Harvesting (and Storing) Carrots

dirty carrots 2

We planted four rows of carrots this year, some orange and some rainbow-colored. Since I made no effort to stagger my plantings, they all matured at once. I was afraid to leave them in the ground too long lest they become woody, so hubby and I dug them all up and I started processing them.

It took about four hours to get through them all, including washing, blanching and storage. But, we now have homegrown, basically free, very yummy, colorful carrots that will likely last us through much of the winter.

Since we don’t have a cold storage area (at least, not in August!), I refrigerated many of my carrots and my carrot shreds. Anything I didn’t think we would use before it got icky in the fridge was chopped, blanched and frozen for future use.

Whether your carrots are homegrown or store-bought, here’s how to store your carrots for the long haul.

First, wash your carrots and remove the tops. I find this is best done by running a sink full of cold water and letting them soak for a bit, then rinsing them clean. This gets the clumps off without wasting a ton of water.

carrot wash

Next, peel (optional) and chop the carrots into the size you want to use later. I chose a chunk size that could work for a roast accompaniment or in a soup.

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Drop the carrot chunks into boiling water for about two minutes, then remove and cool in an ice bath. This stops the cooking process so they don’t get mushy.

Allow the carrots to dry so they do not accumulate a bunch of ice crystals when you freeze them. Then, scoop them into Ziploc baggies.

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I use regular sandwich bags since I like the smaller portions.

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After bagging all the blanched carrots, you can freeze them flat in the freezer and then place in a gallon-size freezer bag or stuff them all in the freezer bag and freeze in one big chunk.

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2 thoughts on “Harvesting (and Storing) Carrots

  1. Freezing Green Beans | My Kansas Life October 8, 2013 at 10:50 pm Reply

    […] beans is pretty easy. Like carrots, it’s a straightforward process of wash, trim, blanch, dry and […]

  2. Dehydrating Corn | My Kansas Life November 7, 2013 at 10:15 am Reply

    […] can use corn you blanched briefly and cut off the cob, the process described here. Or you can use store-bought frozen corn […]

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