This Fuller Life

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Freezer Cooking 2012 (Part 4)

Well, I was planning on cooking one more recipe yesterday. But as you can see in the picture, the freezer is full! I am not fitting anything else in there.

We will have to start eating out of the freezer before I can add anything else. I guess this is a good problem :). I also finally got my kitchen back in order. Life is good!

I promised you I would give you the recipes for everything I made this week, so I made a list. Most of them came from blogs, so I have a link to each recipe and to the home page of the blog.

I got the recipe for Green Chili Chicken Chili from the blog The Whole Kitchen.

Bolognese from The Pioneer Woman.

Red Enchilada sauce from Alosha’s Kitchen. I didn’t have a recipe for the filling of the enchiladas. I just guessed on amounts for the beef, black beans, veggie filling, and cheese.

Chicken, broccoli, and brown rice casserole from Freeze Your Way Fit. I modified this recipe quite a bit and added carrots, mushrooms, peas, jalapenos, and garlic and used only a quarter of the cheese it called for.

Gluten- Free Shepherd’s Pie from Gluten Free Goddess. I also modified this recipe a lot. I didn’t use the mashed potato topping and called it pot pie filling. I used half the amount of chicken called for and added the rest in white beans. I added mushrooms and corn and didn’t use artichokes. I also used real butter in the sauce instead of vegan butter.

As for the chili, it is a family recipe.

As a recap of this experience, I froze a total of 44 meals. In addition I froze 3 bags of chicken, 8 bags of beans, and 3 bags of brown rice with 2 cups in each bag for quick meals. I also froze 4 jars of enchilada sauce, and six jars of roasted red salsa.

I think the hardest part was not having enough large containers to hold the large quantities of food during prep. It slowed me down a lot because I could really only work on one recipe at a time and spent a lot of time juggling food between different containers.

The other issue was the heat coupled with lack of freezer space. I didn’t mind working in the heat as I am mostly used to it. But when room temperature is 95 degrees, the freezers and fridge have to work that much harder to cool down the food. I think my strategy next time will include coolers and lots of ice to cool down the food before I put it in the freezer. Hopefully putting in cold food would help freeze the food quicker as I had to stack them on top of each other to get them in. On the second day, I tried to rotate a many bags as I could through the fridge first to cool down, and then to the top freezer, and finally to the chest freezer. That seemed to work better.

The biggest highlight is that I have 44 ready-made meals in the freezer. I definitely think this experience was worth it and there will definitely be a next time. I have learned so much and despite the amount of hard work, I enjoyed it immensely.

Thanks for reading!

 

3 Comments

  1. You are my kind of cook – prepping and planning ahead for the week (and month) ahead! I binge cook on Sunday mornings to get all lunches, breakfasts and snacks ready for the week ahead. It’s the only way I can be sure to get good food on the table! Thanks for the link to the green chicken chili!

    • Noelle Fuller

      August 12, 2014 at 4:47 pm

      You are welcome, and I am excited that you came by to comment on my page! I have to say that your soups are the best! Your recipe for pumpkin thai curry soup is one of my most used recipes in the winter. I have also tried your turkey soup, lentil soup, and several other recipes. You are a fabulous cook!

  2. You inspired Jaime & I! We went and bought a deep freezer yesterday!

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