Just got back from the allotment with two full buckets of Broad Beans. Obviously I won’t use that many Broad Beans at once so I need to store them, so I thought I’d share with you how to freeze Broad Beans.
How To Freeze Broad Beans
There are many different schools of thought and techniques for keeping Broad beans,from drying them bottling them but for me the most convenient way is to freeze them. This leads us to our first choice, whether to blanche them or not.
Blanching is the term used to describe the process of par-boiling the Beans before freezing them. In my experience it all depends on how long you wish to keep them in the freezer. If you only have a few and you will be using them quite quickly just pod them and place them in a freezer bag and put them in the freezer. If however you have a considerable amount and you want to be able to eat your own broad beans in December then it’s advisable to blanch them. So assuming that you wish to blanche your broad beans…..
How To Blanche Broad Beans
So as I mentioned I have two full buckets of Broad Beans, so, the first thing to do is to pod them. This is not a difficult process, just snap the end of the bean and run your thumb along the inside this will release the beans. I catch mine in an oven tray as it is big enough to collect all the beans (including the ones that seem to jump as far from the pod as they can).
Rinse the Broad Beans in a colander and place into a saucepan of boiling water. Boil the beans for no longer than two minutes. Remember we are not trying to cook the beans just kill any bacteria that is likely to rot the beans in storage.
Now drain the beans in a colander and plunge them immediately into a bowl of cold water. I use a washing up bowl as I have found that this gives me enough room to fill with a lot of cold water. The colder the better, I put ice cubes into the water and it’s surprising just how quickly it melts.
Once the beans have cooled down sufficiently,(this usually takes about ten to twelve minutes) drain them and place them on a tea towel or similar and cover the beans with another tea towel. Gently pat them dry.
Once the broad beans are dry, place as many as you will need for one portion(this will vary depending on the size of your family and how much you like broad beans) into a freezer bag. Gently squeeze the air from the bag and seal it.
Place the sealed freezer bag containing your broad beans into the freezer and leave. That’s really all there is to it. When you wish to eat broad beans just take a bag from the freezer and boil for about five minutes then enjoy.