Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Sunny's Savvy Spender Suggestion #2

Buying meat in bulk and still being able to use it all before it spoils...  Yes, you can do it!  It's simple.
Most stores offer a discount if you buy their meat in larger quantities.  Some stores label them as a "Family Pack."  But, how can you consume all that meat before it goes bad?  Freeze the whole package and... well, what a mess trying to separate icy chicken breasts or break off frozen hamburger meat when you only need a pound or two.
*Just like my previous blog about freezing bread, this will take a bit of time, but it's definitely worth the time spent.
Solution?  Go ahead.  Buy meat in the large packages.  When you get it home, divvy it up and freeze it in parts.

Here are a couple of ideas...

HAMBURGER

 The majority of the time, I purchase hamburger in a 5-lb roll like this one.  No, it's not the leanest of beef.  It's not organic. But, when you're on a super tight budget, you really can't be so picky.  Feed your family the best you can.

 I like these rolls because they're cheaper than the packages of single pounds AND usually, they're conveniently marked by 1/2-pound measurements on the side.
After getting your groceries home, unload and put everything away except your meats.  Using a sharp, serrated knife, slice the roll in 1-pound increments.  Just slice right through the plastic... it won't hurt anything, (that's why the serrated knife is necessary.)
 Invest in some storage bags of different sizes.  You'll need them.

Place each pound into a quart-size storage bag.  Keep some paper towels on hand to wipe any meat or blood that may end up on the outside or on the zipper of your bag.  You don't want to spread anything yucky to the rest of your freezer goodies.
 And... tada!  There you go.  Five servings of hamburger meat already separated and ready to be thawed individually.








CHICKEN BREASTS








 I like to buy the butcher-cut breasts in a large package.  Store brand is almost always cheaper than a name brand.


Simply place one or two breasts in a storage bag.  I store two to a bag because that's usually plenty for a nice meal requiring chicken, i.e.: chicken tacos, enchiladas, chicken and pasta dishes, etc.  And, with only two per bag, it's a much faster thaw time.
 And... there we are... three nights of chicken safe in my freezer, safe from spoil, and convenient as all heck!

*This method can be used with other meats, too.  I do this for steaks, pork chops, chicken thighs, ribs, and more. 

 

**Helpful Hint: Do all your meat cutting and prepping on a large cutting board.  This makes cleanup a cinch and a lot more sanitary.  "I just love animal blood on my countertops," said NO ONE EVER!



Well, get to shopping, folks.  And, don't pass up those bulk packages of fresh meat.  Now you know how to make them work for you!

1 comment:

  1. As usual, your handy tips are practical and presented with style!

    ReplyDelete