Today we’re going to consider freezing and a couple other miscellaneous methods of preservation.
Home refrigerators became common in the 20’s and 30’s, but the first unit with a built in freezer didn’t come until 1940. At first it was supposed to be just for freezing ice cubes. People began freezing all kinds of foods, and never looked back.
When using freezing as a long term food preserving method there are a few issues to consider. If you are using only the freezer unit of a refrigerator, depending on how often the door is opened and how often warm items are put in, the freezer’s temperature will fluctuate. If you want to keep frozen foods for more than six months, you need a separate freezer. A chest freezer will be the best for long term storage, but it has the disadvantage that the food is stacked in and access to what is on the bottom is difficult. An upright model may be a good alternative as long as it is not opened too frequently.
Other factors include the possibility of power interruptions, maintaining food quality, and a desire not to use plastic storage containers.
If you are going to depend on freezers for long term storage and you live where power interruptions may be lengthy, a small generator is a good idea.
Food quality can be a real issue. There is freezer burn, caused by the presence of air and moisture. The best way to deal with freezer burn is to use a system that vacuum pumps out most of the air. There is also the possibility that there may be bacteria in the food when you put it into the freezer. Bacterial growth is not stopped at freezer temperatures, only retarded. Make sure you are not trying to save leftovers for more than a month or two.
The plastic container situation is a problem. Reusable glass containers like canning jars work well. There are vacuum systems that will remove excess air. Just be sure to leave at least an inch or two empty at the top of the jars because of the crazy way water expands when it freezes. Aluminum foil is air tight if carefully sealed, but you can’t vacuum seal any that I’ve seen yet. Stainless steel containers are available, but are very expensive.
The Freezer Queen
Particularly good for smoothies.
Another interesting food preservation method is an oldie but goodie for preserving eggs. It only works on non-washed farm fresh eggs, but it requires no special equipment or temperature control.
Have chickens? Want to preserve eggs? Watch this. I love how thorough she is. You feel you could actually do this.
And do you wonder how this all comes out?
SPECIAL SALES THIS WEEK
Fry’s—Buy 5 or more participating items, get $1 off each one. Many Halloween items 50% off.
Safeway—Special Digital Coupon this week, $.99/each Dr Pepper12 pk, select varieties, first 2. There are a lot of clip or Clip coupons, items ranging from Blue Bunny Ice Cream for $1.99/each, select varieties, Sara Lee Bread for $1.77/loaf and canned Signature Select vegetables, tomatoes and beans for $.49/each.
Sprouts—72 hr sale, Fri Sat & Sun features 5.6 oz Blackberries for $.77/box (limit 6), Larabars for $.69/each and Sprouts Nutritional Oils and Seeds, 40% off.
NATIONAL DAYS THIS WEEK
Sept 18—Cheeseburger Day
Sept 19—Talk Like a Pirate Day (Argh)
Sept 21—Pecan Cookie Day
Sept 23—Autumnal Equinox
Sept 24—Cherries Jubilee Day
September is “Better Breakfast” Month and Chicken Month. So here are a few recipes to help you celebrate.
Microwave Poached Eggs
I like this one because they used Pasteurized eggs. There is a small but measurable possibility of getting Salmonella from uncooked eggs.
Sweet Potato Pancakes
Fabulous with Maple Syrup, or try honey butter.
Honey Butter Try on pancakes, waffles, scones, English muffins, American muffins, toast…
Cooked chicken can be used in so many ways! Any sauce from curry to Marinara, sandwiches and salads, shred and add a little barbecue sauce for sliders…Go Wild.
Just be sure not to overcook. I would simmer very gently for about 15 minutes, then leave it in the covered pot with the heat off for another 10 minutes. Check for doneness, it will probably be done but if not just heat again for a short time. You can use this same technique with bone in chicken parts. It might take a little longer. You will have to de-bone the parts after cooking.
DISHES FOR MID SEPTEMBER (WHEN THE WEATHER IS CHANGING)
Pan Broiled Lamb Chops
Creamy Vegetable Pasta *
Slow Cooker Ribs with home made barbecue sauce *
Grilled or Pan Broiled Steak
Roasted Vegetable Frittata *
Salads and Sides
Cucumber and Zucchini Salad *
Apple Grape Salad
Broccoli Apple Salad *
Fried Rice *
Roasted Garlic Potatoes *
Stir Fried Vegetables *
Pecan Sandies *
Cherries Jubilee *
ON SALE THIS WEEK
Ground Beef—$3.99/lb @Sprouts. $2.99/lb @Safeway. $3.49/lb @Fry’s
Beef, Roasts for Grinding—$3.99/lb @Safeway, Chuck, Cross Rib, Sirloin Tip. $5.99/lb @Sprouts, Chuck.
Chicken—$1.49/lb @Safeway, B/S breast. $1.99/lb @Sprouts. bone in drums, thighs. $.99/lb @Fry’s, bone in parts and whole
Lamb Chops—$20%OFF @Sprouts, grass fed
Ribs, Pork Back—$2.99/lb @Sprouts. $1.97/lb @Safeway. BO/GO @Fry’s
Steak—$6.99/lb @Sprouts, T-Bone or Top Sirloin. $5.97/lb @Safeway, Ribeye
Fruits and Vegetables
Avocados—$5/4 @Sprouts, Haas, lg. $1.50/each @Safeway, Haas, lg.
Bell Peppers—$.98/each @Sprouts, red.
Italian Squash—$.98/lb @Sprouts
Tomatoes—$.98/lb @Sprouts, Hothouse, $1.88/lb @Sprouts, on-the-vine, (O). $2.50/box @Fry’s, Campari
Green Beans—$.99/lb @Safeway
Potatoes—$.88/lb @Sprouts, red, yellow
Grapes—$.75/lb @Safeway, green, red. $.77/lb @Sprouts, red. $2.50/lb @Sprouts, red, green black, (O) . $77/lb @Fry’s, green
Apples—$1.48/lb @Sprouts, Honeycrisp, $2.98/2 lb bag @Sprouts, Gala (O). $.99/lb @Safeway, Gala, Fuji, Granny Smith. $.98/lb @Fry’s, Gala, Jazz, Granny Smith
Yellow Peaches—$.98/lb @Sprouts. $1.99/lb @Safeway. $.88/lb @Fry’s
Black Plums—$1.99/lb @Safeway. $.88/lb @Fry’s
Raspberries—$3.99/12 oz box @Safeway
Blackberries—$77/box @Sprouts, 72 hr sale, limit 6.
Cantaloupes—$.98/each @Sprouts 72 hr sale. $2/eah @Fry’s
Watermelons—$3.98/each @Sprouts, whole Seedless . $2/each @Fry’s, personal
Other Good Deals
Eggs—$3.99/dz @Sprouts, (O), Free Range, Happy Egg Co.
Cheese—$3.99/lb @Sprouts, pepper jack, random weight
Jalapeño Peppers—$.69/lb @Fry’s
Pies—$5/each@Safeway, several kinds