Freezer Pantry Items

As I’ve mentioned before, many of you will have small fridges and freezers. There’s not a lot you need to store in them, so that’s the good news. My mother needed to have a small freezer because she thinks food will last forever if it’s stored in a freezer. My father used to joke that my mother treated her freezer like a savings bank, “She made deposits but no withdrawals!” My son took it one step further and threatened to bring people in and charge admission to her freezer museum.

Although you might think you’ll remember what you’ve stored in the freezer, once it’s frozen, many of the plastic bags begin to resemble one another. Get in the habit of labeling your frozen goods and write the date if there’s room. I buy sheets of labels at office supply stores.

Nuts are expensive.  If you’re not a baker, or love to munch on nuts, you’re off the hook. On the other hand, if you know you’ll use a lot, then purchase them in bulk to save money.  Most cooking recipes will ask for 1/4- 1 cup of nuts at the most, so you don’t need to buy a lot.  Baking recipes, especially ones that are nut-based will require more, so that’s when you want to look at getting a deal by buying in bulk.

Remember, this is what I keep in my freezer. You’re free to pick and choose!

FREEZER:

  • All nuts — almonds, walnuts, pecans, pistachio nuts, etc.  — they’ll go rancid quickly if not in the freezer
  • Appetizers — like Baked Gruyere Toasts
  • Beef — steaks, ground, London Broil
  • Bread — all types — sliced rye, sub rolls, crusty artisan loaves
  • Chicken — boneless, skinless breasts, parts and whole
  • Pancetta slices — usually two, each 1/4-inch thick — for pasta sauce
  • Pork tenderloin
  • Puff pastry
  • Sausage — I keep hot and sweet Italian
  • Vegetables — chopped and leaf spinach, baby peas, corn kernels