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HomePlant ProblemsArtistic Vegetable Gardener:Simply Freezing Swiss Chard: No-Cook dinner Methodology

Artistic Vegetable Gardener:Simply Freezing Swiss Chard: No-Cook dinner Methodology


peppermint stick swiss chard

For those who’re a chard lover you’ll undoubtedly need to put “freezing swiss chard” in your fall to do record!  

There’s little question about it, chard is likely one of the most colourful greens you’ll develop in your backyard. It is available in a rainbow of hues that aren’t discovered in lots of different greens – reds, pinks, oranges, yellows, and even the stripes of the Peppermint Stick selection.

And since chard is extremely simple to develop, you a lot end up with greater than you’ll be able to probably eat recent. After you drop off a couple of bundles to favourite neighbors and mates, it’s time to start out turning your consideration to preserving some for the deep darkish winter.

For those who’ve already perused my article on how one can rapidly freeze kale, the tactic for freezing swiss chard will likely be very acquainted.

woman with swiss chard leaf

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You can begin freezing swiss chard at any level in the course of the rising season. You may freeze small leaves, large leaves…any sized leaves you’d like! I like to attend till the leaves are full dimension (or larger! Take a look at the above photograph of considered one of my monstrous leaves.) as a result of then I want much less leaves to replenish a quart dimension freezer bag.

One other necessary observe that may blow your thoughts: you’ll be able to be happy to combine kale, collards, chard and beet greens all in the identical freezer baggage. The strategy of preserving them is identical, so it’s completely positive (and infrequently handy) to mix them.

I personally use them interchangeably and I favor once they’re combined collectively so I get a wide range of textures and vitamins. And actually, as soon as they’re cooked in a dish it’s very troublesome to inform them aside.

Instructions for Simply Freezing Swiss Chard

It’s true – you’ll be able to freeze chard uncooked! I used to steam it first, however after a tip from a pal, I began freezing it uncooked.

I couldn’t actually inform the distinction between the 2 strategies. So, after all, I opted for the trail that will get the chard into the freezer faster.

There actually is such a factor as simple meals preserving!

 

harvest of orange vegetables

Step 1: Harvest

You’ll be shocked how a lot chard you’ll be able to match right into a quart freezer bag whenever you’re actually packing it in. So, attempt to harvest as a lot as attainable out of your vegetation.

Make certain there are nonetheless a couple of leaves left on every plant so it may well photosynthesize and continue to grow. If it’s spring or summer time there will likely be loads of time for the plant to supply extra leaves.

If it’s fall, plant progress can have slowed down significantly and new leaves gained’t develop again as rapidly. They won’t develop in any respect when you dwell in a northern local weather and it’s near winter. So, contemplate how a lot chard you’d wish to maintain within the backyard for recent harvesting.

For those who even have kale, collards, or beet greens, contemplate including these to the harvest to bulk it up.

Use a pair of clippers or scissors to chop the stem close to the place it emerges from the bottom.

Step 2: Chop

You may freeze the chard stems and leaves collectively in the identical container, or maintain them separate when you favor. Reduce the stem off the place it meets the leaf. Stack a number of leaves on prime of each other after which chop them into chew dimension items.

Then use your knife to cut the stems into small items.

Step 3: Wash

For those who are likely to have worms and bugs in your chard (I do!) you may need to wash the leaves and stems earlier than processing.

how to dry kale for freezing

Dry it in a salad spinner after washing.

Step 4: Dry

For those who rinsed your chard, attempt to dry the leaves off a bit earlier than freezing. This may minimize down on the ice crystals that kind as a consequence of moisture.

Use a towel to pat them dry, or give them a couple of turns by your salad spinner when you’ve got one. (I’ve had this one for a few years and use it a number of instances per week.)

containers for freezing kale

Step 5: Load into containers

On this step you may have a alternative on the way you need the completed product to operate.

For those who don’t thoughts the chard leaves and stems freezing into one large chunk, merely pack them as densely as attainable into freezer baggage. That is what I do.

For those who’d just like the leaves and stems to be unfastened and simply damaged aside, unfold them on a cookie sheet and pre-freeze them within the freezer for 60 minutes. Then pack into freezer baggage.

I don’t discover this to be a obligatory step as a result of even whenever you freeze the chard in a block it’s fairly simple to interrupt off a piece.

You might attempt a couple of baggage with every of the 2 strategies and resolve which you want higher.

See under for notes about different containers to make use of.

Step 6: Retailer

One of the best place to retailer your frozen swiss chard is in a chest freezer. For those who’re getting critical about simple meals preserving you’ll need to put money into one.

The freezer contained in your kitchen fridge (upright freezer) goes by periodic defrost cycles, which is why your ice cream is a bit gentle typically whenever you dig it out for a late evening snack.

A chest freezer stays at a relentless temperature of zero levels F. That is higher for lengthy lasting frozen meals high quality.

While you freeze your chard it would last as long as one 12 months. I guess you’ll use all of it earlier than then!

yellow swiss chard in garden

Containers for Freezer Storage

We’re attempting to scale back our total plastic use in our home. For a lot of of my frozen meals objects I exploit broad mouth glass quart, pint and half pint glass canning jars.

Chard and different greens are troublesome to take away from these jars, so I’ve defaulted to utilizing freezer baggage as a substitute.

I attempt to take care of my baggage so that they final a number of seasons in a row after which they’re usually downgraded to carry different random family objects. However, they nonetheless do put on out and must be thrown away.

You probably have the finances, or plan to simply freeze small quantities of meals, you would put money into Stasher baggage (or another reusable silicone primarily based bag).

It’s also possible to use plastic tupperware kind containers for freezing greens.

See all of my really useful backyard instruments, books, seeds, and simple preserving provides in my Amazon storefront.

How A lot Chard to Freeze

I discover {that a} quart-sized quantity of frozen swiss chard is one or two servings relying on how I’m utilizing it in a recipe.

That’s why it’s so handy to make use of the quart freezer baggage, regardless that I’m not loopy concerning the plastic. 

I like to recommend retaining a document of how a lot meals you’re preserving every year so you’ll be able to consider whether or not you’re placing away an excessive amount of, not sufficient, or precisely how a lot you want.

It’s greatest to attempt to eat your frozen chard and different greens inside one 12 months.

I checked my data and I normally freeze 15 quart baggage of combined greens (kale, chard, collards, and beet greens) for winter and have a tendency to make use of them up by the start of the harvest season the following spring.

After you have recent greens popping out of your backyard you’re not going to need to dig out these frozen baggage!

bright swiss chard stems

Concepts for Utilizing Frozen Chard

I like to make use of frozen chard in smoothies, soups, stews, and stir-fries all through the darkish winter months. I merely take out a freezer bag and use the entire chunk, or minimize off what I would like with a knife.

I don’t normally defrost it first. I throw it in frozen.

Frozen greens by no means have the identical consistency as their uncooked counterparts, so frozen chard is greatest utilized in cooked dishes.

In any recipe that requires frozen spinach, I substitute frozen chard or different greens as a substitute.

fall harvest from the garden

Favourite Recipes for Utilizing Frozen Chard

Studying how one can protect your additional greens is just one a part of the equation. After you have that down you can begin looking for recipes that spotlight the greens you’ve put away. That’s the enjoyable half!

Listed below are a few of my favourite recipes I’ve found through the years which are a terrific complement to frozen chard.

Curried Coconut Quinoa and Greens with Roasted Cauliflower from Cookie and Kate

Rainbow Chard Bowls from Love and Lemons

Greatest Vegetarian Lasagna from Love and Lemons

White Chard Stew from 101 Cookbooks

Having your individual tasty greens from the backyard simply accessible in your freezer will encourage you to include them into plenty of tasty winter meals. And when you’re attempting to eat extra wholesome meals, darkish leafy greens are all the time on the prime of the lists of essentially the most nutrient wealthy greens.

So, seize some clippers, your harvest basket, and spend a while harvesting and freezing swiss chard this week.

 

Learn extra about freezing greens:

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