Methods for Freezing Peppers
If you have had a successful pepper growing season this year, freezing peppers is a good way to save them. Instead of giving your neighbors and family your extra unused peppers, think about how delicious a fresh pepper would taste in the mid November. Keep all of your peppers and store them using your selected method of freezing peppers.
There are many different types of peppers. The most common are red or yellow, bell and hot peppers and you can save and freeze them all for later use. These peppers have different tastes and textures, so you may not want to freeze them the same way. But in the end it is all up to you and your tastes. You may want to also consider how long you would like to keep the peppers. If it is only for a short period of time, you may opt for a quick freeze. But if you want the particular pepper to last for months you should blanch them first.
Green bell peppers have a sharp tangy flavor and are known for their crunchy texture. They are the most commonly used pepper and they are found in many dishes. The freezing method for these peppers is a quick and easy one. Remove the complete stem area of the pepper and cut if in half. Then remove the seeds from the inside and scrape out any of the remaining fleshy tissue. Cut the peppers in either long strips or small, chunky bite sized bits. Make sure to rinse them thoroughly and place them on a paper towel to absorb the access water. Then place them on a freezer sheet and pop them into the freezer for around an hour. You will want to keep checking them to see if they are frozen and when they are, transport them into a freezer bag. Place them in your deep freeze for later use. This method of freezing peppers should only be used if you will be cooking the peppers in the next few months.
Yellow and red peppers have a sweeter taste. They are used in many dishes also but not as much as a crunchy type pepper. For these types of peppers you should blanch them first before freezing them. Remove all the seeds from the inside and the stem area. Cut the peppers in long strips and place them in boiling water for 3 minutes. After they cool off transport them to a freezer bag. It is a good idea to purchase a food sealer that sucks the air from the bag, so they will not get freezer burn. Place them in the deep freeze. When you blanch and freeze any vegetable, they can be stored for up to a year.
Hot type peppers can be stored using either method. But they best way to freeze peppers that are hot is to quick freeze them. Remove the stem area of the hot pepper but do not remove the seeds. Deep freezing peppers or blanching them, can take away heat from the pepper and most of the heat comes from the seeds. So to make sure they come out tasting fresh and hot, freeze them with the seeds intact. You do not have to cut these peppers in any way before you place them in a freezer bag. If you are not going to be using them in the near future, you must blanch and freeze them. Make sure all of the remaining water is drained from the hot peppers before placing them in the freezer.
Pepper dishes like stuffed peppers or stir fries also can be frozen. Place them in an airtight Tupperware container for the best storage.