So...I shipped my little drama queen off to play with friends for the day and got down to business in the kitchen.
Hello, freezer. Are you ready for your new friends??
Note to self: Organize freezer before starting mass cooking. Whoops.
Here are the recipes I printed to try out:
Green Rice Casserole
Southwest Roll Ups
Honey Pizza Dough
Oh wait. Hold up. Before all this, I used Money Saving Mom's Ingredients Planner template and Master Prep List template. These gave me a really good start. Although I have a lot of fine tuning to do before I can whip out all my recipes without my kitchen and head exploding, these were a great help.
I started by cutting up my onions, then cooking up my meats and rice. As those were finishing, I chopped up the green pepper (for the meatballs) and grated all the cheese. I like fresh grated cheese better than pre-packaged. It seems to cook up better and it's cheaper. I then cooked my noodles and started on my lasagna casserole.
I'm not sure why, but even when doubling the recipe, it didn't seem like I had enough of the meat and cheese mixtures to layer up two casseroles. I would suggest tripling the meat and cheese portions of the recipe, it would have saved me a trip to the store for more cottage cheese and spaghetti sauce.
Daisy helping clean the meat mixture bowl. Good girl!!
After topping off the casseroles with cheese and popping them in the freezer, I started on my southwest roll ups. These were extremely easy to make. I hope they taste super yummy because I can whip them up quick! I wanted to eat the beans/cheese/salsa/chicken mixture out of the bowl. I will be serving the roll ups with the green rice casserole for dinner this weekend.
The last item on my list was the pizza dough. I was thinking of investing in a $200.00 KitchenAid mixer for this recipe, but quickly realized that was a dumb idea, considering I was trying to SAVE money. So I settled for a new hand mixer complete with dough hooks, making the process of kneading the dough so much easier. I froze 3 portions of the dough mixture and used one for dinner. It was delicious!
After 5 hours of cooking, I had produced 2 lasagna casseroles, 4 balls of pizza dough, 16 southwest roll ups, 1 batch of green rice casserole and 48 meatballs. I used the eggs from our chickens and the tomatoes from our garden, so that saved me a nice chunk of change. My grocery bill was a whopping $60.00 and I estimate these meals to last us 2 weeks. Yay!!