It seems everyday new reports are coming out about the impact plastic is having not only on the planet but also our health. Scary research highlights the impact of such chemicals as BPA and Phthalates on reproductive health especially for men. Rather than dwelling on the bad news however the good news is there are solutions to pretty much every use of plastic the modern home has when it comes to food storage – plastic-free tips are now plentiful! One of the lesser known skills is the storage of frozen food in glass jars. Rest assure however it’s a very simple task and with the plethora of jars we recycle each week it won’t cost you a thing.
When it comes to what you can freeze, the answer is simply anything. Cook double as many lentils as you need and freeze half. Make a big batch of pasta sauce and freeze half. Double your soup making and save one nights cooking next week. The list is endless.
Leave Enough Head-Room for Expansion
When freezing in glass jars, the most important step is to make sure you leave enough headroom to prevent broken jars. Water, which we find in all our food expands when frozen therefore the food needs space to move. We’d say leave a couple fingers width to an inch at the top of jars to ensure the expansion doesn’t break the glass.
When it comes to thawing the food out, putting the jars in the refrigerator for two days is the easiest way. Or if like most of us, its a last minute thing as to what to feed the family, usually a couple hours on the benchtop to get things started will allow some melting and allow the food to move out of the jar. Or if you need it asap, a bowl full or hot, but not boiling water, will work too. Just sit the jar in it, moving it around ensuring water hits all sides of the glass. This will melt the outer side to allow movement out of the jar as well.
Ensure to Label your Food
Last tip is make sure you label the food with what it is and a date as well. This works best on the lid, as markers rub off glass quite easily. This will stop any confusion as to what is what at those times of need. It’s also helpful to have a list on the side of the freezer also. Then you know exactly what is in there without having to hunt around with ice cold hands.
Some other helpful resources can be found online. On a side note did you know all our pre-packed bulk foods come in cellophane not plastic. Just another way we care for the health of this planet.