Friday, October 14, 2011

A new way of cooking

First of all:

Do you have a messy desk?
Do you pile everything in the same area because it's there when you walk in the door?
Are you like me and lack creativity on how to organize the space?
Are your cats scratching up your furnitures? (That's only funny if you watch It's Always Sunny)

If so, even if not so, got to Creating Sarah and see how to fix your problems. Make sure while you're there, to go and vote for her so we can see her further create.

Are you awesome? (last question I swear)

If you answered yes then that means you read my blog post, a few back, about how I'm not very good at making dinner. Just in case you don't remember I'll do a refresher post.

I'm really bad at making dinner. I work really hard all day and just don't want to cook when I come home. So, I've tried so many things. I've tried making only really simple food. I've tried making a menu. I've tried using magazines to get new recipes so I'm not eating the same food over and over again.

No matter what I've tried I've ended up reverting back to not cooking and eating out almost every night.

On top of not wanting to cook I now work more. Between the dog park, my commute, and my scheduled 9 hour day at work, I'm usually gone for about 12 hours every day. I usually get home long after dinner is over and I don't want my husband to eat nothing/ eat sandwiches or popcorn or frozen burritos every night. So, I had to come up with a solution.

Because of a few serendipitous events, I found the solution to my problems. I found a recipe book called Once a Month Cooking. I bought it on Amazon for $0.50. It is the best book ever. Ever. In fact from here on out I will only call it The Book of Miracles. It has 2 "Two Week" plans and 2 "Four Week" plans. Since my freezer is small I have to go with the "Two Week" plans. Luckily, the recipes are for bigger families and I just have to feed me and my hottie hubby the meals actually last us a whole month.

I know you are wondering how all of this works. I wish I had pictures.

When you pick your meal plan, you have to start by going grocery shopping. Instead of looking at a bunch of recipes and trying to figure out what you need and what you don't need The Book of Miracles already has your shopping list made. It is even broken down into the different sections of the grocery store. So, you just look at the shopping list and make a pencil mark next to the things you need. For instance, I will need to get Pepper Jack cheese but don't really need butter.

After your big shopping trip you look at The Book of Miracles and it tells you what to do the night before cooking. It sometimes tells you to put something in the Crockpot. It might tell you how to organize your fridge. It will for sure tell you what tools you will need the next day and to relax because the cooking day is a big day.

Then cooking day.

Cooking day is a big day. Hello, you are cooking for your whole family for one month. The Book of Miracles makes it easy though. It tells you exactly what order to do what in. For instance:

In a greased 9x13 pan cook 1 lb of chicken in the oven at 350 for 50 minutes.
While that is cooking:
Cut: 6 stalks of celery, 4 onions....
Dice: 2 large onions, 1 jalepeno pepper,...

This could sound intimidating but it's actually quite easy. A lot of the recipes are, put all ingredients in a 1 Gal freezer bag and store in freezer. A lot. Also, it may seem like that would take a lot of dishes but it really doesn't. Also, it's a good way to get all caught up on General Conference, just in case you had to work and missed it. Also, it really pays off to cook only once a month.

Today I made 14 days worth of meals...28 if you account the fact that each meal serves 4-6 people and we're only 2...I had to stop to wash the jalepeno juice out of my eye (that sucked...real bad), had to make a couple of boom boom breaks for my dog, and it only took me 3 hours. That includes dishes, sweeping, AND mopping the kitchen. Pretty cool if you ask me.

At the end of cooking day you kind of never want to look at your kitchen ever again. But The Book of Miracles has one last instruction:

"Look at your freezer and see all the meals you've cooked."

When you do that, it feels so awesome.

The most amazing part is when you get your husband, who HATES to cook, to make dinner every night because it only involves taking something that has been defrosting and putting in the oven for 30 minutes. It's truly a miracle.

Other wonderful things about The Book of Miracles:
  1. We save a ton of money on eating out.
  2. We save a ton of money on groceries. This is because I go to the grocery store once a month, compared to several times a week.
  3. The meals are good, new, and interesting.
  4. There are a variety of meals.

I love that I found this book.


Sarahie said...

First off, thank you so much for the plug!

Second, I've heard of this book (I love that you call it the book of miracles), but never thought to check Amazon for it. Hello, 50 cents! I'm going to have to try it. Maybe it can help me figure out how to be organized enough to work my own recipes in there.

Love ya!

Jeigh said...

The Book of Miracles, indeed. This sounds like something I definitely need to get my claws on. Thanks for the info!

Rosie said...

Thank so much for the suggestion! I will add it to my amazon wishlist.