mint and sage creamy sauce, how to preserve leftover canned coconut milk, and how I store food in my freezer without plastic bags

As we now have both fresh mint and sage in my garden, I can make and share this creamy sauce with you. Not much to it : basically, I just deglaze a pan after cooking lamb, pork, or flavorful mushrooms such as fresh organic shiitake mushrooms. I haven’t tested this recipe on chicken, if any of my dear neighbors is ready to do so, I hope he/she will let me know how it turns out ! The original coconut cream flavor gets lost in the process ; the end result is an intense tasting sauce, especially with meat drippings, with the freshness of the mint in every spoonful.

But if you would rather use mint in a dessert, why don’t you try making strawberry mint jelly.  I personally will, as soon as our strawberries are ripe, in a couple of weeks!

Ingredients (for 2 servings)

6 TBSP / 90ml coconut cream (i.e., from the fatty upper part of the contents of a can, may be frozen – tips after the recipe)

– 2 TBSP finely chiseled fresh mint

– 2 TBSP finely chiseled fresh sage OR 2 tsp dried sage

– good pinch of all natural sea salt (to taste)

How to:

1. Bring coconut milk, herbs and salt to a gentle boil in a saucepan, covered, for about 20 seconds. Turn off heat and let infuse. This can be done ahead of time.

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2. Cook meat / mushrooms in skillet. If you are dealing with meat, remove it from the pan : it will be easier to make the sauce without it.

3. Pour coconut liquid into pan drippings and heat on low, stirring with a wooden spoon, until well combined. Done !

A few tips :

When I open a can of refrigerated coconut milk, I pierce a hole at the bottom of the can, to let the thinner liquid out into a bowl before scooping out the fattier, thicker part.

Unless I plan to use it over the next couple of days to cook my morning oatmeal, I freeze the coconut milk, just as I freeze any leftover coconut cream. As you may know, coconut milk does not keep very well, even refrigerated ! After a couple of days it starts tasting rancid. Yuk !

Storing in the freezer without plastic bags :

Because I buy organic and gluten-free ingredients which can be fairly expensive, I have become extra careful not to waste and learned to make the best usage of my BFF – my Best Friend the Freezer. In the past, I would store a lot of things in plastic bags. But then I became aware of the serious damage plastic has already done to marine life, not to mention the fact that it is made from oil, a limited resource on our planet. So I gradually « invested » in different size silicone items to freeze food in. Granted, silicone is also made from oil, but this was a one time deal and I have noticed that indeed I am now buying a lot fewer freezer bags ! Here is my collection :

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The very small container (about 1 tsp in each slot of the pink tray) is for lemon and lime juice. No more half lemons spoiling in my fridge : this is the « squeeze and freeze » method !

The next size (in purple) is used for coconut milk, tomato paste, etc — basically any tablespoon measurement.

The larger tray (brown), actually a muffin tray that I never use for baking, is for freezing larger portions of pear sauce (as in my gluten-free crepe recipe), apple sauce, red berry sauce, tomato sauce, pureed bell peppers, unused egg whites, and chick pea juice.

After the food has solidified in the freezer, I remove it from the silicone containers and place it in… glass jars, which makes it easy to find and identify the items. I have never ever had a jar break on me. The only time they break is when I accidentally drop them – which, given my legendary clumsiness, happens a little too often, but that’s another story !

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As always, my labels are a happy mix of English and French!

What about you, dear neighbors ? Are you aiming to reduce your waste ? How do you go about it ? Any tips ?

3 Comments

  1. Your coconut cream sauce sounds amazing! So much flavor in there! And I love your food storage method… I have just begun (this year) doing the same. So much better for our planet, yay!

    Liked by 1 person

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