Made from Scratch Freezer to Oven Meals

Made from ScratchAs requested we have been on the look out for healthy and delicious ready-made freezer to oven meals. Recently when chatting with a friend she said “you should meet my friend Nadine Hughes… she is renown caterer, award winning cookbook author, proprietor of ‘Thrive’ a very cool seasonal store she just opened Honey Harbour and…. she makes fantastic freezer to oven dinners made from scratch with great ingredients!”.

We went to visit Nadine at her 2000 sq ft kitchen in Oakville where all her catering magic and Dinner at Home Meals preparation happens. We left with a whole bunch of samples to try and may I say… sometimes our jobs are so hard… over the last month we have sampled some really really wonderful dinners and are now excited to share them with you.

A few things that stand out for us on Nadine’s meals:

  • Drug-free, Antibiotic-free Meats – The meats that Nadine uses are all drug free; no hormones, no antibiotics which, most importantly, keeps to our standards in meats.
  • It’s all about the ingredients – Just real delicious food! Without the use of all sorts of unpronounceable ingredients ie: preservatives, stabilizers, fillers etc.. You taste the actual food and spices and sauces – not the other mystery stuff.
  • Not over-seasoned – A pet peeve with prepared meals or even restaurant meals is that they are often made with too much sodium. I like to have the option to add salt and pepper if I like. These meals in my opinion are perfectly seasoned.
  • Portions are big – There are recommended serving sizes but in my opinion these serve more people as the meals don’t have loads of added carbs like rice and potatoes and pastas (except the mac & cheese of course). When you add your favourite sides the meals go a LONG way.

Here’s what we’ll be offering this order cycle (Sept2016) – for pricing and any newly added items check out our online order form.

Indian Butter Chicken, ~1.2Kg


One of the most popular, this dish is all chicken with a delicious sauce. Served along with some rice and veggies this meal will go a long way. Depending on appetites this should easily serve 4 hungry folks maybe more! Gluten Free

Ingredients: Chicken thigh meat, tomatoes, yogurt, tandoori paste, cream, ginger, jalapeno pepper, spices, vegetable oil, lemon, kosher salt, black pepper.

Chicken Pot Pie, ~1.3kg


Very chickeny with veggies, sauce and a delicate top crust this pie should feed 4 hungry adults. Just pop in the oven when you get home, maybe throw together a quick salad and you’re ready to go!

Ingredients: Chicken breast meat, carrots, butternut squash, potatoes, chicken broth, milk, peas, onions, unsalted butter, flour, garlic, spices, kosher salt, black pepper, Pastry (flour, milk, unsalted butter, vegetable shortening, baking powder, salt)

Gourmet 3 Cheese and Macaroni, .750gm


We think there should always be something for everyone – meat eaters and non-meat eaters! This 3 cheese macaroni & Cheese is great. Kids and adults alike will love this classic.

Ingredients: Elbow macaroni, milk, cheddar cheese, mozzarella cheese, parmesan cheese, flour, unsalted butter, breadcrumbs, dry mustard, kosher salt, black pepper

We also will have available 2 fun products made by Nadine…

Energy Bites, Oatmeal Chocolate, 185gm, 12 balls/pk


I love these! They are perfect for when you need a little energy boost, great for school lunches (nut-free!) or simply for a yummy treat. You can eat them frozen right out of the freezer or let them sit out for 10 minutes to defrost and enjoy.

Hand rolled with 100% all natural ingredients – no preservatives, no artificial flavours, Gluten Free Friendly, Vegetarian.

Ingredients:  Oatmeal, Sunflower Seed Butter, Soya Butter, Ground Flaxseed, Dark Chocolate Chips (cocoa) Unsweetened Coconut Flakes, Sesame Seeds, All Natural Honey, Pure Vanilla Extract.

Tomato Jam, 250gm


Chunky tomato sauce with the sweet and tang you find in ketchup but with extra yum complex flavours. This is dynamite – with the Macaroni & 3 Cheese and the Chicken Pot Pie – it also pairs wonderfully on a cheese plate!

Ingredients: Tomatoes, brown sugar, lemon, garlic, ginger, pepper, salt, ground cloves

The Easiest Chicken Burgers…

Well it can’t get easier than this for a quick dinner…. chicken burgers.


This is what you need:

  • Ground chicken/Ground turkey
  • Seasoning that you like – we used a 50 / 50 mix of our own Chicken Spice Rub and Moroccan Dry Rub.
  • Other spices such as piri piri also work well.
  • Bit of olive oil

This is what we do:

  • Roll ground chicken/turkey up into balls about 100-125gm each.
  • Flatten into patties
  • Sprinkle some of each spice on top…. we actually put a pretty good coating on ours as that’s how we like em.
  • Spices
  • Heat a little olive oil in a frying pan on medium heat
  • When pan is hot place patties spice down on pan then coat the 50/50 spice on top
  •  Flip after 4-5 minutes
  • ChickenInPan2
  • Let cook for about another 5 minutes… or until cooked till done (juices should be clear)

 And that’s it!!

 I like the burger by itself with a side salad but you can definitely go all the way with a yummy bun and toppings of your choice.

 Couldn’t be easier – enjoy!!


Stocking up on Stock


As I ponder what type of rib-sticking soup or stew to make on this snowy Saturday I must say that I’m glad we went stock crazy last November. We are still well stocked for soups, sauces, braises, gravies, tortiere – ok you get the idea – everything is better with homemade stock.

We start with quality bones from animals that have been naturally raised without the use of drugs or hormones. The next most important step to great stock is to pre-roast the bones for an hour. Roasting caramelizes any meat on the bones which creates an added depth of flavor.


After we have simmered the bones in water for a couple of hours we throw in celery, onion & carrots and continue to simmer for a few more hours. The aroma that fills the kitchen at this stage is delicious. Note to self… make candles that smell like simmering stock with veggies…ok maybe not.


Once we’re happy with the taste of the stock the bones and soft veggies are removed. We let it cool completely then scrape any fat off the top. It is then brought up to room temperature so it can be strained through a cheesecloth.

Bag it. Label it. Freeze it and enjoy when needed. I like to freeze mine in different size amounts – some 3C, some 2C and a bunch of 1C portions. Every recipe seems to need different amounts so this allows defrosting of only what you need.


Soups and Stock – My OCD freezer… makes me very happy 🙂