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auntdot 08-12-2006 01:50 PM

ISO Freeze-Ahead Recipe Ideas
Every few months we fly down to see my sil her husband.

She is largely paralyzed and he is not in the greatest health.

And so, for several days we cook items in reasonable bulk that can be frozen for them to eat. It is a lot of work but is rewarding.

We make stuff like baked ziti, chicken fried steak, chicken cacciatore, that type of thing.

Although they love it, would very much enjoy expanding the repertoire a tad.

They have no food requirements.

Would like any suggestions for food that we can make that will freeze well.

Thank y'all, you are great.

Shunka 08-12-2006 01:58 PM

I freeze gumbo, jambalaya and e'touffee with the rice already mixed in for my hubby to have on the road. Echiladas/enchilada pie is another good one along with tamales.

Michael in FtW 08-12-2006 02:45 PM

We almost need a forum dedicated to this topic!

Here are some recent discussions we've had on this topic:

Does Anyone do "Freezer Cooking"?

Looking for meals that can be frozen for later

Meals that I can prepare and freeze?

About the only problem I have when I do this is with fried foods ... they are never crispy after freezing and reheating. I have a much harder time packaging and writing the instructions for reheating in the microwave for my step-mom.

This is not a flippant response .... this is how I get ideas for new things when I get a brain freeze ... stroll down the frozen foods aisle at the grocery store and look at what they have in the cases.

DaCook 08-12-2006 02:47 PM

Oh the things that I have made ahead and frozen! Here a few idieas:
Pasta, any kind
Marinara sauce
Alfredo sauce
Stews & soups
Cabbage rolls
Swiss steak
Rice/fried rice
Chow mein
Roast turkey & gravy
Roast beef & gravy
Roast pork & gravy
I know there is much, much more and I will think on it, but for now I have to go.:chef:

SierraCook 08-12-2006 05:40 PM

Here are some of my favorites that do well when baked, frozen, and reheated.

Enchilada Casserole

2 lbs. ground beef
2 – 14 ½ oz. cans diced tomatoes
1 cup water
2 tablespoon chili powder
1 medium green pepper, chopped
1 large onion, chopped
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
2 packages 6” corn tortillas (20)

Combine beef, tomatoes, water, chili powder, green pepper, and onion in large sauce pan. Bring to boil. Cover and simmer for 20 minutes. Line a 13”x9”x2” pan with a third of the tortillas. Top with third of meat sauce and third of the cheese. Repeat layers, reserving the remaining third of the cheese. Bake covered in a 350º oven for 45 minutes. Sprinkle the remaining cheese on top of casserole.

Rigatoni with Italian Sausage and Tomato

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, sliced
3-4 cloves garlic, sliced
8 oz. Italian sausage
14-oz. can crushed or diced tomatoes
½ cup white wine
½-1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
Salt and pepper
12 oz. rigatoni
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Heat oil in a frying pan. Add the onion and garlic, sauté until tender. Add the sausage to pan and cook, turning frequently, for 2-3 minutes. Add the tomato, wine, red pepper flakes, and salt and pepper, to taste, and stir. Bring to boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes. While the sauce is cooking, cook the rigatoni in a large pan of rapidly boiling salted water until al dente. Drain and return to pan. Add the sauce to hot pasta. Toss well to combine. Serve sprinkled with the combined fresh parsley and grated Parmesan.

Serves: 4

Mexican Stuffed Shells

12 jumbo pasta shells
1-lb. ground beef
1 ½ cups picante sauce (mild or medium, to taste)
1-8 oz. can tomato sauce
¼ teaspoon ground cumin
1/8 teaspoon chili powder
1-4 oz. can chopped green chilies
1 1/2 cups shredded Monterey jack cheese (6 oz.), divided

Cook pasta shells according to package directions. Drain well. Cook ground beef in a skillet, stirring occasionally to break up meat, until brown. Drain off fat. In medium bowl, combine picante sauce, tomato sauce, broth, cumin, chili powder, mix well. Add ½ cup of the sauce mixture, chilies, and ½ cup of the cheese to beef. Mix well. Stuff shells with beef mixture. Spread half of the remaining sauce mixture in a 10-inch round baking dish. Place stuffed shells in baking dish. Pour remaining sauce mixture over stuffed shells. Bake covered in a preheated 350° oven for 30 minutes, or until heated through. Top with remaining 1 cup of cheese. Return to oven and bake, uncovered, 5 minutes or until cheese is melted. Makes 4 servings.

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