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Make ahead meals - again

plantlust's picture

I know that we've discussed this previously (and ALOT) but the only way it looks like we can search is via the message ID number and who can remember THAT.

As you may know, Mother's got a brain tumour that the doctor's estimate will kill her in 3 months. Us 3 siblings on this side of the pond are taking turns staying with her (she's home now) and I want to make some reheatable yet tasty meals that anyone of us can either reheat in the oven or microwave. The items on my list so far are:
Ricotta cornmeal waffles (freezable/reheat in toaster)
Lasagna (freezable/oven or microwave to reheat)
Mom's pork w/sauerkraut & potatoes thingy
Shepherd's pie
Frozen fruit for smoothies/breakfast

I want to make sure she's getting some nutrients and not just caramel(her current favorite). So far, she's on anti-seizure, high blood pressure (to artificially lower hers), steroids (to reduce swelling) and I think that's it for the meds. Buck set up a whole checkoff list for each day, which helps keep things straight for us.

As always, any info would be very helpful and if you've got a recipe handy, even better!

Do not meddle in the affairs of dragons, for you are crunchy and taste good with parsley sauce, goat cheese garlic mashed potatoes, Galena Cellars Niagra grape wine & Pie Boss's apple crumble topped with Ruth & Phil's sour cream/cinnamon ice cream.

Gretchen's picture

She might need to forego the

She might need to forego the sauerkraut for the sodium content.
If I have leftover lasagna I cut it into serving sizes, freeze and vac seal (if you have one).
Twice baked potatoes with veggies and some meat added
freeze wonderfully and would make a meal for her.
Chicken pot pie?
Meat sauce for spagetti.

Pielove's picture

Hi plantlust! Thanks for

Hi plantlust!

Thanks for the update on your mom-- as ever, my heart is with you! That is interesting that she loves caramels. My husband's uncle lived on Frappucino's for his final 3 months. What else is your mom enjoying-- spicy? comforting?

As for make-ahead foods, you're right that it was discussed-- I think we talked about it in Syrah's "the baby is coming" thread-- I wonder how she is doing! I think some of the suggestions included:

--stuffed peppers (there was a good recipe in Issue 97, with chicken and cheddar stuffed into poblanos, but I don't know if this would be to your mother's taste.) Let me know if this appeals and I will dig for the recipe.
--beef stew (don't add potatoes if you will freeze it)
--turkey or chicken and gravy
--enchiladas, chili
--soups of all sorts (as Gretchen said). We have been enjoying a turkey-barley soup.
--As Gretchen said, pasta sauces are great-- in addition to meat sauce, I suggest pesto. (Not that we are getting big drifts of basil here in Chicago, sorry) Costco has a great pesto-- just throw the whole jar in the freezer and scrape out what you need.
--pierogies (also easy to buy).

Good luck with the caregiving!


suz's picture

I have been lurking here from

I have been lurking here from time to time out of curiosity and have not posted until I saw your request for ideas. My mom has Alzheimers and is living in Fl. My sisters and I live all over the country/world, everywhere but Fl. Although my mom has an aide that cooks her meals when we go to visit we always make some home made food to leave in meal size portions. As of recent we have made, lentil soup (which she has had for many a lunch), brisket and most recently I made her beef stew. All freeze well and even taste better when reheated. Sorry no real recipes as these are dishes we just do from years of doing!

My heart goes out to you. Although I said it before on the other site I will say it again here. Your mom is blessed to have a wonderful daughter like you.

STJ4's picture

I love Turkey Meatloaf

I love Turkey Meatloaf "muffins". Your favorite meatloaf recipe cooked in a muffin tin. Great to freeze and she can thaw one or two at a time saving the rest for a later date!

My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family at this trying time.

Gretchen's picture

And building on that idea for

And building on that idea for freezer, I freeze soups in large muffin tins and then put in a plastic bag. I also freeze in ZipLocks, as I am sure others do also.

thecooktoo's picture

As a recently retired

As a recently retired personal chef, still teaching, just not traveling to peoples homes anymore, I have hundred, no make that thousands, or recipes that have been developed expressly for both short and long term storage in the home kitchen.

If you come up with any specific dishes you want, just let me know, I probably have a recipe for it. Their are some exceptions that don't store well: light fish(flounder, etc), any uncooked leafy greens, sauces made with flour thickening. There are others but these are the ones that cause the most problems.

If I can help, just let me know.


STJ4's picture

Jim, If I may...your thoughts


If I may...your thoughts on freezing store-bought flour tortillas?? or dishes with them in it?

has worked and hasn't so I thought I would get your opinion


thecooktoo's picture

The problem is that they will

The problem is that they will get water logged with whatever ingredients you put in them. When I had clients with, for instance, fajita's, I would prepare all of the cooked ingredients and put them in a small container then give them a small container of sourcream or guacamole or whtaever other toppings or garnishes I would want them to have, along with a package of 8" or 12" flour tortilla's. Their instructions were to heat the tortilla's in the microwave, heat the cooked ingredients, then instructions on how to assemble, garnish, fold and serve.

Never had a problem with that process. I have made them myself and kept then in the fridge and they always go "yucky" in about 3 or 4 hours. The only exception I can think of is if you are making enchilada's and putting a sauce on top of them and just accept the fact that they are going to be spongy or soupy, depending on your sauce.