Friday, May 08, 2015

Glad Helps You Protect and Enjoy your Spring Harvest

Spring has sprung and so have the first of my spring crops. It is an exciting time!! Each year my first harvest is rhubarb. And once it starts, it just keeps on going! I've already pulled two lots, and should have more next week. I absolutely can't complain about that, but really it produces more quickly than I can use it up, and I don't want it to go to waste. I like to freeze a bunch so I can pull it out later in the season, once it gets too hot for good growth in the garden.

Different fruits and vegetables require different prep for freezing or storage. Also different packaging. On the packaging end, Glad has a great selection of food storage products to help you out.

Rhubarb can be frozen raw. After removing the root end and leaves, I wash the stalks in cold water and then cut them into roughly half-inch pieces.

I use the large Glad Freezer Zipper Bags for this, because each one easily holds enough for one pie. Helpful hint - think about what you will be doing with your produce and then measure and package accordingly. I've used the labeling area on these bags to remind me they each hold 5 cups. When pie time comes I don't have to worry about using a partial package or measuring again. Later in the season I'll be grating and freezing zucchini in 1 cup portions, for making zucchini bread. I'll use medium Glad Freezer Zipper Bags for that.

Also - when freezing fruits or vegetables, try to freeze them flat. This takes up less room in your freezer, plus, if you do need to take out just a portion it will be easier to break off what you need.

I had about 2 cups left over, so I put those in a small Glad Freezer-Ware Container(BPA-free and crack-resistant). I'll use this for a sauce later.
I also noticed today that my strawberries are starting to flower! I hope to be able to start picking them relatively soon. Plus the cherry tree is covered in blossoms. When I harvest those I like to wash and store in containers in the fridge. The Glad Soup & Salad (3 cups) are a great size for this. If we're heading out on a picnic or for a hike, this is a good size to grab and go.  And since I have the fruit washed before I store it, the boys know they can reach in the fridge and grab a container for a quick and healthy snack. (Side note - I love that my boys are just as happy to snack on fruit as on anything else!)

Do you have a backyard garden of your own? Or maybe you subscribe to a local produce delivery service? With so much goodness and fresh taste coming into our homes after a long winter, it's a shame to let any of it go to waste. Cut and wash fruits before freezing. Most vegetables will need a quick blanching in boiling water first. Even spring greens like spinach and kale can be blanched and frozen for later use. Just be sure to use bags and containers labeled for freezing as these are specially designed and stronger, to guard against freezer burn.

Happy spring!

Disclosure: This post is brought to you by Glad. All opinions on this blog, as always, remain my own.

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