I was so blessed to receive this piece of encouragement in my e-mail inbox last week from Grace a reader of mine. Here's what she had to say:
I loved your ABC's of Freezer book! Don't apologize for recommending making the same recipe! That is why I loved your book. I have tried so many freeze ahead plans that left me exhausted I wanted to make a bunch of something that used one kind of meat. So your practical ideas encouraged me to re-think the cooking for a month.
You asked for ideas. One thing I have done is that when I am cooking chicken breasts I go ahead and season a bunch of them, may be 4 meals worth (garlic, salt, pepper) and get them browned in a bit of oil. Then when they are cooled I bag them. They are ready for any number of sauces like Hoisin, Teriyaki or Bar-B-Que. If I freeze chicken breasts raw with sauce they don't taste as good as this way.
When I do a beef batch I have a real good way to make ahead a stir-fry meat. This I freeze raw and freezes well. I cut up in thin slices enough beef for 4 - 8 meals, about 1/3 - 1/2 lb each baggie. It is not a lot because I am going to add lots of veggies when I cook. I mix all the cut up beef in a mixture of
- 2 T. soy sauce
- 1 t. sugar
- 2 T. cornstarch dissolved in 2 T. water
- 1 T. oil
- I put the meat in this marinade and then divide and freeze. Just thaw when ready to use. It is very tasty and has a nice texture.
- It can be used with a Beef broccoli dish. A good sauce over this would be
- 1/2 c. soy sauce
- 1 T. cornstarch
- 1/2 c. water
- 1 tsp of garlic
- 1 t. sugar
- several drops of sesame oil (optional)
- 1 T. Oyster sauce (optional)
I also use this meat in a Chinese Noodle dish, using Ramen noodles. I use one pack of meat that I cook first, then I cook veggies while I am boiling a couple of packes of Ramen.
For this noodle sauce I use one of the packets of seasoning with soy sauce, corn starch, a tad sesame oil, sugar and water. I boil this so it is thick. Taste to see if it is how you like it. I pour this sauce over the dish when it is on the serving dish. If you cook the meat and the veggies in the sauce it seems to make everything soggy.
I have been known to use this meat in fajitas as well. : )
I am glad you are helping moms to re-think the meal routine. My kids, eventhough they are teens still love to have the same meals over and over.
Thanks so much for the recipes Grace! If you haven't gotten a copy of The ABC's of Freezer cooking yet it's only $2.99 on Amazon. (PS if you've read it and enjoyed it a review would bless my socks off!)