What is your experience with blanching and freezing leeks?

It looks like I will be harvesting more leeks than I can possibly use in a short time (I spotted a leek shooting up a scape, first year this has happened). From what I read, storing the stalks in peat moss or sand seems to affect their quality so I am wondering whether I should blanch them for 3 minutes and freeze them. Does anyone have any experience with freezing leeks?

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Amanda Hesser
Amanda Hesser July 22, 2011

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Droplet
Droplet July 26, 2011

Leeks actually are known for freezing really well. Just chop them, place them in plastic bags and freeze directly, no blanching is necessary. If you have too many to fit them in the freezer, then you can even bury some in the snow at the end of fall, they will keep just fine for a couple of months.

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mainecook61
mainecook61 July 26, 2011

If you can get them in the fall, they will keep all winter in a cold outbuilding, like a garage or cold porch. They freeze, eventually, and get all draggly looking, but the insides stay sweet and tender right into March. It's kind of amazing and no work at all.

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Green Card Gardener
Green Card Gardener July 26, 2011

Thanks. I think I will try to freeze a few stalks unblanched as a test. Of course it would be ideal to leave them in the ground until the fall but I am not sure that is a good idea, given that they started to bloom now (strange, the stalks are barely 1 inch thick). I read somewhere that after blooming they loose their flavor, do you know that to be true?

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Droplet
Droplet July 26, 2011

When you leave them in the ground you are supposed to do so after you uproot them. I've frozen them many times but have never grown them, so I don't know what effect blooming has on them. But in general I think there is a truth to it because once an edible plant begins to bloom, it concentrates all it has into producing seeds, so after a while the flavor will no longer be its best.

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Green Card Gardener
Green Card Gardener July 26, 2011

@Droplet: Good to know you've frozen them successfully. I will do that.

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