Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Freezer Cooking - Roast Chicken and Slow-Cooked Pork with Veggies

Just because I'm eating primally doesn't mean that I can't still do a freezer cooking day every so often. One of the easiest ways for me to relieve my kitchen duties is to have cooked, frozen pieces of animal protein (poultry, meat, etc.) ready to rewarm and incorporate into soups, salads, etc.

I recently came up with 10 lbs. of slow-cooked pork carnitas. I sauteed some heartier veggies (squash, onions, mushrooms), and combined them with pieces of the pork in a ziploc bag for the freezer. I'll use them to make pork soup on short notice with chicken broth for lunches.

This past week, I made a lot of shredded leftover chicken from roasting two chickens - about as much as I can handle at one go. I also like the economies of scale offered by roasting two whole chickens. This is for many factors:

1) Whole chickens are the cheapest per lb.,
2) Cooking a whole chicken takes about 90 minutes (two chickens about two hours) at 350 F, so I can throw them in the oven and forget about them - not a precise operation!
3) Cooking two at once saves me on oven time, about $0.50/hour to run.
4) It is only one extra moment to save the chicken fat from your roasting chickens to freeze so that you can have a stable cooking fat on hand.
5) A couple of chickens yields an entire gallon freezer bag's worth of shredded chicken meat, which is great reheated for a quick protein topping on salads - or, you can divide it into smaller servings in smaller bags.
6) Once the chickens have been stripped, you can make homemade chicken stock with the bones. Yum!

Have you been freezer cooking this week? What have you made lately?
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