Having bought and cooked a beef brisket on Saturday, then eaten it on Sunday in a giant Yorkshire pudding, I was tired of seeing it! I had intended to eat most of this brisket in the coming days, but decided to opt for freezing the leftover cooked beef brisket instead.
When I cooked this particular beef brisket, I used the slow cooker – and I deliberately made a lot of beef stock, something I don’t always do, but it seemed a waste not to make some beef stock. I decided to freeze the gravy separately to the brisket, so I had the choice of whether to use it with or without gravy when I use up these leftovers. I could, for example, just have a beef brisket sandwich, which wouldn’t require gravy!
I didn’t want to mess about, so I grabbed some small freezer bags – I wasn’t sure how many portions it’d make. I had about 450-500 grams of beef brisket leftover, so started by separating out portions into the freezer bags that I thought “looked about the right amount” and then compared them to see. I ended up with four portions in the end.
I then just twisted the bags round and popped all four portions of cooked brisket into a plastic box (just to hold them all together) and tossed them into the freezer. Later on I’ll take them out and clip the bags individually; I will keep them inside a container in the freezer, just so they are kept together and I don’t lose one down the back of the freezer, forgotten!
I do try to use up frozen food within 2-3 months – but this is a personal preference because I like to use up the food I’ve got and keep food moving through the freezer… rather than it turning into a leftovers dumping ground.
To defrost I’ll take out a bag of the frozen cooked brisket and pop it in the fridge the day before I want to use it. I’ll then add some gravy to it and microwave it until it’s superhot (about 3 minutes for individual portions).
Freezing Brisket Gravy/Stock:
I had deliberately added 2 litres of water and stock to the slow cooker when I made this, leaving me with a huge quantity of gravy. I strained this off, leaving just the smooth stock. Using small freezer bags, I lined some small pots and froze the gravy in generous portions – still with the stock being quite runny.
When I come to use the gravy I will decide if I want a thick gravy or a thin gravy, depending on what I’m using it for and will thicken it, if required, when I’m using it (most likely by adding Bisto beef granules).
I loosely twisted the top of the freezer bags round and put the pots into the freezer.
Once frozen I remove the freezer bag from the pots and use freezer food clips to seal the bags. I’ll then stack the gravy portions in an old butter tub to keep them together and protected from the bags ripping.
Keeping the gravy separate means I can use this gravy with any meals in the future – or I can use it as stock to add to other recipes.