We love homemade strawberry jam. I like to make the freezer version because it is so easy. We ran out of the last batch and as strawberries were on sale, I decided to make more.
I loaded my cart with strawberries and headed down the isle the pectin should be on. Apparently I was not the only one who wanted to make jam because they were totally out of the Sure Jell pectin I have always used. After some grumbling to myself, I decided to try out the jar of Ball brand pectin on the shelf. It comes in 3 varieties: Classic Pectin (AKA cooked version), Instant Pectin (freezer version) and Low Sugar version. I chose the Instant Pectin.
I am so glad I was “forced” out of my regular habits. We love the jam we made and I will not go back to the old ways. Let me tell you a few reasons why.
Have you been wondering what to do with that bumper crop of zucchini? Perhaps a desperate neighbor left a pile of giant zucchini on your front porch. This is a great basic recipe for Zucchini bread with a few variations to try. We really like the blueberry with a touch of lemon and of course the chocolate chip! Continue reading
Baked Chicken Chimichangas
with Creamy Green Onion and Cilantro Sauce
My friend Sarah shared this recipe with me. I modified it a little to work with ingredients I always have on hand. We have made them several times now and they are now a favorite. They are good with either white or wheat flour tortillas and they freeze really well. I put them in the kids’ lunches and they are defrosted by lunchtime. Continue reading
Hearty Sloppy Joes
Jeffrey and I made these up. We wanted Sloppy Joes with a bit more substance. They came out very good and were a hit with the whole family. This recipe makes a lot, but the leftovers freeze nicely for an easy meal later. Continue reading
Twice Baked Potatoes
These were a nice compliment to the grilled flank steakwe had tonight. My son liked them so well that he ate 5 of them!! These freeze really well. Once you have filled the potato skins with the filling, freeze them on a cookie sheet until set; then wrap individually with plastic wrap. Place them in a gallon size freezer bag and you are ready to go. Continue reading
Many recipes I love call for onions. However, like many of you, I have some picky eaters. One in particular hates onions. I’m not going to make a separate dish for him, so I just chop the onions in large pieces so that he can easily pick them out. This solves the problem because I still get the onion flavor in cooking and make my son happy at the same time. I do the same thing with green peppers. The flavor goes in, but the picky child doesn’t have to eat it. If a recipe only calls for part of an onion, I still chop the whole thing and freeze what I don’t need. That way I save myself some time on a future recipe.
Freezing meals ahead can be a real time saver for busy days. It can also really help your food budget. You can buy food in bulk when it is on sale to make meals. For example, when chicken is on sale, I make freezer meals that call for chicken. I also watch for vegetable sales, especially peppers. Some meals freeze better than others. I will be adding a “Freezes Well” section to my categories. Spending several hours preparing freezer meals with a friend can be rather fun. I typically use gallon size freezer bags. Here are a few tips to get you started. Continue reading
My family loves these! We make several different variations. One day a friend and I made six different batches together. We individually wrapped them and divided them up. They freeze really well and are great in kids (or adults) lunches. The are very easy to make too. Continue reading
Wheat Blender Pancakes
There are several versions of this recipe out there. This one is pretty simple and tastes great! It’s a nice way to use wheat without having to have a wheat grinder. I’ve taught a few food storage classes and used this recipe as a sample. Everyone has enjoyed them and were surprised they are whole wheat. These freeze well too. Continue reading
Caramelized Apple and Onion Pork Chops
Our family loves this recipe. The apples and onions create a wonderful flavor combination and help keep the chops nice and moist. I make this as a freezer meal as well. I buy pork loin when it goes on sale and have my butcher cut it into 3/4 inch chops for me. They do it for free and it makes my preparation easier. Continue reading