Tips & Tricks: Freeze Everything!

Okay… so maybe not everything, but there are many surprising things that you can freeze that make going home that much easier! Keeping a well stocked freezer can make cooking in a non-kosher kitchen a bit easier. If your family is okay with it, keep a few key things in your home freezer. If freezer space is already limited, freeze ingredients before you go home and then use them when you get there. In a suitcase many frozen meats will stay frozen for even 6-7 hours! When I am traveling with frozen meats/other ingredients I also try to pack them with an extra freezer pack just to be sure it will stay food safe when I get home 🙂

 

Here’s the short list of the things that surprised me…

  • Raw dough… think challah dough, cookie dough, pizza dough…skys the limit!
    • Some things to keep in mind:
      • braid challah dough before freezing, when you defrost follow similar directions to store bought frozen challah dough
      • spoon your cookie dough out on a flat tray and freeze overnight. Then you can throw your raw dough in a ziplock bag until you are ready to throw them in the oven… or eat them raw… no judgement
      • Dough in general… be sure to wrap it really well… dough freezes well but it can still get freezer burn so wrap that thing up!
  • Cheese… I wouldn’t recommend freezing all cheeses but, I haven’t met a shredded cheese that doesn’t freeze fantastically. I’ve even frozen fresh mozzarella (I know it ironic)! Freezing cheese is perfect because it can last up to a year… or possibly longer without going bad! This is especially helpful when getting kosher cheese to your family’s house isn’t the easiest, so you can stock up and keep that freezer packed!
  • Meat… this one is pretty obvious but here are some things to keep in mind…
    • Raw meat can only be frozen once… if you bought it frozen, keep it frozen. If you bought it fresh, freeze within 3-4 days for maximum freshness. When you are ready to use it defrost it (or don’t depending on your recipe) and enjoy!
    • Cooked meat… after meat has been cooked you can freeze the extras for easy meals that just need to be heated up. Be sure to wrap it well.. I generally try to eat cooked meats within 3 months
  • Soup! Soups generally freeze well and when you leave it in the fridge overnight, it’s ready to heat up quickly the next day!
  • Extra ingredients that are likely to go bad before you get a chance to use them… Think, ground fresh ginger, garlic, cooking wine, egg whites… you name it!

What not to freeze…

  • Cooked potatoes… I’m sure there are other things that are not good for freezing… but this is all that comes to mind 🙂

Coconut Curry Chicken Soup

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There is nothing that makes me happier when the weather gets cool than a good bowl of soup, and truth is, there is really only one kind of soup that I crave and it’s this one.

This soup is savory, sweet, filling, flavorful, yet somewhat light… too many words, but basically it’s fantastic. There are a lot of ingredients, so when I make this soup, I make a lot of it and enjoy the leftovers for days and freeze some for perfect meals whenever the weather gets cool again.

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Ingredients:

  • 1 onion chopped
  • Olive Oil
  • 3 chicken breasts sliced
  • 1 -2 TBSP fresh (or frozen) ground ginger
  • 2 11oz containers of cooking grade coconutmilk- I use So Delicious brand
  • 2 – 3TBSP of your favorite curry powder
  • 2 TBSP date sugar (or brown sugar)
  • 2 delicata squash (or 1 butternut squash peeled) and cut up
  • 1 cauliflower (checked for bugs)
  • 2 carrots peeled and cut
  • 2 pieces of fresh lemon grass cut in half lengthwise
  • 1 bunch of fresh cilantro washed and checked for bugs
  • 2 32oz boxes of vegetable or chicken stock
  • Salt to taste
  • 1 bundle of green onions
  • 3 Limes

 

Directions:

In a big soup pot sautee the onions in your favorite cooking oil (I used olive) and almost immediately add the sliced chicken breast and one carton of coconut milk, curry powder, ginger, and sweetner of your choice. As the chicken cooks, finish preparing the other vegetables and add them to the pot: Wash, cut, and de-seed the delicata squash (the great thing about this squash is you can eat the peel!), check and cut the cauliflower, wash, peel, and cut the carrots, wash, check and rip the cilantro, and cut the two pieces of lemongrass.

Add the 2 boxes of soup stock (Tabachnick is generally easy to find at your local grocery). Heat over medium heat until the squash and carrots are fork tender. To finish the soup off, add some fresh green onions, the juice of 3 limes, and the second carton of coconut milk. Add any additional salt, curry powder, or sweeter to balance out any flavors. Enjoy!

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