Foods that freeze well?

Discussion in 'Food & Cooking' started by mylyfebelike, Apr 29, 2012.

  1. mylyfebelike

    mylyfebelike

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    Hey, I am a personal chef and I have a client that wants all her meals in the freezer. Now to be honest I don't freeze anything after I cook it. What kinds of foods/dishes freeze well?
     
  2. butzy

    butzy

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    Curries and stews freeze very well.

    Some soups as well, but don't add any cream before freezing, add it when reheating
     
  3. thatchairlady

    thatchairlady

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    Chili freezes well.  Meatballs & sauce works well, too.  I'm cooking for 1 and a lot of things are near impossible to scale down to 1-2 portiions.  Even if I start with a half lb of ground meat, once I add everything else to the mix, I end up with plenty of meatballs.  If I cook too much pasta (happens most times??), I have had luck freezing that, too.  When I want to use it, I just drop it frozen into boiling water... ONLY until it comes "unraveled"... no real additional cooking.
     
  4. chefedb

    chefedb

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    Most foods if pre-prepped and wrapped correctly freeze well. The biggest enemy of frozen food is AIR. Seal and wrp carefully. Try not to freeze from a hot or room temp state, refrigerate first then freeze this stops formation of ice crystals on the product. Do not use aluminum foil or freeze in aluminum foil pans, as in many foods it has a reaction on the cooked product. When you thaw di it in the fridge not outside. Try to get as much air out of the package as you can. You can put in double plastic bag then under water to push air out then seal uickly. Excess pasta freezes well if not overcooked to start. Things thickened with corn starch will sometime lump or break, boiling or simmering brings it back. Try freezing many different things this way you will learn for yourself whats best.
     
  5. petemccracken

    petemccracken

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    Take a walk down your local mega-mart/supermarket frozen food aisle to get an idea as to what is freezable, basically any food /img/vbsmilies/smilies/crazy.gif

    Now, what is edible after defrosting is another question.

    As a personal chef, I would venture that something in excess of 50% of the meals I prepare are frozen, many in the "complete meal format", i.e. on a plate ready for heat and serve.

    Vacuum sealing works quite well and as ChefEDB points out, AIR is the big enemy.

    Most personal chef prepared meals will be consumed in less than a month, often within two weeks so techniques for long term storage are not essential.

    For me, the biggest problem I face is that residential freezers are rarely set below 0°-4°F and have little ability to freeze food rapidly, they are designed to store already frozen foods, not freeze. To overcome this, I chill the food in the refrigerator prior to freezing and when I do freeze, I use thin packages and space them out as much as possible so they will freeze as rapidly as possible, thus keeping ice crystals as small as possible to avoid damaging the food.

    I've even used dry ice in a cooler to make a "blast freezer", strongly suggest you review http://www.dryiceinfo.com/ before attempting, there ARE safety precautions that one needs to observe.

    In my experience, the major stumbling block for personal chefs is educating/training clients to defrost and heat for service. Defrosting for 24 hours in the refrigerator leads to less damage and heating correctly maintains to food quality.
     
     
  6. mylyfebelike

    mylyfebelike

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    Thanks guys so much for your help! I ended up cooking Sheaperds Pie, Mac & Cheese and Coconut Chicken Curry :)
     
  7. koukouvagia

    koukouvagia

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    You may want to suggest to your client to invest in a vacuum sealer if she intends to utilize the freezer so much.  You can freeze almost anything as long as you do it correctly.  One tip is when you freeze small things like meatballs, patties etc is to place them on a cookie sheet and freeze.  Once frozen throw them in a ziploc bag and they retain their shape without sticking to each other. 

    I like to freeze casseroles, meatballs, spinach pie, soups and stock.