Frozen milk?
March 16, 2020 9:49 PM   Subscribe

I ordered some milk, didn't read the fine print, and it was delivered frozen. Is there any way to make this milk not gross?

I'm not a milk expert, but I live in China and am on day 60 of self quarantine and wanted to drink some fresh milk. All of the milk I've had in China has been garbage, so we found a place that supposedly had really high quality milk, but I didn't realize they would deliver it frozen...makes sense for "freshness," but AFAIK, freezing milk totally messes up the makeup? Not to mention the directions are to boil it on the stove to thaw it which, again...sort of ruins my dreams of a nice crisp glass of milk.

I could boil it, then put it in the fridge for a while and see but...I dunno. Again, not a milk expert.

This is trivial in the face of everything but hey, at least it's a thread that's not about covid
posted by wooh to Food & Drink (11 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: Just put it in the fridge and let it thaw, it will be fine. I don't think freezing changes milk at all. Growing up we always kept bags of milk in the freezer and they were fine. Enjoy your milk!
posted by piper4 at 9:55 PM on March 16, 2020 [11 favorites]

Best answer: We buy bagged milk (#canada) and keep it in the freezer on the regular. Defrosts fine over several days in the fridge or in a pinch immersed in water in the sink for a few hours - granted this latter method seems to leave more fat clinging to the bag, but doesn't impact the taste.

I've always found milk flavours to vary wildly when travelling tho - good luck!!
posted by stray at 10:04 PM on March 16, 2020

Best answer: +1 frozen milk is fine. Or at least the freezing isn’t going to be the main issue.
posted by J.R. Hartley at 10:08 PM on March 16, 2020 [1 favorite]

Best answer: We actually froze a half gallon of milk about a week ago deliberately in case of emergency lockdown in our town. Agree with stray - you may end up with a somewhat "lowfat" version since the fat doesn't always mix back in gracefully, but otherwise no ill effects. (Moms often freeze their breastmilk to lay in extra supplies when nursing, so unlikely that it does much harm to the milk!)
posted by BlueBlueElectricBlue at 10:15 PM on March 16, 2020

Response by poster: Seems like I was worried for nothing. Will thaw a couple in the fridge and live that canadian lifestyle...thanks everyone!
posted by wooh at 10:21 PM on March 16, 2020 [9 favorites]

AFAIK, freezing milk totally messes up the makeup

I thought it did mess up the colloid aspect of it because ice crystals pierce through the layers of proteins that coat the fat particles and mess up the fat-water emulsion. So it might separate more than usual. Maybe just shaking it in a bottle or jar before serving will fix it though.
posted by aubilenon at 10:27 PM on March 16, 2020 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Frozen milk separates a bit and therefore tastes a little bit more low fat than it is, but is fine. Shaking will help mix it back in a bit if possible, but if not don’t sweat it, just drink it!

Also it’s best to wait til it ALL thaws- if you drink half thawed milk that still has a big ice chunk, you will throw off the fat balance and the rest will taste more watery... Like when you suck all the syrup from a frozen dessert.

Source: am Canadian, therefore freeze milk all the time.
posted by nouvelle-personne at 10:40 PM on March 16, 2020 [9 favorites]

Best answer: Just don’t be tempted to start drinking it when it’s partially thawed, because that really will mess up the water/fat balance. (I forget which way. I think the fatty part thaws first?)
posted by leahwrenn at 10:44 PM on March 16, 2020 [1 favorite]

Yes wait till it is completely thawed. It's my recollection that the fat thaws *last* and remains a big fatty chunk in the middle for potentially days after the rest has liquefied, depending on how much milk we're talking about here. If you try to drink it before the fat thaws it's very watery. But if you are patient, shake it up once no solid component remains (and shake it again every time you go to pour some) and it should be pretty much like regular old milk.
posted by potrzebie at 11:29 PM on March 16, 2020 [1 favorite]

Pro tip: icy cold thawed milk that still has little pieces of ice in it is THE BEST.
posted by SLC Mom at 2:29 PM on March 17, 2020 [1 favorite]

When the milk is fully thawed, put it in a blender to mix the fats back in evenly.
posted by Transl3y at 12:30 AM on March 18, 2020

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