Friday, August 3, 2012
For Me Friday: Freezer cooking - dinners
Second week of my For Me Friday installments! Check out my first post here. I was so excited to get so many great book suggestions from you all ... my to-read list is stocked!
Moving on to For Me Friday, part dos - freezer cooking. Freezer cooking has become one of my latest interests, and finding some great posts on Pinterest (seriously, what did we ever do before Pinterest?) has completely changed the way I view freezer cooking.
I used to be completely intimidated about putting together a bunch of meals all at one time. But one blogger I found pointed out that freezer cooking isn't just about putting together a complete meal to whip out (although that can definitely be part of it.) It's also about completing some of the inconvenient steps of recipes beforehand when it is actually convenient for you.
For example, I was making something recently that called for 1/3 of an onion. So I chopped the whole thing and froze the leftovers in 1/2 cup increments to pull out later when I'm making something like meatloaf or enchiladas, and then I don't have to waste that time chopping! Or browning and freezing ground beef with taco seasoning or spaghetti sauce to save you the time and effort (and dirty dishes that come with the territory) when you want to have a Mexican dish or spaghetti one night. Brilliant!
One day a few weeks ago, my good friend Geri came over from Champaign for the day to help me around the house and catch up, and so I made good use of having extra hands around and we whipped up some things for the freezer. It was great too, because she helped me conquer my fear of yeast :)
We made ham and cheese pinwheels that I've been able to pull out and heat up for lunch a few times, two batches of meatballs that I can just throw in the crockpot for spaghetti or meatballs subs, and two batches of meatloaf. I actually felt a huge amount of relief after she left, knowing that I had some easy foods ready for meals in the freezer.
There are so many things that freeze well, including crockpot meals. Some of my favorite freezer cooking posts come from One a Month Mom, Ring Around the Rosies , Jamie Cooks It Up and my favorite, A Turtle's Life for Me.
My advice is to stay organized by marking your containers or bags with what's inside, the date prepared and instructions. Then I also have a running list on my fridge with what's in the freezer that I can cross off when I use it.
I don't have time to be making meals from start to finish every day anymore (isn't that an understatement!), and that's OK, but I need to improvise...and freezing meals or parts of meals ahead of time is so convenient!
Posted by CWestlake at 6:36 AM