Friday, July 9, 2010

Simplicity in the Kitchen

Cooking dinner has been a restful process. Not only do I plan my meals and precook accordingly, but I also plan the uses for what I buy and try preparing them ahead of time. This not only saves time but it can save money as well.

Several grocery shops ago, I came home with a bag of onions. Because I generally use my onions chopped, I went ahead and chopped them all while Addie was napping. I used what I needed that night and froze the rest.  You can buy prechopped onions, but it just cheaper (and probably healthier) to buy fresh onions and chop them yourself.  Just be prepared to cry a bit.

After looking through one of my sister's cookbooks recently, I found some other great tips for simplifying meal preparation.  I have not actually put all of these tips into practice...yet.  But they were too good not to share.

Develop a repertoire of about 12 recipes your family loves.

Buy ground chuck when it is on sale.  Brown, drain and freeze it in 1 lb. portions.

Roast a couple of whole chickens like the deli does.  Chop the meat and freeze in 1 cup portions.

Prechop onions, celery, and green peppers and refrigerate or freeze them in useful portions.

Prepare a double batch of casseroles.  Serve one now and freeze another for later.

Bake a double batch of muffins, waffles, or pancakes and freeze the leftovers up to 1 month.  Reheat in the toaster oven or microwave.

Happy cooking!

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