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Top tips for reducing food waste part 4

Top tips for reducing food waste part 4 - Freeze!

Freeze!

Almost anything can be frozen – honestly, when I first learned about what you can put in your freezer I was amazed.

At present, in my freezer I have: leftover shepherd’s pie, leftover pea soup, 2 loaves of bread, a block of cheese (buy one get one free), petits pois, fish fingers, Smiles (don’t judge – my children love them), homemade cookie dough, minced beef, chicken breasts, ice lollies.

Okay, you’re not really interested in the contents of my freezer but I thought it would be useful to show the breadth of what can be frozen.

Here’s a speedy and hopefully useful summary of what can/can’t be frozen. With all of the following, ideally freeze when they are at their freshest.

Freeze

  • Raw fish and meat – but check that they haven’t been frozen previously
  • Cooked fish and meat
  • Vegetables
  • Cooked meals – I tend to avoid rice or pasta dishes as I never think that they reheat well
  • Herbs
  • Bread
  • Stocks and sauces
  • Pies and crumbles
  • Most fruit, raw or cooked. Strawberries and raspberries though tend to go a little soggy so I would avoid freezing.
  • Almost all biscuits, bakes and cakes (unfilled and without frostings)

Don’t freeze

  • Lower fat creams and cheeses
  • Eggs
  • Yogurts
  • Jams
  • Salad stuffs, which will go mushy

Always allow to cool, pack in a suitable container and label. I never defrost in the microwave but prefer to leave overnight in the fridge.

And remember to use
what’s in the freezer!

If it’s getting full, have a ‘cheap shop’ week and use up your freezer contents rather than buying more.

Ideal for freezing leftovers, this beef recipe is pure comfort food.

 

Braised Beef with Stilton Scones

 

Braised Beef with Stilton Scones

Time 3 hours
Per portion: 594 Kcal, 29g fat (13.8g saturated)
Serves 4
Suitable for freezing

  • Sunflower oil 1 tbsp
  • Diced stewing beef 500g (1lb 2oz)
  • Onion 1, peeled and chopped
  • Plain flour 2 tbsp
  • Beef stock 750ml (1¼ pints)
  • Tomato purée 1 tbsp
  • Worcestershire sauce 2 tbsp
  • Hot horseradish sauce 1 tbsp
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Self-raising flour 175g (6oz)
  • Butter 25g (1oz)
  • Stilton or other strong blue cheese 110g (4oz), crumbled
  • Egg 1, beaten
  • Milk 3–4 tbsp
  • Closed cup mushrooms 110g (4oz), wiped and sliced
  • Cooked frozen peas to serve (optional)
  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/Gas 4. Heat the oil in a large frying pan and fry the beef for a few minutes. Add the onion and fry for 5 minutes, stirring, until the meat is browned and the onion softened.
  2. Stir in the flour, then mix in the stock, tomato purée, Worcestershire sauce, horseradish sauce and salt and pepper. Bring to the boil, stirring.
  3. Transfer to a casserole dish large enough to hold the stew and scone topping. Cover the dish and cook in the oven for 2 hours or until the meat is tender.
  4. Meanwhile, make the topping. Put the flour, a little salt and pepper and butter into a mixing bowl and rub in the fat until you have fine crumbs. Stir in the cheese, then add nearly all the egg, keeping just enough back to glaze the top. Gradually stir in enough milk to mix to a soft, but not sticky, dough. Knead very lightly then roll out on a lightly floured surface until a little smaller than the top of the casserole dish.
  5. Remove the lid, stir in the mushrooms then cut the scone topping into eight pieces. Arrange on the meat in a single layer and brush with the remaining egg.
  6. Cook, uncovered, for 20–25 minutes until the topping is well risen and golden. Spoon onto warmed plates and serve with peas, if using.

Cook’s tip
For a richer sauce, you might like to add some red wine or beer in place of some of the stock.

 


 

Fantastic Food For Less cookbookThis recipe is taken from our wonderful Fantastic Food for Less cookbook.

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#freeze

#lovefoodhatewaste

#reducefoodwaste

#tripletested

#Stilton

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