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HOW TO BLANCH, PARBOIL

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The term "blanching" refers to the technique of plunging a food, usually a vegetable or fruit, into boiling water until either its color has set or the food has softened slightly. This takes anywhere from a few seconds to several minutes, depending on what is being blanched.
 

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Then the food is removed to an ice bath to "shock," or stop the cooking process and to set color.
 

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Why do you use this technique? It makes it easier to peel the skin of fruits like tomatoes and peaches. It also enhances the color of vegetables like green beans or broccoli. That is why the blanched green beans shown here look so vivid.
 

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It's also a good idea to blanch vegetables you intend to freeze, because blanching inactivates the enzymes that promote spoilage.
 

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Parboiling is a technique that is similar to blanching, but takes a bit longer. Parboiled food is actually partially cooked. This technique is especially useful when you are stir-frying foods that take different amounts of time to cook. If you parboil a dense food, such as broccoli, you can add it to your wok at the last minute to cook along with a quicker-cooking food, such as shrimp.

 

 

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