Frozen Food, Home Style

comments (7) December 13th, 2009

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Ruth Ruth Dobsevage, member
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Brussels sprouts stand tall against the snow. Here in Mother Natures freezer, they do just fine well into January.
Brussels sprouts grow along the stalk of the plant. To harvest, you just break off the ones you want and the others will continue to grow.
Brussels sprouts stand tall against the snow. Here in Mother Natures freezer, they do just fine well into January.Click To Enlarge

Brussels sprouts stand tall against the snow. Here in Mother Nature's freezer, they do just fine well into January.

Photo: Ruth Dobsevage

Snow blanketed my garden Saturday night, followed by a blast of arctic air, but that didn't keep me from serving my Brussels sprouts for Sunday supper. I just shook the snow off the plants and snapped off some very cold sprouts. I let them defrost in a sieve over the sink while the chicken was roasting, then simply boiled them. They were yummy.

For some reason, this simple activity got me to thinking about Birds Eye frozen vegetables, which in winter were standard fare when I was growing up. The neat packaging fit tidily into the freezer, where they sat, ready to be served at a moment's notice. So I started to read up on the history of Birds Eye and its founder, naturalist and inventor Clarence Birdseye

  Birds Eye frozen vegetables
.In the 1920s, Clarence Birdseye developed a process for freezing food quickly (at -45°F), which resulted in minimal degrade to its texture, taste, and nutrients. The process, which we know today as flash freezing, was initially used for fish and was later extended to vegetables. Who knew? You can find a longer bio of Birdseye here, and it makes for interesting reading.

The berries in my freezer today are stashed in a motley assortment of freeform plastic bags, not in arrayed in uniform boxes, as in the freezer of my childhood. Gardeners who revel in fresh, locally grown food in season may laugh and  dismiss frozen food pioneers such as Birdseye, but we shouldn't. An Op Ed piece in The New York Times makes the argument that frozen fish is a better choice than fresh fish in terms of carbon footprint.

As for my Brussels sprouts, Mother Nature does the flash freezing for me. At whatever temperature she chooses.

posted in: Brussels sprouts

Comments (7)

carlbeckt writes: Niceeeee.
Posted: 1:23 am on June 3rd
davisjohnny writes: Great work
Posted: 3:26 am on April 21st
marcpatton5 writes: Good share
Posted: 2:27 am on March 25th
JadaE writes: Hi Ruth! Alas, no sweet cherries grow in Georgia, as far as I know...I think sour cherries might grow...

I get my cherry stash from Costco! When they are available, I buy several bags and spend an evening or two pitting and freezing... :) Jada
Posted: 9:00 pm on December 22nd
Ruth writes: Jada, you have cherries? I'm so envious. I have two cherry trees, but I also have squirrels. So far I haven't figured out how to keep them away. The trees are too tall for netting.

I love the butterball story. If I did that, it wouldn't be a problem at all; my dog would find it in a heartbeat. Our local radio station mentioned two more turkey caveats from the Butterball hotline. One was don't use the self-cleaning setting on your oven to roast a frozen turkey. I don't remember the other one.
Posted: 8:05 am on December 22nd
JadaE writes: Thanks Ruth! I love to go out to my garage freezer/treasure trove, and whip up smoothies from my frozen fruit stash. I froze quite a lot of blueberries and peaches last summer (I picked them near my in-laws' place), and they are SO good with a banana, dollop of honey, and glug of milk blended in!

Also, there is nothing better than a sweet cherry, pitted and frozen. It's like eating a little popsicle! They have enough sugar that they don't freeze solid hard, so they have the texture of a popsicle! SO GOOD! :) I pit and freeze a few pounds every summer when they are in season...

I have to admit though...brussel sprouts are OUT for me. I really can't stand 'em! Interestly though, my super picky kids really like them! What's up with that? So, a few times a year, I pop one or two in my mouth with a smile on my face, to encourage them....YUCK! :)

PS. One last thought! I'm long-winded today! I hear on the radio that a lady called the Butterball hotline, to report that she had put her extra large turkey in a snowbank, and then it snowed overnight! LOL!! She couldn't remember where she had put the turkey in her yard! LOL!! The Butterball lady told her to next time put a pole up where the turkey was... :)
Posted: 2:25 pm on December 21st
ChrisMcLaughlin writes: This is good stuff, Ruth. I also enjoy taking a look at things beyond what we think we know about them. Great piece.
Posted: 10:21 am on December 14th
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