Thursday, September 24, 2009

What We've Been Doing

Freezers full of main dishes...6

Number of meals ready to eat...150 (this is OUR size meals)

Happy, grateful mama...1 crazy

Pears...400 pounds

Peaches...150 pounds

Sore, tired aching feet...2

Freezing veggies...too many to wrap my tired brain around

Corn...120 pounds

Green beans...120 pounds

Squash...10 quarts

Grated Zucchini because it is taking over and I can't deal with it anymore...36 quart bags

Number of parents who are praying for frost so that the squash plants die...2

Number of people in my family who love Sloppy *Tims...11

*We are a politically incorrect family and have renamed the Sloppy Joe's, Sloppy Tim's because our Joe is not "sloppy" and was offended. Our Tim, however, is very sloppy and has earned this title...for now.

I get a ton of questions regarding my style of cooking and freezing meals.

It is beyond valuable to me to have this system in place!

I can't even fathom what our grocery bill would be like if we ate out all the time or bought a lot of processed, ready-to-eat foods. I can't even remember the last time my kids had fast food. We go out to eat as a family one or two times a year. Not because I am a food snob...but because, it's expensive!

Every night my family eats a home cooked meal. And most days, I don't even cook. I can't imagine it any other way.

We eat a wide assortment of foods like, chillies, soups, casseroles, meat pies, lasagnas, burritos, sandwiches, and bean dishes.

I have a master list hanging up in the kitchen with all the meals listed and how many of each meal we have. When we pull something out of the freezer, we remove that item from the list.

Cooking in bulk is so easy...and so worth it!

I wish I would have started this years and years ago. I take our favorite recipes and times them by 2 or 3 in order to make one big enough for my family. I then times this new quantity by 4, so we can get four "our size" meals.

I make a master list of all the different ingredients needed to cook all the meals that I plan on making. I do this before I go and then organize the list into different sections, like produce, dairy, etc...

After purchasing all the food, I start cooking! I usually will chop, shred, brown or cut up all my ingredients before getting started, just to make my life easier and we all know I need lots more of that.

When done, we allow them to cool. Plastic wrap first, tinfoil second and 5 gal white garbage bag over the top and then labeled. After pulling one out of the freezer to serve, I pull everything off, put the foil back on and then stick in the oven. If the item is still frozen, I put it into a cold oven and then turn it on as to not crack my dish.

I totally encourage everyone to try cooking ahead, I can't say enough good things about it!



AlliC said...

WOW!!! I can only say that I AM IMPRESSED...I don't cook ahead, but I do plan ahead. I have a small family (4 of us total). I usually make more of a dish so that we can have leftovers during the week. Thanks for showing all of your hard work.

megan said...

You are amazing. I love this idea. Can anything be frozen? Can you share a recipe or what things you like to cook ahead? Do you leave things in the 9x13 pan? You have worked hard this summer. I hope you are taking a break now.

Ginger said...

WOW!!! That's all--I'm totally speachless...just WOW!!!

ishatrisha said...

I am totally impressed! That is a serious amount of food. What kind of timeline are we talking about? When do you cook everything the first time, or is it just ready to be put in the oven?
i'm amazed...trisha