An Easy Way to Freeze (and Thaw) Leftover Turkey

Some foods last longer in the refrigerator than others, and whether you follow USDA guidelines (which recommends throwing most foods away after three to four days in the refrigerator) or live the “smell and taste” model, this OK. to be aware of when the last day is close – and almost a week later the end is damn near for this year’s Thanksgiving leftovers. top bags and reusable food storage containers and place them in the freezer. As you probably know, meats like turkey, roasted ham or spare ribs freeze well raw, but they are also perfect for freezing after cooking. But when you’re ready to freeze them, be mindful of yourself in the future and make it easier for yourself to defrost the meat later. If you have a large, firm piece of meat, break it into portions or small pieces. This ensures fast freezing and fast thawing on the other side. Freezing in individual portions is a great idea, as you should only defrost what you plan to eat right away – it is not recommended to re-freeze the meat several times, as this can lead to loss of moisture and deterioration in its quality. Therefore, if you have a lot of small containers, portion a small amount of meat into them. If you only have large containers, line the pieces of meat with parchment paper, wax paper, or plastic wrap between them. Not only does this ensure you don’t struggle with a giant chunk of meat next week, but smaller portions are easier to work with when you’re ready to cook.

Defrost meat wisely. If you’re thinking ahead, you can move individual portions of previously cooked meat to the refrigerator to thaw slowly overnight, which is the best way to avoid bacterial growth and the safest approach. If you forgot to defrost it and feel hungry, don’t worry: you can run it under cold water for a few minutes if it’s in an airtight plastic bag. Once the meat has cooled but is pliable again, you can use it in sandwiches, salads, or rolls.

If you plan to reheat frozen leftovers in a hot food such as a stir-fry, casserole, stew, or soup, you can skip the defrosting step entirely. Remove individual portions from freezer, cut into appropriate pieces and add to other ingredients.


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