There are some things I make just about every week. Here is my weekly prep routine. For details about how I store these items see my Freezer Stash post.
Large batch of Shallot Baked Chicken Thighs. I will vary the seasonings….lemongrass and ginger…fresh picked herbs from my garden…tarragon, sage, oregano, basil. These will get chopped and portioned into single serving mason jars to add to my freezer stash.
Creamy Veggie Soup. Again, the ingredients will vary week to week. Zucchini, yellow squash and turnip with ginger and turmeric…zucchini leeks and pear…butternut, zucchini and turnip. Tons of possibilities. Again this gets portioned and frozen for the week.
Cooked ground meat. For me this is typically ground turkey. Sometimes I season it, sometimes I do not…just sauteed with olive oil, portioned and frozen. Turkey seems to work best for me since I follow a low histamine diet. Sometimes I do lamb or veal. Beef, bison or chicken are other options and you could have some of each in your freezer stash with or without seasonings.
Lunch Salads. On Sundays when I am already making my typical lunch salad I also prep to go salads for the first half of the week. I will do a similar session one night mid week. I used to prep for the entire week, but again due to histamine issues I now will prep fresh produce items for only 2 or 3 days at a time.
Sweet Potato Cubes or Cooked Squash. I always have a Ziploc bag full of cooked sweet potatoes and I frequently prep baked winter squash slices or cubes and either portion those or freeze in a Ziploc as well. They are super easy to make. I place cubes or slices on a parchment lined baking sheet drizzled with olive oil and roasted at 425 until toasty. They hold up surprisingly well in the freezer. These cubes or slices are super handy. You can grab a handful, defrost quickly and add to any salad or bowl.
Creamy Veggie Soup
I make a batch of this every week and freeze in single portions in pint size mason jars. So delicious. I mix up the ingredients for a little variety. Lately I have been making it in my Instant Pot. This reduces the lectins in the squash…something I have been tinkering lately.
Freezer Cooking for the Paleo AIP
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Wanted to hop on and share a quick tip I recently posted on Instagram. I tuck a paper towel under the edge of my cutting board when I am prepping and then I can slide scraps off on to the towel. At the end I pick it up by the corners and take it right to my compost bucket. Then I give it a shake and usually can use it for a little counter wipe down after I am done. Here I was prepping my weekly batch of creamy veggie soup. I adore this Kitchen Series cutting board by Epicurean. I have 8 of them in different sizes and it is our go to board. I love that they are dishwasher safe for when I am cutting meats.
Ok…so this is so simple it’s not even a recipe…but it is too good not to share. Just made pulled chicken in the Instant Pot and it was crazy quick and easy. Going to be a new regular for me and is a great addition to my freezer stash.
Instant Pot Pulled Chicken
1 lb boneless skinless chicken thighs
1 cup broth
Season as desired. I used fresh herbs from my garden…1 leaf of thyme, a few sprigs of sage and parsley, but get creative and use what you like and try different combos…oregano and lemon…tarragon…so many options.
- Place in the Instant Pot (or a pressure cooker).
- Set to manual for 12 minutes. (Poultry function would also work, which is 15 minutes of high pressure on the Instant Pot.)
- Quick release the steam when done.
- To shred I pulled the chicken out into a deep bowl and used my hand mixer. You just keep moving the mixer around and it shreds quickly and easily. I added a little bit of the juices from the bottom of the Instant Pot for extra moisture.
- This is great to make ahead and freeze in single servings. I used half pint mason jars, which are freezer safe. Vacuum sealing would be another great freezer option. This makes a great addition to my freezer stash.
- Save the juices (you know I hate to throw anything out!) and freeze them in a freezer safe size mason jar or in a silicone mold for the next time you need a little broth. The broth it made was really tasty with the meat juices and herbs and I am assuming it would be a good low histamine broth option.
*Shown served with braised collard greens, oven roasted carnival squash and some Crispy Parsnip Peel Curls.
Recently the pressure steam release valve from my Instant Pot went missing. I scoured the kitchen in search of it, but to no avail. In a last ditch effort I went to the compost pail we have right outside our kitchen door to see if it might have accidentally made it into the compost collection. With trepidation (and for good reason, pretty stinky!!) I dumped that bucket into a wheel barrow to rummage through…ugh, I can still recall that smell. Sadly it was not there. I transferred the contents of the wheel barrow to the compost bin and then rinsed the wheel barrow with the hose right next to my raised bed, dumping the few remaining contents onto the grass and rinsing again. A few days later….lo and behold, the silver lining to my smelly compost story…there were squash sprouts growing in the ground! I quickly googled and found that they are indeed edible.
Next step was doing it on purpose. I always LOVE to find purposes for something I was going to toss in the compost bin or trashcan…think Oven Roasted Leek Greens, Oven Roasted Cauliflower Leaves or Crispy Veggie Peel Curls! So the next time I was prepping carnival squash I chopped the squash in half and scooped and saved the raw seeds…I didn’t even fuss over separating them from the little bits of orange flesh I scooped from the center of the squash. I dumped the raw seeds into a clay pot filled with seed starter soil and covered with a thin layer of more soil. Within days those had sprouted too…and they were yummy. I have since tried butternut and delicata seeds and both have worked and are tasty. They are best when they are smaller, before they form “true leaves”, as they get a little fuzzy when they get larger, though still edible and certainly would be tasty as cooked greens.
Not ready to plant them, no problem…you can throw the seeds into a ziplock bag and store them in the fridge until you are ready to start a batch, which might even increase their chances of germination, although I had no trouble putting them straight into a pot…Give these a try and let me know what you think!
P.S. I was just out there and some of those original sprouts have now turned into plants with their “true leaves”. Grow where you are planted, right?!
Note to self…I think we need to re-sod.
The other day my husband was reading me an article about how many nutrients are in the skins of root vegetables. I often peel my root veggies but I hate the thought of missing out on some nutrients, lightbulb moment…what about if I roast the skins and Continue reading
When I first suspected that histamine intolerance might be another piece of my wellness puzzle, it felt like yet another food restriction limiting my choices…but discovering how many things freeze well has been the silver lining! The freezer has now become a huge part of my food prep plan! Continue reading