Sunday, July 5, 2009

OAMC Big Day

Yesterday morning Joe cooked a 14 lb turkey on the grill for me. Grilling a turkey is great any time of year. On Thanksgiving Day, it frees up precious oven space. In the summer, it doesn't heat up the kitchen. It always tastes great with the hint of smokiness that grilling adds.

I especially liked the cost of buying it in November. Super cheap. They were such a bargain that I bought two turkeys even though we were flying out of state for Thanksgiving. I shudder to think what they go for this time of year.

Yesterday afternoon while Samantha and Joe were napping, I chopped and measured all the turkey meat. I still had an hour to spare before I needed to get ready to leave for a July 4th party, so I made the decision to assemble a couple easy dishes right away rather than waiting. Both dishes were no-cook, mix and layer casseroles. I made up 2 pans each of Turkey Enchilada Casserole and Southwestern Turkey Casserole. I assembled them in less time than it took to chop all the meat off the bird, which saved me 45 minutes today. Another bonus was that the food was frozen this morning and ready to be wrapped, bagged and stacked. That freed up 4 baking dishes and freezer space.

This morning I resumed in the kitchen. I had my game plan written up, but with the first two dishes knocked out already, I wasn't sure where to start. I had selected those recipes because they were so fast that they would give me that jump start to my motivation. It's great to be able to say "I've only been working an hour, but already I've completed two recipes." It really helps get the momentum rolling.

Eventually I re-tweaked the game plan and got started. I finished cooking by 1 pm with a lunch break included. Today I made:
- 3 dishes of Turkey Dressing Casserole
- 2 dishes of Mexican Un-Stuffed Shells
- 2 dishes of Turkey Spaghetti
- 2 dishes of Chicken Curry
- 3 mini-loaves of Chocolate Chip Cream Cheese Coffee Cake
- 12 Mocha Chip Muffins
- 12 Turkey and Muenster Roll-ups
- 12 Pepperoni and Provolone Roll-ups using same dough recipe as the turkey ones

Between yesterday and today, I made 13 supper entrees and a few breakfast and lunch items. That won't last us a month on its own, but I still have frozen meals from my last cooking session as well as extras that I've stashed away here and there. Plus, Joe will be smoking a pork shoulder next weekend. Lots of yummy Carolina Barbecue and other pork dishes to add to the freezer. We'll be set until the end of the month.

I was so pooped after cooking that I took a 2-hour nap this afternoon. Maybe it wasn't the cooking. Maybe it was not getting to bed until midnight after an evening of drinking some Buckeye Red and then waking with the sun to cook the next day.

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