Monday, April 7, 2014

Zesty Italian Melts

We've been enjoying the fruits of our labor from my most recent freezer swap. Weekend lunches are something I always seem to struggle with. Anyone else have this problem? It's easy if we have some leftovers to reheat, but other than the quick sandwiches and what not, I don't always have a great plan. Maybe I try to make things too complicated, I don't usually make the same meal more than once unless it's an absolute favorite.

So it was really nice to pull out these sandwiches, along with some twice baked potatoes and have them ready for lunch after bowling league and our errands on Saturday. Not much thought involved at all, which is really nice! That's what I love most about freezer cooking, at times like this when I don't want to stress about the next meal, I can simply pull something out of the freezer and be done. It's truly a life saver. Now I just need to keep on top of it and make sure I'm doubling meals here and there so we always have a little stash to fall back on.

I spotted these sandwiches in a favorite cookbook of mine, it's one that's devoted entirely to make ahead meals for your freezer. All using wholesome ingredients too. I wanted to try these out for our freezer swap and I hope everyone's enjoying them. I know our family sure did!

I really liked the herbed butter spread on the inside of the buns, the hubby on the other hand didn't so much. But that's no biggie, next time I'll leave it off some. You can really use just about any type of meat you like on these. I stuffed ours with shaved ham and some salami and then added a slice of mozzarella cheese on top.

I wrapped each sandwich in foil and then placed them in a large Ziploc freezer bag. Then we can help ourselves to individual sandwiches as needed. We reheated ours in the oven for a bit, but the microwave would work just fine. In fact I like that idea for easy lunch packing or for when the kids want to help themselves to a quick meal.

Sandwiches aren't something we eat a whole lot of, but with warmer weather coming and nights out at the softball complexes, they will probably start making an appearance on my menus more often. I like this idea of making up different kinds of subs and sandwiches, wrapping them individually and then stashing away in the freezer. I'm looking forward to trying some different variations soon.

Zesty Italian Melts

4 tbsp softened butter
1/4 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp dried oregano
8 sandwich buns
1/2 lb. shaved ham
16 slices of salami
8 slices of mozzarella cheese

In a small bowl, cream together butter and spices, until well mixed. Spread a layer onto each bun. I only did the bottom layer but you can do both top and bottom, if you wish.

Add two to three slices of ham to each bun, along with two slices of salami, alternating. Top with a slice of cheese.

Wrap each sandwich in foil. Place them into a gallon sized freezer bag. Make sure to label the bag with the contents and date.

When ready to enjoy: remove from freezer and let thaw in the fridge. Heat sandwiches in the oven at 300 degrees, for about 15 minutes. Just until cheese is melted and warmed through.

You may also heat in the microwave for a few minutes.

Makes 8 sandwiches

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