Tuesday, July 05, 2011

The Freezer

So yesterday I posted about our fledgling food stockpile.  In addition to The Pantry, we've also invested in a new freezer.
My new bff
Bought ridiculously cheaply on ebay because it has a couple of dents and one of the drawers needs a corner glued back on.

This replaces our old second fridge, which has never been made good use of.  It also uses about 200kWh less power.

My next job is to investigate wholesale meat and how you go about buying half a cow and getting it into bits small enough to fit in the freezer drawers.  I believe there is a wholesale butcher in Dural, so that will be my first stop, if I can find him.  Liss over at Frills in the Hills heads down to a butcher in Wilberforce every month or so, which might be worth a trip.  And I know MumnDad's butcher at Mulgoa might also be able to help.  I'll keep you updated on how I go.


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Rina said...

Hi Caitlyn,  We're just up the road from the Mulgoa butcher, so when your heading this way let me know. I can help with chooks if you want to try farm meat chooks, I have posted about them before. It's a small world, the butcher's dad is my mentor helping with my sheep and  sausage making. Hopefull he will be making salami sometime. Would be nice to catch up with you.

dixiebelle said...

This is something we've considered on & off for a couple of years, wanting to buy meat from the farmer (and more recently, R is getting into bowhunting) and not knowing how to make salami etc., that freezing it will be the way to go. I worry about the extra electricity & cost, but also what if there is a power outage (and Murphy's Law says it will happen when you've just filled it up with expensive meat!). I think the savings on meat & the environment from buying eco-meat direct, would balance out the cost on having another appliance!?

Sam-O said...

I used to go to one and you could buy half a cow or a lamb etc, for example and get them to chop it up how ever you liked.  Get to know your cuts of meat.

Make sure freezer content are covered by our insurance policy.

dixiebelle said...

(Oh, and I am reading a book now called "Cooking on the Bone" by Jennifer McLagan, that includes diagrams about whole animals & what their various parts are called and where to find them on the carcass.)


Joy George said...

My advice is have all of the meat boned out then cut into serving size pieces and packaged. Bones take up too much space and they pierce the plastic wrapping. Then you can make stock with the bones and freeze it in small containers. Reduce the stock down as much as possible, it can then be restored with water when you use it. Lastly, invest in a good vacuum sealer, worth their weight in gold !!

Caitlyn Nicholas said...

That's brilliant advice, many thanks Joy :)

Caitlyn Nicholas said...

I know what you're saying Dix, and the use of power and the risk of losing the lot was always in the back of my mind when we made the decision.  But when we lost power for 24hours a couple of years ago - and then had it sporadically for a couple of days - we found fridge and freezer contents survived because we didn't open the doors and they are very well insulated, and as it turned out the power company reimbursed people who applied $400 for loss of freezer contents (we didn't claim, but I know a few who did and though they had to jump through a few hoops the company paid up).  

As Sam-O mentions you can also get it on your insurance, though I don't think this freezer holds enough to warrant extra insurance, but if it was a huge chest freezer then I would.

For me, a store of cheap meat is the main aim, and having the freezer stocked is a safety net in case hubs has another job disaster - we've got through 1 year of unemployment in the last three due to the GFC.  

Have I said lately how much I LOVE your blog??  

Cait :)

Caitlyn Nicholas said...

Hi Rina.  You're in Mulgoa!!  I spent most of my weekends as a teenager out there, riding my horse around Roscrea, back when it was a dairy farm :). Its such a beautiful area.  Mumndad are in Wallacia now, so I'm out there at least once a fortnight.  I'd love to try farm meat chooks and LOVE to catch up some time, thank you for the invitation.  The sausages and salami sound wonderful, and it'll be so great to hear more about it all.


Caitlyn Nicholas said...

Have been avidly studying diagrams of cows, much to the consternation of guests who are worried I'm thinking of keeping one in the backgarden!!  I can see a blog post on sausage making in my future as well :)

Caitlyn Nicholas said...

Thanks Dix, I'll check it out :)