The hot chiles that survived the winter are fruiting like crazy right
now, and I have to freeze ripe chiles every few days. That still
leaves me plenty to eat fresh, but the frozen chiles make a perfectly
decent substitute, come winter. I generally run out of frozen chiles
just as I can get a pretty decent stream of fresh chiles from the
greenhouse. I cook something with garlic and chiles maybe six nights a
I rinse the chiles pretty thoroughly in cold water in a colander, and
let them drain briefly before plopping them in a freezer bag,
squeezing out all the air I can, then sealing and freezing the bag.
Today, I froze a large bag with six varieties.
I waited to let someone else answer, because I only freeze hot chiles,
so am just guessing, but:
Freezing is hard on texture. That's OK if you're just looking for heat
and color, and are going to slice a still-frozen chile into tiny
pieces, but probably isn't so great for bell peppers. You might lose
all the crunch.
I think I'd roast them before I freeze them. They might hold the
roasted flavor when thawed, and you won't expect any significant
We always roast a batch of New Mexico chiles every year. This causes the
skin to bubble and it can be taken off and the seeds discarded. We freeze
them in small batches and they are wonderful to add flavor to any dish,
I've had good luck with just covering them with ice water after
blanching and then placing them in freezer bags with just enough water
to cover and surround them. That way I never get freezer burns and
you can just cook with the water as it melts.
But then you have to thaw the whole bag at once, right? By wetting
them before I freeze them, I get enough ice glaze to prevent freezer
burn, but the chiles stay separate and I can take out as many or as
few as I like.
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