Monday, December 31, 2012

Cooking Frenzy

I love to cook. I love reading food magazines, I love trying new recipes, I love cooking old favorites, I love planning my weekly menu...I just plain love to cook. In the winter on Sundays, when I can take the time, I usually cook for a few hours to prep food for the next week and make a big Sunday dinner. Growing up, Friday night was pizza night and Sunday night was big dinner night. I can honestly say that we have pretty much stuck to that. Not by conscious choice...I think it was what I was used to and just kind of happened when we had our family.

Unfortunately, it has been a sick ward here all week...and most of us were in our pj's for days, unable to get off the couch for more than an hour. Yesterday, though, I finally felt better and I spent 4 hours cooking. It was a cooking frenzy in here! I decided to make a bunch of stuff to freeze so that we can easily pull healthy stuff out of the freezer for each week.

I made homemade sauce, Auntie's Karen's sauce to be exact. Technically she is my cousin but the kids call her Auntie. She came to visit 2 years ago and spent the week whipping up covers for my screen porch cushions, covering two hassocks for my bedroom, and then whipping up living room & dining room curtains. In between sewing her fingers into nubs, she taught Mimi how to sew, spend time cuddling with our then newborn bunny Ivy, and taught me how to make her sauce. Everytime we have pasta the kids look hopefully at me and and ask "Is it with Auntie Karen's sauce?"  Well, now I can say yes. This week we will have Auntie Karen's sauce & pasta and Friday night we will have homemade pizza with Auntie Karen's sauce. And I have 4 more servings of sauce on deck in the freezer.

Also hanging out in the freezer at the ready is chili - both individual servings for lunch for Tim and I but also a big batch for either dinner or lunches on an upcoming weekend. In addition, I made 2 butternut squash lasagnas...likely the kids won't eat them but Tim and I can have them for dinner one night when the kids just want cereal. I also made butternut squash puree so I can easily make butternut squash risotto, one of our favorites. So. Stupid. Good.

I cooked a whole chicken in the crockpot (it comes out unbelievable) and then shredded the chicken and bagged it into a few week's worth of chicken caeser salad for lunches for Mimi and I. I also made a chipolte pork and shredded up for nachos for a few dinners.

Finally I made the Pioneer Woman's broccoli cheddar cheese soup which is ridiculously good. We had that for lunch today....my kids don't even really like broccoli yet they gobbled it up.

And then when everything was cooked and everything was washed, we ordered out for dinner! I couldn't cook anymore...yet think about cleaning another dish or spatula. Kind of ironic, huh?

I'll be giddy for a few weeks now when I can just pull something out of the freezer and have an awesome meal already made.

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