Monday, 3 November 2014

Holly’s Foodie Blog Hop: Waste not, Want not … Thanksgiving, Christmas and parties are a-coming …



Tips for freezing in ice-cube trays … quick and easy to extract: one or two cubes …

Holly's blog hop

This is something I’m sure I’d do, if I had family and was cooking regularly, so let’s get to it … and please visit all of Holly’s fellow hoppers at her blog link …


Holly’s a great foodie with lots of books out there … check out her blog via the link …


Garlic – I’m forever leaving bulbs in the fridge and finding green shoots … so let’s chop and place slivers into the trays – cover and freeze …

 
Herby and or Garlic
breads

Cheese – ah we don’t want to waste delicious cheese, do we?   Either freeze in a block, or grate it first.  De-frost thoroughly before returning to the fridge or it will become dry and crumbly …


Butter with fresh herbs - chop and mix with butter then freeze in small pats or cubes ...




Fresh herbs – can also freeze well … two-thirds fill cubes and then cover with water, oil or vegetable stock and freeze … 





Citrus zest – finely chopped, fill cubes, cover and freeze …





Lemon juice, or lime juice … freeze in cubes …




Orange citrus butter – mash into unsalted butter … cube or make small pats: useful for a little bit of richness for a dessert …


Pesto – left over pesto (or make double loads) and freeze extra in ice-cubes ...


Eggs – can be frozen too ... crack them and freeze in bags … use for scrambled eggs, or baking … defrost thoroughly first …   (I haven’t tried these!)


c/o  Earthgivenkitchen.com


Iced-coffee cubes … your taste, your decision … strong, flavoured, with milk, sweetened …   I spotted these Chai Tea ice cubes …



I’m sure many of you will have other tips and treats for us … so I’d love to add to this list of useful extras, that can be prepared, or kept, or saved instead of throwing out …
 
Salmon, spinach with herby butter pat

Thanks Holly for a great idea … and I’m looking forward to snacking my way around the Foodie blog hop …


I suggest using ice-cube trays with covers … or make sure you cover the cubes as they are freezing … and then store in airtight containers or bags ... 


Hilary Melton-Butcher
Positive Letters Inspirational Stories

67 comments:

Susan Scott said...

Thank you for these great ideas! I sometimes freeze lemon juice and can buy small frozen packs of herby things. I've frozen cheese before - sometimes it works sometimes not. I'll try grating it and then freezing. Wish I could offer a creative idea to this delicious post but for the moment cannot!

Empty Nest Insider said...

Lots of delicious recipes here! I never thought about how many interesting combinations could be put into ice cube trays before! Hilary, you always make every meal into a magnificent work of art!

Julie

L.G. Smith said...

Mmmmm. Knew you'd have lots of good stuff on the menu. :)

Karen Walker said...

Lots of cool ideas, Hilary. Thanks

T. Powell Coltrin said...

I love your ideas. I want to try the freezing eggs.

J. Lenni Dorner said...

Cool list.
I heard about herbs with olive oil, but hadn't heard with butter before. Interesting.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

What a clever idea. Don't waste garlic!

Southpaw HR Sinclair said...

Great idea. So simple and so handy. Freezing zest into ice is a great one.

Thanks for participating in the hop and the shout out.

Karen Lange said...

These are wonderful tips, Hilary! I especially like the one about garlic. I need to do that! My daughter has done this for a certain ingredient for a recipe she likes (and I cannot remember which one at the moment). Thanks so much for sharing these ideas. I am inspired!

Have a great week!

L. Diane Wolfe said...

I love pesto. I'll have to try freezing some next time I make it.

Gattina said...

All things I love too ! Garlic bread ! a dream ! And I couldn't imagine my life without cheese in all forms and shapes and plates !

Linda said...

Freezing such things is under-utilized. Thanks for reminding us that we can save things this way. The important thing is to remember that we did it and use them. ;)

Stephen Tremp said...

Great ideas ... I can see how this can save a lot of time for future meals and snacks.

I remember as a kid we had plastic ice cubes with fake bugs in them. We'd place them in drinks at parents parties. Yeah, we were little stinkers.

J.L. Campbell said...

Hilary,

I learned quite a lot here today. Didn't realize that so many things could be frozen and keep well.

~Sia McKye~ said...

I make quite a few butter/herbs (sometimes add bacon bits), lay it out on siran wrap and then shape it into logs. I roll it up in the plastic and throw it into the freezer. When you need it pull it out and cut while partially frozen and use it on veggies, rice or potatoes.

I do the same for french bread--grate some cheese, add herbs and butter and store it in the freezer for later use.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Susan - we so easily forget these simple ideas - I've found cheese comes out crumbly .. but if you know that then it's not really a problem .. but might solve the grating scenario in advance.

@ Julie - I have to say when I read up about some .. I was somewhat bemused - but I'd definitely be utilising these ideas if I cooked more ...

@ Luanna - thanks .. glad the suggestions satisfied ...

@ Karen - thanks ...

@ Teresa - yes, I thought the eggs were an interesting idea: I must try

@ Lenni - the pats of frozen herby butter make a lot of sense don't they ...

@ Alex - yup - and I was always throwing odd bulbs away ...

@ Holly - great idea for a blog hop ... and yes zesting into ice could be used for some many things ... zinging up a cold drink in the summer etc ..

Pleasure - I'm glad I was able to participate ...

@ Karen - so pleased you found the tips interesting - if you remember that ingredient .. it'd be good to be added to the list here ...

Also good to know you'll be trying some of these ...

@ Diane - I can definitely see an advantage in freezing extra pesto - I love it too ..

@ Gattina - and yes .. all things I love too ... herby breads, cheesy toasts, cheese ... and so it goes on!

@ Linda - exactly ... we could do more and save items that we might otherwise chuck out and thus waste. True .. remember we did freeze them - and use them up ...

@ Stephen - it would certainly save some time, or just an extra special twist to some meals.

Oh yes .. fake bugs - I remember those .. and did we laugh our little heads off ... not stinkers: just kids ...

@ Joy - thanks .. I don't think about freezing things .. but this post reminded me ..

@ Sia - I know you cater for your large family .. so I like the idea of adding bacon bits ... I think I'd cut the log into slices of some size and slip silicone paper in between - so I wouldn't have to worry and could just take a piece out of the freezer.

I've never tried the french bread idea - but I often make it fresh .. might try that too .. thanks for the great ideas..

Cheers to you all - we could have a party now .. but enjoy the week instead .. Hilary

Lisa said...

Oh boy these are some wonderful ideas! Thanks for sharing these, and the food blog with us Hilary!

Suzanne Furness said...

Some great ideas. I have also heard of freezing left over wine in trays to pop into casseroles etc. Never seems to be any left in our house though! Will try the garlic one.

Crystal Collier said...

My mom used to freeze bread and meat, and it never tasted quite as good, but I understand why she did it. She would have done the same with the cheese, except we burned through it too fast. =)

Great tips today. Thanks!

Unleashing the Dreamworld

beste barki said...

I would never have thought of freezing garlic, and yet, such a useful tip. Thanks for sharing Hilary.

Paula Kaye said...

What a fantastic group of tips. I never thought of using ice cube trays to freeze these little tidbits in.

Clarissa Draper said...

Wow, cool tips. I am always throwing away cheese so I'm going to use the cheese tip!

Elise Fallson said...

I never thought about freezing eggs, what a great idea! And no, we don't want to waste cheese. I love cheese! Thanks for the tips, Hilary. :)

Brian Miller said...

huh that is a pretty cool trick on freezing the herbs in the ice tray....

Susanne Drazic said...

Lots of great tips! I've frozen eggs before. Scramble them before freezing.
I never have any coffee leftover to freeze for iced coffee drinks.

Janie Junebug said...

I've never seen any of these tips before. I don't cook much these days, but if I did, I'm sure these ideas would come in handy.

Love,
Janie

J E Oneil said...

Looking at that garlic bread makes me hungry, and I just ate. No worries on me wasting cheese, but the other ones I'll keep in mind.

loverofwords said...

There is a store here: Trader Joe's that has this little garlic tray. Frozen garlic in a miniature ice cube tray---you just pop out what you need, one garlic clove per section. So easy. My problem is that freezing is too easy and later, much later is the "what is the mystery meat?" Organization is the key, the key that I do not have unfortunately.

Sharon Himsl said...

Hi! This is truly inovative. Thanks for all the great tips. Freezing eggs and herbs is new to me, but really makes sense. WASTE NOT, WANT NOT, as the saying goes. Interesting...I store my garlic on my windowsill in a special jar for that purpose. It has air holes all around and the garlic keeps really well. Never sprouts and the jar makes a nice display.

Patsy said...

I've been liquidizing and freezing as ice cubes part of my enormous chilli crop. Other than when I've grown a bumper crop though I rarely need to preserve food. We try hard not to buy more than we'll eat when it's at its best.

Val Poore said...

Talk about being inspirational! Some lovely ideas here, Hilary! I love the principle of Waste Not Want not! I'm not a foodie, but there are so many good ideas here. Thank you!

bazza said...

This was, as usual, an interesting an original post. The big thing I found out was why cheese becomes impossibly crumbly after freezing!
I love cheese but severely limit the amount I eat so often used to freeze some of it. Now I can try again!
Continuing my new experiment of naming the music I am listening to while posting or commenting - right now it's: Bob Dylan's 'Shelter From The Storm'
CLICK HERE for Bazza’s fabulous Blog ‘To Discover Ice’

TexWisGirl said...

the iced coffee cubes is pretty brilliant. :)

Lynda R Young said...

Great tips! I hadn't thought of freezing eggs before. I'll definitely have to try the herb butter.

Elizabeth Spann Craig/Riley Adams said...

I've never thought of freezing any of these things! But I hate throwing food out, so I'm going to have to try it out. Thanks, Hilary!

A Lady's Life said...

I love these I was going to say freeze grapes to put into your drinks too

Denise Covey said...

Great post, Hilary. Where would we be without our freezer? Informative tips, but for long term, definitely need covers!

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Lisa - food is always an easy one and these tips made some sense ..

@ Suzanne - yes, I'd read about the wine - but other than wine cubes in an otherwise cold drink .. I sort of lost the plot - exactly as you say .. there'd be none left.

@ Crystal - yes I don't eat bread .. bread crumbs were mentioned too, and meat ... as long as you don't freeze things too long they taste better.

We must have had cheese as kids .. but not as much as I get through now - like you ... all guzzled very quickly ..

@ Beste - I must use the garlic idea ..

@ Paula - could be helpful in your family ..

@ Clarissa - I'm not sure how it would work with some of the other cheeses - I guess give it a try and see what happens

@ Elise - I hadn't thought of freezing eggs .. but as someone mentions ... scramble them first; I do buy extra cheese sometimes and freeze the blocks ..

@ Brian - freezing the herbs make sense don't they .. I quite liked the idea of freezing them in oil ... for use on some soups

@ Susanne - ah yes, you mentioned scramble the eggs before freezing; left overs tend to get used up ... rather than saved for that rainy day - so no coffee, that I can understand.

@ Janie - I keep spotting tips, but I only cook now for myself ... unless I'm helping out at a party, or at a do of some sort ..

@ Jeanne - garlic and herby bread is always good isn't it .. and like you no worries on me wasting cheese ...

@ Nat - the garlic tray sounds a good idea ... or as a present. I quite agree - remembering what's in the freezer can be quite difficult - thankfully it's only me rummaging around for stuff!

Cheers everyone .. part 2 coming up ..

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Sharon - good to see you; I'm glad you seem to find them interesting. I had one of your garlic jars too - but it, and the garlic no doubt, gathered dust .. so it's gone! They are attractive though .. I just don't use enough garlic ...

@ Patsy - you did some of this with your chillis - makes sense .. a touch of warmth in a soup during the winter.

It's easier with two of you .. but I quite liked these tips for when one makes a double batch of stuff ... or thinking in advance if one is doing some catering over Christmas .. these extra touches can help so much.

@ Val - I enjoy my food .. but grew up in the era of waste not want not, as you did. I hope you'll be able to use some of the thoughts ...

@ Bazza - glad you thought some of the ideas useful. Cheese, I've found, does crumble after freezing ... but if I know that - then I use it for sprinkling on top of dishes ... flex my foodie thoughts!

Love Bob Dylan ...

@ TWG - ice-cube coffee drinks .. great idea for a mouth cooler in summer ...

@ Lynda - I want to try the eggs too .. but the herb butter I freeze the extra ...

@ Elizabeth - that's great if you'll be trying some of these ideas ...

@ A Lady's life .. yes freeze grapes is another good idea ... thanks for that.

@ Denise - thanks and yes where would we be without our freezers ... and as you say cover, extract the air and freeze tight til needed ...

Thanks everyone .. glad you enjoyed these ideas ... cheers Hilary

klahanie said...

Hi Hilary,

Thanks for noting Holly and the mention of a blog hop!

I'm one to freeze cheese. I also like extra mature cheese, which means in the supermarket, I look for the extra mature cheese with the shortest sell by date. Cheese continues to mature in the package.

I thought Thanksgiving was in October :)

Cheers, Hilary. Sorry for my sporadic commenting over the last three months. I know you understand.

Gary

Patricia said...

this is a fun post Hilary and it is the season when I make the food of love from my free Harvest Potluck e-cookbook that supports the United Nations Mother and Baby fund.

I freeze a great deal of foods for single serves and for family feasts.

My favorite trick is to make ice cubes of chicken liver pate' and chicken broth for my dog. He snarf blasts his food and does not chew - the ice cubes slow him down and he will chew and help to clean his teeth! Easy serving too

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Gary .. good to see you .. even if you only came for the food!!! I love extra mature cheese and that's what I always get ... mine doesn't last in the packet! But I didn't know it continues to mature .. I should have done I guess ... I try and buy breathable packaging sort of cheese ...

I hope Thanksgiving is in November?! Is Canadian Thanksgiving in October - do they have one ..

No worries re the commenting - you've had so much going on and with no fixed dates etc ...

@ Patricia - your eHarvest Potluck cookbook was fun and I'm glad it's supporting the fund.

I think we all freeze some foods, and here I was talking ice-cube size bites ... but interesting to read about your dog and his ice-cube treats ..

Thanks to you both for visiting .. cheers Hilary

Lynn said...

What great ideas! I am guilty of freezing things and wondering what they were later. :) I might try that lemon juice in the ice trays - I could see having lovely iced tea with those cubes in there.

Manzanita said...

Hilary
Thanks for passing on the great cube tricks. I, too, an always saving little bits of this and that. One tends to do that when we live alone.
I didn't know you could freeze eggs either. I guess you can freeze just about anything......like my nose and fingers with winter fast approaching. LOL

Diana Wilder said...

that's it. I am buying ice cube trays. Three or four, of different colors so that I can keep herbs, garlic and butter separate (unless one uses metal trays - which are messy - the odors and tastes tend to cling to plastic. How sad to have garlic in your cinnamon butter...)

This post (like your others was a feast of the eye and the mind.

Diana

Crystal Collier said...

Guzzling cheese is the only way to go! ;)

Unleashing the Dreamworld

David P. King said...

It's a good thing I'm reading this near lunch time. If I wasn't hungry before, I am now! :)

Sara said...

Hilary,

This is such a cool post with great ideas. I'm not much a cook, but even I can see the value of saving food items via ice cubes:~)

I didn't even know you can freeze cheese and the fresh herbs...that great because usually you only use a little, but end up buying a lot.

I'm passing this post on to my foodie relatives...I have a daughter who will love this one!

Is it getting dark too early now? My kid talks about how dark it gets, even around 3:30 to 4PM. That's challenging! We've have several rather cold days, which is unusual for where I live...at least not this early.

I think I told you this, but I loved the Cluedo story. It was very well done!!!

Cheers to you, Hilary:~)

Vagabonde said...

I like all these tips – there is so much you can do with a freezer. My problem is that I forget that these things are in the freezer and after a while, it becomes too full. I do make French toasts by batches, and freeze them, so that later one we can have some easily.

Trisha F said...

I don't really cook ... but your post made me want to eat, something chronic! ;)

The garlic bread & the salmon look sooooo gooood.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Lynn - labelling is something that we should be doing .. but I've never done it, though usually remember. The zesting sounds a good idea .. usually I use the juice, but not the zest. Ice cube tea or coffee in summer would be a great thing to have going on ..

@ Manzanita - the eggs may well be a god-send in freezer ability .. I must try. It's getting cooler here .. and frozen fingers are not good extensions!

@ Diana - well I can see garlic and cinnamon wouldn't be too good mixes! I can see the advantage in buying coloured ID trays .. glad I've given you some ideas ...

Thanks for your complement ..

@ Crystal - guzzling is always better isn't it ...

@ David - I know - I write about food or snacks .. and I get anxious for the next meal to rock around!

@ Sara - I'm glad I'm reminding everyone to save the extras - just we need to remember to use them later on. Freezing butter, cheese and herbs can alleviate the 'help I've run out' syndrome that leads to a food blip! I hope your relatives enjoy the ideas.

Yes - it's getting dark by 4.00pm - a bit much ... and today is cooler .. bonfire night was the coldest day so far for us down south.

Thanks re the Cluedo story ...

@ Vagabonde - there is so much you can do with a freezer ... especially for those who cater for family and friends a lot: which I don't do ...

French toasts being frozen sound like a great idea ...

@ Trisha - even if we don't cook .. we still eat, and usually crave delicious treats ... I always do when I'm writing a foodie post ...

Cheers to one and all - good to see you and I hope we can all use the preparative ideas leading up to Thanksgiving and Christmas .. Hilary

rosieamber said...

Some good tips here, I must get more organised in the kitchen.

Roland D. Yeomans said...

Great ideas, but now you've made me hungry! :-)

mail4rosey said...

You've got lots of good ideas here. I've never thought to freeze the pesto...though now I know, it'll def. be on my list of possibilities!

Brian Miller said...

have you ever made the coffee cubes? i wonder if you need to make it strong for mixing with milk....

Joylene Nowell Butler said...

I bet everyone else thought these were awesome too. I read the first one, thought it was my favourite, until I read the second one, then I thought that one was my favourite, but then I read the third one and thought... well, you get the picture. I'm going back to check out the ice-cube one again. I'm using a lot of ice right now.

Medeia Sharif said...

Wonderful idea. I'd like to try freezing some of these foods.

Juliet Batten said...

So many interesting tips here. I never thought about freezing eggs!

Elsie Amata said...

Oh my gosh! What clever ideas with the ice cube trays. All I've ever done with them is put Kool-Aid or Lemonade in them for summer time treat. This is way more fun for me :)

Annalisa Crawford said...

I would freeze it all and then forget about it. I also don't have a microwave, so when I realised I needed something defrosted I'd have to wait until the next day - assuming the house was warm... Uh, great post, but not for me, sorry :-/

Optimistic Existentialist said...

Now I am hungry!! I love cheese and garlic :)

Vanessa Morgan said...

I'm suddenly extremely hungry. Especially after seeing that herby and garlic bread.

Julia Hones said...

Some inspiring pictures of food to spark the imagination and cook something nice... and I like those combinations...
Thank you, Hilary.

Tammy Theriault said...

I love foodies!!! because you know, I love food. and these are awesome tricks of the trade :D

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

@ Rosie – it’s a good thing to be, organised around the kitchen …

@ Roland – sorry about the hunger pangs! Good to see you …

@ Rosey – there are some good ideas here .. I don’t do much – but thinking about Christmas and parties and those little extras – these seem to make sense ..

@ Brian – no I haven’t made coffee cubes … but when I read up about them – it was your choice .. and I guess a couple of tries … I love cold coffee though!

@ Joylene – there are certainly some good ideas here, and we tend to forget we could do quite a few things in advance – utilising the freezer for those little extras …

@ Medeia – I hope you can give the idea/s a go ..

@ Juliet – I hadn’t thought about freezing eggs either – so that I will try …

@ Elsie – well at least you’re using your ice-cube trays .. I hope you can give some of the ideas a try …

@ Annalisa – yes I’m somewhat like that .. but I’ve made a concerted effort recently to keep the freezer up to date – and I do manage to take out stuff for defrosting … thankfully some things can be cooked from frozen. Ok – no worries … food for thought though?!

@ Keith – I too love cheese and herbs, and some garlic – had too much in my younger days!

@ Vanessa – good to see you … and herby/garlicky bread is one of my favourites …

@ Julia – well these are things I’d happily eat … so I do agree with you …

@ Tammy – food will always push the right button won’t it .. glad you thought some of these ideas will work awesomely well –

Cheers to you all … I’m battling with connectivity – but will be around and catching up - Hilary

Patricia Stoltey said...

Thanks for all these great ideas. I'm also guilty of letting my garlic cloves grow green shoots before I get them all used up.

I follow three wonderful foodie blogs including one staffed by mystery writers, one vegan, and one who participates in cooking contests (and sometimes wins). They always make me hungry.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Patricia .. good to see you and here to 'enjoy't this post .. I'm glad I'm not the only one with green shoots from my garlic!!

I made a decision quite early on .. to avoid foodie blogs - as I'd get too distracted .. but you can't get away from food and food trends can you ..

Good to see you - cheers Hilary