Photography by Jennifer Bartoli Credits: Photography by Jennifer Bartoli
Because spinach wilts down so much when it cooks, buying the frozen kind is a great budget-friendly and timesaving option. It would take several cups of the fresh leaves to amount to one block of frozen spinach, so this is never a bad item to stock up on! Having this leafy green on hand makes it easy to add a healthful ingredient to meatballs, casseroles or soups. Once thawed, make sure to thoroughly squeeze the spinach dry to remove excess water.
A freezer staple, frozen peas make a great last-minute addition to pasta (add peas to the boiling pot of pasta for the last three minutes of cooking time), salads (blanched and drained) or as a quick side dish for seared chicken or steak.
Having shrimp in the freezer is a real lifesaver when you have to get a meal on the table. It’s fast-cooking and can be added to a number of pasta dishes, stir-fries or dinner salads. For the best flavour, opt for raw frozen shrimp that you can then cook using the method of your choice.
When summer fruit isn’t in season, look for the frozen variety! Berries, cherries, peaches, mango and pineapple all make great choices to enjoy from your freezer year-round. Add frozen chunks of fruit to smoothies or blend into a quick fruit purée to stir into a yogurt parfait.
5. Puff Pastry
While homemade puff pastry can make for a fun weekend project, it is a labour of love and fairly time consuming to make on regular basis. You’ll find good quality store-bought all-butter frozen puff pastry in most grocery stores. Use it whenever you’re entertaining or want to make a quick tart.
Have some time this weekend? Try one of these 20 cooking projects.