Freezer Cooking For 30 Days – My Experience

Freezer Clean-out Week 4

For whatever reason, meal prep has been very they stressful and challenging.  I don’t know if it is because the kids are getting older and they are eating more, or if I just can’t get my act together. Maybe it is a little bit of both.  Whatever the reason, meals have been a real struggle lately.

Last week when I visited our library, I went to my favorite section, cookbooks! As I was browsing, I found a book that I had looked into several years ago. It was called “Frozen Assets” by Deborah Taylor-Hough. I borrowed it and looked it over. Art and I talked about it and yesterday, I finally took the plunge and bought all the ingredients to make 30 meals.

I loaded up all the kids, making sure that everyone had used the potty before we left, armed with my Ergobaby, hand sanitizer, coupons and shopping list.  Price Chopper was my first stop and I picked up about three-quarters of my list there but there were some items that I just could NOT justify buying because I knew that I could get it much cheaper at another store. Other than tripping over the boys and having to remind them that they can not go three wide down the aisle when other shoppers are trying to go down the aisle too, the trip was fairly uneventful.

After successfully extricating myself, the groceries and my kids from Price Chopper, I had an errand to run that happened to be less than a mile from a Walmart Grocery. I rarely shop at Walmart but I decided since I was so close I might as well stop by and check the prices.  I ended up getting almost everything else at Walmart except the mozzarella cheese. Cheese was $4.25lb at Walmart and I can get a 5lb bag on my restaurant supply store for $2.50 a lb.  That is a BIG difference.

I got everything together when I got home and immediately started to boil my chickens and make my pasta sauce.  I was on call at 6pm so I only had time to put together my two pans of lasagna before I had to leave the house.  When I got back home, it was almost 10pm. Art kindly helped me to take the meat off of the chicken bones.

This morning, I woke up and immediately jumped right into more prep and assembling the meals. I had Charity help me with the meat mixture while I finished up making the ziti.  By noon, I was pooped, clueless on what I was going to serve for lunch and I still had all the chicken and ham dishes to prepare.  After lunch and rest time in the afternoon, I managed to get another three meals put in the freezer before it was time for dinner. As for what is left, I still have one chicken dish and two ham dishes to make.

My take away of prepping for 30 freezer meals…it is a LOT of work! You really could benefit from a team of people all working with you at once to make the prep go faster. Tomorrow will be the third day of this and I’m ready for it to be over! I’m not sure if I will try this again. I suppose it will depend on how much I enjoy having all of my dinners prepared for me. Maybe there is a learning curve to freezer cooking that makes things go quicker. Honestly, I don’t know, but I do know that I wouldn’t know how well it worked (or didn’t) until I at least tried it once!

Please be sure to follow me on Facebook, Twitter, Youtube and Google+ for more updates on my #freezercooking.

 

Low-Carb Sauteed Kale with Caramelized Onions and Bacon

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If you have never tried cooked kale before and your concerned that it might be too strong for you tastes, try this recipe!  It is full of bacon flavor with a hint of spicy bite to it from the jalapeno peppers

Low-Carb Sauteed Kale with Caramelized Onions and Bacon
 
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This low-carb side dish is full of flavor!
Author:
Serves: 2
Ingredients
  • 1 onion
  • 4-6 slices bacon
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 4-6 oz washed kale leaves
  • 1 chopped jalapeno pepper
  • ½ cup bone broth (can use chicken bouillon if needed)
  • Salt and Pepper
Instructions
  1. Remove thick steam from kale and loosely tear clean, kale leaves
  2. Thinly slice your onion
  3. Finely chop your jalapeno pepper
  4. Place bacon, onions, peppers and olive oil in medium size skillet over medium heat
  5. Stir frequently to caramelize onions and peppers
  6. Remove bacon from skillet when crisp and let onions and peppers finish cooking
  7. When onions are brown and caramelized, add bone broth and kale
  8. Cover and cook for 5 minutes, stirring once
  9. Crumble bacon and add to skillet after cooking is complete

 

Grilled Zucchini Tater Tot Recipe

I made these tonight and they were fantastic! The flavor was filled with smokey goodness. I used frozen zucchini and just thawed it out. Most of the water had already been removed, so it was really easy to squeeze out the rest of it.

Zucchini tater tot

Grilled Zucchini Tater Tots
 
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Full of smokey flavor from the grill!
Author:
Recipe type: Appetizer/Side dish
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 1 cup grated zucchini (fresh or frozen)
  • 1 egg
  • ¼ cup of seasoned bread crumbs
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • ¼ cup Parmesan cheese (can also use your favorite type of cheese)
  • ¼ cup finely chopped onion
Instructions
  1. Squeeze zucchini dry (this is easier if you are using thawed zucchini).
  2. Mix with all of the other ingredients.
  3. Shape into small mounds using your hands and place on greased pan.
  4. Put pan on top grate of hot grill and close lid on grill for 5-6 minutes. After 5-6 minutes, flip your tater tots so both sides brown evenly. Cook for another 5-6 minutes.
  5. Serve with a light and refreshing cucumber/dill dip.