6 frozen foods everyone should consider _ treehugger

Frozen food is often maligned and got a bad reputation when it was all lumped together with crummy convenience food. Peanut butter oatmeal drop cookies And while it’s hard to beat produce fresh from the farmers market, some fruits and vegetables stored in the freezer do have their merits.

On the minus side, frozen food takes more processing and consumes more resources in packaging and transportation.

Oatmeal raisin cookies recipe chewy On the plus side, frozen produce can actually be higher in nutrients than that which you buy fresh at the supermarket. Oatmeal chocolate chip cookies with applesauce Gene Lester, Ph.D., a plant physiologist at the USDA Agricultural Research Center explains that fruits and vegetables chosen for freezing tend to be processed at their peak ripeness, a time when they are generally at their most nutritious. Is oatmeal cookies healthy Produce fated for shipping is generally picked before it is ripe and falls short of its full nutritive potential; plus transportation can further degrade its nutrition.

Other plusses: Frozen foods allow for a variety of produce regardless of season; also, frozen food doesn’t spoil as quickly as do its cousins in the crisper drawer or in the fruit bowl. Oatmeal chocolate chip cookies no flour Consider the following:

Many moons ago I heard a famous classic chef (someone like Jacques Pépin but I don’t exactly remember) say that frozen peas were often a better choice than fresh ones in the supermarket. Recipe for homemade oatmeal cookies That was the aha moment for this former fresh-food-only snob. Oatmeal raisin cookies no sugar Now understanding that fresh peas are delicate little things and become insipid in taste and texture a mere 24 hours after harvest, I too opt for frozen – which are frozen quickly after being picked – unless I’m getting them straight from the farmers market or garden and eating them soon thereafter. Oatmeal raisins cookies Plus having a bag of peas in the freezer makes for a quick and delicious pea puree, pesto or hummus … Oatmeal cookies from scratch or as a handy nutritional boost for everything from risotto and pasta to soup, couscous, and potatoes.

I don’t buy bananas frozen, but I do buy fresh bananas explicitly to put in the freezer. Banana oatmeal cookies gluten free As soon as they reach peak ripeness, and even a bit after, they get peeled and sliced, frozen on a cookie sheet and then stored in a glass freezer bowl. Oatmeal raisin cookies recipe Not only can they then be pureed for an uncanny one-ingredient soft-serve ice cream facsimile, but when used instead of ice in a smoothie they turn it into something like a milk shake. Oatmeal cookies brown sugar And who doesn’t like milkshakes?

For some reason, fresh spinach is something that I have a hard time managing – I somehow never seem to use it all up before a mossy slime takes over. Oatmeal cookies without brown sugar My workaround is to buy it frozen – or freeze it as soon as I buy it fresh. Oatmeal chocolate chip cookies allrecipes Grabbing a handful out of the freezer ensures that I have the right amount and cuts down on waste; and when used in pasta, soups, baked savory dishes, etcetera, I can’t tell the difference.

If you’re not averse to eating soy, then frozen edamame is the way to go. Perfect oatmeal cookies Mostly because finding it fresh is not that easy, but also because thawed edamame suffers little in loss of flavor or texture.

Frozen berries will not thaw and resemble anything like their former selves – their delicate cell walls can’t hold up to the expanding water and thus the whole thing kind of collapses. Ingredients in oatmeal cookies But they still have their place! In applications where texture is not the star, they can provide a quick and delicious serving of fruit – think oatmeal, cereal, ice cream, muffins, cakes, pancakes, cocktails, smoothies, and smashed with sparkling water for a lovely soda alternative.

Having a small bag or two of mixed vegetables in the freezer is helpful in a few ways. Oatmeal rasin cookies First of all, when making a dish with a variety of vegetables you don’t have to buy full portions of each fresh, which can lead to waste. Oatmeal chocolate chip cookies Secondly, they provide an easy fix for a healthy dinner in a pinch. Ingredients for oatmeal raisin cookies It’s a bit of a godsend to be able to toss in a mix of vegetables with a pot of pasta, with beans to make vegetarian chili, stirred with rice for a pilaf or to boost other fresh vegetables in a stir-fry.

Since I don’t love all the vegetables frozen that often come in a frozen vegetable mix – frozen corn is strange and insipid, frozen broccoli smells, frozen cauliflower is anemic – I instead make my own packets from fresh produce that I love and know I won’t be using all of.

• Bottom line, if you can buy fresh at the farmers market, do it – and freeze if you have surplus.But aside from that, don’t fear the frozen food aisle. Easy to make oatmeal cookies In moderation.

• To reduce food miles, also look for products that were grown and packaged as locally as possible (this information is usually listed on the package somewhere).