Delicious Freezer Goodness

In the never-ending attempt to make my holidays less stressful, I’ve filled my freezers with low-cost ingredients and ready-made meals.  I’m determined to enjoy less work, more fun, and good times with all of us in the next few weeks.

DS#1 has two weeks to spend with us, and I’m going to savor the closeness.  He’s away doing country-serving, freedom-defending kinds of things, and hasn’t been home since he left after last Christmas.  Boy, do we miss him!  And he misses us and everyone else here at home.  I’m looking forward to seeing him and enjoying the Peaceful.  So rather than try to juggle a zillion things unsuccessfully, I’m cutting back on everything, including the mania I like to call “dinnertime.”  What better way to do that than plan it all out well in advance (so it’s a no-brainer later)?

To wit, I have placed in the deep freeze, among other things: the lasagne and twice-baked potatoes previously mentioned; chicken enchiladas; turkey taco soup; pizza burgers; Swedish meatballs; manicotti; Reuben loaf; moussaka; baklava; pies; meatloaf; minestrone kit; corn and bean enchilada kit; banana muffins.  I’ve also prepped a bunch of ingredients: chicken chunks and shreds; plain meatballs; marinated chicken; vegs of all sorts; breads.

And, since it’s Christmastime at Chez CT, we have…..cookies!  I couldn’t go a season without them, of course.  I have not made 800, nor 600 this year.  I have so far created about 100 (several of which may or may not have been eaten already).  I’ve got some more to make.  And the fudge (thanks, Pioneer Woman!) is cooling in the fridge as I write this. So, yes, treats!  Many sugary, buttery, unnecessarily caloric treats.

There will also be Christmas chocolates.  Maybe. Who said that?

A friend recently commented that she couldn’t find time or energy to bulk cook.  What I told her is what I’ve been saying here for years — double up one or two meals during the week, and pop one in the freezer after it cools.  If you find a good deal on a meat, bring it home, Crock it up, and toss that in the freezer.  Toss complementary items into a giant Ziploc bag, and call it a kit — I currently have one made with leftovers of tortillas, corn, black beans, peppers, onions, brown rice and cheese, which all appeared at different times but went into the same kit, waiting to be rolled into enchiladas.  Or, if you really need to get them done and stashed, plan a day for each type of meal — I did a chicken day, a ground meats day, etc.  And there are many cookie days, since I only do a batch at a time.

So, what’s your go-to solution for planning holiday meals?  Do you cook meals for the freezer?  Just buy extra and use it as you normally would?  Do you put additional baked goods away?  Do tell!

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To all of you, I wish the Peace that Christmas brings, in the acknowledgement of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, Immanuel.  Enjoy this time with loved ones, and have a wonderful new year.  

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