My First Attempt at Freezer Cooking (Part 1)

Other than my brief and busy visit home for Thanksgiving, I have basically been away for work for the past month, and am not sure when I will actually go home next… I’m hoping to be home for Halloween…  Before I went away, I wanted to prepare a bunch of food so that it is easy for my husband to eat healthy and frugally… So I decided to try my hand at some freezer cooking. I did some reading on the Internet and found a couple recipes that in wanted to try, made my shopping lists and then got to work.

(If you are reading between the lines, then you’ll realize that this post is now over a month late… I did all of this cooking before I went away… but when we are out at these job sites, we work at least 12 hour days, 7 days a week… so it is hard to find the time and energy to get posts written… On the plus side, I have some feedback on how successful I was… )

Because I was doing this in the evenings, I split up the prep up over a few evenings the week before I left, and basically made enough for meals for that week and some for the freezer… So this post was already going to be all over the place… add to that a month of forgetting… and yeah…

Freezer Cooking

I decided on making four meals, and put together some marinated chicken for other meals.  The first meal I made was my chili with beef and yam.

Beef and Yam Chili

Chili Ingredients
Chili Ingredients
When I sat down to chop the ingredients for this meal, I decided to try and get as much of the chopping done for all the rest of the meals too…

First the carrots…

Carrots

Then the yam…

Yam

The the garlic…

Garlic

And finally the onions… (I always leave the onions for last because they make me cry so much!)

Onions

Making chili is so easy, I really should do it more often.  After all the chopping was done, it’s basically throw everything in the pot, add some spices and let it simmer… Okay, first I browned the ground beef and sauteed the onions… but really it’s so easy… And the final product:

Yum!  Chili!
Yum! Chili! (after we have taken a lot for dinner…)
To store the chili for my husband while I was away, I put it in wide mouth jars and after refrigerating it overnight, I put them in the freezer.  Of course, I didn’t take any photos of that… so you’ll have to imagine what 4 big jars of chili in my freezer looks like.

Shepard’s Pie

The next night I decided to attempt two meals… the first was Shepard’s Pie.

Shepard's Pie Ingredients
Shepard’s Pie Ingredients
Shepard’s Pie is something that I never make… and I have no idea why… Okay, it might have something to do with having to make mashed potatoes and then put together the meal… If I make mashed potatoes normally, I want to just eat them… not bother with putting it all together and baking it more… Anyway, I started out with cooking the meat with some spices… and layering that in the baking pans first.

Shepards_Pie_Meat

Then I cooked up the veggies… recognize some of that chopping?  And layered them on top of the meat (saving some for my next recipe too).

Shepards_Pie_Veggies

And finally I peeled and mashed a bunch of potatoes to put on top…

Shepards_Pie_Potatoes

Somehow I only took a photo of one of the final products… the one we ate that night… and it’s not even a good photo… but it was tasty!

Homemade Shepard's Pie!
Homemade Shepard’s Pie!
I packaged up two big pans (the ones in the photos before the final product) for the freezer, gave one to my friend who was at the time expecting her baby any minute (she has since had her baby… but I’ve been away so I haven’t been able to meet her yet..) and put one in the freezer for my husband.

This post is getting really long already… so I think I’ll save the rest for another post… part 2 that I will post tomorrow… and then I will share how everything turned out too!

Stay tuned… 

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2 thoughts on “My First Attempt at Freezer Cooking (Part 1)

  1. Can I admit that I had no idea what freezer cooking was? I was attracted to your post by the intrigue of it. Then, as you explained what you were doing, it turned into a “duh” moment. It seems like a lot of work, but I can see how it can save time, in the long run.

    Liked by 1 person

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