Are you planning to freeze your injera (flatbread) but wondering if freezing is wise decision? You’re not alone!
Firstly, what’s injera? It’s a popular Ethiopian flatbread, adored for its mild flavor and spongy texture.
Injera is Ethiopia and Eritrea’s national food. It’s a delicacy in the East African region. And what’s more, you can eat it with soup, salad, and stews.
Injera is sometimes difficult to get, forcing many flatbread lovers to make their injera at home using teff flour. But the challenge that some persons face is how to store injera.
When stored at room temperature, injera can stay eatable for 2 to 3 days. This short shelf-life has forced many people to ask questions about the possibility of freezing injera. Is it possible? Let’s find out.
Does Injera Freeze Well?
Yes, injera freezes well. The flatbread can stay fresh in the freezer for many months. However, it is advisable to consume injera as quickly as possible, whether frozen or not. The reason is that the longer you store your injera, the higher the chances of the flavor and texture depleting.
When frozen, the texture or flavor change might not be much but be obvious. But this change shouldn’t prevent you from freezing your injera. Your frozen injera can remain healthy for consumption for months.
So, injera stores well in the freezer, but keep in mind that how you prep the flatbread before freezing is crucial. The prepping would determine if the bread would last for months or less in the freezer.
How To Freeze Injera?
Prepping is the most important process when freezing injera. If you don’t prep the flatbread well, it won’t freeze well.
The state your injera is in determines the prepping and freezing. Let’s discuss the diverse ways to freeze injera.
- How to freeze unopened injera:
If your injera is unopened, then you have less work to do. Just label the package to remember the storage date and freeze. But remember to use the flatbread before it passes the storage date.
- How to freeze homemade injera:
The first step is to allow the injera to cool down. Avoid freezing hot or warm foods.
Your freshly made injera should cool down in an hour or two. After that, wrap in aluminum foil.
It is important to wrap your injera well before freezing. Exposing any portion of the flatbread will cause water crystal’s form into the bread, depleting its shelf-life and causing a massive change in flavor.
So, wrap thoroughly. Also, remember to place wax paper between the bread to prevent them from sticking together. Please do this before wrapping it with aluminum foil.
After wrapping the injera in aluminum foil, please place it in a freezer bag. Remember to squeeze out the air in the bag before placing the injera. And label the bag before you place it in the freezer.
- How to freeze leftover injera:
Freezing leftover injera is the same step as freezing homemade injera.
Wrap the leftover in aluminum foil after eating the amount of flatbread you can eat. Put wax paper between each flatbread to prevent them from sticking together.
Place the injera in a freezer bag (squeeze out the air), label the bag, and freeze.
How To Defrost Injera?
Injera isn’t so difficult to thaw, but you must do it correctly to avoid messing up the texture and flavor of the flatbread.
So, how do you defrost injera?
Transfer the frozen flatbread from the freezer to your kitchen counter.
Please don’t move it from the freezer to the fridge, as doing so increases the chances of the flatbread losing its flavor when reheated. While on the counter, give the flatbread an hour or more to defrost completely.
A Handy Tip: You can also thaw injera in the oven under low heat.
How To Store Injera?
You can store injera in diverse ways. Let’s discuss each of them.
1. Store injera at room temperature
Let’s assume you have made fresh injera and want to store it. Since the flatbread is still hot, place it on a wire rack to allow it to cool down.
Once the injera cools down (within an hour), please place it in a plastic wrap. Now transfer the flatbread to your pantry.
It is important to store injera in a cool and dry place, in a pantry. And when stored at room temperature, injera can last for 7 to 9 days. But make sure you consume yours within 2 to 3 days.
2. Store injera in the fridge
You can keep it in a fridge, but keep in mind that the flatbread’s shelf-life might be within 21 days.
However, it’s advisable to consume injera stored in the fridge within 5 to 7 days. By the way, the earlier, the better.
3. Store injera in the freezer
If you want your injera to have a longer shelf-life, the freezer is the right place to store your flatbread.
When stored in the freezer, injera can last for 2 to 3 months. But keep in mind that prepping is crucial when storing injera in the fridge or freezer, as it determines whether the flatbread would reach the suggested shelf-life.
How Do You Reheat Frozen Injera?
Warming injera isn’t a difficult task. You can use a microwave or oven toaster.
When using a microwave, avoid sticking the flatbread in the microwave directly. Instead, get several damp paper towels and place them on the injera.
What role do damp paper towels play? They help prevent the microwave’s heat from drying out the flatbread. Using damp paper towels also keeps the flatbread moist throughout its stay in the microwave.
You can reheat your injera in an oven toaster for at least two minutes. It all depends on how you want your flatbread’s texture to be.
A Handy Tip: Heat injera in a microwave for 30 seconds. Overheating injera can make them rubbery and unappealing.
How Long Can You Keep Injera in The Fridge?
Injera stored in the fridge won’t last long as the one stored in the freezer. However, storing this flatbread in the fridge is far better than storing them on the counter at room temperature.
So, how long does injera stored in a fridge last? It can last for at least 21 days, though consuming the flatbread within 5 to 7 days is advisable.
Furthermore, injera stored in the freezer can last for up to 3 months. Just make sure the prep was done properly. Ensure no portion of the stored flatbread is exposed.
How To Tell If Injera Has Gone Bad?
The first question many may want to ask is; can injera go bad? Well, yes, it can go bad.
Now, how can you identify injera that has gone bad?
You can tell if your flatbread has gone bad via the visible signs. Check if the injera has a white or gray color on it. If it has, then it has gone bad.
The best option for injera bread that has gone bad is to discard it. Using heat to kill the mold to make the bread edible again is not advisable.
What To Do With Leftover Injera?
Imagine having pieces of flatbread (injera) as leftovers, and you aren’t thinking of storing them for much longer. What exactly can you use these pieces of leftover injera for? Maybe that’s the question running through your head.
Discarding the leftover injera shouldn’t be an option, as wasting food in such a manner isn’t a wise decision. The best way to use the leftover injera is to combine them with different dishes to fill your stomach with diverse flavors.
So, below are the simple things you can do with your leftover injera.
1. Prepare fruit stacks
If you plan to consume something sweet for breakfast or dinner, give the fruit stack a shot.
The things you need for this amazing food are simple and accessible. You’ll need ricotta cheese, honey, lemon, fruits, and leftover injera.
2. Prepare nacho
Have you had nacho lately? If not, use your leftover injera to make some. If you like snacking, this should be a no-brainer.
The things you require to make nacho are simple. In addition to the leftover injera, you’ll require cheese, dal, avocado, sour cream, sliced jalapenos, and red onions.
Most people enjoy adding lemon to the mix, giving the nacho a refreshing taste. You can consider that too.
3. Prepare vegetable wraps
If you have leftover injera, but don’t have the time to prepare complex meals, try preparing some vegetable wraps. It can serve as your evening meal or dinner.
Conclusion: Can you freeze injera?
Yes, you can. Injera, which is a flatbread, freezes well too. But you must prepare your injera well before storage.
When stored at room temperature, injera can stay edible for 2 to 3 days. It can last for 21 days in the fridge and 3 months in the freezer.
Injera can go bad too. Keep that in mind. When you discover gray or white coloration on the flatbread, know it’s time to discard it.