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Jul 28, 2009 06:44 AM

Summer foods to get me through the depths of winter

I'd love to have a massive weekend of cooking and freezing delicious summer foods for the winter. So far, I plan to make a huge batch of tomato sauce, a vegetable lasagna, and corn chowder. I am also considering some sort of fruit puree or other dessert/sweet that makes use of the peaches that are so abundant this time of year. Do you have any other ideas for meals that would be fantastic to have in the freezer during the winter that make use of summer's produce? Also, I'm a vegetarian, so meat-free suggestions would be well appreciated!

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  1. I was just thinking that as well last night. I've been freezing sour cherries.

    1 Reply
    1. re: MMRuth

      MMRuth - I am faced with an enormous amount of beautiful sour cherries, but across the pond. I know plain frozen cherries wonæt make it back, and I canæt bring them back fresh. Do you just freeze them whole, or is there a cooking/sealing process?

    2. Pesto. I make large batches during the summer and freeze in smaller batches to pull out during the winter.

      1. Corn on the cob. Some freeze it on the cob; I prefer to blanch and then shock with cold water, and cut it off the cob and freeze flat in ziplock bags. I like store-bought frozen corn; but fresh off the cob when it's local just seems to taste better.

        Raspberries and/or blackberries - puree them for sauces for duck. Blueberries - wild Maine ones are excellent frozen and then used in a lemon blueberry sour cream pound cake in the dead of winter.

        1. I've found that frozen sliced peaches taste even better than canned peaces and are so much easier. I'll use them in ice cream and crisps in the dead of winter. I also like to freeze the stems from my swiss chard. They make a wonderful substitute for celery in winter stocks and soups, providing a nuanced herbal flavor. I've also successfully frozen roasted poblano peppers. They are limp when thawed but still add a beautiful flavor to winter dishes.

          1. Excellent! Thanks everyone. I was also hoping for more prepared dish ideas--not so much which summer foods to freeze whole, but things I could make and then reheat in the winter. Instant satisfaction!

            1 Reply
            1. re: threecupsofcoffee

              Tomato confit - roast a pan of cherry tomatoes with olive oil, fresh rosemary, and liberal amounts of salt and pepper - delicious tossed with pasta, or with a nice hunk of bread and some fresh mozzarella. I freeze mine in small ziploc sandwich bags when I need a Jersey tomato fix in the winter.