I was just rummaging through the freezer and came across an unopened bag of rice - plain old Carolina long grain.(No doubt the handiwork of my husband, helping unload grocery bags.) It can't have been in there more than a week or two....I assume it will still be fine, right? Any reason a well-sealed week in the deep freeze would effect uncooked rice?

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mrslarkin
mrslarkin January 30, 2011

No. It's fine. In fact, it'll keep longer in the freezer. That's where I stash my smaller bags of rice.

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susan g
susan g January 30, 2011

Actually, there are benefits to freezer time for grains and other dry foods. Insect eggs are naturally often present and will hatch when given the right temperature and humidity. They will not survive freezer temperatures. If grain moths have ever bothered you, a few days in the freezer is beneficial for rice et al. (Then move to glass jars.)

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Verdigris
Verdigris January 30, 2011

It will be perfectly fine. And you have the side benefit that any weevil eggs that might have been lurking in the rice will be rendered non viable. I keep my rice in the freezer for a week after buying for that exact purpose.

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amysarah
amysarah January 30, 2011

Ah. Good to know. I usually just decant it into my designated glass rice jar - luckily I haven't come across any critters. Yet. (Yuck.) Will have to start storing grains in the freezer, alongside the endless half-empty bags of nuts, etc.

Speaking of freezer storage, here's another question: I typically store packets of yeast in the fridge. Any benefit - or harm - to storing it in the freezer?

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mrslarkin
mrslarkin January 30, 2011

I always keep my yeast in the freezer, too! Stays fresher longer.

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pierino
pierino January 30, 2011

Yes, yeast doughs do hold up well in the freezer. It's always nice to discover a cling wrapped ball of pizza dough in there.

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hah
hah January 30, 2011

I buy yeast in bulk, and like mrslarkin, always store it in the freezer. It's in an acrylic jar with a clamp top which is lined with a rubber washer. Activated dry yeast has remained viable for about three years, though it's only high-quality for maybe 12-18 months. I have instant yeasts in there now, and expect they'll go at least two years. I like to use them up within a year; otherwise, you have to use more than the recipe calls for to get the same results. It might be my imagination, but that gives an unpleasant taste to the dough.

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amysarah
amysarah January 30, 2011

Thanks for the yeast intelligence...into the freezer with that yeast!

(Oh and to clarify, I didn't mean yeast dough; just the actual packet/jar of yeast itself.)

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susan g
susan g January 30, 2011

Yeast: Packets should last longer than jars because they are foil lined. That said, I sometimes have bulk yeast in baggies that I neglect to put in a jar, and it still lives long. I do like to be sure to proof it before going on the complete the dough.
Grains, etc in the freezer don't need to stay there, just a few days does the weevils in!

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RobertaJ
RobertaJ January 31, 2011

Grains, powdered yeast, flours, etc. do just fine in the freezer. Before I started baking in earnest, I'd keep flour in the freezer for up to a year with no noticable decrease in quality. I buy yeast now in bulk, and it lives in the freezer, no need to even thaw before using. Brown rice especially, if you don't use it often, is better stored in the freezer, since it turns rancid so quickly. And as others noted, critter eggs are killed by an exposure to freezing temps.

Also, if I either hit a sale, or screw up and buy too much of a ground spice or dried herb, so long as it's well sealed, into the freezer they go. Same with fresh bay leaves, just wrap them in a zippy bag, squeeze out the air and freeze. Ginger, lemon grass too.

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