Help! I paniced & threw my teas into the freezer. Now what?


White and yellow teas are among the most subtle.

Help! I paniced & threw my teas into the freezer. Now what?

Postby Kristin » Sep 26th, '12, 22:53

I was doing battle with pantry moths and threw away about $300 worth of food. I do not keep my teas near the pantry, and from what I can tell, they were not affected. I poured them out into a shallow container and saw no signs of trouble or holes in the packaging. That said, I had just purged my whole house of grains and cereal, so I did not want the teas to be attacked next. I have a few white peony and a couple green teas. I chucked them into the freezer. :cry: Now what?

I pulled out the white peony today and put a serving of leaves on a paper towel so that it would hopefully soak up any moisture. Is there a way to remove the entire tea package from the freezer? And how long will it last after I do that?

I'm taking a trip and I want to bring some with me.
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Re: Help! I paniced & threw my teas into the freezer. Now what?

Postby jayinhk » Sep 27th, '12, 03:56

I'd take it all out and let it breathe in a cool, dry room, then pack it back up in a few hours. Spread it out so it it can dry out quickly. You may lose a little flavor, but I think it will still be plenty drinkable.
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Re: Help! I paniced & threw my teas into the freezer. Now what?

Postby Kristin » Sep 27th, '12, 07:54

Thanks so much for the reply!
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Re: Help! I paniced & threw my teas into the freezer. Now what?

Postby Chip » Sep 27th, '12, 08:05

You definitely want to allow the package(s) to remain closed after you take it out of the freezer. Once it is fully room temperature, then see what you have.

Opening it prematurely will allow condensation to form on the leaves ... realllly bad!!!
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Re: Help! I paniced & threw my teas into the freezer. Now what?

Postby jayinhk » Sep 28th, '12, 10:44

Condensation will form on the leaves regardless, no? There's still residual moisture in the package, right?
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Re: Help! I paniced & threw my teas into the freezer. Now what?

Postby Chip » Sep 28th, '12, 11:22

Perhaps, but opening the frozen bag opens it to all the external moisture as well.

The general practice prescribed by vendors is to remove the bag and allow it to sit until you feel the contents are room temperature. Then open.
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Re: Help! I paniced & threw my teas into the freezer. Now what?

Postby teaisme » Sep 28th, '12, 14:24

From hojo website,

Here’s one frequently asked question: what if I seal the bag using tape or what if I pack the tea in a zipper bag and store in the fridge?

For your information, these simple sealing methods are not sufficient. When the bag is withdrawn from the fridge, it is cold inside the bag and therefore causes negative pressure. Air will be drawn from outside and water condensation will take place. In addition, if the bag is frequently taken in and out from the fridge, this will cause heat stress to the tea leaves as temperature is increased and decreased very frequently. If tea is kept in the fridge, when it is withdrawn from the fridge, it is necessary to leave it in ambient atmosphere for more than 24 hours in order to warm up the tea leaves. Based on our experience, 12 hours is not long enough. We may think tea is warmed up, but inside the bag, the tea leaves are still cold due to insulation.

Considering yours was frozen, maybe you should consider even longer then 24hrs. Or... maybe japanese greens potential deterioration is a lot higher and faster. I thought I read somewhere vendors like to store long jing in freezer? Experiment and tell us how it goes, whether it seems like your tea has lost much :mrgreen:
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Re: Help! I paniced & threw my teas into the freezer. Now what?

Postby jayinhk » Sep 30th, '12, 05:23

My rationale for spreading it out was to let any condensation evaporate off as fast as possible. Mom stores bulk spices in the freezer, and when she pulls them out, you can feel the condensation on the bag and the spices. :shock:

Resting does sound like it makes sense too, but then the tea on the outside of the bag would get wet from the condensation pretty quickly.
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