Domestic Chores

Yesterday I defrosted my freezer, it was well overdue and it gave me a chance to find out what was actually in there! I have seen several blogs doing a challenge whereby they live from what’s in their pantry/larder. I kind of feel like I need to be doing the same, while a perpetual larder (whereby you have a replacement of everything you use regularly) is a great idea it also means that I have a lot of stuff stocked away. What I cook and how I cook changes seasonally and also as to which cookbook is in favour at the time, so some things have been in there far too long, I know for sure there are pulses that we should be using up (and that I have about 6 bags of flour due to carrying on buying when I’d cut down on my baking!) and I wanted to know what was in the freezer that I could clear out and use for my half arsed attempt at the challenge!

Veg and Beans

Peas
Corn
Spinach
Brussell Sprouts
Broccoli
Canelli Beans 7 (these are packed in bags of about the same amount as a tin)
Chick Peas 8
Black Beans 6

Spare Items

Milk 1
margarine 2

Leftovers

Taco Filling 1
chili 2 servings
Daal 1 meal

Ready Meal Stuff

Cheese and Onion Rolls 2 meals
Linda MacCartney Pies 4
Sausages 1 bag
Schnitzels 4
Hot Dogs 2 meals
Cauliflower Cheese Grills 5
Lamb Grills 2
Veggie Fingers 2 meals
Stars and Moons 1 meal
Veg and Cheese Pies 2
Quorn Sausages 2
Quorn Chicken Grill 1
Quorn Burgers 4
Fish Fillets 3
Oven Chips 1 bag

Fruit

Applesauce about 5 cups
Pumpkin 3/4 cup
Rhubarb 2 cups
Stewed Plumbs about 5 cups
Summer Fruits 1 bag
Blueberries 2/3 bag
Blackberries 5lbs

General Items

Breadcrumbs
Puff Pastry 2
Shortcrust Pastry 2
TVP Chunks
Ice Cream 2
Basil
Ice Packs
Chicken Pieces 2 bags
Bread 2 1/4 loaves
Pita Bread 2 1/2 packets
Hot Dog Buns 12
Courgette Loaf 1
Wholemeal Muffins 6
Wholemeal Tortillas 4 packs
Ice Lollies

I have printed a list which I will stick on the front of the freezer so I can add and subtract what’s in there and remember it so I actually use it!

Things like milk and marg we buy monthly therefore having spares in the freezer is pretty normal, what has really changed since I started ETL is the collection of ready meal stuff in the freezer. We very rarely had more than 3 packets of ready meal stuff in there (sausages, pies and one other) and we used it very rarely, now the boys seem to be eating processed food about four times a week and that’s pretty unacceptable to me, especially for Little One. So, we will be having a period of clearing that out and making way for healthier options in the freezer. The tortillas are only available at one supermarket chain using wholemeal flour so whenever we go to one we buy four packets and freeze them for later use, they come in packs of 6 which is great for the three of us and means we don’t have spares lying around waiting to be used up like we would with the 8 packs of white flour tortillas (plus they’re much cheaper than the brand names!).

I want more room for my beans, I have a few bags I’d like to get cooked up and frozen and at the moment their space is being occupied by an ice cream tub,DH normally only has 1 tub at a time but we found a 2 for £1 bargain! We need to eat up the ice lollies while the weather complies as well so they don’t sit there all winter.

When I bought this freezer I thought it was really big, but it’s not big enough at all! When we have another baby we will loose a whole drawer come weaning time (that is if we are still in this country then!) like we did with Little One. I boiled up rice, pulses, pasta and potatoes and a load of different vegetables and then DH and I would spend an evening putting together little blended tupperwear containers of meal sizeportionss. I also did the same with different cooked and tinned fruit so we would take out a meal and a fruit portion for each meal, it made things really easy and saved a ton on using horrid jars (although he did have puddings from jars for ages, I want to try and avoid that this time by making more).

I would love to make my own stock and bake more but I just don’t have the freezer space to store things. If I can clear out at least a drawer I will have room for more leftovers and perhaps a bag of stock icecubes plus I can start making soups in double batches and stuff like that, so that we have something quick to pull out. I also like to have 1 and a half portions of soup for lunches for Little One and I in winter so I need to work on space ready for that.

Cooking is something I really adore but I have a bit of a pack rat mentality about food, I tend to go OTT and buy too much and stock up on everything, I think I must have lived in poor times in a previous life or something! Hopefully by clearing out stuff and finishing things up we can save some money and also prepare for moving, even if we don’t go to Portland we will move in this country and there’s no need to lug unnecessary stuff all over the place. Plus I will get to try new recipes and feel good about using what I have rather than bringing in bags and bags more of stuff.

I will be buying anything I run out of and use regularly (ie when I’ve almost used the replacement rather than when I open the replacement like I have been doing) and also fruit and vegetables and refridgerated items. I have lots of Chinese sauces in the fridge which I must use up, my fridge is definitely too small for us, my Sister and Mother both commented that they’d never seen one so full!

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