Hi friends! It’s Recipe ReDux time again, and the September theme for Recipe ReDux is Fantastic Freezer Meals. Here’s the scoop on this month’s theme:
September 2015 Theme: Fantastic Freezer Meals
Share your tips and tricks for making one – or more freezer meals. It’s the end of the gardening season for some of us; let’s store away that produce in heat-and-eat-from-the-freezer-meals. Show how convenient healthy freezer breakfast, lunches or dinners can be!
I haven’t been a huge freezer meal person, but after making this dish, I realized I need to do it more often! Even if it’s just cutting and prepping veggies to freeze for later, or cutting up chicken and freezing with marinade, preparing meals ahead of time for busy weeks can be a lifesaver. Heck, just meal planning in itself saves time and sanity (not to mention a money saver too).
I am working on being more consistent with my meal planning and sticking to my shopping list to get rid of the mid week “what’s for dinner?” scramble to the store. I rely heavily on leftovers for my midday meals, so if I don’t cook the night before I’m stuck without a lot of healthy options and I end up eating not so healthy meals or snacking too much.
So, since planning head is super important but so are quick and simple meals, my offering for this plan-ahead freezer meal is a low-prep stir fry. Low prep as in you cook this once (not twice) and the prep for this dish involves chopping veggies and making sauce before freezing. Easy!
This is a different kind of freezer meal than most: you don’t have to cook it before you put it together. Basically you only have to cook this once, not twice, saving you some time. Simply prep your veggies, sauce, and shrimp then freeze. When you’re ready to cook it, take it out of the freezer the night before and let it thaw it in the fridge until you are ready to saute it. It only takes 15-20 minutes to cook this dish in one large pan so it’s a great option for busy nights.
If you want more meals, you can prep more than one of these frozen dinners to cover several days out of a month if you don’t mind eating this dish several times a month. If you want to save a little money, replace the shrimp with chopped or sliced chicken breast or pork and follow the same recipe.
Also, it’s important in this recipe to keep your veggies separate from the shrimp in the freezer bags: the shrimp will cook much faster than the vegetables will. If you are tempted to cook them all at the same time, the shrimp will be overcooked and rubbery. Not so appetizing.
- 1 large red bell pepper sliced
- 1 large green or yellow bell pepper
- 1-1/2 cups julienne zucchini
- 1 cup petite baby carrots
- 1/2 large onion sliced
- 12 ounces raw peeled shrimp fresh or frozen
- 1/3 cup canned coconut milk
- 2/3 cup chicken broth
- 2 Tablespoons green curry paste
- 1 Tablespoon fish sauce
- 1 Tablespoon sesame oil
- 2-3 Tablespoons brown rice flour or sorghum flour
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Prep your vegetables: slice the bell peppers, julienne the zucchini, and slice the onion. Put all the sliced vegetables in a freezer bag. Set aside
- Prep your shrimp: if you are using fresh raw shrimp, rinse the shrimp and peel it if needed and put in a freezer bag separate from the vegetables. If using frozen shrimp, put the frozen shrimp directly in a freezer bag (make sure you are using peeled shrimp if they are frozen). Set aside
- Prep the sauce: In a measuring bowl, whisk together the coconut milk, chicken broth, green curry paste, fish sauce, and sesame oil. Pour half of the sauce mixture into the freezer bag with veggies, and the other half of the sauce into the freezer bag with shrimp.
- Put the prepped veggies and shrimp in the freezer together and label your bags. Freeze until you are ready to cook them!
- Remove the freezer bags from the freezer and let them thaw in the fridge overnight. The sauce will marinate the vegetables and shrimp as it thaws.
- When you are ready to cook the stir fry, saute the vegetables and sauce in a large skillet or wok until they are begin to get tender.
- Add the shrimp and sauce to the pan and continue to cook
- As the veggies and shrimp are cooking, sprinkle the brown rice flour or sorghum flour over the sauce 1 Tablespoon at a time, stirring well after each addition.This will help to thicken the sauce. If you want your sauce thicker, use 3 Tablespoons flour, if you want a thinner sauce, use 1-2 Tablespoons flour.
- Cook the veggies and shrimp until the shrimp is cooked through.
- Serve immediately over rice or rice noodles.