Chowpup on the way, never frozen meals!
We have a chowpuppy on the way and I know in my heart of hearts that the right thing to do is freeze a bunch of meals (preferably that can be prepared in less than one quarter of a Sunday afternoon football game :)). The only problem is that I've never been a big freezer girl - small apartment freezers. Well, the smallness of my apartment has not changed, but my need for quicker, less labor-intensive meals has (or is going to). I have frozen lasagne with success, but aside from that, I'm not really sure what freezes well and what doesn't.
Do you have any tips for freezing that you wouldn't mind sharing? I'm particularly interested to know what can/cannot be frozen, what is best frozen in a partially-prepared form vs. what should be fully cooked before freezing, and other such tips. And, of course, any recipes that you have would be GREATLY appreciated.
(By the way, I did see the post a few weeks ago about the teacher looking for frozen meal ideas, so I will DEFINITELY hit those up!)
My twins are almost 5 and my baby is 18 mos. I have gotten very friendly with my freezer in the past few years. Here are some of the things I have stashed away right now:
chicken stock, minestrone soup, tortilla soup (barefoot contessa at home), mac n cheese- cut into squares, lasagana, assorment of good sauasages, basic tomato sauce, meatballs, bbq brisket, chili- some beef and some chicken, some great breads- bought fresh, sliced and frozen, muffins (pumpkin, berry & banana), scones.
Also, lately, I have been buying double quantity of chicken and for whatever I am going to prepare for dinner, I make an extra batch to store in the freezer-- I have a chicken marbella and a few different marinades.
I haven't had much trouble with things not defrosting well. I have most poultry frozen in an uncooked state but the beef is cooked with the exception of a hamburger and few pieces of steak that my baby loves.
Also, I found that I had some time to stroll through farmers markets with my infants and I may have been lucky but my kids were pretty easygoing and good sleepers so when my baby was 5 days old, I made the zuni cafe roast chicken for dinner. Good luck and have fun cooking.
These are the threads that I have bookmarked on frozen meal. I am about to start freezing in a couple of weeks (going back to work after my mat leave).