Sunday, October 4, 2009

Thinking ahead for the busy times

I'm doing my contribution for tomorrow a bit early because I may be roped in to roasting a lot of pumpkins... (i.e. Two friends gave another friend 8 pumpkins with the deal that she'd make them pie and other goodies, and I've offered to help her complete the task!)

It isn't the most attractive of pictures, but I'd like to briefly say how much I've enjoyed stocking up my freezer. Since this is the first time that I've lived on my own with no roommates, I have been greatly enjoying the fact that I have a whole kitchen to myself as well as a fridge to fill up for all my own. No more worrying about the food of other roommate's going bad! (But, I digress...)

As a first year graduate student, I know that my life is going to be extremely busy at times, so I'm hoping to make those times easier by having a variety of meals stashed away in the freezer. Some things are simple and possible to do on a slow afternoon or evening, like cooking beans or chopping up bell peppers to freeze, but cooking extra meals isn't too hard either. During the times that I am able to cook, I often cook a recipe in its entirety even though I'll probably only eat 2 or so servings of it. The rest I can just toss in the freezer. By using this method, it has also allowed me to stock my freezer with meals made from fresh and local produce as I have been buying 95% of my fruits and veggies at the Farmer's Market on the weekend.

The contents of my freezer thus far:
basil and olive oil cubes
2 different batches of from scratch tomato sauce
savory bean dish from V'con (the name is escaping me)
corn, black bean, and chipotle soup
beet and rice soup
shredded zucchini
lots of pitted cherries (picked by me!)
raspberries (from my parent's garden!)
chopped bell peppers
bags of beans (chickpeas, white beans, black beans, and adzuki)

Whew! I like to think that I have a good mix of actual meals and saved up produce from when it is in season. Some of the meals have already come in handy, such as the calzones. I had a tough time this past week, and those things were my meal in less than 10 minutes. Pop it in the microwave to nuke it, then crisp it up nicely in the toaster oven. Once I run out, I will definitely be making more of those for sure!

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