Freezer Files. #3 --Mother Hen

Let’s think cooler~ I’m getting desperate

With the sun bearing down on the already dry, drought maimed lawn and the air still blowing hot like a blow dryer, even retreat to the shade is still miserable with the temp at 100.6 Now anyone who knows me being of ‘Mother Hen Age’ that I DON’T DO HOT. As a matter of fact, I am almost always hotter than everyone else, so they are always trying to turn off the ceiling fan, adjust the thermostat and walk around with a blanket or sweater. Blaaaahhhh!!!! makes me ill thinking about it. I have been spending a lot of time in my ‘summer home’ aka basement with canning 70+ qts. green beans and yesterday 59 pints tomato juice. It is fantastic as it is always a good 5 degrees cooler than the main level of the house, unless of course I drop the thermostat upstairs, then it just gets cooler in the basement as well. Well like I said I don’t like the heat so even with all the hard work of canning it was enjoyable.

As another way to cool myself lately, I have been thinking about my freezer. I found over the years of my determination to freeze anything I have had good success as well as a few battles I’m still working on. Early on in this challenge I found great satisfaction in cooking, blending and freezing veggies and later meats for my babies in ice cube trays. So easy to just whip out 4 or 5 pots and cook, blend and freeze several vegetables, one mess clean up and you are set for a couple of weeks. Sure beats hauling home from the store those heavy glass jars (back in the day before plastic) as well as the SAVINGS. Unbelievable especially when they start eating 2+ jars a meal plus meats. You always have the option of several vegetables and using one cube, two or more as they grew. I chose hominy to take the place of corn and they loved it. As they got a little older I was able to be more creative, by adding some onion, tomato even raisins when cooking to give more yummy taste. Cook up some noodles in broth, or rice and mix with cooked chicken or beef and they are loving you Mama.

Coming from a good old German pedigree nothing goes to waste... you find a way to cook it. I will spare you a couple of the eeewww things that are not thrown away when home butchering. So naturally meal leftovers, became TV dinners even before they became popular. Don’t ever let stale bread go into the trash. You dry it (either in oven or dishpan on kitchen counter), break to small pieces and freeze. When ready for that fabulous Thanksgiving dressing yep, head for the freezer and you are ready to go. Chicken on sale, take advantage. Buy & cook 10+ lbs, de-bone and yep freeze meat in quart bags for easy go to chicken for casseroles. DON’T throw away the broth. Freeze it as well, always there for soups. How about home made dumplings? You are catching on, make those yummy things, freeze on cookie sheet, into zip lock bags & back into the freezer. Its crazy easy to get together a quick meal with everything in your freezer ready to go. Fresh sweet potatoes in season, boil, peel, slice in 1 ½” slices and freeze on cookie sheet, then in zip bag.

Build yourself a great pan of lasagna, cover with plastic wrap, then foil and freeze. Pull that thing out night before thaw in refrigerator and bake while you are trying to catch your breath from a day of running errands or field trip with kids at school. Who says we have to make ourselves slaves to the commercial grocery store every day.

Got to run now it almost dinner time and made a new soup recipe. Suppose to be ‘heart healthy’ hhhhmmm which usually means :-( but we will see.

Mother Hen

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