It happens to all of us, unexpected guests arrive and we often insist that they stay for a meal, whether it’s dinner, lunch or brunch. The only problem is what to make and serve in a hurry? Or there are days when we are not feeling up to cooking for ourselves and yet want a home-cooked meal. How do we keep ourselves prepared for these situations?
It helps to have a few dishes semi-ready that we prepare in advance and keep refrigerated or frozen.
These are some of my suggestions:
- Paneer cubed and lightly fried. You can freeze them for months or refrigerate up to a week.
- Tomato puree. Just boil with light salt, cook until it is pasty and freeze using ice cube trays. This comes in handy for making a gravy based dish.
- Dahi vada can be frozen prior to the soaking step and will keep for a few weeks. When you are ready to serve, defrost just enough vadas and soak in lukewarm water for about 10 minutes. Vadas are ready to be used.
- Frozen Muthias are always very handy.
- How about freezing half-fried samosas!
- Cabbage kofta. The kofta itself freezes well and when you are ready to serve, just prepare the gravy and your dish is ready. This is a real treat for any visitor or just for your family at home.
- Many different desserts can be prepared well in advance, such as Gulab Jamuns, Rasgullas, Rasmali, and Burfies. Make sure you are freezing them in small batches.
- For side dishes, cabbage with peas, green beans and peas, paneer tikka masala, and palak paneer are some of the dishes that freeze well. Remember to always freeze in small portions.
Chutneys! I highly recommend having these ready as they come in handy. Preparing the snack becomes so easy, if the chutneys are readily available.
- Hari cilantro chutney can be frozen easily freeze using ice cube trays.
- Tamarind sweet and sour chutney can be refrigerated as it stays well for a few months.