Massive Freezer Cooking Session – Lessons Learned

Today was finishing up the last few vestiges of freezer cooking.  There were 2 recipes to finish today, and getting more ginger from Wal-Mart.

I took Dad to donate blood this morning (I can’t for many reasons), and didn’t get started working on anything until about noon – then I wasn’t really focusing on cooking/prepping, so it took until 1:30ish to have everything done on the first recipe, and Dad and I finished the last recipe after Daughter Person went to bed.

I learned a lot these last 4 days:

  1. I bit off way more than I should have.  I probably should have limited myself to 4-5 recipes instead of the 11-12 I did.  I wanted to do more than dinners for Dad and Daughter Person though, so I went whole hog.  I really think we’ve got enough food for the next 3-4 months, not just 2.
  2. I need to have a better plan in place – like having freezer space to freeze things on cookie sheets so they freeze flat where needed.  I did the chicken fingers last, yet they really needed the space for a cookie sheet or two – I ended up just tossing them into the foil pan and hoping for the best. I also need to chop/dice *everything* beforehand, instead of doing it sort of haphazardly.  Yes, it means more space in the fridge to store the chopped stuff, but it’ll save time in the long run.
  3. I tried to plan everything on the computer (using www.plantoeat.com), but I think I might have done better with pen and paper.  I probably would have spent more time making up a grocery list, but I think that time would have doubled as a “oh, I need to do this first…” check.  However, I have a monthly plan to print out for Dad while I’m gone.
  4. Trying to figure out how many servings (tsp/tbsp) in a oz is a PITA.  And I mean oz as in weight, not fl oz as in volume.  Spices have a different specific gravity than water, so it’s not as simple as it sounds.  I found some great references for converting from weight to volume though: Durkee’s list, the produce converter, and about.com’s equivalent chart.

I’ve started figuring out the price per serving for each recipe and I’ll post that eventually.  I spent most of the afternoon setting up an excel spreadsheet with the numbers and calculations (and why I needed the weight to volume conversions).

Tell me your thoughts