Friday, June 12, 2009

Adventures in cooking!!!

Today was my first attempt at freezer dinners. Peter and I have been working really hard trying to pay off our debt and after almost 6 months of eating beans and rice for dinner I can't really stomach the stuff anymore. I started doing some research about cheap meal plans and I came across a lot of information for making a bunch of dinners in bulk and freezing them and how that is a really good way to save money. There are several books out with recipes for cooking in bulk and freezing so I picked one up last weekend and decided that today would be the day that I attempt to make a bunch of dinners. I also thought about how nice it would be to not have to come home and figure out what to cook every night. Just take the food out of the freezer the day before and put in the oven when I get off work.

I have to admit I was very nervous about trying to cook this much food. A lot of the recipes call for you to under cook things a little bit so when you recook them they will be just right. I have a tendency to overcook things. I can officially say that I made it through without burning anything!!! Not entirely sure about "under cooking" everything though.

My kitchen already for me to make a mess!!!

The fridge with food prepped and ready to go:

I'm not even joking: Juno wanted to watch me cook apparently and she hates laying on the hard wood floor so she pulled my blanket off the couch and pulled it into the dining room so she could see what I was doing. Is she smart or what?

First item on the menu: 5 dinners of Baked Ziti

Next up: 2 Lazy Man Lasagna's

Things did get a little hectic for awhile trying to cook several dishes at one time and not having pots big enough to do the full serving so I had to cook it twice and then trying to keep dishes washed throughout the process so I always had the tools handy that I needed.

The next items I made where:

1 bag for spaghetti

1 meal of meatball sandwiches

2 meals of Salisbury steak

3 meat loafs

2 meals of sweet and sour meatballs

1 chili day meatballs

2 days of meatballs with noodles

For a total of 19 beef dishes!!!

Then I moved on to my chicken dishes which were:

4 meals of Tex-mex chicken that you serve with tortilla chips

and 4 meals of chicken broccoli:

I finished my day long cooking with 2 meals of a broccoli ham bake:

and 4 servings of scalloped potatoes and ham:

We have a grand total of 33 meals in the freezer!!!

It was actually kind of fun. I do enjoy cooking and baking but it is difficult to muster up the energy after work to enjoy cooking!

For 33 dinners we spent a little under $150! I figure with most of the meals I will have leftovers for lunches too. Now I just hope that everything comes nicely out of the freezer and tastes great!