Monday, July 19, 2010

Once a Month Cooking - Round 2

I was introduced to Once a Month Cooking by a fellow Nestie (on my anniversary board on and thought I'd give it a try. The idea of coming home and only having to pop something in the oven or warm it up on the stove sounded SO appealing. After all, what mom who works full time doesn't need a few extra minutes in her day?

The first time was completely overwhelming. I chose 25 recipes, organized my grocery list, spent over $300 at the store and then cooked for 2 days straight. Phew, I'm exhausted just thinking about what it was like! My house was a complete disaster! This time I narrowed my recipe selection down to 8 and just made double batches of everything. Keith and I don't mind eating the same things every other week, and it's so much easier to make double a recipe instead of 2 separate recipes. I only spent $200 at the store this time and was able to make enough for 18 dinners. Here's what I made:
Beef Empanadas
Thursday's Chicken
Fiesta Chicken
Baked Ziti
Chicken & Broccoli Casserole
Stuffed Burger Pockets
Tater-tot Casserole filling (my recipe)
Taco-Stuffed Pasta Shells
These were our favorites from the first time I did OAMC, so I figured I'd stick with what I knew. It only took me 8 hours to make all of those, as opposed to the two days it took me to make 25 recipes. I'm thinking I'll have one day a month were I make several meals like I did this past weekend, and then 2 other weekends a month I'll try 2 new recipes to freeze. I'm also slowly working on adapting our favorite recipes into ones that will work in the freezer.
If you have the time to devote to cooking for a full day and the endurance to grocery shop for everything, I highly suggest giving OAMC'ing a try! After you finish, you'll swear up and down you'll never do it again, until you enjoy a month's worth of hassle-free dinners. Completely worth the effort!

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