I love the fall! I love the colors, the cooler weather, the holidays but most of all the comfort food that I can make my family on cooler nights. Over the last couple of months I have been able to vacuum pack and freeze several of the vegetables that either were in our baskets or offered as an add-on. With today being a lazy Sunday for me, I raided my deep freeze and pulled out some the vegetables that I had processed and made my family some yummy crockpot beef stew for dinner. To compliment our meal, I made some fresh French bread.
From the stew pack that was offered, I was able to create 3 nice sized bags of mixed veggies to use for either soups or stew. The Stew pack included potatoes, celery, carrots, onion and garlic. After doing some research, I found that you don’t have to blanch some of your veggies before freezing them. Potatoes, carrots, celery are on that list. I peeled and cut my vegetables into the desired size and them packaged them into vacuum pack bags and sealed them up for the deep freeze.
We were offered green beans and that amazing sweet corn by the case as add-ons. Both green beans and corn need to be blanched and allowed to air dry for a bit before packaging them up and freezing. The more moisture allowed in the bags, the more likely you will get frost/freezer burned veggies. Frost burned veggies make me grumpy! What about you?
I am not including my stew recipe because most everyone has one that they love and I don’t really have one that I follow. My favorite thing to do is just throw what I have into the crockpot, salt & pepper, some beef broth, worcestershire sauce and whatever else sounds good to me spice and vegetable wise. I love a thick beef stew so, towards the end of the cooking time I always throw in a couple envelopes of beef gravy to thicken it up.
Some of my other favorite comfort foods for the fall is chili (we have this on Halloween for dinner as a tradition), hot chocolate on cold mornings, overnight oatmeal, soups and casseroles. For some reason, I use my crockpot more in the fall and winter too. I own two of them and have been known to have both of them in use at the same time.
What are some of your favorite things about fall and your favorite comfort foods?