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Cooking ahead for the week

(8 Posts)
CartwheelGirl Wed 28-Dec-16 19:32:15

I'm going back to full-time work after being self employed and working from home for a few years, so I'm trying to get my head around what and when I will be cooking.

I will be coming home about an hour after kids come home from school. I can either leave some fruit/snacks for them to munch on, or prepare something easily reheatable by DH or by kids under his supervision.

What do you cook for the week, if you work full-time?

Icklepickle101 Wed 28-Dec-16 21:51:53

Freezer bags and a slow cooker will be handy here.

I spend a weekend day cooking about 30 meals every now and then and it saves so much time and washing up!

Things like chop some chicken, peppers and onions and add some seasoning in a freezer bag - just need to get out in the morning to defrost and fry and serve with wraps for fajitas.

A ragu - make tonnes of the stuff, make a lasagne with some and save some for slag bol , and some beans and spices to turn in to chilli with rice/jacket potatoes

On a Sunday chuck a ham in the slow cooker with some coke for 6 hours then make a rough honey/mustard/nutmeg glaze and roast for 25 mins. Then you can have ham, egg & chips, gnocchi gratin (all time fave!), ham and pea risotto etc all take minutes to assemble once you've got the ham cooked.

We have saved loads of money being organised with batch cooking/meal planning too!

pumpkin321 Wed 28-Dec-16 21:59:19

Great idea with the fajitas. I tend to batch cook and freeze individual portions for busier nights. We usually have potatoes to do jackets with things like beans, cheese, tuna, salad etc if there's not time to cook. We also tend to have the same thing two nights running during the week to save cooking from scratch every night. smile

CartwheelGirl Wed 28-Dec-16 22:28:52

Some great ideas there, Icklepickle101. Must try cooking gnocchi gratin!!!

Slow cooker is tempting, never had it before, but will probably like it once I get used to it!

pumpkin321, jacket potatoes are easy but they take so long, I'm afraid I'll be eaten alive by the time they are ready! Might try asking hubby to put them in the oven, but he doesn't get on with jacket potatoes and might not cooperate.

Never tried to put homemade bechamel sauce in the fridge or freezer - has anyone tried it? That could be my midweek cauliflower cheese sorted.

So, freezer:
- Bolognese sauce (for spaghetti bolognese and lasagne)
- Three beans sauce for chilli
- Freezer bags with spiced chicken pieces for curry and fajitas
- Tomato soup
- Leek and potato soup

Fridge, to cook on Sunday for Monday/Tuesday:
- Risotto
- Veg ragu

Thanks for the ideas, keep them coming.

Icklepickle101 Wed 28-Dec-16 22:38:12

Dump bags are really brilliant, gives you variety with no hassle as it's the preparation that takes time.

As well as fajitas we do beef and broccoli, seeet and sour chicken, fish cakes, chicken teriyaki, burritos with leftover chilli. We even have some homemade McDonald's breakfast muffin style breakfast in there! I found the key thing was doing the hard work in one go that would make a yummy midweek dinner by adding basic rice/pasta/salad/potatoes etc which takes minutes.

Icklepickle101 Wed 28-Dec-16 22:40:53

Jacket potatoes, prick them and shove in the microwave for 5 mins and then the oven for 15 minutes to crisp up, no one had hours to waste oven cooking!

Cauliflower cheese freezes well, we do the Jamie one with breadcrumbs on top which maybe protects it from the frost a bit?

CartwheelGirl Wed 28-Dec-16 23:04:09

You just freeze the bechamel sauce, right? Or do you freeze the whole thing, with cauliflowers and all?

CartwheelGirl Wed 28-Dec-16 23:04:35

Don't have the microwave, but like the idea with jacket potatoes.

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