I am so happy about how my efforts to get a head start on cooking for the month have gone over the last few days. I am still way behind in the learning stages when it comes to domesticity, and I have never undertaken a project quite like this. Given my past experiences, I have to admit that I was a little bit afraid of trying out so many new things all at once. I really don't think there are any of the recipes that I ended up making that I had tried out before. That normally signals danger to me because I've been known to produce a flop or two on the first stab at a recipe.
Now that I've admitted that, I can share my excitement that everything turned out great (except what I renamed pumpkin surprise muffins because when you take a bite, all is well until SURPRISE you bite into a cranberry that bites you back--I'll still eat them, though.). I have a head start on some of the time consuming kitchen tasks for the month, and I have newfound motivation to tackle a couple of other tasks--like dealing with all those sweet potatoes I couldn't resist at $.25-$.29/lb. My freezers are stocked.
No, I can't believe I just showed my freezer off to the world, either. It's actually somewhat of an avalanche waiting to happen. Actually, it did happen a couple of times in the midst of trying to decide what to move to the deep freeze upstairs. But all is well. I am happy...and proud. Can you tell? This seriously is a big deal for me, and I hope it's only the first of many encouraging strides in the development of my homemaking skills. I really needed that right about now.
I didn't really mean to throw all that out there, but I guess I always want to keep it real here as we give the world a peek into our home and family. I only pray that our realness...reality...whatever can be an encouragement to someone along the way.
I actually just wanted to post a final list of what I accomplished over the past two days and a couple of things I want to accomplish in the coming days.
What I accomplished:
Cranberry Pumpkin Muffins (aka Pumpkin Surprise Muffins)
Pumpkin Pancakes (x2, but we ate some for brunch, and I realized that I used way more pumpkin than the recipe calls for. It just made the batter thicker)
shredded pork (x3 meals)
seasoned beef and sausage for meat sauce (x3 meals)
black beans (x3 meals)
pinto beans (x3 meals)
meatballs (x2 meals)
chicken, broccoli, and rice casserole (x2 meals)
macaroni and cheese (x3 small portions since it's mostly for me & the little boys for lunch)
roast for soup or stew or whatever I come up with
1 quart broth from the pork roast
chicken broth (@2 cup portions x 3)
1 pint beef broth
What I'd still like to accomplish:
deal with the sweet potatoes - I saw so many yummy sweet potato recipes on Twitter during the cooking days since I'm not the only one who can't resist deals. I definitely want to try to make some sweet potato fries ahead of time since my boys eat those like candy.
get to the chicken pot pie - I decided actually to have this for dinner tonight so I can just double or triple it and put some of the filling in the freezer.
pizza dough - This is actually pretty easy, and I want to make a triple or quadruple batch soon. It freezes well and makes for a great quick and easy meal as long as you keep the toppings you like on hand. I may actually make some pizza sauce to keep on hand, too.
When you consider all of this along with the fact that I still have a whole chicken, turkey, and a half of a ham in my freezer it looks like we're pretty much set for December!