Tuesday, January 17, 2012
From fresh to frozen
Today I picked up tons of fresh veggies from local farmers hoping to make baby food and soups to stash away in the freezer. I loaded up our little Prius with all the veggies that would fit and brought them home. Now the work begins. Here is a picture of just a few of the fresh veggies that we brought home.
I knew that I should act quick to use these veggies before loosing them so I got to work right away. Being Saturday, Peter was home and it was much easier to take on a project like this. This wouldn't happen on a school day.
So, I placed the squash in the oven to bake.
While baking, I washed, cut, and steamed some of the green beans.
I pureed these two veggies into baby food. Next, I put the purees into containers and in the freezer. I have about two months of pureed veggies in my freezer right now...huge savings over buying jars of baby food...and I love saving!
Because I make my own baby food, I can also sneak some of the puree into the kid's meals. This butternut squash is perfect to sneak into mac and cheese! I have been doing it off and on for four years now and the kids have never caught on...whaahaha:)
Here is a picture of the squash ready for the freezer.
I decided to do something with the tomatoes other than baby food. I usually don't feed my babies tomatoes until after 12 months.
So, I made a double batch of our favorite tomato soup and froze it. You can see how we make tomato soup in a previous post here. Now I have two meals ready to go in the freezer:)
Three of my younger kids kept grabbing tomatoes and eating them whole...just like an apple. I love that they eat veggies so well...wish the older two would!
Seth's favorite was the grapefruits. So beautiful with the leaves still attached.
I kept slicing them and he kept eating them. I have no idea how many he ate before I finally cut him off...haha. It did entertain him well though:)
The eggplant was more difficult for me. I really had never cooked with it and had no idea what to do with it.
So, I went to my favorite recipe website and looked for recipes. We ended up making ratatouille...the kids loved the idea of this as they love the movie. Peter and the kids took this project on. And as always, the kids had a good time helping in the kitchen. In the end, Peter and I were the ones that really liked it with most of the kids just picking at it. But, it was fun! We have also made several recipes of breaded baked eggplant that we dipped in marinara sauce...yum!
All in all, I spent $20 on the produce and have two months (at least) of baby food, two meals of tomato soup, several meals of eggplant, and lots of veggies for salad and sides. I also shared veggies with several friends and a neighbor too. Great deal. I will be frequenting this produce supplier...and learning how to cook with a seasonal harvest:)
Now, to get my kitchen cleaned up and back in shape for the new school week...