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I made the mistake of doing my friend a favor...

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The other night my friend/ex boyfriend (and hopefully one day boyfriend-again) mentioned to me that he had tried some fresh edamame and loved it. Since he knows that I'm a tad obsessed with food (though ironically I dislike edamame) he asked where to purchase fresh edamame. Since I was going to food stores/suppliers I told him I'd look for some for him and pick some up if I found it, since we had plans to get together last night and I figured I could pass off the edamame at that time. Well, I found the edamame at Whole Foods, and got two packages worth, but unfortunately our plans fell through and now the stuff is sitting in my fridge. We have plans to get together this week, but according to the sell-by date the beans won't last that long. Are these freezable? Let me clarify what they are--the package says they are "Edamame" and that the ingredients are soybeans and salt. And, in case this is a question, they are still in their pods as opposed to what you frequently find frozen which are not. What do you think--are they freezable and if so, how will they taste? I know you can freeze most veggies, but since these will be eaten uncooked, as opposed to most other veggies that you freeze and then cook, I'm not sure how they will taste. Thanks in advance for your help--hopefully the boy will feel so appreciative of my effort that he'll have to take me back... (I can dream, can't I?)

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  1. They freeze very well (in fact that is almost exclusively how they are sold where I live-which is the northeast)

    1. Yes you can freeze them, but why would you eat them uncooked? I've always boiled edamame, and am confused about eating them raw...

      1 Reply
      1. re: amyzan

        Hmm...perhaps I misunderstand what you are supposed to do with these, or perhaps I misunderstand what they are in their present form, meaning maybe they are already cooked. I assumed that since they have already been salted they are meant to be eaten as they are, or at lease can be eaten that way. While I don't like edamame and clearly can't pretend to have expertise with them, I was thinking that eating them as they are now would be comparable to eating string beans raw, which IS something I enjoy since I like them better raw then cooked. I assume that even if most people don't eat edamame raw they can be eaten raw, right? Otherwise I would have bought the cheaper, frozen ones...

      2. Berna...how do you eat them after they've been frozen? What I mean is, do you just let them thaw on the counter/in the fridge or do you do something special to speed up the freezing process or...? Do you think the freezing negatively affects the flavor? There is a possibility that I'll be choosing between a frozen batch of edamame versus a batch of edamame whose sell-by date might have just passed (by a day or two)...which option should I choose? Thanks!

        4 Replies
        1. re: Laura D.

          Laura D,
          Freeze them, they will be fine.
          When you want to give them to him, lightly steam or boil them until they are warm and tender. Drain, sprinkle with a little sea salt and voila! He will take you back instantly.
          Encourage him to put part of the pod in his mouth and use his teeth to pop out the individual edamame, that way he gets a little salt with each bite, and he learns some skills too...

          1. re: rabaja

            Thanks for the information...I'll gladly share it!

            However, I guess my question is this: can he eat them as they are now? They sound great steamed and I'd be happy to prepare them for him this way. However, he has had them before, knows how to eat them, etc, and it sounds as if he had them in whatever form his buddy purchased them in, which sounds like it is the same form I have them in. What I mean is, it sounds like his friend purchased the same type of edamame that I did, (seemingly uncooked and "fresh," though perhaps even as I have them they have been prepared or cooked already in some fashion and just don' t denote that on the package...perhaps just being labeled "edamame" instead of "soybeans" signifies that some sort of cooking has already occured), and that he ate those cold/straight from the container/etc. If he plans to do the same with the ones I've purchased, since he enjoyed eating them this way before, then how can I make the transition for the beans from frozen to edible? The edamame that I purchased came in container that was housed in the sushi/prepared foods section of Whole Foods, which is also why I figured they could be eaten exactly as they are straight from the container.

            Thanks again...sorry, I don't think I'm being very clear with my question, and with what exactly I've purchased!

            1. re: Laura D.

              If you bought them in the sushi section they are already cooked and salted so you can eat them as they are. I'd still recommend steaming/boiling them until warmed through (be careful not to overcook). Makes it that much better. If the salt runs off, just add some fresh sea salt.

              1. re: ESNY

                Excellent...thanks for the suggestion. I consulted with my friend last night, confirming that he had, in fact, eaten them cold (which I was mistakenly equating to uncooked) before, so I'll see if he is willing to let me steam them now that they've been frozen, or whether he'll still insist on eating them cold this time too. And, I'll definitely make sure to re-salt them if I do heat them. Thanks for understanding what I was trying to say!

        2. Laura D. I think the other posters have given you good information. Edamame keep well in the freezer. I have made them into a salad before. If you want to try it, shell them and add chopped celery and cilantro. I make a dressing from lime juice, olive oil and salt. Good luck with the relationship!

          1. TJ's actually sells frozen edamame in pods (for future). I always just throw em in a bowl with a little water and nuke in the microwave. Drain off excees water; drizzle with rice vinegar and a little salt.

            1. Freeze them, but definitely boil them for about 5-6 minutes before serving.

              1. also, the "sell by" date doesn't mean the beans are going to kill you if you eat them shortly after. they'll be fine in your fridge for a few days. you may also want to split the bag up and freeze some. the bags available in my area are usually one-pound, which is alot for one sitting.

                3 Replies
                1. re: hotoynoodle

                  I agree with you 100% on not being too obsessed with the sell-by date of foods. And, if I knew for certain that I was going to see my friend as planned this week, only a single day after the sell by date, I definitely would have kept them in the fridge. However, given that he can be at times unreliable (are all men like this?) I decided it would be better to freeze them while they were still fresh, rather than to wait for our planned meet-up to come and go, and to then have to freeze beans that were now fairly unfresh. So, into the freezer they've gone.

                  I think my packages were actually fairly small--perhaps 1/2 pound each or so, but I probably should have split each package into two packages nonetheless, since each package does contain a fair amount of edamame.

                  Thanks for your suggestions

                  1. re: Laura D.

                    for some reason I think this is one of the more poignant thread..well, maybe THE most poignant thread about Edamame I'll ever read....good luck to you.

                    I used to dislike edamame in Japanese restaurants as those i've been had served them cold. Then the last time I was in HK, where they were served piping hot with coarse salt sprinkled all over the pods...Wow, what a difference! I think i much prefer them hot, firm and fresh tasting instead of cold, clammy and disintegrate before chewing.

                    1. re: HLing

                      Thanks...though he said he likes them cold I'm the one providing them to him, so perhaps I will try to warm them up in hope that I'll actually enjoy them too. And, at the rate we're going, perhaps he'll never show up and they'll be mine to enjoy (in my own way) anyway!

                2. Are they extremely expensive edamame? If not, don' t take the chance of freezing them and having them turn out sub-standard. Especially if you're serving them to the young man you wrote of in your initial post. I would compost the edamame you have now, write a short note about it to your friend and suggest he bring fresh edamame and some coarse salt on his next culinary visit to your place. That way everyone will be happy.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: PMittens

                    Thanks for your post...I enjoyed it! No, they weren't terribly expensive in general terms, though I'm not quite sure how much edamame cost. These two packs ran about a total of $7.50, and came to roughly a pound of edamame (in total, not per package). So, worst case scenario, I am out $7.50. I've lost much more on food for friends who haven't shown up as planned so I'll survive.

                    Unfortunately, I popped these suckers in the freezer on Sunday afternoon, so what's done is done. But, if the freezing experience makes them subpar I'll happily tell him that next time he should bring his own edamame (since I don't like the stuff anyway and am sacrificing my precious freezer space to house it). :)