Thursday, March 18, 2010

Freezer Cooking Part 1.

So, I got laid off 2 weeks ago yesterday and I have been trying to find some creative ways to save money while attempting to eat healthier. I went to the library and got 2 books by Deborah Taylor-Hough called "Frozen Assets" and "Frozen Assets Lite & Easy" both with the tag line "Cook for a day, eat for a month". The theory - just like it sounds. 1 day of cooking for 30 meals, and by creating menus around big sale items (like ground beef and chicken) you can save lots of money. In her example, a $200 shopping trip equaled 41 meals for her family of 6. !. !!. So... I am giving it a go.

Today, I made a list of a few items that I want to try in a mostly ground beef mini-session. I am following her recipes for the most part because they look good and they have been freezer-tested.

My menu choices = 12 meals, some with leftovers:
Sloppy joes - 2 batches of 6 servings = 3 meals of 4 servings.
Texas chili - 1 batch of 12 servings = 3 meals of 4 servings.
Poor mans casserole - 2 batches of 6 servings = 2 casserole meals w/leftovers
Chicken curry - 1 batch of 10 servings = 2 meals of 5 servings
Chicken noodle/rice soup - 2 batches from stock, leftover chicken & veggies.

I spent $70 on:
15 lb ground beef
3 lb ground turkey
1 whole turkey
3 onions
2 green peppers
bunch of celery
32 oz diced tomatoes
32 oz kidney beans
1 can of sloppy joe sauce
1 gallon of milk
(on hand I had 1 can sloppy joe sauce, taco seasoning, can corn, frozen veg, potatoes, cheese, can mushrooms and an apple plus other normal pantry stuff)

Right now I have the chicken boiling in a stockpot over it's body with water, plus 1/2 an onion and 3 stalks of celery. This will make the chicken curry meals plus leave about 2 quarts of chicken stock to make soup from.

Tomorrow after I get the kids to school/daycare I'll chop my veggies and brown my ground beef/turkey. Ugh... how the heck does one brown 18 lbs of meat? lol. Very Carefully!!

Ok, so I just did my math and the meat mixture is 5 lb = 12 cups of mix. My 18 lbs will be about 42 lbs. I only need 12 to make what I listed. Whoopsy! Let me add some more meals!!

I'll update tomorrow with my final menus. Wish me luck!

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