Oct 14, 2011

Batch Cooking

HB and I have tucked another batch cooking day under our belts.  This was our fourth cooking day together and it just keeps getting easier. {Click for first, second and third days.} Today's meals came together relatively easy, they weren't labor intensive.  All the credit needs to go to my bestest gal pal for her wonderful planning.  She is too good to me!  

When brainstorming our menu for today, we wanted to use a generous amount of green bell peppers from my mom's garden as well as a mixture of beef and chicken.  My husband does not prefer ground beef so that limits our recipe choices.  We also talked about the fact that this is the season to use a slow cooker. Many of our family favorites can be started early in the morning and slow cooked throughout the day. [A helpful resource for slow-cooking is this blog].

And a plug for batch cooking: you just got to try it.  Find someone whose family eats similarly to yours and double a couple recipes.  The time in the kitchen is more fun with another person plus when that crazy hour of 4 o'clock rolls around you will be so glad you have something for dinner from the freezer.  I cannot speak highly enough of batch cooking.  It has made me a better mother.  I am tired in the afternoons - and so are my children.  They need my attention during those crazy hours just before Daddy gets home.  The days that we have a meal waiting for us EVERYONE is happier.  My husband loves that I have been batch cooking.

The five meals made today:

Chicken and Rice Soup
This is the soup we serve our loved ones when they are sick.  Chicken broth is so nourishing and super delicious!  Now that the weather is cooling and the sniffles are in the air, this soup is even better.  Simple to make: chicken, chicken broth, mirepoix (that's a fancy word for the trinity: celery, carrots and onion), and rice.  Here's a grain free version.  We packaged this in smaller 2 cup containers, as well as 2 quart portions.

Has anyone ever tried a recipe by the Pioneer Woman they didn't like?  That woman can cook! This sandwich was amazing.  Both families ate them for dinner tonight.  The weather was utterly perfect for eating outside.

Another recipe chosen to use green bell peppers and cube steak but a crowd pleaser nonetheless!

Beef Tips
The last time HB and I cooked together she made these for us.  Uh- MAY-zing.  Seriously good food.   I hope to get this recipe to you peeps, soon.  It is delicious!

Mexican Chicken
What's not to like about lots of cheese, chicken and cream with a bit of tomato, peppers and corn tortillas?  This recipe was assembled and frozen in 8x8 pans.

I didn't take many pictures today, but I truly enjoyed the whole day.  It was not stressful.  At one point during the craziness, there were 4 women and 6 children in the house and it was LOUD.  The house was extra messy and crazy but I loved every single minute.  There are nourishing meals in my fridge and I got to hang out with friends today.  Does it get better than this?!  My friends even helped clean up.

And yes, that's a Chick-fil-A cup on the counter - one of my neighbors stopped by.   Almost directly above the Chick-fil-A cup you'll see another white bottle.  I burned myself by pouring a LOT of HOT chicken broth on my hand so I used liquid bentonite for the burn.  It works better than aloe.  Amazing stuff.

Linked with Monday Mania.

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