That does it. I cannot put one more thing in either of my freezers so I simply MUST use up some of my supply of food. I no longer even know what’s in them and I really need to defrost the chest freezer. Other than some fresh produce and dairy products I am NOT doing anymore food shopping until I’ve used up a good portion of what is already on hand.
I just pulled out a container of squash apple soup I made a couple of months ago and put it in the fridge to thaw. It was a new-to-us recipe and only so-so. I froze it in two containers with the idea that I could add it to a regular vegetable soup. I also know I have several packages of frozen veggies in the freezer which I should use. This time of year I prefer to make use of all the wonderful fresh vegetables available so I tend to ignore the frozen stuff. I think I’ll make a big pot of soup as a way of using those frozen vegetables.
I also noticed I have some organic corn tortillas in there so tacos would be a good addition to the menu this week. I don’t have any organic ground beef (and I’m NOT shopping) so I’m thinking that a black bean filling would be a good alternative.
I also have a HUGE bag of organic frozen strawberries which I bought with the intention of making jam. I should put that on my to-do list this week, although that might not free up much space. I like to make freezer jam so it’s just going to go back into the freezer! I do, however, have some frozen peaches which will make a nice dessert one or two nights plus be good in my morning smoothies.
So here’s what I’m planning this week:
Monday: Vegetable medley over brown rice, green salad, mandarin orange segments
I’ll cook up some brown rice in my rice cooker this afternoon and it will stay warm until I’m ready to cook dinner. I’ve got fresh onions, carrots, celery and garlic on hand so I’ll start by cooking those in a little olive oil. When they are almost done I’ll add various frozen veggies, season to taste and then add some leftover white wine from the fridge. This will be served over the cooked rice with a sprinkling of grated sharp cheddar cheese. The green salad will be a simple one of iceberg lettuce, organic spinach, wedges of tomato and some croutons. I have several mandarin oranges that need to be used so I’ll peel and separate the segments, adding some color to the plate and an extra dose of vitamin C.
Tuesday: Vegetable soup, cheddar biscuits, frozen peaches
The squash/apple soup from the freezer will be combined with a variety of fresh and frozen vegetables and any stock I may still have in the freezer. I’ll also check my fridge for anything that can be added to soup. It’s a good way to use up the last little bit of various condiments (ketchup or some tomato-based salad dressings, for instance). I will have used the leftover white wine in the vegetable medley Monday night but if I have any leftover red wine, a hearty vegetable soup is a good way to use leftovers. The frozen peaches will be allowed to *almost* thaw, sprinkled with organic brown sugar and served with a little heavy cream drizzled on top. Or maybe a tiny scoop of the vanilla ice cream I have in the freezer.
Wednesday: Black bean tacos, Mexican rice, green salad
I’m planning to go help my mom with some cleaning on Wednesday so an easy dinner is a good plan. I will cook extra rice on Monday for today’s Mexican rice. I’ll cook some diced onion in a little olive oil, add the pre-cooked rice, a can of mild green chilies, diced tomatoes and seasonings (garlic powder, chili powder and cumin), then allow to simmer for 10 or 15 minutes. The taco filling will be made with canned black beans, drained and seasoned, heated with some frozen corn and salsa. The corn tortillas will cook quickly in a little hot oil (we like ours just starting to get crispy but not hard). We’ll top them with shredded lettuce, tomatoes, hot sauce and sour cream.
Thursday: Bison steaks, baked potatoes, frozen vegetable, salad
I serve on the board of the area homeless services organization and we have a 5:30 p.m. meeting this Thursday. They usually don’t last more than an hour but I need another easy meal. My sweet son-in-law bought a package of grass-fed bison steaks for me when he heard I was very anemic. They’ve been in my freezer the past few months where they aren’t doing anything at all for my iron levels. I’ll put them in the refrigerator to thaw on Tuesday so they’ll be ready to cook Thursday. I’ll ask David to put the potatoes in the oven and fire up the grill so that as soon as I get home we can throw the steaks on the grill while I make a salad and cook a vegetable.
Friday: Dinner out
Monday, June 20th is our 30th anniversary. Unfortunately David has to fly out early that morning for his annual managers meeting in Houston. In order to make it up to me, he made reservations for three nights at our favorite Oklahoma City hotel, the Skirvin (take a look at the link for some fun information about this “haunted hotel”). He’s going to *try* to get off work early on Friday and then we’ll head for the city. I’m really looking forward to a long weekend alone with my sweetheart enjoying room service breakfasts, nice meals out, naps, and evenings spent listening to live music at the Red Piano Lounge located in the hotel. I can hardly wait!
What’s on your menu this week? Do you ever let your freezers get so packed that absolutely cannot squeeze in one more item? Please tell me I’m not the only one.