Aji dulce are, as the name suggests, a sweet pepper popular across Latin American and the Caribbean. In the western world, they can be a little harder obtain so if you’ve managed to get some, how do you then store them?
Can You Freeze Aji Dulce?
Yes, you can freeze aji dulce for up to 12 months. The best way to do this is to blend the peppers into a paste and then fill an ice cube tray with that paste. Freeze it solid before transferring the paste to freezer bags.
Do Aji Dulce Freeze Well? Yes
Can You Refreeze Aji Dulce? Yes
How to Freeze Aji Dulce
Freezing aji dulce isn’t quite as simple as you might consider it to be. Although you could bag them up and freeze them, this is not an efficient way to freeze them.
Instead, we have a far superior method for freezing these peppers:
- Make a Paste: The peppers can be blended into a perfectly smooth paste with relative ease. Pop the peppers into a blender with the stalks removed and then add in a splash of water or oil before blitzing.
- Fill an Ice Cube Tray: Filling an ice cube tray with the paste is a great, simple way to get evenly sized portions. This can allow you to easily portion the paste out for your cooking.
- Freeze Into Cubes: Freezing the cubes is a simple process, though we recommend placing them on the top shelf of your freezer. We recommend this because it ensures that they will freeze evenly from all sides of the cubes.
- Bag Up: Placing the cubes into a bag allows you to do several batches of aji dulce paste one after the other. Also, you can then clean and use the ice cube tray for something else – like pesto!
- Final Freeze: Storing the bag of cubes to the edge of your freezer is wise, as they will form a barrier between freezer burn and delicate food at the centre of your freezer.
3 Tips for Freezing Aji Dulce
Now you know how to freeze them, we’ve got our 3 top tips which we strongly recommend following when freezing aji dulce to have the best results:
Try Making a Sofrito
Instead of forming a paste of only the peppers, combine them with onions, garlic, and coriander to form a sofrito. Then, add a few of the cubes to a pan at the start of cooking a meal, and you’ll form a base flavour that’s ideal for these peppers.
Try Different Moulds
You can use different ice moulds to freeze varying sizes of aji dulce paste. This may not be entirely important, but it can be a good idea if you’re going to freeze larger portions – take a look online, there are many differently sized molds available.
Combine with Other Peppers
If you do go down the sofrito route, you can mix the aji dulce peppers with bell peppers or others. They will stand in well and can be used together to create a flavorsome sofrito with relative ease.
How Long Can You Freeze Aji Dulce?
You can freeze aji dulce for around 3 months.
We recommend this for a wide range of products since it’s generally considered to be the maximum amount of time that you can freeze food for. In this case, we recommend it as the peppers may lose some potency by the end of those 3 months.
When kept in a paper bag, aji dulce will last for around 1 week in the fridge. After that, you will find that the skins soften and wrinkle.
How Do You Defrost Aji Dulce?
The simplest way to defrost aji dulce is just to throw a cube or two into the pan as you’re cooking. It will thaw rapidly, allowing you to quickly cook with it in no time at all.
Be careful not to throw the cubes into hot oil, as the mixture of cold ice and hot oil can be dangerous and explosive!
Can You Refreeze Aji Dulce?
You can refreeze aji dulce with great success – the paste contains nothing liable to get contaminated outside your freezer.
Although it is possible to refreeze aji dulce paste, you may find it hard to do so. You’ll usually cook it from frozen into a dish. The resultant dish, which contains previously-frozen aji dulce, can be frozen safely too.
Do Aji Dulce Freeze Well?
Yes, aji dulce does freeze well!
The main reason for this is the density of the paste: as it contains very few air bubbles at all, you can be sure that the paste will not expand very much during freezing.
This lack of expansion allows you to freeze things more cleanly and simply, with less risk of any kind of mess.
If you’ve still got questions about freezing Ajidulce or aji in general, then these may help:
Yes, it is possible to freeze aji dulce whole, but you need to consider how you usually use them. If you rarely use them whole, then there is no point in freeing them whole.
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