Earlier this week I discussed in my post a food preparation method called Once A Month Cooking (OAMC). Annette Economides re-sparked my interest in the idea when I met her earlier this summer, so this month I decided to jump in and learn to swim the OAMC ocean.
To be completely honest, I did not know what I was doing, but I had a decent enough idea to get me started and just decided to figure it out as I went along. It is this “ready-fire-aim” side of me that helps to get things moving instead of stopping me in my tracks for fear of failure. Sometimes it is best to simply jump in and allow yourself to learn from the failures that may come.
To accomplish my OAMC experience, I looked up several recipes that I thought would go well with our family. I had no problem making quadruples of every meal and simply duplicating weeks for the most part, so I chose about 8 meals to play with for the 4 weeks. The reason this happened is that I allowed some wiggle room for meals that may be more costly, moving a vegetarian meal in here and there, or hearty stew to help balance out things.
Once a Month Cooking (OAMC) Meal Plan/Recipes I chose:
1. Taco Filling – I made this recipe as is to allow for 4 different Taco nights during the month. Serving with taco sides and whole wheat tortillas (GF ones for my GFers).
2. Crockpot Spaghetti Sauce – Recipe as is made a huge crockpot of sauce, which will serve 4 meals this month. Will be served over GF pasta and/or Dreamfields (to be THM-friendly…more on that another time) and with side salad.
3. Family Favorite Crockpot Chili – Quadrupled, which basically meant lots of beef ready to be thrown into a crockpot on chili night with all the others ingredients. Serving over rice (for the kids) with a salad.
4. Taco Spaghetti – I made this as suggested (with GF and lowfat substitutions), mostly because of freezer space and lack of casserole dishes, but provided for 2 dinner meals for the month. Serving with a salad.
5. Dijon Chicken – Wanted to make this for 4 meals, but I ended up not buying enough chicken for the chicken dishes, which made this turn into 2 meals for our large family. Planning to serve alongside brown rice and steamed broccoli.
6. Buttermilk Herb Chicken – Also made this for 2 meals. Planning to serve with sweet potatoes and steamed green beans.
7. Easy Ranch Chicken – Same thing as the Dijon chicken; desired 4 meals, but because of lack of chicken has turned into only 2. This is why I have back-up vegetarian meals =0) Planning to serve this with steamed broccoli and rice (for the kids).
8. Bean Stew – Makes big pot of soup, to be served with fresh made bread and maybe salad.
9. Pizzas – Since we love pizzas I have planned to rotate in a pizza night here and there for the family. The GF version we have enjoyed can be found here. We have also enjoyed this pizza crust recipe for an easy make-ahead freezable crust, including personal pizza option! For Mark and I, we will be trying this sourdough recipe to keep with the THM focus. (As you can see, Pizza night is a bit more involved in our family, but if I make the personal pizzas ahead it goes much more smoothly).
Be sure to subscribe to and/or follow my blog to get the Part 2 post to the OAMC series, where I explain the exact steps I took to accomplish my largest cooking day ever!