You CAN freeze potatoes successfully for 1-2 months if you select the right potatoes and recipes. Use mature potatoes you have stored at room temperature for at least 30 days. Potatoes with a higher sugar content, such as those stored in the refrigerator, will brown excessively and will be less attractive. The real "trick" to freezing potatoes is cooking or partially cooking them first. Raw or new potatoes just don't freeze well. I think it has something to do with their water content -they turn mushy!
Cooked potatoes also become mushy when frozen in liquid. Cook in water and drain; or saute grated potatoes in oil. Grated/ shredded potatoes for hash browns freeze well if rinsed or blanched and dried, and mashed potatoes freeze well. Baking potatoes including Yukon Gold freeze better than red potatoes, but if you want to try freezing red potatoes, blanch whole potatoes 5 minutes, or blanch pieces 3 minutes before freezing.
It is the raw starch in raw potatoes that reacts with moisture, enzymes and air and blackens the potatoes. That's why blanching, drying, and fast chilling also reduce the discoloration.
In pre-Columbian South America, the home of the potato, there was a traditional frozen potato dish. "Another popular food is chuno, made from the potato. Spread on the grass in the early winter, the potatoes freeze at night and thaw in the daytime until they become soggy. Then members of the family tramp them to squeeze out moisture and remove part of the peel. Again, the potatoes lie in the sun and dry. They become small, hard pellets that will keep without spoiling for months even years. The Indians use them in a stew with llama meat or mutton. In the spring quinoa leaves are added to the stew."
To plan an OAMC potato cooking day, first select your recipes. Plan to cool prepared dishes quickly in the refrigerator, and to wrap in moisture-vapor-proof packaging. Seal, label, date and freeze. Thaw in the refrigerator.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Dip each potato piece into the olive oil and place it on a baking sheet. Combine the salt and the spices and sprinkle the mixture over the potatoes.
Bake the potato skins for 15 minutes or until they are crispy and brown, adding shredded cheese if desired the last 5 minutes. Serve them immediately. Other toppings for crispy skins or baked potatoes could include sour cream, sliced scallions, salsa, guacamole, grated Jack or Cheddar cheese, chili, caramelized onions, stewed tomatoes, peas or corn, ricotta cheese, or hot pepper sauce.
Potato crust: Mix the shredded potatoes, large egg, onion and Parmesan cheese and press into a quiche pan to form a crust. Bake the crust at 400 degrees for 35 to 40 minutes and cool. The crust may be used refrigerated or frozen for use later.
Veggie Filling: Sauté the zucchini, carrots and the garlic in butter. Cool slightly, drain and arrange in the crust. Mix large eggs, cheese, milk, oregano, salt and pepper and pour them over the top of the of the zucchini mixture. Place a row of sliced cherry tomatoes around the outer edge of the pie. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes. Let stand 5-10 minutes before cutting and serving.
1 10oz pkg. frozen spinach, thawed
This part can be done the night before. Squeeze excess moisture from thawed spinach. In small skillet, over medium heat, melt the butter. Sauté chopped onion until translucent, about 5 minutes. Crumble "dry" spinach into pan and stir in nutmeg. Remove from heat and cool to room temperature. Spread spinach mixture evenly over the potato crust. Mix shredded cheeses together, then spread cheeses evenly over the spinach. At this point you can cover with foil and refrigerate overnight.
When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees. In blender or electric mixer, beat the milk, eggs, seasonings together until thoroughly mixed. Pour over the cheese. Bake 30-45 minutes or until puffed and cooked through. Remove pie from oven and let sit for 5 minutes to firm up. Serve hot with garnish of cherry tomatoes and parsley.
Here is a different recipe for potato puffs (freezable). These individual potato side dishes, cooked in muffin tins, are popular with most kids and handy for both dinner and breakfast.
Serving Size: 12
12 medium baking potatoes
4 large eggs, beaten
1 cup flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 tablespoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 cup (4 oz) butter, melted
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Grease about 12 large muffin cups.
Peel potatoes and grate in the food processor. Drain well, pressing out liquid and place in a large bowl. Grate the onions and add to the potatoes along with the large eggs and mix well. Don't allow too much time to pass during this process or the potatoes will darken. Combine the flour, baking powder, salt and pepper and blend into the potato mixture. Add the melted butter and stir well.
Spoon into prepared muffin cups, filling up to the top. Bake for about 1 hour, until brown and crusty. Cool for a few minutes, then remove by running a knife around each one. Cool completely, wrap and freeze.
To serve, reheat in the oven, wrapped or microwave.
Twice Baked Potatoes
Serving Size: 12
12 large potatoes, baked
2 cups sour cream, buttermilk or thick plain yogurt
1 green onion, chopped
1/4 cup milk
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
2 teaspoons salt
pepper to taste
1 1/2 cups (6 ounces) cheddar cheese, shredded
additional melted butter
Bake the potatoes fully done, wrap in a dishtowel and carefully roll or squeeze to tenderize the pulp without breaking the skins. Cut off a slice of potato skin from each hot potato. Put slices aside for crispy potato peels, carefully scoop out pulp, leaving a thin shell. In a bowl, mash pulp until smooth. Beat in sour cream, cheese, onion, milk, butter, parsley and salt. Fill shells; brush with butter and press on a layer of grated cheddar. Cover and refrigerate until cold. Wrap potatoes individually in plastic wrap; place in freezer containers or zipper bags. Freeze.
To serve, thaw and place in an ungreased shallow baking dish. Bake, uncovered, at 400 degrees for 30 - 35 minutes or until golden and heated through.
Potato, Broccoli and Cheese Bake- Sunset Magazine
Serving Size : 4
Very ordinary, but popular
4-5 potatoes, sliced
1 head broccoli, florets, blanched
OR 1 package frozen broccoli florets, NOT thawed
1 can broccoli and cheese soup
2 cans milk, approx, to cover
shredded cheese to taste
This easy recipe freezes well if prepared with cooked potatoes and reheated in the oven. In a buttered casserole, put a few (4-5) sliced potatoes, the florets from a head of broccoli (blanched), a can of cream of broccoli and cheese soup, and enough milk to make the soup cover the veggies. Throw in a handful or two of shredded cheese. Cover, label and freeze. It tastes like a broccoli cheese baked potato.
Bake this in the oven for about 40 minutes.
For crockpot: use raw potatoes and evaporated instead of fresh milk. Cook for 3 hours or till done on high.
Doll's Baked Potato Soup Base
Servings: 4-5 quarts, about 16
1 medium onion, chopped fine
2-4 tablespoons butter or olive oil or combination
10 baked potatoes, chopped coarsely
1 quart chicken stock
1/2 gallon milk, any
Some people do not like potato soup once it has been frozen, so try it with one batch before you freeze lots. You can make this recipe as low fat as you want and as thick or thin as you like. The ingredients are yours to play with. The key to its flavor: don't peel the potatoes. This is very plain, you may add all kinds of flavoring when you reheat.
Sauté onion in butter or olive oil. Put onion and potatoes in food processor or blender. Add chicken stock. Pulse on and off. Add milk and process until desired smoothness. I like it slightly lumpy myself. You might find it easier to blend ingredients while cool and then reheat.
Freeze at this point. Suggested garnishes: chopped green or red onion, bacon bits, grated cheeses (cheddar, roquefort, or queso anejo), red pepper flakes, tabasco, sour cream, virtually anything your heart desires.
America's Best Baked Potato Soup 1997
Recipe By : America's Best Recipes 1997
Serving Size : 12
5 medium baking potatoes
8 slices bacon
1 cup sweet onions, chopped
2/3 cup all-purpose flour
6 cups chicken broth
2 cups half and half
1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
1 1/2 teaspoons garlic, minced
1 1/2 teaspoons dried basil
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon coarsely ground pepper
1/2 teaspoon hot sauce
1 3/4 cups shredded cheddar cheese, divided
1 cup green onions, sliced, divided
1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
Wash potatoes; prick several times with a fork. Bake at 400 degrees for 1 hour or until done; let cool. Peel potatoes, and slice crosswise.
Meanwhile, cook bacon in a large skillet until crisp; remove bacon, reserving drippings in skillet. Crumble bacon, and set aside or freeze to garnish.
Cook onion in drippings, stirring constantly, until tender; add flour, stirring well. Cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Gradually add chicken broth; cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until mixture is thickened and bubbly. Stir in potato, half-and-half, and next 6 ingredients. Bring to a simmer, and cook, uncovered, 10 minutes (do not boil). Stir in 1 cup cheese and 1/4 cup green onions. Cook until cheese melts, stirring often.
Again freeze at this point.
After reheating, ladle soup into individual soup bowls. Top evenly with crumbled bacon. Sprinkle evenly with remaining 3/4 cup cheese, 3/4 cup green onions, and parsley.
Frozen French Fries
Serving Size : Varies
Homemade French fries have a short storage life, so use them within 2 months.
Deep frying method: You can partially deep fry potatoes and they freeze much better than fully-cooked ones. This is similar to blanching, but you do it in the deep-fryer instead. Use bakers or all-purpose potatoes, not new/red. For best results, use mature potatoes you have stored for at least 30 days outside the refrigerator. Unstored or refrigerated potatoes have a higher sugar content will brown excessively and will be less attractive.
To make frozen French fries, pare and cut potatoes lengthwise into 3/8 inch strips. Rinse in cold water to remove surface starch. Dry thoroughly on a towel. Fry strips in deep fat or oil at 360 degrees about 4 minutes or until cooked, but not browned. Remove from fat and drain on absorbent paper. Cool and then flash-freeze and bag them up.
Oven prep method: Peel baking potatoes and cut in to french fries or steak wedges. Shake the raw french fries in a little olive oil and cajun seasoning, (this is easy in a big plastic bag) then bake till just browned, cool. "Flash freeze" (set on the cookie sheet they are baked on in the freezer until they are frozen solid). Scoop them off with a spatula and store in 5 quart ice cream buckets or zippered plastic baggies, pressing out extra air. Shake out only what you need for reheating.
When you use them, you can:
- Fry in deep fat without thawing.
- For skillet crisping, brown the French fries in one tablespoon of oil.
- To finish in the oven, fully preheat your oven to 475 egrees.
To heat them up, spread frozen potatoes apart on a cookie sheet in a single layer, bake in a preheated 475 degree oven for about 15 minutes, they get crispy. For a very large amount, turn the oven to 425 degrees.
These days, many people replace catsup with ranch dressing.
Freezer Hash Browns
Adapted from Sylvia's Pretty Quick Shredded Potatoes, The 20th Century Homemaker
20 pounds makes approximately 5 patties of 10 servings
Large kettle of boiling water, with metal colander or skimmer
food processor or grater
3-20 pounds potatoes
OPTIONAL 1 diced, sauteéd onion for each 3 pounds potatoes
You can use these for recipes or shredded potato quiche crust.
Boil the water. Shred your potatoes for hash browns, place in colander or skimmer, scald in boiling water 1 minute. Don't overcook! When they're cut up like this, is doesn't take long. Then drain well, and place them on an absorbent, clean dish towel. Gently press ALL the remaining water out of the potatoes.
Package in recipe or pan size packages, in layers no more than 1" thick. Add sauteed onions to some or all of the bags as desired. Some people use a large round ice cream container to store the frozen rounds, putting 2 pieces of waxed paper between each layer. You can also freeze flat on cookie sheets, press in snap lines before freezing, so you can brak them into meal size pieces after freezing, then bag. Label and date, freeze. Use within 2 months.
To serve, place the frozen hashed browns in hot grease in a large skillet; cook as usual.
Hash Brown Breakfast
Meat Eaters' Recipe By Gina
Serving Size : Varies- about 50 servings
20 pounds baked potatoes, grated with or without peel
5 pounds onion, chopped fine
2 pounds bell pepper, chopped fine
2 dozen large eggs, boiled hard, peeled and grated fine- or even better, use yolks only, simmering the yolks in boiling water and saving the raw whites for another use
5 pounds breakfast sausage, cooked and crumbled
OR 5 pounds kielbasa, chopped
5 pounds tofu, frozen, thawed, drained and shredded
seasoning for tofu, such as 1/2 cup soy sauce
5 pounds soy sausage, cooked and crumbled
Mix all ingredients in a huge bowl. Freeze in pan-sized rounds. Use 5 quart ice cream buckets. Layer wax paper, 2 cups hash browns or whatever would make a meal, wax paper, and so forth until you are done. Each 5 pounds takes about 1 bucket.
To cook this, take the frozen hash brown patty and place it in a nonstick skillet with some oil or butter on low with a lid over it for about 20 minutes until thawed. Then turn the heat up, stirring as it browns, cook as usual.
Note: If potatoes start to turn color while preparing, rinse the starch off. Then pat dry with paper towel and continue.
Baked Cheese Potatoes Recipe By : Southern Living Casseroles Cookbook
6 servings. Recipe may be doubled.
1 tablespoon oil
1 clove garlic, split
4 large potatoes, grated
2 cups milk
2 teaspoons salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1 cup sharp cheddar cheese, grated
Pour oil into a 2 quart baking dish and rub oil around dish with garlic. Combine remaining ingredients and pour into the baking dish.
Bake at 325 degrees for 1 hour and 30 minutes. Serve or freeze.
To Serve: Thaw in refrigerator overnight, or all day. Bake at 350 degrees for 35 minutes, or microwave until hot.
Marbled Mashed Potatoes
10 servings- 9"x13" pan
4 medium size sweet potatoes
OR 2 pounds winter squash
3/4 cup butter or margarine, divided
1 teaspoon ground cardamom
6 medium size Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and quartered
1/2 cup sour cream or plain yogurt
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/4-1/2 cup milk
Garnish: fresh thyme sprigs
Bake sweet potatoes or squash, or cook in boiling water to cover 45 minutes or until tender. Drain, cool, and peel.
Beat sweet potatoes, 1/2 cup butter, and cardamom at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth. Set aside.
Cook gold potatoes in boiling water to cover 10 minutes or until tender. Drain.
Beat gold potatoes and remaining 1/4 cup butter at medium speed with electric mixer until mashed. Add sour cream and next 3 ingredients, beating until smooth. Add milk, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating until desired consistency.
Drop alternating heaping tablespoons of potato mixtures into a lightly greased 9"x13" baking dish. Swirl gently with a knife.
Freeze at this point. Potatoes may be covered and refrigerated for 24 hours or frozen up to 2 weeks. Thaw frozen potatoes overnight in refrigerator; bake at 325 degrees for 1 hour or until thoroughly heated.
Or bake immediately, covered, at 325 degrees for 30 minutes or until thoroughly heated. Garnish with fresh parsley or other green herb, if desired.
2 tablespoons butter or oil
20 ounce package of frozen French fries
OR 2 pounds potatoes, thinly sliced
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 cup shredded cheese
2 large eggs
1/2 cup sour cream
I use fairly thinly sliced baking potatoes, but the french fries are good! In large heavy skillet, heat butter and add potatoes or French and onions. Cook until all ingredients are thoroughly heated but not brown (potatoes start to get "transparent").
Remove from heat and add shredded cheese. Mix thoroughly. In separate bowl beat the large eggs and blend in the sour cream well. Place potato & cheese mix in sprayed casserole and pour large egg - sour cream mix over the top.
Freeze at this point. Potatoes may be covered and refrigerated for 24 hours or frozen up to 2 weeks. Thaw frozen potatoes overnight in refrigerator; bake at 325 degrees for 50 minutes or until thoroughly heated.
Or bake fresh at 350 degrees for 20-30 minutes.