it – that way you’ll always have raspberries available at home when needed. Besides, raspberries are not usually in season all year round. Raspberries are only in season during spring and summer. So if you want to have fresh raspberries during other seasons, you’ll need to have stocked up on it while it was still in season.
If you’re going to be storing a large amount of raspberries at home, you’ll need to use a reliable preservation method.
You may have been wondering: can you freeze raspberries? Yes, you can freeze raspberries. Freezing is a preservation method that can keep your raspberries fresh for up to 12 or 18 months. Raspberries that are to be frozen should be taken off the countertop after three days of exposure to room temperature.
With the 12 – 18 months preservation time provided through freezing, you’ll have a nice supply of fresh raspberries all year round, and you can easily restock when the fruits are back in season. However, there are a couple of important steps that should be followed when you want to freeze raspberries. Keep reading to know more.
When you intend to freeze a batch of raspberries, there are some things that you must do. For instance, it is advisable to inspect the batch of raspberries and select the best ones. Start by purchasing the raspberries when they’re in season. This is because the best and freshest raspberries will be gotten when the fruit is in season; the price is also lowest during this period.
In addition to purchasing the fruits in season, you must go further to select the ripe ones. The ripe raspberries would have a bright red color all round. If the berries are turning dark, that may mean they’re overripe. Make sure you check raspberry’s texture to feel which ones are firm and which ones are already mushy. The firmest ones should be selected for freezing so that their texture can be preserved after being frozen for a while.
The container to be used for freezing the raspberries must also be inspected for mold and dampness. Wipe out your container of choice and make it as sanitized as possible to reduce bacteria.
How to Freeze Raspberries
These are some of the best steps to follow when you want to freeze your raspberries:
Step 1: Rinse in Cold Water and Dry Properly
When you want to rinse the raspberries, you need to be careful so as not to crush them – raspberries have an easily compromised texture. Don’t place the berries directly under a running tap so that the water pressure doesn’t squash them. Instead, place them in a colander and put the colander in a cold water-filled bowl. Gently swirl the berries round in the cold water so that dirt comes off easily.
Now that the berries have been rinsed, you’ll need to dry them properly. However, we have established that raspberries can be easily crushed under heavy pressure; which means you can’t dry them by wiping with cloth lest they’re squashed by your hands. The safest way to dry the batch of raspberries is to leave them spread out on a paper towel to dry.
Step 2: Pre-Freeze Batch of Raspberries in a Single Layer
To do this, you’ll need a baking tray and wax paper. Use the wax paper to line the inside of the baking tray and spread the raspberries in a single layer. If the individual raspberries aren’t well spaced out, they’ll stick together in the freezer and create a problem when you want to defrost them.
After properly spreading out the berries in a single layer, place the lined baking tray in the freezer and allow the raspberries to freeze well. The berries should be left to freeze for one whole day. Make sure you remove the frozen raspberries after 24 hours to prevent freezer burn.
Step 3: Transfer the Pre-Frozen Berries into a Freezer-Safe Bag
Transfer the pre-frozen raspberries from the baking tray into a resealable freezer-safe bag. You may add some sugar to the raspberries if you want them to be sweeter. Place them in a secure freezer compartment to freeze. Be careful not to place heavier items on the bag of raspberries.
How to Defrost Frozen Raspberries
Raspberries can stay in the freezer for well over a year. However, you’ll eventually want to take them out at some point. When that time comes you’ll need to know how to defrost the frozen raspberries. Thankfully, raspberries are easy to defrost.
If you like a frozen snack, you can eat the frozen raspberries without first defrosting them. To defrost them you’ll need to put them in the microwave for about half a minute. Set your microwave to defrost and put the raspberries in. After half a minute in the microwave, check on the raspberries to see how much they’ve defrosted. If they’re still frozen, put them back in for another 30 seconds and repeat the process till they’re well defrosted.
Having a fresh supply of raspberries all year round can be really useful. There are so many delicacies that can be prepared with raspberry as an ingredient. Thanks to freezing, we can safely preserve our raspberries for up to 18 months. This lengthy preservation period keeps us supplied with tasty raspberries till the fruits are in season again.