This is a question someone posted in an online newsletter I read, and I felt like responding after reading it. So here is the Q&A:
Q: “Two years ago, my husband and I decided that we needed an upright freezer. We figured that with a family of four, we could buy in bulk and save. I use a price book, and I’m good with sales. It seemed like a good idea, but now I’m beginning to wonder if it really is a money-saver. Lately it’s hard to find really good deals on meat, or it seems like all I have is one type of meat like all chicken or all beef. Plus, occasionally a piece of meat isn’t packed right and gets freezer burned. Does anyone have advice on how to use a freezer effectively?”
A: I have been using a chest freezer for about 10 years. I found it very useful. Since I am not a big meat eater, I don’t buy a lot of meat. But I use the freezer for a lot of other things in addition to freezing meat.
I make extra food when I have time and freeze some for busy days when I have no time to cook.
When I have leftovers that I don’t want to use right away, or food close to expiration date, such as crackers, bread, flour, milk, I put them in the freezer so they don’t get spoiled.
I freeze fruit for making smoothie. When strawberries, blueberries or bananas are on sale, I buy more than I need and freeze them for future use. My daughter doesn’t like fruit except bananas, but she loves smoothie. I made smoothie for her so she would eat more than just bananas. Now my kids love the home-made smoothie so much, they make it every day on their own.
In my freezer there is also fast/convenient food that my kids like and can make on their own if they are hungry and I am not around, such as frozen pizza and chicken nuggets.
I also freeze certain vegetables from my garden or bought at the farmer’s market in summer or fall when there is abundance and the price is good.
Freezer is not just useful for food, it can also be useful for other stuff.
For example, you can freeze your pantyhose to extend its life. Wet your pantyhose and squeeze out most of the excess water before placing them in a freezer bag. Freeze them for at least 24 hours. After 24 hours, remove the pantyhose from the freezer and let it thaw naturally. Freezing actually strengthens the fibers, allowing the material to last longer.
My freezer is usually full. I might run out of space, I don’t run out of ideas or items for using the freezer.