Tuesday, October 20, 2009
I know there are a lot of you out there like me: busy men and women who want to have a homecooked meal on the table as often as possible. You also know that this is no easy feat. As much as the professionals would like us to believe that a hot, homemade meal every night is possible it's just not. Sometimes I wonder if they every do things like take their children to music classes, go to parent meetings, carry kids to sports practices and attend religious events. If you're like me you don't work all day, come straight home and stay there. Being short on time doesn't have to kill the dream, though, you know?
The freezer is always there to save the day!
I freeze so many things, and again, I'm sure I'm like a lot of you in this way. In my freezer right now you'll find: pizza dough, homemade breadcrumbs, flash-frozen fruits and vegetables including peppers, brussels sprouts, blueberries, strawberries, zucchini and squash; balls of cookie dough; pecans; and lots of organic, free-range chicken, sausage and beef from the farmers market (thanks to my dad!) If you had looked a couple of days ago you would have found a bag of homemade biscuits with sausage patties (frozen individually for quick breakfasts) and a bag of these honey cornbread muffins. But we finished the biscuits for breakfast this weekend, and the last of these muffins disappeared yesterday, when we ate them (slathered in butter, of course) with a bowl of tomato-barley soup.
At first I didn't like these. We ate a couple of them fresh one night alongside our roasted cornish hens (sometimes I do have time to cook great meals!) But some time in the freezer actually improved the texture of these muffins, which shocks me as much as you, I'm sure. They do have honey in them, but they're not overly sweet, because being true Southerners we're not that into sweet cornbread. I made these, cooled them, froze them individually on a cookie sheet then popped them into a large Ziplock bag. You can also do this with baked biscuits, and it makes dinner that much quicker. (It also pleases the bread-obsessed members of your family!)
So go ahead and make that chili and freeze it. Cook a pot of vegetable soup this week and freeze it. And don't forget the corn muffins. And next week? When soccer practice runs late or Bible study is calling you won't have to hurry home too quickly from work because voila! Dinner is served!
Tell us all. What are your favorite meals to freeze? Any tips?
Honey Cornbread Muffins
Adapted from Food TV
1 cup yellow cornmeal
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup milk
2 large eggs
1/2 stick butter, melted
1/4 cup honey
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2. In a large bowl, mix cornmeal, flour, baking powder, sugar and salt. In a separate bowl, whisk the milk, eggs, butter and honey. Add the wet to the dry ingredients and stir until just combined. 3. Place paper liners in a 12-cup muffin tin. Pour batter into liners. Bake 15 minutes, or until golden brown.