Friday, August 23, 2013

You Can Freeze Hummus, And Other Things I Have Learned

Once upon a time, I was in Boston for Boston Book Festival and I saw a truck with the Sabra logo on it:
When you see this truck, it means free food.  

In the past, I had gotten small samples of hummus and pita chips, but on this particular day, I got much more than that.  For some reason, this truck was handing out buckets (literally) of hummus and salsa.  By the time I got there, they were out of salsa, but I got a bucket of hummus, and a nice young man kept loading bags of pita chips into my carrier bag (another good reason to always keep a collapsible bag in your purse) until I finally said STOP!

A bucket of hummus, cat included for perspective
So, what does one do with that much hummus?  I gave a bunch to a friend, and then elected to freeze a small sample to see if it would work.

It totally did, and since that time, I have set out to find other foodstuffs to stock up on and freeze.  Here's a short list:
  1. Hummus.  Trader Joes is a bit of a hike from my house, so I only go there every six weeks or so.  I stock up on their humus because it's significantly cheaper, and then just chuck most of it in the freezer.
  2. Pizza dough and sauce.  Ditto for the pizza dough and sauce from Trader Joes, but you could also do this with homemade dough.  It takes a while to thaw, but if I pull a dough out of the freezer before going to work, it's ready to go when I get home.  The sauce is acidic enough that it's fine to sit out at room temperature for a few hours.
  3. Cheese.  Cheese goes on sale pretty infrequently at my grocery store, so when it does, I stock up.  I usually buy about ten bricks and just have one in the fridge while the rest wait in the freezer to be needed.  You can freeze brick cheese and shredded cheese and it doesn't change the texture at all--at least for cheap cheese.  This probably doesn't work as well for soft cheese like Brie, but I've also never tried.  Anyone know?
  4. Mashed Potatoes.  Mashed Potatoes are one of my favorite foods, but they're kind of a pain to make.  Usually I get a ten pound bag, make a ton of them and then freeze half (yes, I can eat five pounds of mashed potatoes before they go bad).  When you thaw they back out, they get kind of weird and watery, but once microwaved, they're back to their fluffy, delightful texture.  Man, I love mashed potatoes.
  5. Soup.  In the winter, I make a batch of soup in the crock pot at least every other week.  I have no problem eating the same thing every day, so that becomes my lunch for the week.  Even though I have a smallish crock pot, I often wind up with more soup than I can eat in a week, so I just always freeze half.  That way, it's handier than crock-potting a new batch.
  6. Basil.  Even though I don't have a garden, I still frequently wind up with a TON of basil in the summer.  Everyone i know wants to give me some, and that is totally fine because it freezes just fine. The only strange thing about freezing basil is that yo have to chop it up and add some olive oil, but that's it!  Here's how to do it:
What have you discovered that you can freeze and buy/make in bulk?

1 comment:

  1. I buy butter and flour in bulk and freeze them. I use a lot of butter during the holidays so I like to buy it when it's on sale and store it throughout the year. I buy my flour in 10 pound bags online but I can only store 5 pounds in my pantry so I freeze the rest.