As COVID-19 (also known as the Coronavirus) puts a stop to what is regarded as normality, people have been forced to be efficient when it comes to food and stocking fridges and freezers. We absolutely support the advice not to hoard food and panic buy. Not only does it negatively impact those in society who are vulnerable, but it creates needless excess waste. Here are some tips to helping keep your freezer as efficient as possible ensuring there is minimum waste and maximum efficiency during these testing times…
1. Defrost the freezer
This is the first place to start. Many freezers have excess frost in them, which is mostly unnecessary but takes up quite a bit of space. Defrost your freezer by taking out each draw, running warm water over it and giving it a little clean whilst you’re there. This will melt away the frost, giving you maximum space.
2. Divide meat into portions
When purchasing meat such as chicken/turkey breasts, pork chops, steak, and mince, portion out each serving and then place all in reusable containers in the freezer. This will help you only defrost and use what you need whilst prolonging the amount of time your supplies keep stocked. Try and challenge yourself to see how many meals you can get out of your meat.
3. Batch cook to frozen
Dishes such as pasta bakes, lasagne and spaghetti bolognese are great for batch cooking. They’re also great for freezing in reusable containers and stacking in a space-efficient manner. They can be defrosted safely in the fridge over 12 hours, or if you’re in a rush, there are defrost setting in most microwaves.
4. Divide bread loaves in half
Perishables such as bread can be frustrating when there are a smaller number of you in a household. To extend the lifespan of a loaf of bread, and to reduce waste and ensure you don’t have to keep popping out for a new loaf, divide your loaf of bread into two when you first get it. Place one half in the cupboard and the other half in the freezer. This way, the loaf lasts longer and you’re less likely to risk mouldy bread. Bread defrosts really quickly too, so you won’t need to plan ahead too much as you would with other items. Be careful not to squash the bread in the freezer as it may compromise its integrity once defrosted.
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