Freezer advice

Discussion in 'Random Ramblings' started by pattycake, Feb 15, 2008.

  1. pattycake

    pattycake Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 7, 2007
    fingerlakes, ny
    This is totally off-topic, but I know there are a lot of gardeners and homesteading types here, so...

    What kind of deep freezer would you recommend? I'm shopping around and have no idea whether I should get an upright or a chest, and how big it should be. I've never frozen much before, but we recently moved to the sticks and have space for a huge garden, and I'd like to freeze seasonal fruit in it too (blueberries, strawberries, etc.). I don't want to butcher my own chickens, but I'm also toying with the idea of buying some fresh chickens from a nearby farm. I have a family of four, if that helps.

    Also, how to do prepare food to freeze it? Do you put it in plastic bags, freezer paper, or what?

    I'm a total newbie at freezers, as you can tell.
     
  2. SeaChick

    SeaChick Chillin' With My Peeps

    Apr 25, 2007
    Southern Maine
    I LOVE my freezer!!! I have a small chest type that we got on craiglist or freecylcle... it is too small. I use heavy-duty ziplock freezer bags.

    It saves SO much money in so many ways.
    1) We freeze out own produce and that from the farmers market when things are cheap, succulent and in season, like breen beans and tomatoes.
    2) we buy quarters of grass-fed organic beef & pork that we can only afford in these large bulk quantities
    3) when things are on sale that are normally splurges, like organic chickens for $1.99 or buy-one-get-one-free packages of organic strawberries, I load up on those

    I always have the fixings for a great dinner without having to go to the store!!
     
  3. MissPrissy

    MissPrissy Overrun With Chickens Premium Member

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    Get the largest, most energy efficient chest freezer you can afford if you plan to harvest and preserve your own food.
     
  4. horsejody

    horsejody Squeaky Wheel

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    Waterloo, Nebraska
    I hate my chest freezer. It seems that, no matter what I want, it's always at the bottom. I think chest freezers are more efficient, but they are a pain. My next one will be an upright.
     
  5. Yogiman

    Yogiman Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Feb 2, 2008
    South Louisiana
    pattycake,
    It is probably safe to say that there are no hard fast rules regarding freezers and freezing of foods. However, there are some safe practices that should be followed.

    I have 3 freezers. I garden big time and fill them with home grown veggies and meats. Each region probably has their own practices. About your question regarding how to prepare foods for freezing:

    I process, clean and wash the veggies from the garden first. I them cook them ready to serve rather than blanch them and have to cook them later. I store all of my veggies in Zip Lock bags. All meats are wrapped in freezer paper and labeled.

    My experience has taught me that an upright freezer is the only way to go. First of all they take up less floor space. Second of all it is far easier to find your items in an upright as opposed to digging through a chest freezer. Trust me, things do get buried down in a chest freezer.

    I just bought an interesting freezer from Lowes. It is a Whirlpool "convertable" if you can believe that. It is a refrigerator/freezer combination. With a flip of a switch it can be either or a freezer or refrigerator. We love it. It looks just like an upright freezer with a single door.

    I process and freeze large quantities of veggies each year. For example: southern peas, squashes, snap beans, lima or butter beans, okra, corn, mustard greens, collard greens, turnips, etc. I have put over 100 quart and gallon size bags of greens in the freezer this winter alone.

    Best of luck with your endevor.
     
  6. kbarrett

    kbarrett Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Nov 12, 2007
    PA
    I love my chest freezer. I put up lots of veggies, homemade soups, and buy all my meat in bulk and repackage it for the freezer. DH put in cheap coated wire shelves in there with helps alot to keep it organized and everything easy to get to.
     
  7. pattycake

    pattycake Chillin' With My Peeps

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    May 7, 2007
    fingerlakes, ny
    Wow, thanks for all the great advice. I saw a small one for cheap on Craigslist, but I guess I'll hold out for a big one. Since I'm not going to have any produce to freeze for like five months, I can certainly save up.
     
  8. Pelican49

    Pelican49 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I have an upright, but I'm giving it to my son and daughter-in-law when I move. My new one will be back to chest style.
     
  9. nccountrygirl

    nccountrygirl Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 31, 2007
    Sanford N.C.
    I had a chest freezer and hated it so I gave it to my DD and got an upright and I love love love it. With the chest freezer I would either lose meat in there or have to take every thing out to find some thing, I don't have to do that with my upright every thing is within eye range.
     
  10. Wildsky

    Wildsky Wild Egg!

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    I have an upright - not yet using it - will do so when my veggies can be planted and harvested!

    I don't particularly like bending over into a chest freezer - my parents had one and I HATED it.
     

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