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Can You Freeze Cardoons?

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By Ross Young

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Cardoons are native to countries like Morocco and Portugal and grow in countries throughout the Mediterranean. It tastes a bit like an artichoke although it’s more bitter. If you find yourself with a supply of cardoons, you might be wondering how best to store them. 

Can You Freeze Cardoons? Yes, you can freeze cardoons. They can be frozen for up to 6 months. Rinse and slice them, before bagging them up into separate portions. You can then defrost them whenever you’re ready to enjoy them or to use them in a particular recipe.

Do Cardoons Freeze Well? Yes

Can You Refreeze Cardoons? Yes

How to Freeze Cardoons

Although they might not be the best-known vegetable in the world, cardoons are popular in regions throughout the Mediterranean where they are grown.

If you’ve managed to get your hands on some cardoons, the good news is that you can freeze them until you’re ready to enjoy them.

Here’s what you need to do: 

  1. Prepare
    Depending on how your cardoon looks when you buy or pick it, you will need to remove its head and cut it into slices. Once cut, cardoons look a little like leeks. 
  2. Rinse
    Next, place your cut cardoons into a sieve and run them under the cold tap for twenty seconds or so, taking care to remove any dirt or debris. 
  3. Slice
    Return your cardoons to your chopping board and slice them into smaller portions. You can leave them chunky if you prefer, but you will need to defrost them all in one go. 
  4. Bag Up
    Decide on the portion sizes that you want to preserve your cardoons in. This is entirely up to you, but it’s easier to defrost the portion that you need when you think about this step in advance! 
  5. Label and Freeze
    Write today’s date and the use-by date on the front of the bag, seal it, and place it in the freezer. Remember, you can freeze cardoons for around six months.

3 Tips for Freezing Cardoons

Now you know how to freeze them, we’ve got our 3 top tips which we strongly recommend following when freezing cardoons to have the best results:

Freeze Fresh
Cardoons, like other vegetables, are best enjoyed when they’re super fresh. If you leave your cardoons sitting in the fridge for a week before freezing them, they will lose some of their flavour and nutrients.

As soon as you’ve picked or bought them, prepare them and freeze them so they taste great when you come to defrost them.

Cook from Frozen
If you’re planning to fry, bake, or braise your cardoons, you can do so from frozen and you don’t need to defrost them.

Freeze Cooked Cardoons
Although they won’t taste as great as fresh cardoons once thawed, it is possible to freeze those that you have already cooked. This is good to know if you have prepared a recipe with cardoons or have battered and fried them as a savoury snack.

How Long Can You Freeze Cardoons?

You can freeze cardoons for around six months. While some people freeze vegetables for up to a year, it’s best to use them before this.

If you leave cardoons in the freezer for too long, they will start to deteriorate in taste and texture due to the ice crystals that form during the freezing process.

While there’s nothing wrong with eating cardoons that have been frozen for longer than this, they probably won’t taste as nice as you had hoped.

You Can Freeze Cardoons for up to 6 Months

How Do You Defrost Cardoons?

If you’re planning to cook cardoons, you don’t need to defrost them. Simply remove them from the freezer and set about cooking them in any way that you choose.

However, if you want to eat them raw or need to defrost them for a particular recipe, simply transfer them from the freezer and allow them sufficient time to thaw in the fridge.

We wouldn’t recommend thawing cardoons in the microwave as doing so can affect their texture.

Can You Refreeze Cardoons?

Yes, you can refreeze cardoons providing they’re still nice and fresh. If you notice that their texture has started to soften or are concerned that they don’t look quite as appetising as they did the first time around, you shouldn’t refreeze them.

You don’t need us to tell you that veggies taste much better fresh, so the more times you freeze cardoons, the less delicious they’re likely to be.

Do Cardoons Freeze Well?

Yes, just like other vegetables, cardoons freeze really well.

This Mediterranean vegetable might not be the first on your shopping list, but knowing that you can freeze it for up to six months should inspire you to try it out and see if it can add something to your next family meal.

If you’ve still got questions about freezing cardoons or cardoons in general, then these may help:

How Do You Store Cardoons?

Besides freezing, cardoons should be kept in the fridge. However, they will only remain fresh in the fridge for 2 to 3 days so you’ll need to use them up quickly.

Do You Need to Blanch Cardoons to Freeze?

No, you do not need to blanch cardoons. Although it’s not a terrible idea to do so, blanching isn’t necessarily as there is a risk of overcooking the cardoons.

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