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Monday, January 9, 2012

What's Cookin' in the Parsonage?

Hey everyone! In case you missed Friday's post, Mom asked me to hang out with y'all while she's in Israel. So here we go with Monday! 

I don't live in a parsonage....but I used to. Does that count? =)
At the end of a long work day, I am ready for a quick meal that tastes like it took all day. Anyone else feel like that?

Here is the best thing I’ve found to be really helpful towards that end…MENU PLANNING!

Trust me on this one. Sit down before you go to the grocery store and decide 5 or 6 meals you want to make, beginning with the ingredients in your pantry and freezer. Supplement this with items that are on sale at your grocery store. I have a folder of bookmarks for recipes I see online that I want to try. I don’t assign meals to a day, I make whatever works best for our very unusual schedule. As I make out the menu, I simultaneously make my grocery list (make sure the list isn't mostly things you want to buy that aren't on sale...unless you just like spending all your money on groceries....). ;) 

For example, here is my menu from last week:

Spaghetti with ground turkey (because I had ground turkey in the freezer and ground beef was $3/lb! Yikes!)

Hot Chicken Salad
Green Beans

Corn Muffins (the other half of the batch I made last week and stuck in the freezer)
Cheese & Crackers
Raw veggies and ranch

Baked Chicken
Steamfresh red potatoes and vegetables

Frozen Pizza

I admit I don’t have children, so my life is pretty uncomplicated. But I do work full time as well as accommodate a husband who tirelessly works like ALL the time. If I can menu plan, you can too. Try it! Who’s with me??

If you are already a menu planner, what works best for you? Talk to me! 

Whitney for...


Michelle said...

I'm with, I do a menu plan generally every 7 to 10 days which seems to work well for me. I usually will do a produce or diary run more often for those things that I want fresh. I have a little spiral notebook that I do my grocery list in on the left side of the page is the menu the right side is the grocery list. I also write the menu out of a post-it note memo pad and leave it on the fridge so my husband knows and I know what the plan is. Works great for us. I also try to keep my freezer stocked with frozen veggies so side dishes are quick and easy. Tonight we are having faijitas and I can't wait!

M said...

Whitney, you are so organized! I am, and always have been a spontaneous person. I just go to the grocery, and buy according to what's a good buy, choosing several meats, side dishes, and items (staples) that I am low on. Then I fix each day something that appeals to me, or something my husband mentioned having a taste for. I scour magazines for tempting recipes, and manage to have appealing meals. I grew up this way, and it works for me these 56 years....not very efficient, but I've always been a stay at home Mom, and loved having supper simmering on the stove in late afternoons.

M said...
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Eliza said...

I try to cook every couple of days. We don't eat "leftovers," I'm simply "cooking ahead."
On the in-between days, we'll eat day 2 of the meal & add a new vegetable.
For instance, if I roast a chicken, and have baked potatoes, green beans and a salad one day, the next day we have chicken again, with fresh veggies & a fresh salad. Then I'll use the rest of the chicken for a soup.
At least twice a week, we don't get home until after church, so those are soup & sandwich days. If I can manage right, I only have to cook twice a week.