Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Welcome to Freezer Bees!

Welcome y'all!

This is an attempt to help us all save time, money, effort, AND increase the health and wellness of our family (and look SMASHING doing it to boot!).

I attempted to find recipes that have FEW ingredients. I have the attention span of a ping pong ball on drugs (no, seriously, just ask The Wonder Bee. Or ask Peekie Bee. Not Super Bee though because he is probably chasing the same butterfly I am.).

So if the recipe ingredient list made my eyes glaze over, I did not keep it. I want quick, I want simple, I want to make the Ford Assembly Line of home cooked meals, then I want to chuck those stacks of homemade incredible ediblenesss in the freezer!

I also have recipes that call for jarred sauces, mixes, etc. For the beginning of this, just keep it easy on yourself and use any jarred sauce, mix, etc that you like. Just concentrate on quickly stocking your freezer, you beautiful bee, you :) THEN we can work on perfecting a homemade sauce to use. A homemade meal with one jarred sauce will be better for your family than a night at McDonald's. Cheaper too. So don't get feeling like you have to milk your own cow to make the cheese to go with the hand rolled pasta for the free range chicken you bought.

A few FYI's, disclaimers, etc:
--I am not a nutritionist. In fact, for the longest time I insisted that poptarts should be considered a fruit (well, the cherry ones. Not the hot fudge sundae ones). I think I even gave a rousing speech at a La Leche League meeting about that. I HAVE amended my ways, and do not consider poptarts a fruit. But really, that is about as good as I get.

--If you are looking for no fat, no salt, no sugar, no gluten, might I suggest that this is probably not the blog you seek. At all. In fact, unless there is a blog devoted exclusively to deep frying breaded sticks of butter in shortening and serving with a whiskey/karo/cuban cigar glaze, I cannot think of a worse recipe blog for you. BUT I would love to have you stay and visit. You might just have to BYOR (bring your own recipes).

That having been said, I DO, however, try to stay away from high fructose corn syrup and trans fats, so I might mention products that have none of that. I am also a BIG fan of buying locally and buying meats that are produced at small farms (grass finished and WITHOUT hormones, if you please :) ).

--Some of these recipes I have tried, some I have not. I am listing the ingredients to make one batch, two batches, and 4 batches (see, I did the math for you! Isn't that SMASHING?! :) ). I would strongly recommend starting with one batch to see if your family likes it before making 12 pans of broccoli rice casserole to put in the freezer. On the other hand, your neighbors will love you when you have to hand out all those extras because your family did not tell you that they all hate broccoli. :)

--OH! I also avoid beans like the plague, so if you see a chili recipe, for example, and think "Huh, shouldn't there be beans in that?" the answer is "Yes, yes there should be....and you are more than welcome to add them. Just please invite me for pizza night instead." :D I DID keep the beans in the Bean Burritos recipe...but those are for Peekie Bee.

--I am going to try to post recipes with similar ingredients together at first. That way when you pick up, say, tortillas, there will be several recipes that you can use them for. I will also attempt to be very diligent in labels for posts, so you can click on "beef" and find tons of recipes, just in case you just received your first side of beef and are staring at several boxes full of meat and not sure what to do with it all.

--Let's be honest: it is not that we lack recipes, it is that we get into ruts and make the same boring thing even though we have the entire PLANET'S full of recipes at our fingertips (and probably spent a good hour surfing the web and looking at wonderfully delicious looking foods :) ). How many times have I made massive lists of menus and then still had 5 night straight of "Fend fer suppers" (meaning "fend fer yourself")? I still find recipes and menus from several years ago that I never made.

To that end, may I STRONGLY suggest that you only read this blog when you do your grocery list making or meal planning? 'Cause if you are like me, then you find these GREAT recipes that you are just DYING to try. You very diligently copy and paste it into MSWord, and feel quite content about it...until the next recipe comes along. Eventually your MSWord folder is groaning with the strain and you are still serving frozen chicken nuggets and Ore Ida's for the third record breaking day this week. Trust me, I have BTDT.

Do this: Write down the recipe ingredients on your grocery list as soon as you find a recipe you like. Then make it. Perhaps try one new recipe a week :) Or if you are one of those "Go big or go home" folks, then try several new recipes a week. Again, our main problem is one of inertia, not one of lack of recipes :) So make up your mind to DO, not just "I am going to read this so I do not have to sort socks". :)

I am glad you are here! Send me any freezer/quick recipes you have. Feel free to share tips on saving time, and share tips on enjoying the time you have saved!

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