Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Oh, Once a Month Cooking, how I love thee!
How many of you reading this want to feed your family wholesome meals? (Okay, yes, I see you nodding to yourself.) How many of you feel like there is NEVER enough time to get everything done, including cooking supper and cleaning up afterwards? (Again with the nodding...very good, very good.) Well, I have a solution.

I had heard of Once A Month Cooking (OAMC) and knew that it sounded like a good idea, but I had never taken the leap required to try it out. WOW! Had I been missing out!? What's better than having homemade Alfredo Chicken Penne with garlic bread and only having to run the microwave and put places and utensils in the dishwasher? At my house, NOTHING!

So I know you're thinking, is it really possible? How do I actually do this? I'm here to help you out, step by step!

Step 1. Pick a day that you will cook. Plan to have someone keep the children for the day, unless they are great at occupying themselves.
Step 2. Make a list of items your family loves or would like to try (I would encourage only trying 1 or 2 new recipes--just to keep things easy).
Step 2. Break down that list into a list of what ingredients you need for each dish.
Step 3. Check the cupboards, freezers, etc. for these items.
Step 4. Make a list of which items you are still in need. Don't forget disposable metal pans (if you want to use them), aluminum foil, plastic wrap, baggies, etc!
Step 5. Make a trip to the grocery.
*Note: If you shop like I do--stocking up on Sale items, but not ever buying at regular price--you will want to plan ahead each month/week and be buying those items you will need for your OAMC.
Step 6. Next day--Begin cooking!!!

As far as the cooking goes, it will be much easier if you plan to make all like dishes at once. For example, I made breakfast first. I cooked all of my sausage patties first. Then I browned all my sausage for burritos next. While I was doing this, I had eggs cooking in the microwave for burritos and biscuits in the oven for sausage biscuits. Make all chicken dishes at the same time, make all beef dishes at the same time. If you're going to need 1 lb. of ground beef for 5 dishes, cook all 5 lbs at once and divide later.

Planning ahead and multitasking are your best bet when it comes to OAMC!! Another idea would be to ask a friend or family member to help and split the meals! I can tell you from experience, an extra set of hands would have gone a LONG way!

The most important thing is to not be overwhelmed by the thought of it. Jump in! That's the only way you'll ever try it! I can tell you, I won't be going back to the hassle of trying to figure out what to cook every night. I love going to the freezer in the morning and thawing out a homemade supper!

Good luck with your cooking adventure!!

1 comment:

Rhiana said...

You need to post some recipes or links on the side board. I would live help with breakfasts!