As we head into these last few weeks of summer, lots of garden vegetables are ripe for picking. But what if you have too many vegetables? Kevin Lee Jacobs shows us his no-canning tips for how to preserve beans, herbs, leafy greens, onions, and garlic for up to a year by using the freezer and some pantyhose!
Bagging: Transfer the beans to plastic freezer bags. You might limit, as I do, the amount per bag to a single serving (usually a half-cup) for each family member. Since we are a family of two, I place one cup in each one-quart bag. In any event, do not overfill bags. When the bag lies flat in the freezer, the beans should form a single layer.
Vacuum Sealing: To avoid freezer burn, express all air from the bag, to create a vacuum-seal. I remove the air by partially sealing the bag, inserting a drinking straw, and sucking. True, this is a primitive way to vacuum seal, but it does the job. If you have an electric vacuum-sealing gadget, by all means use it.
Label and Date: Label and date the bag. If properly blanched, frozen, and sealed, green beans will stay fresh for an entire year of good eating.