Batch cooking for beginners

 Hello reader,

You all know what I do to save money, here’s a bit of how I do it. Even though there’s just the two of use, I always buy a whole chicken as it’s much more economical that buying chicken pieces. Today, it’s been roasted along with a few spuds for Dearly Beloved in the mini oven. I used an entire head of broccoli and six carrots and that was lunch. I’ve plated up four meals as we’ll have the same again when we get in late from work tomorrow night. Neither of us get home until half six so a ‘ready meal’ is just what’s needed at the start of what is always a busy week.

I bought the plate covers for pennies years ago. I bought them in Ikea and I think they still sell them. The suppers will go in the fridge and they’ll both fit in the microwave, one on top of the other and will heat up in five minutes. I’ll go back to the remains of the chicken when it’s entirely cool, pick every last scrap off the bone, chop into small pieces and mix it with mayonnaise and sweetcorn and store in a plastic pot with a lid in the fridge to use as sandwich filler for DB’s lunch. Food prices are so really high and it means we have to supplement with budget cuts and half the meals we eat are without meat and all are without dessert! As you can see from the piles of veggies, we bulk out our meals with them and make what ever we have go further.

I’m also delighted that I can have a night off cooking tomorrow! xx

See you tomorrow,

Love Froogs xxx

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17 thoughts on “Batch cooking for beginners

  1. When I roast a chicken, I like to have loads of roast veg; parsnips, butternut squash, sweet potato, carrot, courgette, aubergine, tomatoes, peppers, whatever we have. The plan is to have enough to make roast veg soup for the next day. But it's so delicious we eat too much and soup doesn't happen! At least it's better to binge on veg instead of chocolate!

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  2. Planning ahead certainly reduces stress during the work week! Although you mention deboning the chicken, are you not going to use the carcass to make stock? Soup can be made for pennies, are a great way to use up bits of this and that and are very nutritious. I often take soup to work for my lunch.

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  3. Isn't chicken wonderful! And being efficient and carving it completely and plating up immediately prevents the temptation to go back on a sunday afternoon and cut another slice of meat for a sandwich!

    Tomorrow I am planning to make a HUGE tinful of roasted veg, using all my veggies from the fridge, and then portion it up to last a few days.

    I am afraid I DO like a pud tho – but yogurt is wonderfully cheap and a small pot suffices.

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  4. Hi froogs..yep we do that too..i love making the most of a chicken..even got my mum in on it too…she has made batch meals for her and my dad..we do however bulk all our meals with lots of veggies…good job we have 2 allotments..roasted butternut squash is divine with a chicken dinner..
    love sara

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  5. I stretch chicken as far as it will go. As the week progresses we have more and more veg and less and less meat! The bones are either sucked and crunched to death (DH) or boiled to make stock.
    Love from Mum
    xx

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  6. Another thing I like to do is cook a batch of something freezable (chilli is a great example). Then you can make looooads of it at once and defrost it during the day ready to heat up when you get home from work.

    Your lunches looked really good! Does everything on the plate heat up at the same rate in the microwave, or do you have to plan how big to cut certain things to balance the cooking?

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  7. Every so often, I let my husband pull the leftover meat off of the chicken, and I am amazed at how much he leaves behind.

    We take the process one step further and turn the bones left from stock to mush and feed that to our pets.

    But I am on the chicken wagon with you!

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  8. Someone mentioned newspaper bricks/logs in the comments on your last post. On http://www.downthelane.net, various people have mentioned that they simply roll up newspapers (ones found free on trains…?) as tightly as they possibly could and burned those as newspaper logs. As I remember, the consensus of opinion was that they worked reasonably well – not quite as well as making the brick with the gadget but a good deal easier to make and totally free. Free heat sounds good to me!

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  9. I love your ready made meals. How nice to get home and know you don't have to cook but are still eating a home made meal!

    I have another twist on buying a whole chicken. I take the whole chicken and remove the breasts, thighs, and drumsticks which I freeze separately.

    I then use the wings and left over bones, neck and any giblets, with veg, to make a chicken soup. After it has cooked I pick all the meat off, to be used later or put back in the soup.

    That way I get a yummy soup and small portions of chicken for other meals.

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