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GlutenGalAZ

Some More Freezing Questions

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I bought some real rice (not instant rice) and want to put it in some meals or just make and freeze it.

Has or Does anyone frozen/freeze rice and then just heat up later?

What about adding rice to meals and freezing?

I was thinking of making that Rice Lasagna that was posted a while ago as well as some other meals. I want to make some stuff up this weekend (if time allows) and put them into smaller containers for lunches/dinners. The only stuff I normally freeze are pancakes and muffins so not too sure about the whole meal thing yet. I did make a lasagna couple months ago and froze it for the next week and it turned out good (so baby steps haha).

I guess I just don't want to take the time to make and cool and freeze meals if certain items so not freeze well or re-heat later well.

OHHHH..... what about corn tortialls for enchiladas have any of you had good luch with baking it cooling and freezing it for later???

Stupid Question: What is the average time meals that you make can stay good in the freezer (a month)??

Any input???

Thank you!!!! :D

Edit: I am really determined this weekend to do this haha.... I am just nervous b/c my mom never really froze meals so no input there from her on stuff and I don't normally have a lot of time to make stuff so usually nervous it won't do well freezing. Thanks for any input/pointers on this.

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The only thing I have frozen with rice in it was soup and when thawed and reheated it still tasted pretty good only a little mushy. Try something small first to test it out. I have also frozen soup with quinoa in it also with good results. I have never froze many "meals". I usually have frozen leftover soups, breads, muffins, cookies, pancakes etc. Mix up a meatloaf and freeze it and when ready pull it out and bake it. Find a cook book dedicated to mixing things up ahead and freezing. I have one I bought from a kids fund raiser called Take and Bake or something like that. I'm sure if you look you can find something. In mine it tells you how long stuff will keep in the freezer cooked or uncooked.

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I've had good luck freezing spanish rice made with Uncle Ben's Converted Rice. I normally make a huge batch and freeze the leftovers in individual serving dishes. It makes a tasty and quick microwaved meal in just a few minutes.

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From past experiences, there is nothing wrong with freezing rice. The only thing when rice is defrosted, it becomes mushy. I very seldom freeze anything with rice. The only dish I freeze with rice is an eggplant dressing.

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I have had good luck freezing things made with Tinkyada rice pasta. The lasagna freezes well, and I used the spaghetti-style pasta for Chicken Tetrazzini, which has a cream sauce base. I don't keep track of how long things are in the freezer, but everything has come out fine if it's sealed well. I also made a batch of Mrs. Leeper's cheeseburger macaroni (like Hamburger Helper) in individual servings and that is coming out well, with the noodles just a tad mushy. If you're going to freeze things with rice or rice pasta in them I recommend that you do it right after you cook it because if you keep it in the fridge for a few days before you decide to freeze what you can't eat, the noodles or rice will have absorbed liquid and changed texture.

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Here's a linkabout the joys of freezing that Mark Bittman of the New York Times did. I found it a couple weeks ago through Allergic Girl's blog "Please Don't Pass the Nuts" (she is also gluten free).

Enjoy the freezer! I admit that I usually freeze ingredients rather than meals. But that's because I have a very short commute! When I had a longer one, I definitely cooked 2x what I needed and froze for later convenience. Double-wrapping is your friend (I do plastic wrap, then a zip-loc type bag - a good friend of mine uses foil as her second wrap).

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I've had success freezing meals with rice when I have made it in the electric steamer. For whatever reason, it doesn't seem to get quite as mushy.

I have had really GOOD success freezing enchiladas with corn tortillas. I've usually withheld putting sauce and/or cheese on top when I freeze them . . . then bake with sauce & cheese in an oven after microwave thawing.

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Thank you everyone for the replies. Very helpful :D

Thanks for the input about the rice being mushy after freezing. I decided to pass this weekend on trying it out and concentrated on a making a couple of things but next time (soon) when I make rice with a meal or on its own I'll take your advise and freeze a little to see how it turns out (for some reason I always forget about this).

I've had good luck freezing spanish rice made with Uncle Ben's Converted Rice. I normally make a huge batch and freeze the leftovers in individual serving dishes. It makes a tasty and quick microwaved meal in just a few minutes.

Do you mind sharing your recipe for spanish rice? Thank you

Here's a linkabout the joys of freezing that Mark Bittman of the New York Times did. I found it a couple weeks ago through Allergic Girl's blog "Please Don't Pass the Nuts" (she is also gluten free).

Enjoy the freezer! I admit that I usually freeze ingredients rather than meals. But that's because I have a very short commute! When I had a longer one, I definitely cooked 2x what I needed and froze for later convenience. Double-wrapping is your friend (I do plastic wrap, then a zip-loc type bag - a good friend of mine uses foil as her second wrap).

Thank you for the links, I saved them in my favorites. Thanks for the pointer on double wrapping, I used that pointer this weekend when I froze some extra dough (1st time freezing dough so will see how that turns out :huh: )

I've had success freezing meals with rice when I have made it in the electric steamer. For whatever reason, it doesn't seem to get quite as mushy.

I have had really GOOD success freezing enchiladas with corn tortillas. I've usually withheld putting sauce and/or cheese on top when I freeze them . . . then bake with sauce & cheese in an oven after microwave thawing.

I have never used a rice steamer before but have read a lot of people like them, is it easy? How long does it normally take?

With the enchiladas... do you still put sauce and cheese in it but just leave the top sauce/cheese off till later??

I really wanna try freezing enchiladas yummmm. Our busier time at work is starting up soon so thinking if I can get the freezing stuff down right/good then can do that off and on.

Thanks again everyone!

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Do you mind sharing your recipe for spanish rice? Thank you

Sure--it's not really a recipe, but something that I throw together. :D

In a large skillet, saute a large chopped onion and about 3 good sized sweet peppers--seeded and chopped (any color or a mixture of what you like) in some olive oil until tender and starting to lightly brown.

Add a pound of lean ground beef and continue to brown on medium heat until meat is browned. (if necessary, discard excess fat after meat is done)

Add one cup of Uncle Ben's Converted White Rice, a 24 ounce jar of pasta sauce, (I use Bertolli Olive oil and Garlic) and about 1/3 the jar of water, and mix well.

Bring to a boil, turn heat down to low, cover and continue to simmer for 45 minutes--stirring after 20 minutes or so.

I don't add salt, but you could add a teaspoon or so with the rice.

Hope you like it :)

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I was kind of shocked at how easy an electric rice steamer is! I didn't know how convenient, either, until we got one. It takes about twenty minutes -- the time it takes me (or less) to prepare the stuff going ON it!

I still put the sauce & cheese in the enchiladas, along with anything else I'm deciding upon . . . but I DO withhold putting the sauce & cheese on the top. I usually defrost in the microwave, then put the sauce & cheese on top & bake with foil covering the top -- then the last few minutes remove. I am getting REALLY hungry . . . !!

BTW: It's my experience that Patti has GREAT recipes!

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Patti

Thank you for the recipe =) It sounds really good and simple to make. I printed it off to try soon.

I was kind of shocked at how easy an electric rice steamer is! I didn't know how convenient, either, until we got one. It takes about twenty minutes -- the time it takes me (or less) to prepare the stuff going ON it!

I still put the sauce & cheese in the enchiladas, along with anything else I'm deciding upon . . . but I DO withhold putting the sauce & cheese on the top. I usually defrost in the microwave, then put the sauce & cheese on top & bake with foil covering the top -- then the last few minutes remove. I am getting REALLY hungry . . . !!

BTW: It's my experience that Patti has GREAT recipes!

Thank you for replying about the steamer. That is neat so it takes about half of the time then the stove, cool.

I have been wanting to make and freeze a small batch of enchiladas so that sounds like a good idea keeping the sauce and cheese off of the top till the night you eat it.

Thanks again for the replies

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General tips for rice , cooking and freezing:

For best results ,always buy good quality rice. Basmati is my favourite choice. Cheap rice is not advisable.

always wash rice a minimum of 3 times before steaming or cooking or boiling it. ie. swish by hand in a big bowl of clean water, drain/strain and repeat -- 5 times is even better

why? to remove the excess starch that causes mushiness

then- also wash the rice once it has been cooked (for the same reason) and drain well-- I learned this from an Indian chef but not until I had "taught" myself the hard way!!!

do not let rice sit (refridgerated or not) in the excess water that accumulates at the bottom of the bowl once it has been rinced and drained - to prevent bacteria growth

there is a fine line between over and undercooking rice, no one loves gadgets more than me and I do use my rice cooker from time to time -for smaller batches - but I always go back to the tried and true stove top method:

2 parts water ( or broth) to 1 part rice and seasonings of your choice - S&P, garlic powder, parsley, cumin etc--but I tend not to season when I am cooking as much of the flavour will tend to wash off with the after rinse

bring water/broth to a boil, dump in the washed rice , stir well, lower heat to minimun, set timer for 20 minutes, cover and continue to stir every 3 to 5 minutes = aprox 6 to 8 times in 20 min. - pay carefull attention how this basic method works for your stove and adjust accordingly for the future

if you are putting it in any liquid such as a broth or soup, get it frozen ASAP or the rice will absorb a great deal of the liquid

I like to toss a small quantiy of EVO oil (extra virgin olive oil) on my cooked rice to help prevent the rice from drying out in the freezer if it is going to be eaten as a stand alone side dish

and you are good to go

doodle

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General tips for rice , cooking and freezing:

WOW... really good and informative info! Thank you!!!

I didn't know about washing rice before cooking I could see after but before makes sense too when you explained why.

With washing the rice before and after does it take away that starch texture/taste?

Thank you very much for posting and I am going to print off the info you typed out and keep it in my notes for cooking folder :D

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I make fried rice and freeze it.

Lately I have been making rice in the rice cooker, let it cool, then pour into a bag and freeze it. My dd squishes out how much she wants into the frying pan and adds her veggies. So simple (for me...lol)! :lol:

I use long grain white rice and don't even rinse it anymore. I learned to make it early or the day before so it can cool in the fridge before making fried rice otherwise its gummy.

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I learned to cook rice in Colombia where they eat rice for at least two meals a day. I can tell each culture cooks their rice differently. In Colombia we also rinse the rice before cooking. I use a wire sieve which I find much easier than a bowl. You will see all the starch you wash off. Then we lightly fry it in the cooker where the oil is heating. Stir it in the hot oil a bit before you add the liquid.

I didn't think much of rice cookers until my DH brought one home. I NEVER want to do without one again! It's so simple to use, it adjusts it's own temperature no matter how much or how little rice you cook and it shuts itself off when done! I've never heard of rinsing the rice after and never do that. We eat a lot of rice so I don't freeze it, it can be mushy. We make up a big container of it and refrigerate. When reheating, I sprinkle on a little water so it steams a bit in the micro and I think it tastes fresh again. It keeps a few days covered in the fridge. If you wanted, you could cook it then divide it into lunch size containers. Then grab it and go throughout the week.

I have frozen my enchiladas. They don't usually last long enough for that but you can do it. Preparing for a busy time at work is a great idea!

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