Can You Freeze Kaffir Lime Leaves?

Kaffir lime leaves are one of those ingredients that can take your east Asian curry from home-cooked to authentic with little effort.

The problem is that they can be a little expensive for what you get and, chances are, you won’t use them all that often. So can you freeze kaffir lime leaves?

How To Freeze Kaffir Lime Leaves

The good news is that freezing them is super easy. There is one thing you need to know, however. Kaffir lime leaves are potent. If you just toss them into your freezer their odour will penetrate every other food item in your freezer. That’s why freezing them correctly is very important:

  1. First, grab yourself a thick freezer bag. Don’t use cheap, ziplock bags as they will let some odour seep out. Instead, invest in some solid, thick freezer bags for these.
  2. Now all you need to do is place them into the bag. Seal the bag up, trying to keep as much air out as possible then please into your freezer.

That’s honestly all there is to freezing kaffir lime leaves – no flashing freezing or blanching. Just place them into a bag and then into the freezer.

Can You Freeze Kaffir Limes?

Kaffir limes, much like standard limes, can be frozen. The method is actually very similar if you plan on freezing them whole. Simply toss them into a freezer bag, seal up and then store in the freezer. If you want freeze portions or slices, then you will need to flash freeze them on a baking tray first before storing them in a bag to prevent them from sticking to one another.

How Long Can You Freeze Kaffir Lime Leaves?

Kaffir lime leaves will actually keep in the freezer for a really long time. In fact, you can keep them in there for around a year before their flavour will degrade slightly. Having said that, they will actually be fine to use beyond this date but may not pack quite a big of a flavour punch as they previously did. Ultimately, kaffir lime leaves will keep indefinitely in the freezer.

It’s still a good idea to label up the bag so you know what they are and when they need to be used by. This is especially important if you have frozen fresh bay leaves or curry leaves as it can be hard to distinguish between them.

You Can Freeze Kaffir Lime Leaves for Around 1 Year

How Do You Defrost Kaffir Lime Leaves?

The good news continues when it comes to defrosting your lime leaves… Because you don’t need to. Just grab a leaf or two from the freezer (or however many the recipe calls for) and use them immediately how you normally would, generally tossing them into the curry you’re cooking.

As they’re so thin and delicate, they will almost immediately thaw out and begin to release their notoriously, pungent flavour into your dish.

Can You Refreeze Kaffir Lime Leaves?

When you freeze kaffir lime leaves, you will pull a little bit of moisture from the leaves which contains a lot of the flavour. When you refreeze them, you will end up pulling out more of the flavour. Fortunately, kaffir lime leaves are packed full of flavour so refreezing them won’t remove all of the flavours but can make them a little more subtle.

Do Kaffir Lime Leaves Freeze Well?

Kaffir lime leaves are one of the best Asian ingredients to freeze. They last for an incredibly long time and will always give you an incredible hit of flavour when added to a dish. It’s safe to say that they freeze really well. The only caution you need to take is ensuring that the lime leaves don’t spread their odour throughout your freezer.

Related FAQs

If you’ve still got questions about freezing kaffir lime leaves or kaffir limes in general, then these may help:

Are Kaffir Lime Leaves Edible?

This depends on whether you’re using fresh or dried. Dried kaffir lime leaves will be very unpleasant to eat and not something you’d want to try. Whole, fresh kaffir lime leaves will also be tough to chew through. You’ll often find in Thai dishes, kaffir lime leaves cut up really thinly. This is when you can eat them.

Can You Freeze Curry Leaves?

Curry leaves can also be frozen in much the same way as kaffir lime leaves have been frozen above. Again, they can be quite strong in odour so it is a good idea to use thick freezer bags. Simply place your leaves into a bag, seal up and store in the freezer. When you need a curry leaf, grab it from the bag and use it directly in the dish you’re cooking.

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