How to freeze bread: This is the one mistake you shouldn't make

These are the important steps you should follow to ensure you're safely preserving your bread.

Frozen Bread
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Frozen Bread

We're sometimes tempted to freeze bread to avoid a trip to the bakery or to avoid waste. An ingenious idea, provided a few conditions are met.

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The smell of the bakery can often make our eyes grow bigger than our stomachs... We often end up buying more bread than needed, which is left over. To avoid wasting bread, it's tempting to freeze and eat it later. An idea that's both economical and ecological. But beware: whether you're freezing a baguette, sliced bread or farmhouse bread, there are certain rules to follow to avoid any health risks.

Don't freeze unwrapped bread

Bread is an essential part of any meal, whether for breakfast or dinner. You can, of course, store it in the freezer to stock up at home. But if you're in the habit of putting your baguette straight into the freezer after cutting it in half, you're making a mistake! As well as spoiling the taste of your baguette because of the odours it may give off from other foods, freezing it unwrapped is dangerous for your health. The bacteria in the freezer can lodge in the crumb and crust of the bread.

Although freezing slows down the activity and development of microorganisms, it does not kill them. What's more, when the bread is defrosted, microbes start to grow again, and can end up in our bodies once the baguette has been eaten! And because prevention is better than cure, we strongly advise you not to refreeze bread after it has been thawed for the first time, or you risk getting sick.

How to store bread in the freezer

If you want to freeze bread properly and avoid damage to your health, you need to place it in a container such as an airtight box or wrap it carefully in plastic film before placing it in the freezer. The aim is to expel as much air as possible. If the bread is hot, it should also be allowed to cool to room temperature beforehand.

How long can bread be kept in the freezer?

Although it's a practical and effective way of preserving bread, freezing doesn't guarantee it will last forever. Bread should not be stored in the freezer for longer than 6 months. To defrost, leave at room temperature for as long as necessary. For a soft crust and heart, you can lightly moisten the surface of the bread before putting it in the oven for a few minutes, without it turning brown. A slice of frozen bread can also be reheated in the toaster as soon as it comes out of the freezer.

How can I keep bread longer?

To keep bread crusty for as long as possible without freezing it, there are a few equally effective tricks. Firstly, you can store it in a clean cotton cloth for a few days. But don't put it in a plastic bag left out in the open. Plastic captures the moisture that macerates in the bread, which risks growing mouldy more quickly.

To prevent bread from going soft, you can also store it for 3 to 5 days in a wooden or metal box, wrapped in a canvas bag. A little tip: place a halved apple or potato in the bread tin to regulate the humidity level.

Finally, you can use the refrigerator trick. Place your bread in a zip-top freezer bag, trying to remove as much air as possible. Then put it on the highest shelf of the fridge, where it's coldest. In this way, your bread will be soft in the center, but will retain a certain hold in the crust.

This article was translated from Femme Actuelle

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