Monday, January 28, 2013

Once a Month Cooking

For the month of January I got this idea that I would do once-a-month cooking.  

What is it about you ask?  

Well the idea is that you spend one horrid day cooking EVERYTHING for that month, freeze it, and then you will have meals every night to just thaw out and eat.  So we did our grocery shopping...
 I used this book.  It was my mother-in-law's and I snagged it at a garage sale at her house.  I was very intrigued.  She told me that she had never used it.  I read it and thought I could do it  It assured me that you can fit a month of food into a standard freezer.
I was a little leery however, as our new fridge (isn't she beautiful???) has a pull out freezer drawer.  Also, the prepared meals weren't going to be the only thing in our freezer, so I just knew that there was no way it would all fit.

 So I did two week cooking.  Which this book has a plan for by the way.  Two actually.  A regular two week plan and a low fat two week plan.
I was going to do this after church on a Sunday, but we had a sick little one, so I was able to start early in the morning.  I had the meat out.  
 I chopped all of the vegetables for all of the recipes.  I had to chop a lot of onions!
 One of the first things I made was marinara.  Dumped everything in and let it cook for two hours.
Here it is all canned up.  It is so super yummy!

After this part I basically stopped taking pictures because I was in too much of a  rush to get things done.  Now I would consider myself pretty familiar with the kitchen.  I do a lot of cooking and baking.  So when it told me it would take all day I was a little over confident and thought that surely it wouldn't take me that long.  But seriously! Let me tell ya, I cooked from the 7a to the 7p.  Sunup to sun down, yo.  I was exhausted.  Exhausted!!!

I could not imagine doing a whole month as I only did 2 weeks, but it was so worth it.

As we approach the end of the month, we had one more meal and then we are done.  The two weeks of dinners has worked perfectly for us.  Here's why...I do like to use cooking as a way to express creativity.  Sometimes I like to play with cooking and try new things.  So I've probably cooked like that once a week.  The rest of the time has been us eating sandwiches on the run between classes we are carpooling too.  We also eat at Nick's mom and dad's once a week when they take one of the kiddos a week.  And a couple of times we have eaten out.

So that's it.  Once a month cooking for us was only two weeks worth of meals, but it was so worth it.  I can't wait to do it again because I am hoping (hoping being the key word here!) that I will get better and faster with the processes and will be able to accomplish more in less time.

For this next month I've been researching new recipes to use.  This FabuLESS website looks amazing!!!  I am a HUGE Money Saving Mom fan and she has some great recipes and advice as well.  And I haven't checked it out too much yet but I can't wait to dive into the Thriving Home's website about freezer cooking.

So there ya go! I know I talked about this before with some friends and I am so, so sorry that it has taken me about a month to get this written.  And please let me know if you have any questions.  I would love to help!  And I am getting ready to do my freezer cooking for next month, so maybe we can all do it together :)
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1 comment:

Aunt Jan said...

I am happy this is working for you. However your 2 little ones still will eat what you put in front of them to eat each night. My boys however, were older and they said all the food tasted the same night after night. They got to the point where they would just not eat what I pulled from the freezer. I did it for 2-3 months and finally gave up. And yes, it does take a good day or two to make a months worth of food. Uncle Bill did help me but soon had to do his own work things, so I was left to do it all. I was so pooped after that much cooking all at once. Good luck! You will need it!