Tonight the Girl Scout troop made some meals for one of our troop families. Wow! We had 6 girls, my son and a Girl Scout’s dad (you should see him wield a spoon) helping out tonight! The kitchen and table were packed. Thanks to all who could make it at such short notice. The girls made 6 dinners and a dessert in about an hour and half. They did an amazing job.
This is the second time I have used these recipes to bless another family. It works out really well and thought others might also know someone who is experiencing and illness or loss that you would like to bless with some meals. It also makes a nice mini freezer session for your own freezer, also. What we used to put on the freezer tags are at the end. If you want to precook everything (like we did tonight) you can just add the label to your meal. We also cooked rice for the sweet and sour chicken and packaged that in a separate freezer bag with the sweet and sour chicken.
If you choose to just chop and dump in a bag all the uncooked ingredients (which is what I usually do if I am making freezer meals for home) label the meal, “thaw then put in a slow cooker for 6-8 hours on the low setting.” I will usually package the spinach and parsley for the cassoulet and the broccoli for the sweet and sour chicken in smaller bags (and put with the main ingredient bags) so that they can be added in separately a 1/2 hour before the end of cooking time in the slow cooker.
For the crispy bars, we just followed the regular rice crispy bar recipe on the marshmallow bag (using a gluten free crispy rice cereal, Earth Balance margarine, gluten free marshmallows), topping with gluten and dairy free chocolate chips and sprinkles for fun.
All of these recipes are already on my blog in other entries. Printable labels with instructions for reheating for giving.
White Bean Chicken Chili – made 18 servings (We split this into two 1-gallon sized freezer bags)
Slow Cooker “Cassoulet” (We made two recipes – one recipe per gallon sized freezer bag)
8 oz. kielbasa, halved lengthwise and cut into 1/2-inch pieces (be sure gluten free)
1/2 to 1 tablespoons olive oil
20 oz pkg boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch chunks
1 1/2 cups baby carrots, or enough carrots to equal, cut into 1/2-inch chunks
1 green or red pepper, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 cup chopped onion
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 (15-oz.) cans Cannellini beans, drained & rinsed
1 can (14.5 oz) Italian style tomatoes
1-1/2 cups chicken broth
1/2 cup dry white wine, or apple juice/cider or white grape juice (we used apple juice)
3/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 t allspice
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
2 Tablespoons snipped fresh parsley
2 cups fresh packed spinach, chopped
Heat the oil in a large skillet; add the sausage pieces and sauté 1-2 minutes, just to release a little of the fat.
Add the chicken and sauté another 1-2 minutes until lightly colored. Put chicken and sausage into the slow cooker.
Add the carrots, peppers, onions and garlic to the pan, pour in 1/2 cup of the chicken broth and cook for 2 minutes, scraping the bottom. Remove from the heat and put into slow cooker with chicken and sausage. Stir in the beans and undrained tomatoes.
In a separate bowl combine the rest of the chicken broth, white wine, thyme and red pepper. Pour into the slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 7 to 8 hours or on high 3-1/2 to 4 hours.
Just before serving, stir in fresh parsley and spinach. Serve with some crusty gluten free garlic bread and a green salad. Serves 6-8.
Slow Cooker Sweet and Sour Chicken (We made 2 recipes – one recipe per gallon sized freezer bag)
White Bean Chicken Chili
Thaw chili in bag. Reheat in pan on stovetop. Serve with tortilla chips.
Thaw cassoulet in bag. Reheat in pan on stovetop. Serve with garlic bread and mixed veggies.
Sweet and Sour Chicken
Thaw sweet and sour chicken and rice in bags. Reheat in separate pans on stovetop. Serve chicken over rice.