Preserving: Freezing Raspberries & Blackberries

Summer raspberries, 2008
One of our absolute favorite things about summer are all the big delicious ripe berries we get to eat.  Both my children love berries in any form.  Right now Addie’s favorite are raspberries and Austin begs for strawberries but equally favorites are blackberries.  Although it is fair to say we eat far more than we put up each year, I love to freeze them to have to make muffins, cobblers, syrups, yogurt ice pops and even jams in the winter.  It is really a simple process and although summer is quickly fading, I thought I would share our process of freezing our berries.

Start of with washing your berries well.  Although blueberries I actually sit in a sink of water, I just give my blackberries and raspberries a very thorough washing several times over.

Lay your berries on a towel in a single layer to dry or gently towel dry, trying to remove as much water as possible to not create a frozen block of berries and ice.

Although I don’t always use was or parchment paper, it really does make the job easier so the berries don’t break when removing them, it is up to you.  Line any flat pan, cookie sheet or baking dish with your wax or parchment paper and then place your berries in a single layer.  I try to make sure they aren’t touching as much as possible so they don’t all freeze together.

Place them in your freezer for 1-3 hours.  They should be quite firm when you remove them.  Now you can simple place them in mason jars or ziploc baggies and put them back into the freezer.

I love the fact then when you take a little extra time now, I can freeze them together and later down the road if I only want a half of a cup of berries, it is easy to shake the bag and take what I need.  If they do start to stick, you should be able to tap them on the counter to easily break them up.

You can see how nice it is that I don’t have one big clump of berries.

What is your favorite berry?

What is your favorite berry recipe?  What method do you use to preserve your berries?

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