Sunday, January 17, 2010

Frugal Tip: Soup

I love a big pot of soup, but I don't love eating it for three straight days. Yes, I know that I could cut the recipe in half, but if I'm gonna spend the time to make a bunch of delicious, cold-day goodness - I might as well go big. My solution - the freezer.

Now I've tried different methods of freezing soups to make the most of freezer space. The disposable "gladware" stuff, specialized freezer containers, and freezer bags. I've finally found the best space saver, and ease in reheating.

I fill the freezer bag and squeeze the extra air out. Then I lay the bag flat in the freezer until it's solidly frozen. Then I can store the bags stacked upright in a small box or plastic shoe tote.

Now this shape also comes in handy when it's time to reheat. Instead of having a large block of soup, I have a thin plank of soup. Simply cut open the bag and microwave until heated through. You can also stove heat and add just a bit of water, broth, or milk to help get it started and not burn - while stirring.

If you have the time you can pull the frozen soup out and thaw, but I rarely end up doing this. Soup is more of my go to comfort food or last minute meal solution. Add a bit of bread or a sandwich and you are good to go.

Note: when freezing soups with a pasta or noodle, be careful that the pasta is still pretty firm. The recooking can make it mushy if it's already soft to begin with.

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