Category: Bread & Baked Goods

Bread & Baked Goods

Can You Freeze Lemon Meringue Pie?

A sweet finish to a lovely meal is always welcome especially if it’s a generous slice of lemon meringue pie! And making a meringue pie is by no means a walk in the park! So what if you have leftovers? Can you freeze lemon meringue pie?

As you know, meringue is made from whipped egg whites. Since egg whites are sensitive to freezing temperatures, they do not hold up well in the freezer. In addition, the meringue could turn rubbery or crusty once it’s been frozen and thawed. In some cases, the meringue becomes too soggy when defrosted.

That being said, it is possible to freeze a lemon meringue pie. As long as you’re okay with the possible changes in the meringue’s texture or flavor, you can prep leftover pies for freezing. We do recommend making and adding the meringue to the pie only when you are ready to serve.

Image used under Creative Commons from jules

Different Types of Meringues

Italian Meringue

This type of meringue is made by beating hot sugar syrup into beaten egg whites gradually. It’s the most popular meringue variant and is often used as frostings for cakes and pies.

Swiss Meringue

This meringue is made by simmering dissolved sugar and egg whites together and then beating the mixture in an electric mixer. Swiss meringue is often used as a base for buttercream frosting.

French Meringue

This type of meringue is made by adding ultrafine sugar to uncooked egg whites gradually. Then, the mixture is beaten until it forms stiff, shiny peaks. French meringue has a characteristically crisp and light texture.

TIP: Meringue is often baked or cooked. Italian and Swiss meringue are cooked while French meringue is baked.

How to Make Lemon Meringue Pie

Baking Tips

Avoiding Meringue “Weeping”

The meringue topping tends to “weep” when the pie is left standing in a humid room for too long. You can avoid weeping by cooking the meringue before it is added to the pie. In addition, cover the filling completely so the meringue won’t shrink.

Refrigeration could also cause even the most stable meringue to weep. You can avoid this by serving the pie immediately or leaving the pie to stand in a draft-free spot before serving. If a pie is left untouched for a few hours, prep it for refrigeration or freezing.

Sometimes meringue weeping is caused by the improper sugar syrup temperature. You have to boil the sugar syrup to a soft ball stage (120c or 248F) before being added to the egg whites. The egg whites should be beaten to stiff peaks prior to the addition of the syrup.

Keep the Lemon Filling Hot

Always keep the lemon filling hot before spreading the meringue over. If the lemon filling cools completely, it creates a melty layer between itself and the meringue, causing the meringue to sweat.

Tart Filling

Love a sharp-tasting lemon filling? Try adding the lemon juice just as the curd filling cooks so the flavor remains fresh and tart! It also helps to reduce the contact with the cooking starch because this thickening agent tames the acidity of the lemon juice.

Image used under Creative Commons from jules

How to Freeze Lemon Meringue Pie

Freezing Homemade Lemon Meringue Pie

If you’re making the meringue pie from scratch, leave the lemon custard filling to cool completely prior to freezing. Do not add the meringue topping just yet, do this only when you are ready to serve. If you don’t give the pie enough time to cool, the pie could turn soggy.

Once the pie has cooled completely, place it in a baking dish and stick in the freezer. Leave the pie to freeze for at least 2 hours, no cover needed. When the pie is frozen stiff, take it out of the freezer and wrap it in several layers of cling wrap. Leave no spot uncovered to prevent freezer burns. After wrapping the pie in cling wrap, place it in a heavy-duty freezer bag. Write the storage date, seal, and stick in the freezer.

Freezing Leftovers or Pre-made Lemon Meringue Pie

For leftovers or pre-made meringue pie, make sure the pie has cooled completely prior to freezing. Cut the leftovers into serving portions and place them in a freezer-safe plate. Stick the pieces of meringue pie in the freezer until they are frozen stiff (about 2 hours of freezing). Once the meringue pie pieces are frozen solid, take the plate out of the freezer and place the pie pieces in a heavy-duty freezer bag. Write the storage date, seal, and stick in the freezer.

Shelf Life and Thawing Suggestions

When frozen, lemon meringue pie will keep for 3 to 4 months. However, consume the pie as soon as possible for optimal flavor.

When it comes to thawing the frozen meringue pie, just transfer a portion of the pie to the fridge. Leave the pie to thaw for several hours to overnight then serve. No need to reheat the pie, it’s ready to eat as soon as it is thawed.

Leave no leftovers because refreezing is not recommended for thawed lemon meringue pie.

Summary

Baking a lemon meringue pie as a make-ahead dessert? Can you freeze lemon meringue pie? Although freezing is not a recommended storage option for lemon meringue pie, it’s great to know that it can be done with little to no changes in flavor. Just keep all the tips we’ve outlined above to extend the shelf life of lemon meringue pie!

Bread & Baked Goods

Can You Freeze Buttercream Frosting?

Baking with buttercream? Buttercream made from scratch involves endless whisking so you have to make the most out of the frosting to maximize your effort. What if you have a lot of leftover frosting? Can you freeze buttercream frosting? Excess buttercream is quite common and it is great to know that frosting does freeze well!

It is worth noting, however, that buttercream comes in 5 types. Some of these types of buttercream freeze well better than others. In addition, the five different types of buttercream are prepared in two different ways!

5 Types of Buttercream

American Buttercream

American buttercream has a fluffy and creamy consistency. It is usually pale yellow in color and is a little firmer than most types of buttercreams. Making the buttercream does not require cooking, just a lengthy beating.

French Buttercream

French buttercream has a velvety, rich flavor and a bright yellow hue thanks to the egg-yolk foam. This type of buttercream is the most difficult to make because it requires cooking hot sugar syrup and mixing it into the beaten yolks. You have to keep the mixer running while incorporating the sugar syrup because the heat could cause the egg yolks to scramble! This buttercream doesn’t hold well in warm temperature.

Italian Buttercream

Italian buttercream is made with Italian meringue, which explains its pale yellow or almost white coloring. This buttercream holds up well in warm temperature. making Italian buttercream requires cooking and it involves drizzling hot sugar syrup over an egg foam made only of egg whites.

Swiss Buttercream

Swiss buttercream is a light and fluffy frosting with a glossy finish. This buttercream is made with Swiss meringue. This is one of the easiest buttercreams to make because you don’t have to pour the hot sugar syrup over an egg-based foam.

German Buttercream

German buttercream is a custard-based buttercream with a smooth, rich consistency and a deep yellow color. This buttercream type is usually lighter than American buttercream but you can add more of the custard base for a thicker consistency.

Image used under Creative Commons from Marjolein Knuit

Buttercream Cooking Methods

There are two ways of making buttercream from scratch:

Made with Sweet Base: This preparation involves adding a sweet base, such as custard or pudding, to beaten butter.

Buttercream with Egg Foam Base: This preparation is made by combining cubes of softened butter to an egg foam base or meringue.

The five different types of buttercream can be divided into two cooking methods. American and German buttercreams are made using a sweet base. French, Italian, and Swiss buttercreams are made using an egg foam base.

How to Make Buttercream Frosting

How to Freeze Buttercream Frosting

Freezing excess buttercream frosting is so easy. Just scoop the buttercream into a resealable plastic bag and squeeze out as much air as you can before sealing. Seal, write the storage date then stick in the freezer. Place the buttercream in the coldest spot in your freezer to extend its shelf life.

Do note that freshly made buttercream freezes better than buttercream that’s been left sitting too long at room temperature or in the fridge.

General Buttercream Guidelines

Room Temperature Ingredients

When making the buttercream frosting, always use room temperature ingredients (eggs and butter). This will minimize the risk of separation between ingredients, especially if you are freezing the excess buttercream. By using room temperature ingredients, the buttercream will also come out smoother and hold its texture longer.

Watch the Butter Softness

You have to soften the butter to make the buttercream. However, the softness has to be just right. If the butter is too soft, the consistency of the buttercream will become grainy due to curdling once mixed using the mixer. To achieve the perfect softness, the butter should be melty but not overly greasy. If the surface of the butter has turned oily, it’s too soft. The butter should break off easily into pieces once tossed in the mixer.

Preventing Curdling

Sometimes the buttercream would develop a curdled texture even when you did everything right. This is normal and easily corrected by vigorous mixing. Do not stop when you see the separation between the ingredients; continue mixing until the buttercream is smooth and velvety.

Image used under Creative Commons from Clever Cupcakes

Choosing the Right Sugar

Yes, the kind of sugar you use for the buttercream could affect the frosting’s consistency! Generally, use powdered or confectioner’s sugar when making American buttercream. Powdered sugar dissolves easily into the butter for a smooth, velvety buttercream frosting. When making European buttercream frosting, use sugar syrup made from granulated sugar to achieve the right consistency. Add the sugar slowly to retain the buttercream frosting’s smooth consistency.

Reconstituting Breaking Buttercream Frosting

If for some reason your buttercream frosting breaks as you beat vigorously, there is a way to restore its consistency. Just put the frosting in the fridge and leave it to harden a bit. Then, take the frosting out of the fridge, beat it again using the mixer on high until the buttercream emulsifies. As you beat, continue adding butter gradually. If the buttercream frosting breaks beyond salvation, coat the frosting with crushed nuts after spreading on the cake.

Shelf Life, Thawing and Reheating Suggestions

When kept in the freezer, buttercream frosting will keep fresh for up to 3 months. Thawing the buttercream frosting should be nice and slow. Start by transferring the frozen buttercream frosting in the fridge and leave it to soften overnight.

When you’re ready to frost the cake, take the buttercream frosting out of the fridge and bring it to room temperature. Then, re-whip the buttercream frosting until light and fluffy. Beating still-cold buttercream frosting will result in a grainy, curdled consistency.

If for some reason the buttercream frosting remains grainy, let the frosting sit out for a little bit longer then whip again. To thicken the buttercream frosting, add a tablespoon or two of powdered.

Summary

Making buttercream frosting from scratch is by no means an easy feat but there’s just something about frosting that makes any type of baked goods look and taste even better. Can you freeze buttercream frosting? The good news is, buttercream frosting can be made ahead and frozen for later. As long as you keep these tips in mind, you can make the frosting in advance!

Bread & Baked Goods

Can You Freeze Scones?

Tea time isn’t complete without scones! If you love these yummy baked goodies then you’re probably stocking up on scones. But what if you’ve bought more scones than you can handle? Can you freeze scones for later use?

Baked treats are a little tricky to freeze, that much is true. Unfortunately, scones have a rather short shelf life. When kept in the fridge, scones only lasts for 3 to 4 days. But when you freeze scones, they will keep fresh for 3 to 4 months.

Image used under Creative Commons from Michell Zappa

That said, it’s important to consume the scones as soon as possible because the bread tends to break down faster when it’s been frozen. The fact is, you can freeze baked and unbaked scones! Here is a step by step guide on how can you freeze scones:

How to Freeze Scones?

For unbaked scones, whip up the scone recipe as usual, including cutting the dough into wedges and putting them on a baking sheet. Then, stick the baking pan (or dish) in the freezer, leaving the dough to freeze for an hour or so.

While waiting for the dough to freeze, get a large rigid plastic container that’s big enough to hold all the cut scone dough. After an hour, take the baking sheet out of the freezer and gently place each scone wedge into the plastic container. Layer the wedges so they fit the container. Cover with an airtight lid, write the storage date then pop the container in the freezer.

Image used under Creative Commons from Pauline Mak

For baked scones, you need to wrap each one tightly in aluminum foil or cling wrap. Then, place all the scones in a heavy-duty, resealable plastic bag. Squeeze as much air as you can prior to sealing then pop in the freezer.

How to Defrost and Reheat Scones?

Defrosting the frozen (baked) scones is so easy. When the craving hits, just transfer the scones from the freezer to the fridge. Leave the scones to thaw for several hours to overnight. While waiting for the scones to thaw, start preheating your oven. Once the scones have softened, they are ready for reheating. Unbaked scones do not require thawing at all.

Baked and unbaked scones are prepared differently after they’ve been thawed. For baked scones, you can use the microwave or the oven for reheating. Preheat the oven to 350° and place the scones on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Pop in the oven and warm for 8 to 10 minutes or until the scones are thoroughly reheated. If you’re using a microwave, heat on high in 10-15 second intervals.

Image used under Creative Commons from Jeremy Keith

For unbaked scones, preheat the oven to 350° to 375°. Then line a baking sheet with parchment paper and place the frozen scones one by one. Make sure the scones are evenly spaced so they don’t stick together when they expand as they bake. Pop the scones in the oven and bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until golden brown.

Summary

Scones make a great snack, a delightful treat that satisfies the sweet tooth. It’s a relief to know that you can freeze baked and unbaked scones for future uses! Now that you know how can you freeze scones, there’s absolutely no need to worry about the scones’ short shelf life at all.

Bread & Baked Goods

Can You Freeze Sponge Cake?

Sponge cake is a light, fluffy cake made from flour, sugar, and eggs. A classic sponge cake – also known as Victoria sponge cake – consists of raspberry jam and whipped cream sandwiched between two layers of sponge cakes. Sponge cake is quite popular and is often served during special events and dinner parties. Can you freeze sponge cake?

Don’t be fooled by the delicate texture of sponge cakes, they freeze so well! When kept in the fridge, sponge cake should last for 2 weeks. But when kept in the freezer, its shelf life is extended to 6 months, maybe even more if the temperature is kept at a steady 0 degrees Fahrenheit.

Image used under Creative Commons from Kelly Hunter

That said, it’s best to consume the cake within two months for optimal flavor and texture. Sponge cake could degrade when kept in the freezer for too long. Fatless sponge cakes tend to degrade faster than your average sponge cakes. Firmer sponge cakes will freeze better than softer varieties.

Certain things to consider when you’re making a sponge cake in advance, use natural ingredients instead of artificial essences to extend its shelf life. Homemade sponge cakes are best frozen in separate layers. If this isn’t possible, that’s fine, you can stack them up if you have no room in the freezer. Below is a step by step guide on how can you freeze sponge cake:

How to Freeze Sponge Cake?

If you’re making the sponge cakes from scratch, wait for the sponge cake layers to cool completely on a wire rack. Do not add the fillings or toppings, do this when you’re ready to serve the cake. Once the cake layers have cooled completely, wrap each one in cling wrap. This will serve as the first layer of protection against freezer burns.

Image used under Creative Commons from fenwench

Once the cake layers are covered in cling wrap, get a heavy-duty resealable plastic bag. Do not use flimsy or thin plastic bags, they do not offer enough protection from the freezing temps. Place the cake layers in their respective plastic bag. Squeeze as much air as you can, seal, then write the storage date with a marker.

As for leftover sponge cake, wrap the whole thing in aluminum foil first. Then, place the cake in a rigid plastic container or a large resealable plastic bag. Write the storage date with a marker then stick in the freezer.

Image used under Creative Commons from Carwyn Lloyd Jones – Dylunio Creadigol

How to Defrost Frozen Sponge Cake?

To defrost frozen sponge cake, remove the sponge cake from the resealable plastic bag but keep the aluminum foil or cling wrap wrapping. Then, transfer from the freezer to the fridge. Leave to thaw overnight. You have to remove the plastic wrapping to reduce condensation. When condensation sets in, it will ruin the texture and water down the flavor of the cake.

Once the sponge cake has been thawed completely, it’s ready to be eaten or dressed with fillings, toppings icing, and other add-ons.

Summary

Whether in the form of a birthday cake or a wedding cake, there’s no doubt that sponge cake makes any gathering extra special! And if you’ve got an upcoming event, treat loved ones to a beautiful sponge cake. But if you are pressed for time, you can always make the cake in advance and store it in the freezer until you’re ready to serve. Now that you know how can you freeze sponge cake, your baked creations will stay fresh and delicious for days!

 

Bread & Baked Goods

Can You Freeze Cream Pies?

Who could say no to a delectable slice of cream pie? A freshly baked cream pie makes any occasion so much special. But what if you have a lot of leftover cream pies? Can you freeze cream pies? The thing with cream pies is that the filling doesn’t keep in the fridge or freezer well. You simply cannot chuck leftover cream pies in the freezer and expect the dessert to maintain its original texture and flavor.

Most bakers do not recommend freezing cream pies. We feel the same way simply because the ingredients will not hold up well in freezing temperature. The cream filling isn’t firm because it’s mostly made of liquid ingredients and there lies the problem. Once the cream filling comes in contact with the crust, the pie will go soft and soggy. This can be problematic once you’re thawing the frozen cream pie.

Image used under Creative Commons from Lisa Williams

If you must, it’s possible to freeze cream pies for later use. However, there will be significant texture changes no matter how carefully you prep the pie for freezing.

Cream pies have a short shelf life because of the delicate ingredients. When kept in the freezer, cream pies will keep fresh for 3 to 4 days. But when kept in the freezer, cream pies will last for at least 6 months. For leftovers, here is a step by step guide on how can you freeze cream pies:

How to Freeze Cream Pies?

If you’re making cream pies from scratch and you’re anticipating a lot of leftovers, we highly suggest holding off the cream filling until you’re ready to serve the pie. This way, you can freeze the cream filling and piecrust separately. And whenever you need to make a cream pie, just thaw the cream filling and crust then assemble. Assembling and baking the pie will only take minutes so it’s still convenient to do it this way.

To do this, you have to pre-bake the crust and leave it to cool completely on a wire rack. Whip up the cream filling and then divide it into manageable portions. Using a large, heavy-duty resealable plastic bag, spoon the cream filling into the bag. Squeeze as much air as you can then seal the bag. Mark with the storage date and stick the bag in the freezer.  Cover the cooled pie crust with tin foil then place it in a resealable plastic bag before sticking in the freezer.

Image used under Creative Commons from Annie

When it comes to leftover cream pies, those that have been served for a while, they’re probably soggy by the time they hit the freezer. Don’t transfer the pie to a smaller container because this could cause the already-soggy crust to break apart. Use the serving container the pie came with unless you don’t mind the filling and crust getting all mixed up as you transfer the pie to a different container.

Cover the pie with aluminum foil, making sure no part of the pie is exposed to freezing temps. The cream filling has high water content so it is quite sensitive to freezer burns. Once the pie is covered completely in aluminum foil, you can simply stick the whole pie in the freezer. You could also place the container inside a resealable plastic bag before freezing for added protection.

How to Defrost Frozen Cream Pies?

If you’ve frozen the cream filling and pie crust separately, just take them out of the freezer, remove the aluminum foil if there’s any and transfer to the fridge. Leave the pie components to thaw for a few hours.

If you’d like to speed up the frozen cream’s thawing process, go ahead and immerse the sealed bag in a bowl of tap water. It should soften up in a couple of hours. Never thaw the pie components ahead of time. Bake them into a pie as soon as they are thawed to maintain the integrity of the ingredients.

Image used under Creative Commons from luftholen

Once the pie components have been thawed, cut the corner of the bag and pipe the cream filling into the piecrust. Then, bake in the preheated oven for 40-50 minutes at 350 to 375 degree Fahrenheit and serve.

As for frozen leftover cream pie, there’s no need to thaw the pie because it can be eaten as is. But if you’d like to soften the filling and crust a bit, just transfer the pie from the freezer to the fridge and give it at least 2 hours to partially thaw. Once thawed, it’s ready to be eaten.

Summary

Some experts would straight up say cream pies should never be frozen at all. But if you have too many leftovers in your hands, there’s not much choice but to freeze the pie to prevent waste. Now that you know how can you freeze cream pies, there’s no need to worry about spoilage when you’ve got more pies than you can handle!

 

Bread & Baked Goods

Can You Freeze Naan?

If you love Indian cuisine then you’re probably no stranger to naan bread. This is a flatbread that resembles a pita bread but it’s leavened with yeast or bread starter. Naan bread is often served fresh off the grill and slathered with butter. It’s soft with a mild doughy flavor, perfect for scooping up tikka masala or wrapping grilled meats!

Apart from being a staple food, naan bread is often used as a utensil of sorts. This is the reason why naan bread is often served with stewed dishes.

Image used under Creative Commons from Johan Bryggare

Naan bread is widely available but if you got a little too excited stocking up on this flatbread, can you freeze naan for later use? The short answer is yes, you can freeze naan.

Naan bread has a short life span. It only keeps fresh for 3 to 4 days when kept in the pantry. It should keep for 1 to 2 weeks in the fridge and about 2 to 3 months when frozen.

The problem with naan is the delicate nature of the bread. Naan has a tendency to become excessively chewy when it’s frozen and defrosted improperly. Depending on how you prepped the flatbread, naan could sometimes turn crumbly or soggy. If you want to store naan bread and keep its original texture and flavor, check out this step by step guide how:

How to Freeze Naan?

If you’re freezing an unopened pack of naan, you don’t have to transfer the bread to another container. Just stick the bread in the freezer and you’re done. But if you’re freezing leftovers or homemade naan, you have to prep the flatbread first.

For homemade or leftover naan, wait until the bread has cooled down completely before prepping for storage. Once the bread has cooled down, place them one by one in a baking pan lined with parchment paper. Make sure the bread is not touching one another before sticking the whole thing in the freezer. Level the baking pan so the flatbread won’t slide. Give the bread about 2 to 3 hours to freeze.

Image used under Creative Commons from jeffreyw

Once naan is frozen, get an airtight container, take the frozen bread out and place the flatbread gently inside the container, one by one. Close the lid, write the storage date with a marker and stick in the freezer.

Apart from using an airtight container, resealable plastic bags are also recommended for storing naan in the freezer. If you don’t have resealable plastic bags, you can wrap the frozen flatbread in aluminum foil. Just make sure the bread is completely covered to prevent freezer burn.

How to Defrost and Reheat Naan?

The best way to thaw frozen naan is to transfer the flatbread from the freezer to the fridge. You want to defrost the bread slowly so it doesn’t get soggy due to the drastic changes in temperature. Leave the bread to thaw for several hours to overnight.

There are different ways to reheating naan. You can use a microwave to reheat the flatbread (about 10 to 20 seconds) although you have to keep an eye on it as you reheat. If you microwave it for too long, naan becomes tough or chewy. One thing to remember is to place a cup of water inside the microwave together with the platter of naan. As you reheat, the water vapor from the cup of water will soften the bread.

Image used under Creative Commons from Charles Haynes

You can also use your oven toaster to reheat naan. Start by spraying a little water over the naan, the extra moisture ensures that the bread won’t dry out as you reheat. Stick in the oven toaster and reheat for 2 to 3 minutes, depending on your preferred doneness. You can reheat the naan using an oven (5 minutes in 350 degrees Fahrenheit) but you need to watch the bread as it heats otherwise, the naan could dry and toughen up.

Finally, you can reheat naan in a griddle. Heat the griddle over medium heat, brush or spray with butter then place the naan bread to brown.

Summary

Indian dishes aren’t complete without naan on the side. Now that you know how can you freeze naan, you can keep this flatbread in stock for later use!

Bread & Baked Goods

Can You Freeze Injera?

Can you freeze injera? Injera is a type of Ethiopian sourdough-risen flatbread. This bread is typical in the East African region and is traditionally eaten with stews, soups, and salads.

Injera – which is the national dish of Ethiopia and Eritrea – is an incredibly thin bread yet has a spongy texture and mild flavor. This type of bread is quite rare so if you found some in your local supermarket and you love flatbread, stock up on injera! Of course, you can also make your own injera using teff flour and a skillet.

Injera does turn moldy much more quickly than other flatbreads so it must be stored properly. It is possible to retain the soft, chewy texture of the flatbread as long as you prepped the injera prior to storage.

Image used under Creative Commons from Serene Vannoy

When kept at room temperature, injera could keep fresh for up to 2 to 3 days only. In the fridge, injera is safe to eat for up to 7 days. And when frozen, it will keep fresh for 2 to 3 months. However, we recommend consuming the flatbread as soon as possible even when it’s frozen. The longer the injera is kept in the freezer, the higher the chances of texture and flavor change.

If say, you overestimated the amount of flatbread you bought, here is a step by step guide on how can you freeze injera:

How to Freeze Injera?

Depending on the state of the injera, there are different ways to prep the flatbread prior to freezing.

Freezing Unopened Injera

If the flatbread’s packaging is unopened, you can simply stick the injera into the freezer as is. Just make sure to label the product with the storage date.

Freezing Homemade  Injera

For homemade injera, leave the flatbread to cool for an hour or two on a cooling rack prior to freezing. Then, wrap the injera in tin foil.

Wrapping the bread in aluminum foil, there should never be a spot exposed or the bread won’t freeze properly. Water crystals will form into exposed bread and this will affect the shelf life and texture of the injera once it’s been defrosted. Once wrapped, stick the bread in the freezer.

Freezing Leftover Injera

To prep leftover and/or homemade injera, wrap each flatbread in cling wrap or aluminum foil completely but layer a sheet of wax paper on each bread. This will keep the injera from sticking to one another as it freezes.

Image used under Creative Commons from Steve Graby

After wrapping the bread in protective cling wrap or aluminum foil, place the whole thing in a freezer-safe, resealable plastic bag. Squeeze as much air as possible before sealing. Get a marker, label the product with the storage date, and stick in the freezer.

How to Defrost and Reheat Injera?

Defrosting the Injera

Injera is easy to defrost but do so gradually so the texture and taste won’t change at all. To thaw injera, transfer the frozen flatbread from the freezer and onto the kitchen counter. Do not put the frozen injera in the fridge because once you reheat the flatbread, it becomes dry and tasteless.

Once the injera has been thawed for an hour or so, get several damp paper towels. Place the paper towels on top of the injera and then stick the flatbread in the microwave to reheat. The damp paper towels will protect the injera from heat while also keeping it moist as it is heated.

Image used under Creative Commons from Ernesto Andrade

Reheating the Injera

Once you’re done reheating, you can now serve and enjoy this delicious flatbread. You can also reheat the injera in oven toasters for a minute or two, depending on how you like your flatbread.

Summary

There’s no doubt about it, injera is one of the best types of flatbreads to use for stews and saucy dishes. The flatbread has a mouthwatering smoky flavor that’s totally unique and delicious! Now that you know how can you freeze injera, you can store more of your favorite flatbread for future meals.

Bread & Baked Goods

Can You Freeze Brownies?

Can you freeze brownies? Brownies are perhaps some of the most popular sweet treats and if you’re wondering if you can freeze brownies, you can! Freezing is no doubt the most effective way to preserve brownies for later use. Why? The method causes little change to the food. As long as the brownies are prepped well prior to freezing, the original texture and moisture content of the brownies will remain the same. This goes especially if you’re trying to avoid freezer burns.

Now, before thinking of ways of how can you freeze brownies, it’s important to note what sort of brownies require freezing. Brownies come in different varieties; some are fudge-like while others are similar to biscuits. The type of frosting, bits and other ingredients added into the brownies will affect the overall texture and flavor of the dessert after thawing.

Most types of brownies could be frozen successfully but those with cheesecake swirls will require more prep. Why? These brownies sometime “sweat” during thawing. They are fine to eat when they sweat but the extra moisture could turn the brownies into mush. When frozen, brownies could keep up to 3 months in the freezer. Here is a step-by-step guide on can you freeze brownies properly:

Image used under Creative Commons from JLK_254

How to Freeze Brownies?

If you made brownies from scratch, leave the slab of brownies you’ll freeze to cool completely prior to storage. Remove the brownies from the pan and leave it to sit on a wire rack for an hour or two. If you’re planning to freeze most of the brownies, it’s best not to cut the brownies into squares. Instead, stick the whole slab in the freezer. Whenever you need a couple of squares, just cut the slab up to desired pieces and thaw the brownies bit by bit.

To do this, get a plastic wrap or durable aluminum foil and wrap the whole brownie slab. Fold or roll the edges of the plastic wrap or aluminum foil tightly around the brownie slab, making sure not to crush the dessert inside. Once the wrapping is sealed, put the slab of brownies in a resealable and food-safe plastic bag. The bag will prevent moisture loss and freezer burn. Finally, label the bag or container with the content, the date of storage and stick in the freezer immediately.

If you don’t have room in the freezer for a whole slab of brownies, go ahead and cut the slab into manageable pieces prior to freezing. Just make sure you’re using an airtight container when freezing smaller pieces of brownies to retain the flavor and texture!

How to Defrost and Reheat Frozen Brownies?

Ready to make good use of the brownies you kept in the freezer? The good news is, it’s easy to defrost and reheat frozen brownies. But there are certain steps you need to take to maintain the heavenly texture of the brownies. The last thing you want is to ruin a batch because of improper thawing!

To thaw the frozen brownies, take the brownie out of the storage bag and carefully unwrap the aluminum foil or cling wrap cover. Cut yourself several squares in the desired size using a sharp, serrated knife. Brownies won’t be hard as a brick even when completely frozen so it’s fine to cut it up straight away. Wrap the rest of the brownie slab carefully and stick it back into the freezer.

Now, leave the cut up brownie squares to thaw at room temperature for two to three hours. Then, reheat the brownies using a microwave or a toaster. If you’re using a toaster, keep a close eye on the brownies because the sugars could scorch! Once reheated, you can now serve the brownies as a quick snack or topped with vanilla ice cream and drizzled with hot fudge topping for a fancy dessert!

Summary

Just like any type of baked goods, brownies can be frozen and reheated with little to no change in its texture and appearance. Of course, it helps if you store the brownies properly so every batch you reheat turns out better. Nothing is worse than mushy brownies with watered down taste. We hope that this step-by-step guide helped you learn the right way to freeze brownies for future uses.

Bread & Baked Goods

Can You Freeze Muffins?

We could all use a dose of sweetness in life and nothing satisfies the sweet tooth than a warm batch of muffins. Muffins come in an array of flavors too, some savory others are sweet. Whichever type of muffin flavor you like, did you know that you can always freeze muffins and fresh batter for later use?

Image used under Creative Commons from Susanne Nilsson

That’s right, baked muffin and batter keep well in the freezer. By storing your extra muffins and batter in the freezer, you’ll never run out of delicious snacks to whip up! Frozen baked muffins and batter will keep fresh in the freezer for up to 3 months.

How to Freeze Muffins?

The best way to freeze muffins is to do so once the baked goods have cooled down to room temperature. To prep the muffins, get a re-sealable plastic bag and start wrapping the muffins one at a time. You want to make sure all muffins are wrapped individually so they don’t get stuck together in the freezer as well as to keep freezer burn at bay!

Once all the muffins are packed in a container, get a marker and label each one with the freezing date. To enjoy optimum flavors and texture, use up your stock within the recommended storage time. Also, make sure the freezer is set at a steady 0°F or lower for best results.

How to Defrost Frozen Muffins?

The best way to defrost muffins is by transferring them from the freezer to a plate and letting the muffins thaw at room temperature. Once the muffins have been thawed completely, stick them in the preheated toaster oven or conventional oven.

Image used under Creative Commons from Isabelle Hurbain-Palatin

Get a small plate, unwrap the muffin and wrap it in tinfoil before putting it on the plate and sticking it in the oven or toaster oven.  Heat for about 10 to 15 minutes at 350°F. If you’re using a microwave, heat it on high for no more than 30 seconds.

Summary

Microwaving muffins may affect the texture of the finished products so always keep an eye on the setting and heating time. Keeping a batch of baked muffins in the freezer means you’ll always have snacks ready for you and your family. Now that you know how to freeze muffins properly, you can store a large batch for future use.

Bread & Baked Goods

Can You Freeze Donuts?

Donuts have notoriously short shelf life. When kept at room temperature, donuts can only keep up to two days. That begs the question – can you freeze donuts? You can always store leftover donuts in the fridge but it will only keep fresh for 5 days. A great way to keep this popular dessert fresher for longer is to freeze it. Yes, you can freeze donuts and enjoy it at a later date but you have to do this properly. Otherwise, you’ll end up with tough, unpalatable results.

Donuts are literally fried dough and when kept at room temperature, the oils will start attracting bacteria. That bacteria could hasten spoilage. When it’s kept in the fridge too long, the oils will start solidifying, causing the dough to toughen. To maintain its original texture, you have to thaw it properly too! When kept in the freezer at 0 degrees Fahrenheit, donuts will keep fresh for up to six months.

Frosted donuts with sprinkles

Image used under Creative Commons from Dave Crosby

How to Freeze Donuts

The proper way to freeze donuts is to prep them one by one. Get a large piece of plastic wrap and lay it on the table. Put the cooled donut on the center of the plastic wrap and cover the dessert completely, tucking the edges of the plastic wrap under the donut. The plastic wrap will protect the donut from freezer burn once it’s kept in the freezer.

Stick the wrapped donut in the freezer one by one, making sure that the tucked ends are secured. That prevents the donuts from sticking to one another. Apart from plastic wrap, you can also use tin foil or freezer-safe plastic bags to pack the donuts before freezing.

Donuts with sprinkles

Image used under Creative Commons from Salim Virji

How to Thaw Donuts

The best way to defrost frozen donuts is to transfer it from the freezer to a plate and leave them to thaw at room temperature. It takes about an hour or an hour and a half to defrost a frozen donut completely. Once the donut is thawed, you can stick it in the microwave oven or preheated oven to warm it up. You can also use a microwave to warm the thawed donuts but limit the microwaving to 10 to 15 seconds to prevent the dough from hardening.

Summary
Donuts aren’t exactly health food but once in a while, indulging can be a good thing! Thawed donuts won’t look as good as their freshly-made counterparts but they’ll be just as tasty. Now that you know how to freeze and thaw donuts, you can store more of your favorite desserts for later use.