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Making your own frozen "microwaveable" foods

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

We cover the gamut of food here on cheftalk, most of the time enjoying the impressive array of "from scratch" preparations, complex dishes, fresh food, etc. However, the reality for me is not ever meal is one I have time to prepare nor do I want to. Sometimes I just need something to eat! At that same time, the convenience of frozen foods is wrought by horrible quality in ingredients and generally loaded with things that are not healthy to eat.

 

Breakfast tends to be one of the meals I prefer not to cook. Recently I was thinking over the idea of breakfast burritos. I like them, and the thought occurred that I could get some good whole grain tortillas, free range eggs, dice some potato, onion, and bell pepper and pick up a package of diced ham for about 13.00 and I should be able to make around 20 (just 65 cents each) good quality breakfast burritos that I plan to seal with my food saver into individual portions. The foodsaver wrap is safe to microwave and by vacuum sealing it they should keep for 2+ weeks with no issue. I am excited about mixing it up some and if it works well I may try to put together some carne asada and bean burritos for those lunch days when I don't have time to cook.

 

Have any of you gone down this road of preparing dishes that you could then easily portion and freeze? I've done it in the past with lasagna, with the food saver I just throw it in boiling water and I swear it tastes like it just came out of the oven. I'm interested in any ideas others have!

post #2 of 12
Yeah, I do that a lot.
I like curries and they normallly freeze fine, even the ones with coconut milk.
I like soups as well, actually, it is only a thin line between a soup and a stew/curry :-)
I am not much of a breakfast eater. A piece of toast is fine for me, or just some left overs.
Lemme know how the burritos goes. Sounds interesting!
Maybe fajitas would be a nice option for you as well?

Life is too short to drink bad wine
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Life is too short to drink bad wine
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post #3 of 12

Do it regularly as part of my business as a personal chef, both for family style as well as individual servings.

 

Generally cook five meals with 4-6 servings per meal in a single day, vacuum sealed and refrigerated or frozen.

 

Heated for service, depending on meal characteristics and client's desires,  in:

  • Microwave
  • Oven
  • Toaster oven
  • Simmering water
Chef,
Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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Chef,
Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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post #4 of 12
Thread Starter 

Ah glad to see some others are doing it. Any pointers Pete? It just makes sense with things like soups or stews, even lasagna, but I am really interested in how far I can push the line and still achieve good results. I live alone and occasionally provide food for my father but if I am going to cook something I tend to make 6 servings. I am going to make some of the breakfast burritos today and freeze them, I will report back tomorrow how well they do in the microwave.

post #5 of 12
Thread Starter 

Ok.. I have learned one thing from trying this.. it is not worth it! WAY too much work for a stupid breakfast burrito. I did figure out that it is worth cooking the ingredients up front. I should be able to keep about 5 days worth of eggs, home fries, ham and onion pepper mix and just make the burrito each morning. Here's what they look like after having all the life sucked out of them.

 

And some bonus shots of ingredients lol

post #6 of 12

Something I like to do for myself is cook something sous vide, chill it in an ice bath, then freeze it. I do this with lots of chicken and lots of veg. Just defrost, warm up, and eat. Another freezer staple is chili, and I like to do big batches of pulled pork. I know most people don't have access to sous vide, but it so convenient. I bought my whole set-up for around $300. (Sous vide cooking unit and vacuum sealer)

post #7 of 12

I've frozen breakfast burritos for the family before. Works pretty well. Sausage, cheese, eggs, hashbrowns, salsa, tortilla. I wrap them individually in plastic wrap, then into a zip lock bag for the freezer.

 

French toast, waffles work pretty well. Waffles are best heated in the toaster so their crispness is restored. 

 

I'm cooking for 5 and I mostly do this for those mornings when I'm laid out by my Meniere's or whatever else crops up.

 

Even for a single person. having a baggie of frozen breakfast burritos makes sense (to me at least) for those tight mornings. Nuke it when you get to work and enjoy it there. 

Palace of the Brine -- "I hear the droning in the shrine of the sea monkeys." Saltair
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Palace of the Brine -- "I hear the droning in the shrine of the sea monkeys." Saltair
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post #8 of 12

I do this, too.  I am just too busy during my workweek to cook much.  So on my weekend I try to make big batches of something to freeze and eat later.  Even as simple as grilled peppers and onions that I add to my morning eggs during the week.  I do the eggs fresh, but the veggies add nice flavor and it is a quick breakfast.  Right now I have a beef barley stew in the freezer and chicken enchiladas.  It is just trial and error as to what freezes well.

I also make a double batch of rustic no-knead bread, which freezes beautifully pre-sliced and well wrapped.

post #9 of 12

Coincidentally I am eating a wedge of baked macaroni & cheese I had made weeks ago and froze in single serving portions. Surprisingly enough, the pasta holds its texture well despite freezing and reheating, and with a drizzle or two of hot sauce, it makes for an easy and satisfying weekday lunch. It's just me and my boyfriend at home, so we'll bake a full 9x13 to yield plenty for dinner and at least one or two future lunches. Great time saver!

post #10 of 12

My wife, girlfriend at the time, got tried of watching me eat store bought frozen burritos after having work a 10-14 hr. day so she started making me homemade burritos that she then froze.  I still think it is one of the reasons I married her!!

post #11 of 12

One key to vacuum sealing of some foods, especially liquid or crushable , freeze first, then vacuum pack

Chef,
Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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Chef,
Specialties: MasterCook/RecipeFox; Culinary logistics; Personal Chef; Small restaurant owner; Caterer
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post #12 of 12

 

 

ES, I think that I've made up batches of different dishes, portioned them out and then put them in the deep freeze for later in the Micro FOR EVER.  Funny you bring up this topic on microwave ovens, my darling, sweet and generous husband had bought me a new one when we first started dating and we were just talking about that... (reminiscing on our 20th) and then this past Christmas, Santa brought me a FoodSaver, LOVE IT!!!

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