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Making my own casserole/pasta/curry/chilli base

(6 Posts)
TotalConfucius Wed 07-Sep-16 13:57:47

We have a glut of celery, carrots and onions. At the weekend I'd like to make a huge batch of 'base' which I'd then freeze in family-size portions and defrost as nec. So I'll finely chop all the above and brown/soften them in a pan with the plan that when I need one it'll defrost quickly then I can start off one of the above dishes with it.
Would you season before or after cooking? And what would your essential herbs/spices be for
Brown stew
Chicken casserole
Miedium-hot curry
Maybe carbonara too?
I'd like to get the bases as far as possible leaving stock/wine/meat/flour to thicken to be added on the day (I work from home and love the smell of something lovely cooking for a few hours during the day).

TotalConfucius Wed 07-Sep-16 13:59:40

What a ball of confusion!
I mean: would you season/add herbs before or after freezing?

Tiggeryoubastard Wed 07-Sep-16 14:05:08

I just chop carrots and celery and freeze like that. Less freezer space and they cook beautifully.

theredjellybean Wed 07-Sep-16 14:12:07

i would cook all of the suggested veg in chicken stock, untill reduced and quite thick.gloopy, and slightly sweet tasting, then freeze. Leave seasoning until you are making the final dish as there need different seasoning. Be careful with salt though as stock often has quite a bit of salt in it. I always find i do not need to season with salt,if i use this method.
lovely plan though !

TotalConfucius Wed 07-Sep-16 14:23:35

I've got to do something with the crates of stuff as the apples will be down very shortly and that's another to-do! This is my first year with celery - who knew it would be so successful!
Autumn/winter, I love doing the school run, coming home and prepping and leaving it in the slow cooker or oven for hours with it wafting around the house.
But I need to get straight into my work nowadays so not having all the chopping and peeling to do will really save time. I'm organised enough to get the meat out of the freezer the night before (and bulk buy it specifically for freezing) and once I've reorganised my spice cupboard (yes, cupboard!) I'll be aiming to have the dinner on by 9.30am.
Not a stealth boast - my bathrooms are a nightmare and there's dog hair in every corner of the hard floor, I know my washing machine needs a boil/clean wash. But my food's organised.

1frenchfoodie Wed 07-Sep-16 21:50:29

As you plan to use as a base for so mamy different dishes I would fry very low and slow (25-35 mins, maybe even more for very large batches) until soft and just turning golden but not add anything else. You might want to have a bit of water on hand to pop a splash in if the veg looks to be sticking but that is all. What you'll have made is a soffrito and would be fine for the dishes you mention in your 1st post, apart from the carbonara. Carbonara is a very quick dish anyway and doesn't need soffrito.

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