And what’s in YOUR freezer?…hopefully more than ice cream and ice cubes, unless of course, you’re a university student!
Well we have more than that in ours, however at the time of this writing, I don’t even have any ice cream! 😦 Occasionally I treat myself to a Ben&Jerry’s, but only when it’s on sale.
Your freezer can be your best friend when it comes to keeping foods. It is good for keeping ice cream and cubes, but you can keep so much more in there. We actually have two freezers. We have a small chest freezer plus the one that came attached to the fridge. 😉 Because we have two, I keep a listing of what is in each one, labeling the fridge/freezer as Freezer 1 and the chest freezer as Freezer 2. I just defrosted Freezer 1 Monday morning and updated the listing as I hadn’t updated since April(!).
Without showing you the actual freezer, here’s a photo of the listing so you can see just what we have. I shared my herbs and spices with you, so why not my freezer contents?
We cross things off as they’re used and also hand write in things when we add to it. So when the list starts looking like a bunch of scribble, it’s time to update.
As you can see, we have a pretty good selection of items to choose from and putting a meal together is not too much of a hassle. However, there are probably some items that we all should have in our freezers, known as ‘standbys’…those items that really come in handy should you need them at the last minute and don’t feel like running to the shops. They make for stress-free cooking, especially as the holidays are right around the corner…
TOP 10 FREEZER STANDBYS
1. Bacon, sausages and fish fingers. Great for breakfasts, brunches and feeding the kids.
2. Butter can be frozen for about 6 months. It’s one of those must-have items that always runs out, so it’s worth buying extra.
3. Grated cheese can be used straight from the freezer.
4. Milk and pots of double cream/heavy cream. Defrost them in the fridge overnight.
5. Peas, along with green beans are good for everything from soups to stews and as a side dish.
6. Use ready-made pastry for tarts or mince pies. Pastry takes about an hour to defrost.
7. Seasonal fruits can be open-frozen on a tray when picked in summer before transferring to a plastic bag, to ensure they don’t freeze as a solid block. Use them as needed for a quick compote, crumble filling or to top your breakfast porridge or yogurt.
8. Sliced bread and bagels can be toasted from frozen. A great time-saving tip is to cut bagels in half before freezing and slipping a piece of baking paper between them so they can easily be separated for toasting.
9. Soups can be heated gently from frozen. Great for emergency lunches.
10. Freeze leftover chicken stock ready for a soup base or extra gravy.
And finally, don’t forget the ice cubes! It’s tempting to ditch the ice cube tray when you’re desperate for space, but they’re essential for drinks when you’re entertaining.
Always label and date everything you put into your freezer because no matter how much you think you’ll remember what it is, you won’t!