Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Once a Month Cooking

Well, this week's Shenanigan is one that I have been dying to try for quite some time, so I finally did it.  With baseball season just around the corner, we will be at the field 4 - 5 nights a week.  The last thing I want to worry about this season is.. what's for dinner.. so I did a bit of research, picked some easy recipes and cooked 30 meals in one day!!  You read me right.. 30 meals in one day!!  I made a mixture of casseroles and crock pot recipes that are all sitting tucked away in zip lock bags in my freezer.  First thing I did was choose the recipes.  Some I found online, and some I got from friends, and some came from a cookbook.  I chose 10 recipes and then tripled each one, so that I would have 30 meals.  Then, I shopped and boy did I shop!!
There was definitely a lot of food to be purchased and I spend approximately $500.00 for all of the meals that I prepared which worked out to be about $17.00 per meal.  That isn't too bad to feed my family of four!!
Next, I chopped, and I chopped and I chopped!!  The worst part was the onions.  Every recipe called for chopped onions, so I peeled and chopped about 30 onions.  In order to avoid the watery eyes, I wore swimming goggles, and they worked like a charm!!
 Once all the chopping was done, I was ready to mix the sauces and assemble the bags and casseroles.  There was not much pre-cooking or prepping involved with the recipes I chose so I pretty much put all of the chopped raw vegetables and meats into the bags.
 I labeled the bags and casserole dishes with a black sharpie marker and prepared them for freezing.  I also made some casseroles and I purchased tin foil casserole dishes from a dollar store, these were the perfect size and stack nicely in my freezer.
I had to stop 1/2 way through my day to wash up the dishes to re-use them for other recipes.  I literally used every dish I had for the prep!!

All in all, I spent about 8 hours in my kitchen from start to finish, it was exhausting to say the least but, I now have 30 meals  all ready to go and now that the ball season has started, I haven't had to worry about what's for dinner in weeks!!  I would highly recommend this to anyone who is interested in getting organized for a busy family and I will definitely be doing it again.