This week in my Kitchen…Store Cupboard Basics…Part 10…The Freezer…

Keeping a little stock of freezer essentials at home is a great idea. It can help you throw together recipes for meals is easy to do and is a great standby…

Do you have some leftover cooked rice plus some bits and pieces of cooked vegetables cut them up into small pieces carrots a few peas, and sweetcorn just mix them together and freeze…

Frozen produce is also available year-round, and in most cases is cheaper than fresh….studies have also shown that fresh produce can lose up to 45% of its essential nutrients during the journey from farm to table…

Frozen Chopped Spinach is a great freezer standby and can be used in stir-fries, curries or added to a casserole.

Frozen Fruits are great for smoothies, pies and crumbles plus most fruits freeze really well…freezing is great if you have a glut of fruit or vegetables…squash can be pureed and then frozen in portions for soup…

I also freeze frozen segments of citrus fruits and strawberries to pop in drinks…my favourite is pomelo which is similar to grapefruit…

Bread freezes really well plus if you are on your own it’s great to slice bread and take a slice or two out as required…Bread crumbs also freeze really well…Bread can be frozen baked or unbaked and if you make your own it can save time if you batch bake…

Wrap each loaf tightly in plastic wrap. Then wrap it in foil or freezer paper. The double wrap is your secret weapon for freshness…wrapped properly most bread stores well in the freezer for 4-6 months…The main exception to this is very crusty bread like a French baguette, which can come apart after it’s been frozen and thawed, so is best just eaten on the day it’s bought or made, fresh…

Frozen Fish…fish frozen as soon as it’s caught is a wonderful addition to your freezer…Any frozen fish or shellfish will be safe indefinitely; however, the flavour and texture will lessen after lengthy storage. For best quality, freeze (0 °F / -17.8 °C or less) cooked fish for up to 3 months. Frozen raw fish is best used within 3 to 8 months; shellfish, 3 to 12 months.

The best raw fish to freeze is …

  • Fatty fish like mackerel, tuna, salmon, and swordfish.
  • Large fillets like halibut, monkfish, cod, pollock, and haddock.
  • Scallops, lobster, shucked clams, or squid.

Frozen Pastry…Frozen puff pastry will last 10-12 months in the freezer. It’s best to put your pastry in the freezer as soon as possible and keep it at -18°C. Puff pastry can easily get freezer burn, so make sure to store it in airtight packaging.

Shortcrust pastry can be frozen for around a month. Some home bakers like to freeze their pastry as a dough ball. Alternatively, others freeze shortcrust pastry after it has been cooked, which is perfectly fine, too.

Frozen chips/fries…its always handy to have a bag of frozen chips/fries in the freezer or you can make your own especially if you have a glut of potatoes…if you are making your own Once frozen, move frozen fries to a zip-top freezer bag for longer storage. Frozen fries can be stored in the freezer for up to 3 months…you might be wondering why anyone would bother with making their own frozen fries. Freezing your own french fries is cheaper and gives you control over the ingredients, and because you cut the fries yourself, they can be exactly the size you prefer…

Ice Cream…ice cream is wonderful and although it freezes well I do not keep a stock in my freezer…Why it’s too tempting…I keep a few lollies for the kids and the rest I buy or make as required…

Frozen Herbs and Aromatics…if you dry or freeze herbs or aromatics, you should never have to run out or waste any again… it’s quite easy for example when you buy a piece of ginger to use in a recipe, and after you’re done cooking, you have some ginger left over too much to throw away so you put it in the fridge “to save for another day,” when really what happens is that it slowly goes mouldy until it hits full-on blue fur status and all wrinkly, and you finally toss it in the bin…I have been as guilty of that as anyone…

How to freeze ginger:

  1. Use a vegetable peeler, paring knife, or spoon(which) is my preferred method to peel the entire piece of ginger.
  2. Slice the ginger into discs.
  3. Place the ginger slices into a freezer bag, press out any air, seal, and freeze! …Easy as 1,2.3…

Just make sure you dry your ginger to avoid those little discs sticking together…they will thaw easily or your can use frozen ginger can be chopped, minced, or simply added straight to hot oil to add fragrance and flavour.

Whether it is spring Onions(green)onions, chillies or lemon grass these are all aromatics that I tend to have an excess of then freeze them…after washing thoroughly the onions just need topping and tailing…I separate the white part of the onion from the green and then freeze them.

Chillies after washing can be frozen whole or chopped and lemongrass just wash thoroughly then top and tail and freeze making sure that they are dry… Use silicon bags which are washable and watertight plus they are kinder to the environment.

Herbs like coriander and parsley also freeze really well…just wash thoroughly and using a salad spinner make sure they are dried well then freeze, making sure there is no air in the bags to use there is no need to thaw just add to recipes.

Herbs also freeze well in icecube trays…

Thank you for joining me today…my holiday is drawing to a close only one more week until I head back home…I hope you are all have a productive week and as always I look forward to your comments xx

15 thoughts on “This week in my Kitchen…Store Cupboard Basics…Part 10…The Freezer…

  1. Pingback: CarolCooks2 weekly roundup… 17th -23rd July 2022-Monday Musings, Health, Obesity, Store Cupboard Basics …The Freezer… and Saturday Snippets where “Miracle” is my one word prompt.… | Retired? No one told me!

  2. Sue Dreamwalker

    A post dear to my heart Carol… I freeze a lot of our produce to use in winter months especially fruits such as raspberries and Blackberries, Sweetcorn… Among many other things…. We have two huge chest freezers in the garage and a normal under counter one in the kitchen..
    Loved the tip on how to freeze Ginger ❤

    I also make several pies often in one cook day to freeze for meals later on..

    We buy our fish in bulk fresh from a supplier who delivers from the coast about every 3 months, and freeze. And have back up generators just in case! 🙂
    Thank you for the reminder too about left over rice etc….
    Have a great weekend Carol ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
    1. CarolCooks2 Post author

      Wow , Sue thats a lot of freezers… I also batch cook or make enough to enable me to freeze portions for another day.. You are lucky to have a good source of fish to freeze, Sue I am envious… I hope you have a good weekend too xx

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      Reply
  3. Dorothy's New Vintage Kitchen

    All good tips Carol (and Dolly!). I consider my freezer to be such an important component in my efforts to eat as locally as possible. Whether it is packing my pesto in little containers to use all year, or freezing our lovely local corn or blueberries, they all feel like treasurers tucked away.
    I love your idea of mixing all the little veggies with the rice to freeze. You’ve got the better part of a meal in one container!

    Liked by 1 person

    Reply
    1. CarolCooks2 Post author

      I agree, Dorothy and thank you my freezer is also my friend and packed with lots of little titbits it saves all waste…and a lovely way to enjoy those little treasures out of season…:)

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply

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