Monday, February 8, 2010

Auntie Em's 5 Week Freezer Meal Menu and Shopping list

Just for fun I thought I'd shake things up by showing everyone how amazing my sister's list of freezer meal planning and shopping is. It's a longer post, but I think it's full of awesome information. Em is good for a home style meal that kids and adult will eat. She keeps me grounded sometimes when I rattle off a gourmet idea (and remind me that not every kid in America will eat roasted garlic like mine do). I don't know where she got some of the recipes or if they are all her own, but I know her family really loves them. Here's where I'm going to let everyone ask Em questions. She has a smaller family (3 people) so I know these recipes stretch pretty far for them. I get a lot of requests for smaller family recipes that everyone will eat. Wish granted my lovelies.

Here is an outline of a 5 week freezer menu with the recipes, labels for the freezer meals, and shopping list Em uses. I love how she does things in such an orderly way! Hopefully it helps. Print off this page and try it out. You can plug the menu into the days of the week as desired. She divides some of the recipes (note the duplicated "directions") and alternates throughout the month. She even allows for "surprise days" or "wild cards". They are listed in order:
Week 1
Chicken packets
Family Night Surprise
French Bread Pizza
Calzones
Chili Verde
Spaghetti
Wild Rice Chicken


Week 2
Mexican Stroganoff (recipe and shopping list not included)
Family Night Surprise
Balkan Meatballs
Marinated Flank Steak
Chicken Tetrazzini
Linguine a’ la Anne
Chili Hamburgers

Week 3
Baked Eggs
Family Night Surprise
Poulet de France
Chicken Packets
French Bread Pizza
Calzones
Wild card Night!

Week 4
Spaghetti
Family Night Surprise
Wild Rice Chicken
Mexican Stroganoff (recipe and shopping list not included)
Balkan Meatballs
Wild card Night!
Chicken Tetrazzini


Week 5
Linguine a’ la Anne
Family Night Surprise
Wild card Night!
Baked Eggs
Poulet de France
Surprise
Surprise


"Rough" Shopping List (Em based this on what she had on hand as well...)
Meat and cheeses:
lb bulk Italian sausage
1 c Parmesan cheese
4 c grated mozzarella
1/2 c grated Romano
6 ounces sliced mozzarella cheese
3 oz pepperoni slices
12 c cooked chopped chicken breast
1 (3 oz) pkg cream cheese
1 1/3 pounds flank steak
1 pound ground beef
1 c chopped ham
Refrigerated stuff:
2 pkg refrigerated crescent rolls
8 eggs
1 1/2 c milk
Veggies:
5 med onion
celery stalks
3 green bell peppers
1 red bell pepper
Canned goods:
1 (12 oz) can tomato paste
3 (28 oz) can crushed tomatoes in puree
1 (4 oz) can green chilies
3 can cream of mushroom soup
1 can cream of chicken soup
2 (4 oz) can mushrooms stems and pieces
1 (12 oz) can evaporated skim milk
Dry goods:
1 (16 oz) package spaghetti
1 (12 oz) package linguine
1lb egg noodles( Balkan Meatballs)
loaf unsliced French Bread
1/ 1/4 c dry pinto beans
1 doz small tortillas
1 c long grain and wild rice mixture
1 1/2 c crushed seasoned croutons
6 c seasoned bread stuffing
6 slices bread (Italian, French or pizza)
4 hamburger buns
non stick spray
1/4 c red wine vinegar
ground ginger,ground allspice,
Containers
Gallon freezer Ziploc
1 quart freezer Ziploc
sandwich freezer bags


Recipes for creation
Spaghetti Sauce1 lb bulk Italian sausage 1 1/2 c finely chopped onions
1 (12 oz) can tomato paste 3 (28 oz) can crushed tomatoes in pure 2 c water 4 T minced garlic 4 bay leaves 4 t dried basil leaves 2 t dried oregano leaves 2 t salt 1 (16 oz) package spaghetti
In a large pot, cook and stir the bulk Italian sausage with the onion until the meat is brown; drain fat. Add remaining ingredients, except the spaghetti. Bring sauce to a boil; reduce heat. Partly cover, and simmer for 2 hours, stirring occasionally. If desired, simmer in a crockpot instead of pot. Makes 12 c sauce.
After sauce has cooled, freeze 4 c (flat) for Spaghetti (makes 6 servings). Set aside 3 c for French Bread Pizza; set aside 5 c sauce for Calzones.

French Bread Pizza
1 loaf unsliced French bread (not sour dough)
3 c Spaghetti Sauce 1/4 c grated Parmesan cheese
1 c grated mozzarella cheese 3 ounces pepperoni slices
Slice loaf in half lengthwise. Spread Spaghetti sauce on (you decide how much), top with mozzarella cheese, Parmesan Cheese and pepperoni. Freeze on cooling rack for 4 hours. Wrap in plastic wrap and place in freezer bag. Makes 6 to 8 servings.
Chili Verde
1 15 oz can cooked pinto beans, diced chicken breasts 1 (4 oz) can chopped green chilies 1 t cumin 3/4 t dried oregano 1/8 t ground cloves 1/8 t cayenne pepper 3 c water 3 chicken bouillon cubes 1 t minced garlic 1 t salt 2/3 c finely chopped onion 1 c grated cheese 1 dozen corn tortillas 1 (11 1/2 oz) jar salsa
Combine beans, chicken, chilies and seasonings, bouillon cubes, garlic, salt and onion in a large pot; bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer 30 minutes. Cool and freeze. Grate cheese, put in a 1 quart bag and attach it to the freezer container with the chili. Makes 5 servings (serve with corn tortillas and salsa)
Wild Rice Chicken
1 c long grain and wild rice 1 c cooked, chopped chicken 1 c finely chopped celery 1 1/4 c finely chopped onion 1 c light mayonnaise 1 (10 3/4 oz) can condensed cream of mushroom soup

Cook rice according to package directions. Combine rice with chopped chicken, celery and onion (which have spent 2 minutes in the microwave); put mixture in 2 1/2 gallon freezer bags and freeze flat. Makes 6 servings


Chicken Packets
2 c cooked, chopped chicken 1 (3 oz) pkg cream cheese
1 T chopped chives 2 T milk salt to taste 1/2 c crushed, seasoned crouton crumbs 1 recipe

Steph’s raised crust frozen pizza dough 1/4 c melted margarine

Mix chicken, cream cheese, chives, milk and salt in a medium bowl (mixing with hands works best) to make filling. Separate dough into 10 equal portions. Roll out to 1/4 inch thick, fill with chicken mixture and crimp edges. Flash freeze for 4 hours, wrap individually and place in freezer bag. Put crouton crumbs in another 1 quart bag, attach it to bag of chicken filling, and freeze them. Makes 10 packets.


Poulet de France
6 c seasoned bread stuffing 2 T melted margarine 2 c chicken broth 3 c diced, cooked chicken 1/2 c finely chopped onion 1/4 c minced chives 1/2 c finely chopped celery 1/2 c light mayonnaise 3/4 t salt 2 eggs 1 1/2 c milk 1 (10 e/4 oz) can condensed cream of mushroom soup

In a medium bowl, mix stuffing, melted margarine and 1 1/4 c broth. Blanch onion, celery and chives in microwave for 2 minutes and Mix with chicken, 3/4 c broth, mayonnaise and salt in another bowl. Spread chicken mixture in bottom of 2 8x8 pans. Top with stuffing mixture. Whisk eggs, milk and soup in a large bowl. Pour sauce evenly over stuffing. Top with cheese. Freeze, pop out, wrap in foil and store in freezer bag. Makes 8 servings.

Chicken Tetrazzini
8 oz spaghetti noodles 1 1/4 c finely chopped onion…3 T margarine 1 c chopped green pepper 5 1/2 c cooked diced chicken 2c grated cheese 2 cans cream o mushroom soup 1 can milk salt and pepper to taste

Cook spaghetti 3 minutes less than directed on package. Saute onions and green peppers in margarine. Mix all ingredients in a large bowl. Spread in 2 8x8 pans and freeze. Pop out, wrap in foil and store in freezer bag.
Baked Eggs
6 slices bread, cut in cubes 2 c grated mild cheddar cheese 1 c cooked, cubed ham 1/4 c chopped green bell pepper 1/2 c finely chopped onion 6 eggs 3 c milk

Mix bread, cheese, ham, bell pepper and onion(which have spent 2 minutes in the microwave); spread in 2 8x8 baking dishes treated with nonstick spray. Whisk eggs and milk, and pour over top. Freeze. Pop out, wrap in foil and store in freezer bag. Makes 8 to 10 servings.
Linguine A’ La Anne
1 (12 oz) package linguine 2 T margarine 2 T all-purpose flour 1/2 t salt 1 (12 oz) can evaporated skim milk 1 (4 oz) can mushroom stems and pieces, save liquid 1 1/3 c water 1 chicken bouillon cube 4 c cooked, cubed ham 1/2 c grated Romano cheese 1 sliced red bell pepper 1 sliced green bell pepper 1 T vegetable oil 1 c seasoned croutons

Cook linguine in a large pot 3 minutes less than package directions say to, drain, and return to pot. While linguine cooks, melt margarine in a medium saucepan over low heat. Stir in flour and salt, adding evaporated milk. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Boil and stir 1 minute. Add liquid from mushrooms, water and bullion cube. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until bubbly and slightly thickened. Add 2 c sauce and drained mushrooms to linguine, and toss until well mixed. Spoon linguine mixture into 2 8x8 inch baking dishes, pressing it up the sides to leave a slight hollow in center of dish. Toss ham, bell peppers (which have spent 2 minutes in the microwave) in remaining sauce; spread it in the center of the linguine. Sprinkle with Romano cheese. Freeze. Pop out, wrap in foil and store in freezer bag. Makes 8 servings.
Calzones
1 recipe Steph’s frozen rise pizza dough 6 ounces sliced mozzarella cheese 5 c Spaghetti Sauce

Divide dough into 10 equal parts One at a time, roll each dough square until 1/4 inch thick; place one cheese slice, 1/4 c sauce and pinch edges to seal. Freeze on cooling rack for 4 hours. Place each turnover in a small sandwich bag. Put 5 turnovers in a 1 gallon freezer bag. . Makes 10 servings


Marinated Flank Steak
1/2 c vegetable oil 1/4 c soy sauce 1/4 c red wine vinegar 2 t Worcestershire sauce 1/2 t ground ginger 1 t minced garlic 1 1/3 pounds flank steak

Mix first six ingredients for marinade. Put flank steak in a freezer bag, pour marinade over it, seal bag, and freeze. Makes 4 servings
Chili Hamburgers
1 pound lean ground beef or turkey 2 T finely chopped green bell pepper 1 T minced onion 1 T chili powder 1 T chili sauce 1/4 t black pepper 1/2 t salt 4 hamburger buns

Thoroughly mix all ingredients except hamburger buns. Shape into 4 hamburger patties. Freeze in a large freezer bag, with waxed paper between each one. Makes 4 servings

BALKAN MEATBALLS
1 egg 1/4 c milk 1/3 c crushed seasoned croutons 3/4 t salt 3/4 t sugar
1/4 t ground ginger 1/4 t ground nutmeg 1/4 t ground allspice 1 1/2 pound lean ground beef 1 c finely chopped onion 1 recipe Steph's€™s Freezer White Sauce 16 ounces wide egg noodles.

In a medium-size mixing bowl, beat egg with milk. Mix in the crushed croutons, salt, sugar and spices. Add beef and onion; mix thoroughly. Shape meat mixture into 15 walnut sized meatballs and place on rimmed cookie sheet. Bake at 350 for 40 minutes. Remove from pan and freeze on cooling rack lined with wax paper. Prepare Steph's Freezer White Sauce and freeze flat in two 1 quart freezer bags. Remove meatballs from freezer and divide between two 1 quart freezer bags. Place one bag of white sauce and one bag of meatballs together in a 1 gallon freezer bag.
WHITE SAUCE (FREEZABLE, STEPH’S RECIPE)
4cups whole milk 6-8 T flour(do not use cornstarch--it will not hold thickness after being frozen) 6T butter 2 clove fresh pressed garlic 8 oz. cream cheese, softened
Salt and pepper
In a most perfect and wonderfully heavy saucepan melt the butter and add the flour cook a few minutes stir and stir and stir add the garlic and stir about a minute. Add the milk and simmer, stirring every few minutes for 10-15 minutes. Remove from the heat and add the cream cheese. Stir until it is all melted and thick and white and yummy like a good white sauce. Taste. see if it needs salt. Add pepper. You may also fold in Parmesan. Freeze flat in two 1 quart freezer bags.
To use: Thaw and whisk (mixture will be lumpy until whisked) over medium heat until warmed through and smooth. Remove from heat and pour over your intended dish.

Cooking Directions For Final Use

Spaghetti: to prepare for serving: thaw sauce, and heat in a medium saucepan. Cook noodles according to package directions, drain, and pour sauce over them.
Spaghetti: to prepare for serving: thaw sauce, and heat in a medium saucepan. Cook noodles according to package directions, drain, and pour sauce over them.

French Bread Pizza: Bake in preheated 450 oven for about 20 minutes or until cheese is melted and sauce is heated through
French Bread Pizza: Bake in preheated 450 oven for about 20 minutes or until cheese is melted and sauce is heated through

Chili Verde: Thaw chili and cheese. Simmer chili 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Top chili with salsa and grated cheese; serve on warmed corn tortillas


Wild Rice Chicken: to prepare for serving, thaw rice and chicken mixture, remove from bag and place in a 2 1/2 quart baking dish. Stir mayonnaise and condensed cream of mushroom soup together and spread over top of chicken. Bake covered in a preheated 325 oven for 1 hour.

Wild Rice Chicken: to prepare for serving, thaw rice and chicken mixture, remove from bag and place in a 2 1/2 quart baking dish. Stir mayonnaise and condensed cream of mushroom soup together and spread over top of chicken. Bake covered in a preheated 325 oven for 1 hour.



Chicken Packets: . Dip each packet in melted margarine, and coat with crouton crumbs. Place packets on a baking sheet. Bake in a preheated 350 oven for 20 minutes or until golden brown. Packets are good either hot or cold.
Chicken Packets: Dip each packet in melted margarine, and coat with crouton crumbs. Place packets on a baking sheet. Bake in a preheated 350 oven for 20 minutes or until golden brown. Packets are good either hot or cold.

Poulet de France: To prepare for serving, thaw chicken dish. Bake covered in a preheated 325 oven for 40 minutes.
Poulet de France: To prepare for serving, thaw chicken dish. Bake covered in a preheated 325 oven for 40 minutes.

Chicken Tetrazzini: To prepare for serving, thaw dish, and bake in a preheated 350 oven for 40 minutes. Remove foil, stir to bring colder food in center to the outside; bake 20 minutes more.
Chicken Tetrazzini: To prepare for serving, thaw dish, and bake in a preheated 350 oven for 40 minutes. Remove foil, stir to bring colder food in center to the outside; bake 20 minutes more..

Baked Eggs: to prepare for serving, thaw dish, and bake uncovered in a preheated 375 oven for 45 minutes.
Baked Eggs: to prepare for serving, thaw dish, and bake uncovered in a preheated 375 oven for 45 minutes.

Linguine a’ la Anne:To prepare for serving, thaw dish,. Bake dish uncovered in a preheated 400 oven for 20 minutes.
Linguine a’ la Anne:To prepare for serving, thaw dish,. Bake dish uncovered in a preheated 400 oven for 20 minutes. .

Calzones: To prepare for serving, take frozen turnovers out of bags and place them about 2 inches apart on a baking sheet sprayed with a nonstick spray. Preheat oven to 350 and then bake for 15 minutes. Turnovers will be golden brown when done.
Calzones: To prepare for serving, take frozen turnovers out of bags and place them about 2 inches apart on a baking sheet sprayed with a nonstick spray. Preheat oven to 350 and then bake for 15 minutes. Turnovers will be golden brown when done. .

Marinated Flank Steak: To prepare for serving, thaw flank steak, remove from marinade and barbecue 8 to 10 minutes per side; or set oven control to broil and/or 550. Broil steak 6 inches from heat until brown, turning once, about 6 minutes on one side and 4 minutes on the other. Cut steak across grain at slanted angle into thin slices.


Chili Hamburgers: To prepare for serving, thaw patties and hamburger buns. Grill or fry patties to desired pinkness in center. Serve on warmed hamburger buns

Balkan Meatballs:
To use : Thaw sauce and meatballs in fridge or microwave. Whisk white sauce (mixture will be lumpy until whisked) over medium heat until warmed through and smooth. In the meantime, microwave meatballs until warm. Cook noodles and distribute between three plates. Top noodles with 5 meatballs each. Remove white sauce from heat and pour over all.
Millions of thanks to Auntie Em for this very useful post! Smooooches!

12 comments:

Nathan and Mareesa said...

Wow! What a great resource!
I don't suppose you have a printer friendly version?

Chef Tess said...

Funny...Auntie Em just asked me if I wanted a pdf version for people. I'll let her know that it is a "must have". Anyone else want a copy? I'll see if I can figure out how to attach a document...I may need a private tutor for that skill.

clan of the cave hair said...

what a great list of make ahead dishes. I am a little confused about what to do with the crouton crumbs though for the chicken packets.
Definitely going to use this for inspiration.

Nathan and Mareesa said...

To add the pdf to your post, you need to store it on a free host (like Google docs), and then put a link to it in your blog. Would be nice if it was easier!) Let me know if you need any assistance, am happy to help :)

vinyldood said...

OMG! i am always looking for freezer ideas because my wife and i are always on the go an exhausted by the time we get home. this is awesome! thx!

Kim said...

Love this. Thank you!
I have a question about the freezable white sauce... can I use skim milk instead of whole milk?

Chef Tess said...

Yes, you can use skim milk no problem at all. Enjoy. Thanks for the great comment!

Anonymous said...

This is fabulous! We want to teach our teenagers how to plan a menu, shop for the ingredients and cook the meals. This will really help us since there are so many great recipes! God Bless! (and the PDF would be grand!)

Scott said...

I hope you don't mind...since you give so much to the world, I created a PDF file of the 5 week meal menu for you. You can get it here:
http://www.web-mgt.com/files/Chef_Tess_Bakeresse_Auntie_Em_5_Week_Meal_Menu.pdf

God Bless!

Chef Tess said...

That is the most amazing gesture of goodwill! Thank you so very much! God bless you!

Anonymous said...

Hi Tess--Love this. Thank you!!

Do you have the pizza dough recipe called for in the calzone and chicken packet recipes? I would like to try these.

Chef Tess said...

Yes, the pizza dough recipe is under "freezer meal ideas, pizza...oven rise pizza dough." Smooches!