The freezer is your friend

Categories: LIVE WELL.

We lead such busy lives nowadays and I find my freezer invaluable, even though I don’t buy ready meals.

It saves me time and money.  If I’ve been whooping I often freeze my reduced food items.   

photo of fridge freezerFreezers are also great if you have leftovers or if you batch cook recipes and portion up extra meals for when you’re short on time. 

It’s always good to keep a list of what you put in the freezer and update it as you use things up. I keep a small notebook on top of the microwave, just the job.

Here are some of the things that I freeze regularly:

Sliced bread/Pittas/bagels – never end up with mouldy bread again. Defrost slices as required for butties or toast straight from the freezer

Breadcrumbs – I always keep a bag of breadcrumbs in stock, handy for gratins and coating fish/meat before baking

Homemade cakes/muffins – take out in the morning to defrost by lunch

Blue cheese – cut into 1” chunks. It can be added straight to homemade soup for extra flavour

Parmesan cheese – I finely grate the whole block and freeze in a sealed bag or box. I use it straight from the freezer.

Cheddar – coarsely grate and freeze in a zip bag. Use in omelettes or to make a cheesy sauce for lasagne

Halloumi – I slice this before freezing, defrost before using

Egg whites – defrost before using in meringues

Herbs – chop up chives, rosemary, sage, coriander, tarragon, parsley and freeze in individual small tubs (I use Philadelphia tubs).  They should last for a couple of months, add to stews, pasta, stir frys as required

Veg – leftover fresh and cooked veg all get bagged up for future soup adventures.  Frozen peas and sweetcorn are handy staples to have for side veg if you run out of other veg for soup making.

Fruit – for smoothies and purees. Freeze bananas in their skins, handy for banana cake.

Meat – Trim off any excess fat/skin and dice or chop up if necessary before freezing. It’ll save time in the future.

BaconFreeze rashers in small bags of 2 or 4.

Fish – freeze portions of salmon, smoked cod/haddock, prawns, cod loin

Smoked salmon – freeze in 50g size portions. Defrost and add to pasta dishes or fish pie

Prawns – defrost before using