Saturday, May 12, 2012

More Freezer Cooking Fun: Carb-Fest

I've been on a carb-related freezer cooking roll in the last week.  :)

1 - Butterhorns
On Wednesday I tried out Money Saving Mom's recipe for Butterhorns. They looked very Pillsbury crescent-like, and my husband and I love us some crescents. And I liked the fact that I'd be able to freeze them and enjoy freshly baked rolls on a whim! Yes please.

It's an incredibly easy recipe to follow; so easy that I assumed I had messed something up and they wouldn't actually be tasty. Regardless, I dutifully rolled them up like crescents, and placed them on a silpat + baking sheet and popped them in the freezer overnight.
I left two Butterhorns out so they could finish rising and then baked them for dinner, as a taste test. And let me say... NOM. Major nom! Very light and buttery. Not as flaky as a true Pillsbury crescent, but delicious in its own way. My husband and I both enjoyed our Butterhorns with some honey!

Once frozen, I put them all in a labeled freezer bag and sucked out all the air.
The next day, I took out two frozen Butterhorns about six hours before dinner, letting them defrost and then rise on a silpat + baking sheet. Baked them for dinner and again... deliciousness!! So let's just say, I love having a bag of them ready and waiting in the freezer. And this recipe will be used again soon...

2 - Homemade Baking Mix
On Wednesday I also assembled Money Saving Mom's Homemade Baking Mix recipe, because it's really, really easy. So I figured I could get it done and be really happy about adding TWO yummy things to the freezer in one day. I felt so productive!!  :D

The hardest part is patiently cutting shortening into a mix of dry ingredients... other than that, it's just mixing! The end result is a Bisquick-like mix that you can use to make a whole bunch of things (biscuits, pancakes, cinnamon rolls...)... nice! Haven't made anything with it just yet, but I will soon.

3 - Hot Dog Buns
I'm easing my way into the "envelope system" with money (more to come on that). So when I decided this week that I had spent all my grocery money, I realized the one last bit of food I needed was... hot dog buns for our weekend lunches. Part of me thought... I can let myself go over budget a bit with some really cheap hot dog buns for about $1. But then the other part of me thought... I wonder if I can make hot dog buns with the ingredients I already have on hand?

I did a little reading and found some promising recipes, and ended up having all the ingredients for a very simple hot dog / hamburger bun recipe. I didn't actually calculate out the costs but based on what I read, making your own hot dog and hamburger buns costs about as much as it would to buy inexpensive buns, if not more expensive.

In the end I decided to accept the challenge! For two reasons:
1 - I wanted to be stingy :)
2 - The really inexpensive hot dog buns are so dense and not super tasty... I could make something better, right?!?

So this morning I woke up early and made this simple hot dog bun recipe. They didn't end up rising as much as I expected (I used yeast that was still technically good, but I'm now thinking I should have tossed it in favor of brand new yeast I just bought). And they were a bit small (I cut the recipe into 16 buns, but should have done 12). But, they looked like hot dog buns! And they tasted good!
They weren't as light as I was hoping, but they also weren't as dense as the cheap store buns. So if I attempt this again, I'd like to try this very yummy-looking recipe. Those buns look reeeeal good!

I baked 8 of the buns, and froze the other half in a bun-shaped pre-risen state. I'll try desfrosting them next weekend, and will report on the results!

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