If you’ve bought abalone and had more than you can eat, you will wonder what to do with the leftovers. Would freezing abalone be one of the options for storage?
So, can you freeze abalone? Yes, you can freeze abalone, whether it’s cooked, canned, or raw. When freezing fresh abalone, clean the muscle properly to avoid compromising the quality while it’s stored in the freezer. With proper preparation and storage, abalone will last up to 3 months in the freezer.
Does Abalone Freeze Well?
Abalone freezes extremely well due to the high content of moisture. As long as it’s prepared correctly and stored in an airtight container or freezer, abalone will last for quite a long time in the freezer.
If you’ve bought abalone from the grocery stores, and it’s vacuum-sealed, you can place them directly in the freezer when you get home. Vacuum-sealed abalone will last for up to a year in the freezer if it’s unopened.
Preparing Abalone For Freezing
To keep the abalone at its best quality while frozen, you will need to prepare them correctly first. Below are the step to preparing your abalone for the freezer:
Step 1: Clean the Abalone
Wash the abalone under running water to remove any debris and seaweed that may be on it. You can also use a brush to scrub debris that is stubborn to remove.
Step 2: Dislodge It from the Shell
With an oyster knife, insert it into the tender part of the abalone. Once the knife reaches the bottom part of the shell, push the shell upward to remove the meat.
Step 3: Trim the Hard and Bitter Parts
Grab a pair of scissors, cut off the guts and liver of the abalone. These parts are the thick dark brown of the abalone.
You can also remove the tough edges or lips of the abalone. This will make it easier to eat it.
Step 4: Remove Debris From the Meat
With a brush or sponge, scrub away the leftover dirt around the abalone meat.
A quicker way is to cut off the slimy edges of the abalone. These are the area that contains most of the dirt.
Step 5: Rinse the Abalone Meat
The last step is to wash the abalone meat. Place it under cold running water for a few seconds. This will ensure any leftovers dirt and other debris is removed from the abalone.
How To Package Abalone For Freezing
Step 1: Slice the Abalone
With a sharp knife, slice the abalone into thin slices. It should be about a quarter of an inch thick. This process is optional, but it will make it easier for you when you have to remove them from the freezer. Also, this will allow you to store them in portions, which will prevent any leftovers.
Step 2: Wrap Each Abalone Individually
With cling film, wrap each abalone individually. You can double wrap them for extra protection.
Step 3: Store in Airtight Container or Freezer Bag
Place the individually wrapped into an airtight container or freezer bag. Both items do a good job of keeping air and moisture from reaching the abalone.
If you’re planning to use a few abalones at a time, it’s best to divide them into portions. Place the abalones into several small containers or freezer bags.
Step 4: Seal It
For freeze bags, squeeze out the air before sealing it.
For an airtight container, check the seal on the lid for any damages. If there are none, secure the lid to the container tightly.
Step 5: Label and Freeze
With a marker, write down the date of freezing on the freezer bag or airtight container. Then transfer them to the freezer for storage. You will want to keep them at the farthest end of the freezer. This is where it will be less likely to be affected by the temperature changes when the freezer door is open or closed.
Can You Freeze Canned and Cooked Abalone?
When it comes to canned abalone, it doesn’t require any prepping or freezing. It has been cleaned, preserved, and canned by the manufacturers already. You should store canned abalone in a dark and dry place, like the cupboard or pantry.
If the canned abalone is opened, you can freeze them if it’s going to be longer than a month before you use it. All you have to do is drain the liquid from the abalone and wash it thoroughly. Then place it into an airtight container, seal the lid tightly, and place it into the freezer.
On the other hand, if you’re freezing cooked abalone, wrap them in plastic wrap. Then place them into a freezer bag or an airtight container. Press on the bag to remove any excess air from the bag before sealing it. Then place it into the freezer.
How Long Can You Freeze Abalone?
Abalone can last in the freezer for up to 3 months. It can last for much longer, but the quality of it will deteriorate.
After 3 months, the abalone is still safe to eat, but you may not enjoy the taste of it very much.
To ensure that the frozen abalone taste at its freshest, try to use it within 3 months. The earlier you use it, the better.
How Do You Defrost Abalone?
When it comes to defrosting abalone, there are two methods to doing so. You can either thaw them in the fridge or let them sit in an ice bath.
If you’re not in a hurry, the fridge is the best option. Remove the frozen abalone from the freezer and place it onto a plate. Then transfer them to the fridge. Let it sit overnight or for at least 10 hours until all the ice has melted.
The second method is to use the ice bath if you need the abalone sooner. Remove the frozen abalone from the freezer. Leave them in the freezer bag and place them into a bowl. Then pour water until the abalone is submerged. Then place ice on top of it. Let it sit for approximately an hour until it’s thawed.
To thaw it much quicker, replace the water every 10 minutes.
Avoid trying to force thaw the abalone, either by leaving them at room temperature or using the microwave. Doing so will alter the texture and taste of the abalone.
Can You Refreeze Abalone?
You can refreeze abalone, only if it has not thawed yet. This means if you’ve removed them from the freezer, and it has been less than 10 minutes, you can refreeze them. The texture of the abalone will not change.
On the other hand, once it’s thawed, the texture will be altered. When it goes through the process of freezing and thawing more than once, the quality of it will deteriorate even further.
To prevent having to refreeze abalone, take only the amount you need to use.
Other Questions about Abalone
Can you freeze cooked abalone?
Yes, cooked abalone can be frozen. Remove any excess moisture or oil from the abalone. Then wrap each one individually with cling film. This will prevent them from sticking to each other during freezing. Also, it will make it easier for you to remove them from the freezer.
Then place the individually wrapped abalone into an airtight container or freezer bag. If you’re using a freezer bag, squeeze out the air before sealing it. Then transfer the container or freezer bag to the freezer.