No prizes for guessing what today’s challenge is – the FREEZER!
Cleaning out my freezer earlier this year was a revelation – and quite an uncomfortable one too. We had so much stuffed into our three freezer drawers that it took forever to find something, we had numerous packets of partially-used frozen vegetables, and an alarming amount of chicken. I even found a frozen Eisbein that had been there for over two years! Despite this abundance, Stephen and I were heading to Woolworths every day or every second day to buy dinner ingredients for that night – mostly because we had been too
lazy busy to take something out of the freezer that morning. It was a sobering thought that we were one power failure away from losing over a thousand rand’s worth of food!
We chose to go cold turkey and eat out the freezer until it was empty! This meant consuming a LOT of chicken (chicken casserole, chicken stir fry, chicken pie, roast chicken, chicken and vegetable fried rice – you name it, we ate it), interspersed with mince, steak and the odd roast. But it was well worth it – we saved a small fortune on our grocery bill and relearnt how to work with what we had at hand.
So, today’s challenge is to empty the freezer out completely! Give the freezer shelves and drawers a good wipe, and then get stuck into sorting out the items on your countertops.
I began by dividing everything into categories:
- Frozen vegetables and frozen fruit (a great way to store fruit that’s on the turn – chop up and place in freezer bags for instant smoothies. Plus, frozen bananas make the best banana bread)
- Bread, bread rolls
If you are not planning to eat the contents of your freezer like we did (a gentler approach is not a bad thing) – you might like to dedicate a drawer/ section to “EAT THIS FIRST” – items that have been there for a while and should ideally be consumed in the next week or two.
Once again, I find plastic containers a godsend when organising the freezer – we keep our bread and bread rolls in a plastic bin, which makes it easy to find what we need and quickly clean away bread crumbs. They also work well for frozen fruit, Fitchef smoothie kits and Liquifruit (we freeze ours and then cut off the lids and eat it with a spoon – a great alternative to ice-cream on a hot day and a great lunch box filler as it keeps everything nice and cold).
Once you have discarded items you won’t eat or that are no longer safe to consume, replace all items neatly by category. This makes everything so easy to find, as well as simplifying your weekly grocery shop because you can see at a glance what you already have to avoid duplications.
Here are a few inspiration pictures to get you in the mood:
And that’s it – what a difference a day makes! See you tomorrow!