Firstly, I'd like to say that sometimes cooking in my kitchen is like being on one of those FoodNetwork challenge shows. You know, the ones where the contestants are given some 'mystery basket' full of items and asked to use them in a dish? What with the gifts of various groceries from family and friends or the donations of someone cleaning out their pantry, sometimes the name of the game is trying to use up what I've got, but I think I've been up for the challenge! Lasagna Spirals was one of those recipes. I loved this idea of individually portioned servings of lasagna and it freezes beautifully!
One of my stand-by recipes is Taco Meat . That recipe is nearly similar to the one I use, except that I make my own taco seasoning packet, and really only try to make it when I can find the ground beef on sale for about 99-cents a pound. Did you know that if you rinse your ground beef, even if it started out as the fattiest cut (let's say 70/30) it will be leaner than even one of the leanest cut you can buy?! I just told my 83-year-old grandma about that little trick the other day. Since I was feeling adventurous, in this last batch I used some store-bought Habanero Salsa. The taco meat is so scorching spicy, I think we'll have to eat about 20% meat, 40% sour cream and 40% cheese in each taco! Better than throwing it away, I 'spose.
Another family favorite is Swiss Chicken. The recipe I've always used has white cooking wine in place of the water/broth & I just usually use whatever condensed soup I have on hand or that someone has given us. I bought a big bag of seasoned stuffing on clearance awhile back & have been using it for this recipe ever since. A bit of I Can't Believe It's Not Butter in place of the real butter helps to lower the calorie content too.
A new recipe that I tried last weekend was these Jalapeno Cheddar Scones. I served them with some easy homemade Chili (destined for the freezer!) and they were super delish. A friend just happened to have some jalapenos on her kitchen counter, so I helped myself to a couple. I froze a few of the scones and passed on a few to a friend with a new baby. These are so yummy and are a great change-up from my usual cornbread-with-chili menu. Next time, I'm making a bigger batch! The blog that this recipe came from is a MUST READ. I have been away for far too long & look forward to
And I've saved the best for last. I have successfully frozen little patties of cookie dough from the recipe The Whole Jar of Peanut Butter Cookies. I *love* being able to whip out a homemade dessert on a moment's notice. We are able to have a tasty treat after supper on many occasions, since the dough is already prepared. I think a nice homemade sweet treat also makes us all feel special, regardless of our severely reduced income and grocery budget. I simply follow the recipe, chill the dough, use a cookie scoop to portion out, dip a fork in sugar to make the classic criss-cross design, then flash freeze and bag up. Bake 'em at 350° F for 13 minutes. Or, you could just eat them straight out the freezer, with your husband, and the freezer door still wide open, pretending that this-is-perfectly-normal-since-they-do-sell-ice-cream-with-cookie-dough-in-it, all the while saying "Mmmm. Mmmm. Good."
Not that I'm saying I've ever done that.
Nope. Not me.
Hope you enjoyed this peek into my freezer. Got any goodies in yours?