Cook for a day and eat for a month!
Written by Pamm Clark
Once-A-Month Cooking (OAMC) is cooking main dishes for your family's supper one day per month. Basically, you shop one day and cook the next. You take your prepared dishes to the freezer, (after making a list of what you have!) then take one out per night and heat it up. You add a couple of vegetables and some bread and you have a meal in minutes!
OAMC helps by having things already made. There is none of that 2 hour (for me, anyway) decision of what to have, then thawing the meat and cooking it. It was taking me almost all day to do all those steps.
There are a few books on this type of cooking:
While studying for your college or online degrees, you might check your local library or used book store for OAMC books. I see some of them for sale on the used curriculum lists and swap boards once in a while.
I started out with Once-A-Month Cooking (borrowed it from a friend). I agree with others who say that their menus are too expensive to fix. I then joined Frozen Assets email loop (found on the OAMC Links page) and got a TON of recipes and ideas. I made my own recipe book and experimented with other things. I finally have lots of recipes my family enjoys and I enjoy making. I even started blogging about my recipes on Leftovers On Purpose.
For the shopping part, before we moved I belonged to a co-op in our community. Once-a-month, they come to town. You could buy a box of food for $15 and extra meat, 10 lbs. for $10. All together, I would buy 1 box of food and 20 lbs of meat for a total of $35. That was enough meat for our family of 4 for the entire month, plus some fresh vegetables and canned goods. I spent a little more at the grocery store for cheese and other ingredients for my cooking session. Weekly, I would buy only milk, fresh vegetables and fruits, and condiments, it seemed. You might check into your area for a co-op or other food programs.
Does all this seem a little overwhelming?
Try cooking for a week or two at a time or cook mini- sessions of chicken one day, then beef the next.
Try making 3 or 4 of whatever you are having for dinner. For example, if you are making meatloaf for dinner, why not make 4 meatloaves and freeze three? You will be surprised of how many dinners you will have in no time and how little effort it take to make a few extra.
Can't imaging cooking all day with the kids around? Have Dad take the kids out for a fun day one Saturday. Enlist older kids to help cook or watch younger ones. Invite a friend over and take turns helping with the cooking and the kids. Have a teen come over to watch the kids while you cook. Cook in mini-sessions during nap or your children's video watching time.
The most important thing to do after you've made all those wonderful meals is to make a list of what is in your freezer! You will forget! (The Organized Home site, found on the OAMC Links page has a printable Freezer List that's perfect!) I make a monthly menu that I post on my fridge, as well.
If you have any questions or would like even more information, please click this E-Mail button and I will try to direct you to the proper information.
||Click on this bowl for
our favorite family
Visit my OAMC Links page for my favorite Once-A-Month Cooking sites.
Happy Infrequent Cooking!