Saturday, May 8, 2010

Freezer Cooking Day!

Meet my wonderful friends. We decided to try a Freezer Cooking Day today (also known as Once A Month Cooking). This is us at 9:24 a.m.

Chelsea, Melissa & Me - looking chipper in our new fLiRtY aprons!!! (thanks Melissa for an awesome Mom's Day gift!) and don't we look ready to COOK?

And this is my freezer at 9:24 a.m. (empty! except for a few ingredients needed for the day. I cleared it out to make room for the 120 meals we made. *YES* I said 120 meals...well, about that - 40 meals each or so. And we did it all in one day.)

These are some of the groceries that have overrun Melissa's house for the past few weeks. She was our designated shopper (and coupon QUeeN!) and menu-planner. Thanks to her shopping savvy, we made all these meals for a grand total of about $100 each.

This is Melissa multi-tasking. (She's calling her mom for some tips on the lasagna!) Such talent. Okay, she's amazing! Did I mention, she planned the whole day too, right down to the last onion?

This is the last onion. :)

And this is Chelsea. She's amazing too! Not only did she chop most of the onions, she also mastered the "stuffing of the pork chops"! She may never want to look at another pork chop ever again...

And this is me, dicing strawberries for the delicious Strawberry Muffins and Berry Breakfast Burritos. We split the tasks into stovetop, baking, and assembly (and we shared dirty dish duty - there were a lot of dirty dishes.)

And there was a lot of trash. About 4 & a half bags of trash (at least the trash bags are can find them at Menard's.) Who knew a month's worth of cooking would produce a month's worth of trash in one day?

Anyway, back to the cooking! We brought in card tables for extra prep space, with coolers below for extra cool storage space. Here you see our delicious Strawberry Muffins (left) I mentioned, along with some chicken (in back) for our Chicken Pot Pies, and some stubborn frozen pork (middle) for our Crock Pot Pulled Pork, and all the fixings (right) for our Chicken & Rice Casserole. Just to name a few...

We managed to get it all (well, mostly) done in about 10 hours. (That means a lot to me, because it normally takes me at least an hour per meal - and now after 10 hours, I have 40 meals! Just have to pop 'em in the oven at breakfast or lunch or supper time.) Plus, I'd rather spend 10 hours in the kitchen with friends than 40 hours throughout the month, on my own & frazzled at suppertime. I think I love this whole freezer cooking idea.

This is my (indoor) freezer at 7:14 p.m. Stuffed to the gills, ExpLoDinG with FOOD! (Outdoor freezer is holding some too!) I feel so accomplished. :) At the end of the day, we divided it all up and pitched in for clean-up. (I love my friends!)

But I must say, I'm pooped! And so are my friends. This is us at 7:14 p.m.

Now that I've had time to rest my aching feet...and back...and hands... (We joked that we sound like old ladies...) I am really looking forward to blessing my family with a freezer full of meals and a less stressful mealtime!

Mealtime gameplan + easy-fix food = less stress = happy mommy.

I like it. Let's hope my family likes it too!