Tempeh is a healthy Indonesian food product that is made up of fermented soybeans. They are healthy snacks with countless nutritional values and the perfect alternative to meats. Millions of vegans consume it because it is a rich source of lean protein.
There are chances that you may have some leftovers of tempeh. You might be wondering how you can store them to eat later. Well, can you freeze tempeh to store them for later use?
Can Tempeh Be Frozen?
To answer this question, we have to first understand how tempeh is made. Tempeh is made up of fermented soybeans and other legumes. They are first boiled for a long time and let to dry. Then a little introduction to yeast makes them undergo a process called fermentation.
After that, the food product is incubated until it becomes like a cake foam. Once the enzymes form the foam-like substance on the outside, it is frozen immediately to preserve the enzymes and other nutritional values of tempeh.
The process itself includes freezing tempeh. So, it is safe for us to freeze them to preserve them. Also, they are mostly sold in frozen form to be fresh. Though you can freeze tempeh, it is not advisable to refreeze the leftovers. It might just make the tempeh lose its taste, texture, and quality.
However, if you intend to mash the tempeh, you can freeze them. In the upcoming sections, we will see the methods to freeze tempeh.
How To Freeze Tempeh?
Freezing tempeh is an easy task if you know what kinds of tempeh it is. There are two types of tempeh, and each needs different kinds of freezing techniques.
The first type is the fresh tempeh. The fresh tempeh is frozen just after the incubation stage and is sold when they are frozen. They are extremely rare kinds of tempeh and are barely available in the USA. If you are looking for them in the USA, try searching Indonesian food stores.
Fresh tempeh needs to be cooked for at least 20 minutes. This will help them to absorb the flavors effectively.
Another kind of tempeh is pre-packed or vacuum sealed tempeh. They are readily available in American stores. They don’t need prior cooking and can be consumed as it is. They can also be cooked for better flavor. After cooking them, they become soft and moist. Cooking enhances its taste and texture and reduces its naturally bitter taste.
Freezing tempeh is a feasible process. Follow these steps to freeze your leftover tempehs.
1. Take a piece of cling wrap and place it on the table.
2. Keep the leftover tempeh on top of it and wrap it. Make sure that not even a slight part of tempeh is exposed. This might cause a freezer burn on the tempeh.
3. Now, paste a label on it and write the date on top of it. Ensure to write the accurate date so that you don’t eat your tempeh after its expiration date.
If it is inside the pre-sealed package, you can skip these steps and keep the package inside the freezer. That will be sufficient to freeze your tempeh.
How Long Can You Freeze Tempeh?
Fresh tempeh is one of the foods that have a significantly low shelf life. It can last up to 24 to 48 hours, and anything more than that is a miracle. However, if you keep them in the refrigerator after picking them thoroughly, you can prolong their shelf life from one week to ten days.
Freezing tempeh surely increases its life expectancy exponentially. Packing them and keeping them in a freezer with a temperature less than or equal to zero degrees celsius will keep them fresh and unspoiled for up to a year. Since they are fermented, the shelf life is very low for this food item. So, if you want to preserve the leftovers, try wrapping them up and putting them in the freezer. You will have a readymade snack anytime you want this way.
Is It Ok To Freeze Tempeh?
There is no harm in freezing tempeh. In fact, fresh tempeh is frozen as soon as they are made. They are even sold in frozen form to prevent them from getting spoiled. You can also follow the same process to freeze your leftover tempeh.
Freezing your tempeh will increase its life expectancy to over a year. Usually, fresh tempeh can’t last more than two days but freezing them grants them an additional year. Also, it is much easier to store pre-sealed tempeh as they are already in an air-tight sealed package. You can eat them without any worries after thawing them.