Saturday, October 29, 2011

Miss Freeze.

Freezers are a huge suck of energy, but whether we like it or not: it’s a staple appliance in every home, and they're here to stay. Most people use them for meat, and at-home fast food. Vegetarians and vegans, alike, tend to use them to store chopped and flash frozen fruit as an arsenal for smoothies. I know I do.

But have you ever considered using them for fast food too?

I’m not talking about Michelina’s frozen stir fry.

Life is a little hectic, and sometimes it can be a little difficult to stick to a healthy vegetarian/vegan diet when you’re rushing around in the morning, to get to your 9 to 5 job.

As Dolly would say: what a way to make a living.

Especially with the coming winter, none of us really want to get up early enough to make those raw meals we so love, and once the snow hits the ground, and the produce at the store is less than marvellous, things can seem so much more daunting than we’re used to.
Remember the first raw food bento box of the spring? Remember how excited you were for lunch time? Winter doesn’t have to be an endless array of questionable canned soups. And it doesn’t have to be a repeat of what you had last night.

So here’s my suggestion: retire your bento box for the season, and make up with it in the spring.

Crack out your old plastic containers, make friends with them again, and clear your Sundays! It’s time to make large batches of your favourites! Ideally, you can have several individual portions of several different meals.

I have, within my possession, 49 plastic containers. Which is, realistically, more than anyone should have; but there are three people to my household, on three different working schedules, so meals rotate fast. I typically make rice and a combination of two things. I use a lot of spinach, because I find cooked spinach tends to freeze well. I split everything between 7 containers. That’s a choice of 7 different frozen vegan meals every day—and it makes my cold winter mornings a lot easier, because I am many things, but a morning person is not one of them.

The first couple weeks, you may find a little crazy, as you may need to make a meal Saturday and Sunday, or perhaps even two a day, until you have enough to rotate through, but in the long run, you'll marvel at how much less work it is.
At the end of the week, you'll have five or so clean containers again, and it's time to make a new meal! Ideally one you don't have yet.

Most, if not all, workplaces have microwaves, and your frozen meal can be ready in 4 minutes, at power 5, which is what most frozen meals require anyways. And while it may be true that frozen food contains less nutrients, at least you can enjoy a more nutritional alternative! No preservatives. Lots of taste. Exactly what you want, and in making large batches, you spend less than five dollars a meal!

With a little thought and planning, you can have quick, vegan, gourmet meals every day, all winter—without breaking the bank!

And who doesn’t want that?

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