FEATURES TO KEEP FOOD FRESH
Freezing your favourite foods is a convenient way to lock in freshness, flavour, and nutrients. You can also save money by freezing leftovers or buying in bulk. But, did you know that not all freezers are equally good at storing food?
Modern freezers often have features that ensure your food remains safe to eat for the longest possible time – while retaining valuable vitamins. Find out what to look for below.
FAST FREEZE SETTINGS
Fast or quick freeze functions are designed to lock in vitamins and nutrients more effectively, so you can be sure the fresh food you freeze will retain its goodness. The fast freeze setting is particularly useful when you want to freeze large amounts of fresh food in one go.
The temperature in the freezer compartment drops when the function is enabled, freezing your food much more quickly. Some models can switch this setting off automatically, so you don’t need to worry about forgetting.
When fresh food is frozen quickly, smaller ice crystals form than if the food was frozen without the function enabled. This means that when you come to defrost your food at a later date, it will be of a much higher quality.
Fast freezing can also help food retain its original, delicious texture. So, you can freeze anything from meat to bread without worrying about how well they will defrost.
Fast freezing can also help food retain its original, delicious texture.
FOUR STAR FREEZER RATINGS
If a freezer has a four star rating, it means it’s capable of storing food as low as -18°C, freezing fresh produce, and storing goods for up to 12 months. The maximum storage time depends on the type of food and best before date.
You may also come across one, two, and three star freezers. One star models are often just an ice box in a fridge. They keep food at -6°C and can store pre-frozen food for up to a week.
A two star freezer will freeze foods at -12°C, and can store pre-frozen food for up to one month. Three star freezers reach -18°C and can store pre-frozen food for three to 12 months.
Only four star freezers are suitable for freezing food from fresh – something to bear in mind if you like to freeze leftovers, unused ingredients, or the extra items you get from those irresistible buy-one-get-one-free offers.
POWER CUT SAFETY FEATURES
Many freezers have a useful power failure safe storage feature. This keeps your food frozen in the event of a power cut, so you’ll have time to get the problem fixed without worrying about your food defrosting. The storage period varies depending on the model, so it’s important to check this before you buy.