Monday, November 13, 2006

Dinner for the family - the easy way

Dream Dinners. I know you've heard of it, or something like it (i.e. Super Suppers, etc.). So they've come out with a cookbook. It's called Dream Dinners. Yes, I know, shocker.

If you haven't heard Dream Dinners or Super Suppers, here's how it works. You go to their storefront, spend about two hours preparing meals with prepared ingredients (the onions are already chopped, the chicken is already cooked and diced, etc.) and you come home with eight or ten meals for your family. You stick them in the freezer just pull them out when you need them. We've done this a couple of times at a local place and it's fun, but expensive. So when the Dream Dinners cookbook came out, I bought it and we are loving it! One day a month, I give John a grocery list. He goes to Sam's and the grocery store and buys all the ingredients we need. We spend about 5-6 hours together in the kitchen putting together meals and at the end of the day, have about 18 meals in the freezer. Some are casseroles, some are soups, some are marinated meats. Most will have leftovers, so we have enough dinners to last about a month.

The cookbook shows ingredients for one dinner in one column and ingredients for three dinners in another column; we always do the three dinners ... it just seems to make better use of our time to slap two more dinners together.

Yesterday we made:
Split pea soup mix (not from Dream Dinners, but good nonetheless)
Baked Ziti
Cheesy Chicken and Rice Casserole
Beef Stir-fry
Three Cheese and Spinach Soup
My mom's Meatloaf and Sauce

Voila! Eighteen meals in the freezer!
John and I both enjoy it; he shops and makes cocktails, I organize the processes, and we both cook and assemble. I love it that we've been married long enough to be comfortable in our roles. I know now that John doesn't like to read the recipes; he likes to be told what to do. We make a good team in the kitchen. :)

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