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July 4 weekend did not work in my favor. In addition to being on call, a personal situation resulted in my missing all the beautiful weather and doing....nothing. Including cooking and blogging.

I made it out of the apartment for a few hours just long enough to 1) Stuff my face with chips, pizza and cherry pie....+ a few beers! and 2) To see the NYC Macy's Fireworks from this rooftop. Obviously I couldn't take pics of the fireworks with my phone but perhaps by the time the next post goes up, I"ll have gotten a few pics off of my camera.

What is your favorite July 4 splurge?

Anyway, it turned out OK and the personal situation has resolved! Still, as much as I'd like that to have heralded my return to the kitchen, I've begun another Hell Month at work and my 12 hour days have put the kibosh on my willingness to shop and my kitchen creativity.

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So, without further ado, I present to you the beginning of the Foray Into The Freezer.

I like to keep a few handy essentials in my freezer at all times, for situations just like this one. I keep a HUGE stash of frozen shrimp that takes up fully 1/5 of my freezer. These things are super-fast to defrost, cook in 6 minutes flat and can be put into anything. Plus, they are super-low-calorie/low-fat! (Not low cholesterol though, so not everyone can enjoy them quite as often!). Also in there are turkey sausages, bread products, vegetable medleys and frozen fruits/vegetables. In a pinch I can throw together dinner complete with protein, vegetable and carbs AND dessert just by sifting through my freezer. Finally, for emergencies, I keep a few frozen meals on hand. Specifically the under 300 cal Lean Cuisines. It helps also that my parents bring me wild blueberries, mushrooms and freshly caught fish to freeze!! =)

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Today was just such an emergency. I had nothing whatsoever to pack for the main component of my lunch, but I did have just one of these: a garden lites Cauliflower Souffle. These are great. For only 140 calories, they make a tasty lunch component and when warm they are moist and comforting.



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I like a little variety though. The other half of this guy went on a bed of lettuce (cafeteria purchase = rip off) with a little honey mustard drizzled on and some crumbled crackers on top. This half got another drizzle of HM and was eaten plan.

Note the bready texture: this is actually super moist!

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After a long 12 hour stress-ball day, I ran 6 miles (necessary after July 4) and was in no mood to cook! So back to the freezer we went and found this: an Asian Vegetable Medley and frozen shrimp!

I defrosted the shrimp in a glass bowl drizzled with Honey Mustard Marinade. As the shrimp thawed, the marinade got watered down and became almost a sauce!

By the time I got home from the gym, I just threw the contents of the glass bowl into a pan and cooked the vegetables according to the package.

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Then I rolled some spaghetti squash around in the shrimp "sauce/soup". The squash was the only thing I actually "cooked" this weekend.

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Finally, into a bowl it all went: veg and shrimp on a bed of honey mustardy spaghetti squash: ~250-275 calories for this bowl. So satisfying too!

Took a nice long time to eat and left me feeling pretty pretty full! Though I saved room for an apple for dessert =)



I realize this isn't a recipe, but it's a post that goes to show how important it is to keep a VARIETY of foods in your freezer. I suppose there's no real need to fill it up quite to this extent, but I love that I can make any meal from this freezer if I have to. I suppose it also goes to show you can freeze just about anything (I was surprised that bread could be frozen!)

What are your freezer staples?

Phew, it's midnight and I'm still awake and fading fast. Time to go!
 


Comments

Serenity
07/07/2011 11:56

great suggestions on stocking the freezer. that looks like such a yummy bowl. your stamina is amazing. good luck with those shifts.

Reply



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    I'm a recent graduate from medical school and a pathology resident living in New York City. Like most girls living in the city, I've found that a lot of my social life revolves around the regular consumption of high-calorie food and alcoholic beverages. I've decided to start a blog about how I am trying to beat the bulge by eating and cooking defensively between social engagements and how even a busy girl can fit exercise into a busy life.

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