Thursday, February 24, 2011

Late night freezer cooking

So this is 2 days late, thanks to parent-teacher conferences yesterday and doing my freezer-bake at 10 PM the night before. **Disclaimer: I do NOT recommending 10 PM freezer-bake sessions! You'll see why in the rest of my post.

Last week, I stopped by Meijer after my grad class since it's close, and they clearance their produce that day. I picked up a bag of 12 Cubanelle peppers for $2, and my Mom (and my cooking muse) sent me my Aunt Marcia's recipe for stuffed peppers.

So, in looking at the recipe, it calls for 12 peppers. So, awesome! I have everything I need to double the recipe, so we'll go ahead and double the recipe and freeze the rest, right?.... Needless to say, I failed to notice that the recipe was for stuffing green peppers, and that my Cubanelle peppers were MUCH smaller than a regular green pepper.

So I went ahead and stuffed the 12 peppers I had:
You sprinkle cheese on them towards the end of the baking process...mmm, cheese! These were absolutely delicious! We had them last night, and the leftovers were packed in my lunch today by my wonderful hubby!

And yet, I still wound up with twice as much stuffing as I needed! So, decided to be creative, and had some frozen bell pepper strips from a previous clearanced produce purchase. I diced up a couple of peppers-worth, mixed it in, and decided to make...
"Stuffed Pepper" Casserole! (Are we noticing a cheese affinity in my cooking?)

Just as a note, freezing casseroles has really helped in making drastic strides in reducing our grocery budget. I've gotten a lot better about cooking from our pantry as much as possible. Once every week or two, I take an hour (or two) to destroy my kitchen. For just the two of us, being able to take a regular recipe and split it into smaller casserole dishes, or to double a recipe and freeze several pans takes away that excuse of not wanting to cook when I get home after my hour-long drive home from school.

Since the hubby gets home before me, I write baking instructions on the foil, and he can put the casserole in the oven timed to be ready when I get home! And honestly, ladies, isn't it wonderful to have dinner waiting for us when we get home? :-D

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