Saturday, July 27, 2013

Today’s busy families are finding that batch cooking and freezing meals to cook and eat later saves them lots of time

Mayo Clinic Health System Health Note
Freezer cooking, batch cooking, doubling recipes, etc. are all great ways to make more food now when time allows, and freeze for later when a quick, healthy meal is needed—helping you avoid last minute trips to the grocery store or a fast food restaurant. When freezing food for later use, it is important to follow these food safety tips:
  1. Let foods cool to room temperature, or slightly above room temperature before refrigeration. This helps so the temperature in the refrigerator does not increase. Also, make sure that the air is able to circulate around your food for about 20 to 30 minutes.
  2. Cool foods to refrigerator temperature before putting into your freezer. Make sure to loosely cover your food in the refrigerator to allow the heat to escape.
  3. Pack foods into freezer containers or freezer bags. Freezer bags are thicker than storage bags and will help to keep your food fresh longer. Remove as much of the air from the bag as possible. Also, freeze foods in a thin, flattened shape in the freezer bags. This helps for storage as well as thawing.
  4. Label your food. Label foods using freezer tape, gummed freezer labels or permanent markers. Make sure to include the name of the food, packaging date, serving size or amount, and special ingredients. Do not stack freezer bags until frozen so they freeze faster.
  5. When you are ready to thaw and cook frozen foods, DO NOT thaw foods at room temperature. If foods are left out too long at room temperature, bacteria can grow and produce heat-resistant toxins that can cause food-borne illness. Plan ahead for slow, safe thawing. Up to 5 pounds of food takes about 24 hours to thaw in the refrigerator; otherwise, you can thaw your food in the microwave.
Amy Every
Senior Communication Consultant, Marketing Communications
Mayo Clinic Health System Franciscan Healthcare

No comments:

Post a Comment