Freezing Peaches Guide
If you would like to enjoy peaches when they are out of the season, there’s an easy way to do it – you can freeze them. In this article, we will go through the entire process of freezing peaches, so if you’re interested, read on! Just for your information – this isn’t another tutorial on freezing peaches with sugar or in syrup. In this article, we talk about freezing peaches in a way very similar to freezing veggies.
Blanching and peeling peaches
The first thing we need to do is to peel peaches. You might choose to peel raw peaches (it will take a long time) or make a better choice and blanch peaches, which not only will make fruits freeze better but also allow you to peel them in a breeze. First, take each peach and cut a small X on its bottom, just so it will break the skin. This small X will allow you to easily peel the fruit later.
Now the standard blanching procedure – bring a pot of water to a boil and transfer peaches into the boiling water. Make sure each peach is fully submerged (you can work in batches if all don’t fit at once). Each peach should be in boiling water for about 30-45 seconds. After that time take it from the water and transfer it into a pot (or sink) of cold water (adding some ice-cubes recommended) to quickly cool it down. Right now you’ll probably notice that on at least a few peaches the skin starts to peel off without you doing anything. When the fruits cool a little (so you can handle them without hurting yourself), peel them. Most peaches will be easy to peel. If any of the fruits are still difficult to peel, transfer it into the boiling water for another 10-15 seconds and back into the cold water, this should help.
Prep – part 2
After peeling peaches, it’s time to cut them in halves, remove the pit and then slice into desired chunks (consider how you’re going to use them in the future). Now we need to make sure fruits won’t become brownish after freezing and thawing. To do that you will need some lemon juice. There are basically two options now – you can either sprinkle all the chunks (on both sides) with lemon juice or prepare a solution that consists of 1 tbsp. of lemon juice per 2 cups of water and transfer the chunks into that solution for a few minutes. Either way, make sure each chunk is coated, so it won’t become brown after a while in the freezer. Before going to the next step, drain the peaches.
This step is optional, but I strongly urge you not to skip it. Pre-freezing will allow you to easily scoop a few chunks of peaches from the freezer without having to thaw the whole bag of chunks or smashing it against the counter so you would be able to get a few chunks. How it’s done? Take a cookie sheet and transfer the chunks onto it. Make sure they don’t touch each other, so they will freeze individually, not in clumps. Put the cookie sheet into the freezer and keep it there until the fruits have frozen. Not take the cookie sheet out of the freezer – peaches are ready to be packaged and frozen.
Packaging Peaches for Freezing
Take the prepared chunks and transfer them into a freezer bag. Before sealing the bag make sure you squeezed out as much air as you can (consider using a straw). Seal the bag, label it, and put it into the freezer. Peaches can be stored there for few months without a huge loss of quality. If you have omitted the pre-freezing step, consider dividing the chunks into few groups, package each group individually and then transfer those small packaged into a larger freezer bag. This way you still will be able to easily thaw just a few chunks of peaches instead of thawing the whole freezer bag.
As you can see freezing peaches isn’t that difficult. Frozen and thawed (if needed) peaches work well in pies, toppings, etc.