A useful way of pre-cooking vegetables so that they only need re-heating later, this also helps keep the bright vibrant colour of vegetables. Blanching vegetables before freezing is essential as this destroys certain enzymes and bacteria, but helps preserve the colour, texture and flavour of foods.
To blanch, bring a saucepan of water to a rolling boil, add the vegetables, bring back to the boil and boil for just a couple of minutes only. Drain, and then plunge the vegetables into ice-cold water. When the vegetables are cold, drain again and freeze if desired or reheat in boiling water when ready to serve.
Carrots - thinly sliced or diced, 3-5 minutes
Green beans - 2-3 minutes
Sprouts - 4-5 minutes
Cauliflower - 3 minutes
Asparagus - 2-3 minutes
Peas - 1 minute