Thursday, March 1, 2012

How I Freeze Stock

The sun is shining on this glorious first day in March.  I love this time of year, my sinuses are fighting me, but I still can't resist that warm sun on my shoulders.  My kids are so motivated to finish their school work on days like today.  They listened, didn't fight, focused in, of course so they could go outside and ride their bikes, but hey, whatever gets it done!  While they rode I worked on staining my new bookcase, it is turning out really pretty.  Now the kiddos are napping before we head out to the park to enjoy a little more of this weather.  It is raining again tomorrow.
Because so many of my recipes include Homemade Chicken Stock I wanted to take a minute to show you how I freeze my stock.  This method may work for you but it also may help you think of a way that would work for you better.
You can freeze it in flat freezer bags like I did the Cream of Mushroom Soup.  I've done this in the past, and the only problem I encountered was I would have to let them defrost before I could use them, or sometimes they wouldn't fit in the pan I was trying to put them in.  So lately I have gotten a little creative and I have been using my Chinese takeout soup containers (seriously I have a problem with take-out, it has been over a month since I last gave in...round of applause?).
The large soup containers hold 4 cups and that is enough for me to make 2 cups of brown rice.  And the smaller ones hold 2 cups which is enough to add to a roast of slow cooker meal or to make gravy or pan sauce.  Because I only have a few of these containers, after they are frozen I run them under hot water and store them in gallon size zipper bags.
For recipes that need just a tad of stock to thin them out or add flavor, I use ice cube trays.  I also freeze cauliflower and pumpkin puree in ice cube trays to add to macaroni and cheese.  Little trick I learned from Jessica Seinfeld.
I would love to hear any of the ways you've managed to keep homemade stock on hand.  I'm off to soak up some more Vitamin D.

Love and Butter,

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