Cooked sliced flat beans in sieve. Beans having been blanched (placed in cold water) after cooking in order to keep their green color. Cooking pan on white wood planks. Amber light. High point of view.
The Blanching Shortcut Every Home Cook Should Know
Blanching is a technique that helps retain the nutrients, vibrant color, and crisp texture of vegetables, but the cooking process needs to be halted quickly for the best results.
Traditionally, the cooked vegetables are transferred into an ice-water bath to halt cooking, but cold running tap water can be just as effective with small batches of vegetables.
The cold running water technique quickly cools down the vegetables, saving valuable time in stopping the cooking process and preventing further heat absorption.
Quickly cooling the vegetables helps retain the vegetables’ natural flavors and crispness by halting enzymatic activity that can lead to a loss of flavor.
Once the vegetables are cooked to the desired tenderness, immediately run them under cold tap water for at least a minute or until they have cooled completely.
The continuous flow helps maintain consistent cooling, but be sure to drain off any extra water to keep it from heating and further cooking the vegetables, too.
This technique is best for smaller quantities of vegetables. If you are cooking larger batches, divide them into manageable portions and blanch separately for optimal cooling.