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If you are lucky enough to have an apple tree that is producing well, have recently enjoyed a trip to pick - your - own orchard, or if you just go overboard at farmers market this week, you may have more apples than you can handle at this time of year. It may just be time to learn how to freeze apples. While nothing quite compares to fresh apple, freezing apples for use in cooking or baking goods is an easy way to manage unexpected overstock and will keep those cobblers, pies and dumplings coming all year long. There are a couple of things to consider before rushing to the freezer. Sweeter apples such as Fujis or Galas are more likely to hold their flavor than tart varieties, but any apple will do fine in the freezer for six to nine months. Perhaps more important to keep in mind, though, is that freezing apple does alter texture, leaving flesh spongier than that of fresh apple. Just fine for any application that involves cooking, but if you are looking for crisp bite of apple straight from the orchard, eat your fill now before you hit the freezer. Like many fruits and vegetables, how you freeze them depends on how they will be used. The short answer is yes, apples may be frozen whole and with virtually no effort. Wash and wrap in plastic or seal in Ziploc bags to freeze, There is no quicker route from orchard to freezer. It may be easy, but bear in mind the end result is apple that is inconvenient when it comes time to use it. In the long run, youll be better off processing apples into something more manageable before hitting a big freeze. Peel, core, and slice. If youve get apples to freeze, but have no plan for their use, this is the way to go. Use later by handful or bagful in any cooked recipes. Pies, muffins, cobblers and even applesauce can be made from frozen apples. There are some fun peeling gadgets around and may save some time, but I tend to stick with my trusty swivel peeler. On the other hand, I ca say enough about the value of sturdy slicer / corer. Indispensable tool when you have a lot of apples to get through. Once slice, dip the apples in a bowl of water with a little lemon juice stir in to prevent browning. To prevent clumping, arrange slices on a plate or baking tray, line with parchment paper and pre - freeze them for a couple of hours before bagging them in airtight container or Ziploc bags.
Line the baking sheet with a piece of baking parchment, then arrange apple pieces or slices on parchment so theyre not touching each other. Put your freezer on to its highest setting. This will freeze fruit faster, meaning ice crystals are smaller and fruit retains more of its nutritional benefits. Put tray of apple pieces in the freezer for a few hours or until frozen through, then take them off the paper. Put them in a freezable container or bag then return to the freezer. Dont forget to label box or bag. Frozen fruit will keep for 3 - 6 months in the freezer. If it is kept any longer, it might start to lose its flavour little or texture may deteriorate.
Peel, core, and slice apples to whatever size your apple pie recipe calls for. Then, sweeten and season with sugar and spices according to the instructions. Try this genius freezing method to get your pie fix anytime. Mix pie filling, pour it into aluminum foil - lined pie pan, and freeze it. Once frozen, simply remove the filling from the foil, place it in a freezer storage bag, and store in the freezer until you are ready to bake pie. When time comes for pie, simply drop frozen filling into the prepared piecrust and bake. You may need to bake your pie a bit longer when using frozen apples, but it won't take any longer to bake than frozen pie from the grocery store.
Frozen whole and sliced apples can be used to make apple butter, applesauce, jam, jelly, pies, cakes, cobblers, baked apples, and other baked or cooked dishes. To use frozen apple pie filling, simply drop frozen filling into the pie crust, cover with dough, and bake. There's no need to thaw apples first, although you 'll probably need to bake your pie about 20 minutes longer if using frozen apples. If you turn frozen apples into apple butter or applesauce but you are not big on canning, you can freeze both until you re ready to use them. Just be sure to pack them into freezer - safe jars or containers, so they don't crack.
If you want to freeze apples, wash them thoroughly and peel the skin off with peeler or knife. Then, cut the apple into quarters and remove the core and seeds from each of the pieces. Once you 've removed the core, cut the apple into smaller pieces or chunks, depending on your preferences. As soon as they re cut, place apples in a bowl with a mixture of 4 cups of water and 2 tablespoons of lemon juice. After about 5 minutes, drain the apples and arrange them into single layer on a lined cookie sheet. Next, place apples in the freezer for 1 - 3, and transfer them to a sealed container once they re frozen. For tips on using frozen apple slices, keep reading!
Peel, core and slice apples into 8 wedges, using an apple corer / slicer to save time if possible. 2. Zest and juice the lemon and pour over top of the apples. Toss well and set aside. 3. In large saucepan, add white sugar, brown sugar, corn starch, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt and water. Bring mixture to a boil while whisking over medium - high heat. Allow for rapid boil for 2 minutes, stirring constantly. 4. Reduce heat to low simmer and add in apple wedgess. Stir and cover with a lid. 5. Simmer for 10 minutes or until apples begin have just begun to soften. Remove from heat and set aside, still cover. 6. Let cool about 30 - 40 minutes, checking periodically. Your apples should be soft but not mushy. 7. Ladle 2 1 / 2 cups of pie filling into 4 - 5 gallon size freezer bags. 8. Let them cool completely and place them in the freezer for up to one year. Use filling just like you would use a can of apple pie filling.
Fruit tissues of apples have sugar and other constituents that lower the freezing point of fruit below 32F. The freezing point of fruit varies between varieties and fruit maturity; even so, apples begin to freeze at 28. 5 to 28F. The lower air temperature and the longer exposure, greater is the risk of damage. The general rule is that apple fruit will withstand up to 4 hours at 28F before serious injury occurs, but it is difficult to give hard and fast rule to predict injury based upon minimum temperatures and duration, as recovery depends not only on the extent of freezing, but also the rate of thawing. During the time that fruits are freeze, they should not be touched or move. Handling frozen fruits invariably leads to fatal damage in the form of deep and lasting bruising. One must wait until fruits have completely thawed before handing them. This likely means waiting several hours after the air temperature has risen above freezing. Slow thawing is actually beneficial for preserving fruit tissue integrity for apples that have just had near - death experience. Fast warming or exposure to direct sunlight will make damage worse. Bins of fruit that must remain in the orchard overnight during potentially freezing weather should be left where they will be shade from morning sun. While the method is destructive, and not very sophisticated, there is a way to determine if fruit are freeze. Sample some fruits and jab your thumbnail through skin and into fruit. Fruit that is not frozen will pop as skin breaks, and the resulting wound will be juicy. Conversely, fruit that is frozen will give the sensation of sticking your thumbnail into a popsicle, and it won't be juicy. The same test can be used to gain some confidence that fruit has thawed long enough to be harvested or move. Fruits that experience only mild freeze of short duration may recover and be perfectly salable, but should not be considered candidates for long - term storage. Such lots of fruit should be stored separately and pressure tested frequently during storage for evidence of fruit softening. Unacceptable fruit softening is a key indication that damage is worse than predict. Fruit that were fatally frozen will exhibit flesh browning after thawing once the temperature has risen far enough for oxidation to take place. This browning can appear on skin surface or below, and generally takes ~24 hours to appear, longer if temperatures remain cold. After apples are warm enough to exhibit flesh browning, cut the fruit open and inspect them. If browning appear, fruit is obviously unfit for use. It is also possible for fruit that does not have obvious browning to have serious freeze damage. This fruit will rapidly soften in storage. It is good only for making juice and only if processed right away.
You might think that freezing cooked apples is surely the same as freezing any old apple. And yes, you can freeze them in exactly same way. But we have recommended way of freezing cooking apples so you have ready to go, delicious apples that can be used in crumbles and pies. Peel, core and cut your apple into chunks. Place in a pan with a squeeze of lemon juice, few spoonfuls of brown sugar and a pinch of cinnamon and cook on low heat until the apple is soft but not broken up. Youre not making compote! Allow apple mixture to cool, then tip into clingfilm - lined dish. Place it in the freezer. Once frozen, you can remove the pie filling and add it to ziplock bag. You now have ready to go pie filling. Just top with pastry or crumbled topping and bake in the oven as you normally would. It may just take a little longer to bake.
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