Thursday, March 29, 2012

Meal Planning/Cooking. Am I growing up?

Trying to decide if becoming a mom has just this to me, although I kind of think I'd enjoy it even if I was babyless. I get way too many kicks out of my 2 week meal plans and trying new recipe. I've become an old woman.

Pinterest has helped this addiction; seeing new recipes and pinning them to go back and see later is awesome. Pinterest led me to punchfork which I love; it's basically pinterest but just for food. I can search recipes by genre or by ingredient, and then "like" them and it saves under your likes, so I can go back and look at them later. Then of course there's my usualy favorite sites like and I actually get excited to sit down and make my meal plan. I usually do it for 10-11 meals, as we go to the grocery store every two weeks, and I don't cook every single night. It works out well. I can order the meals in the event there's any produce that may go bad earlier than that, I'll make it within days of grocery shopping.

My favorite part of it all is experimenting with new ingredients and recipes! The first few menus I did, I made all new recipes.. 10 brand new things to try! If it was a hit I definitely use it again later on. What I've been lately (and hating that it took me so long to start doing it) is doubling two or three of the meals on my menu and freezing them. Right now I have about 7 dinners in the freezer, and my goal is to have 30 by the time baby is here. I know 10 of them will probably be made on an afternoon that I dedicated specifically to freezer stocking. Darren and I are also going to spend a Saturday afternoon (while C naps) making a bunch of waffles and french toast, and freezing them so we can just pull them out for our weekend breakfasts.

One of my favorite habits I've developed is tossing 5 chicken breasts in the crock pot with some water, putting it on high, and shredding it up about 5 hours later. Then I seperate them into 4 or 5 different small single-serving containers. I stick 2 in the fridge and the rest in the freezer and have chicken for lunch for the next 5 days. I'll throw some on a a salad, or wrap it in a tortilla with some cheese and salsa. Some minute rice and teriyaki sauce make for a quick and delish lunch as well. I just hate that it took me so long to do this. It will come in handy with the new baby when I'm breastfeeding and wanting to eat the entire house.

Anyway, go to now.. RUN. You'll love it (or you'll think I'm crazy for making meal planning/cooking a hobby).

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