Batch Cooking … Such a Time Saver …

A few weeks ago back towards the end of September … around my Birthday actually … I decided to cook a lot of food all at once … inspired after a really big grocery shop stocking up on so many different foods I wanted to do so many things with … I knew Perry and I were heading into a busy period with work and guests and I didn’t want the constant worry of making sure we had something for dinner to be something else we had to think to hard about … It was the first time I had done something on this scale so I’m happy to say its worked out really well for us …

So I made up Five different dishes along with a whole side of Salmon over 3 days … here is what I made and how it portioned up …

  • Salmon Fillet – I portioned up a whole side of Salmon after picking out the last few bones with some tweezers and got 8 portions out of the one Salmon each around 150g … this is one of our favourite fish and with a sprinkle of lemon pepper seasoning its ready after roasting in the oven for 15mins … I usually throw in some vegetables to go along with it (whatever we have in the fridge at the time) and its a really quick and satisfying dinner … the only advance prep needed is to remember to take the salmon out the freezer in the morning so it defrosts in the fridge during the day while we are at work … 20130924-100537.jpg
  • Fish Cakes – I love THIS fishcake recipe by Jamie Oliver and have made it a couple times now … it pretty much works with any fish in it … and I made up a double batch portioned them up … wrapped in cling film and froze them … again just took them out the freezer in the morning and cooked them in a light spritz of oil for 10mins … served along side a mixed salad its another quick and easy dinner … or lunch on the weekends when you don’t really fancy cooking too much … made 6 portions …20131016-163513.jpg
  • Beef Curry – I made THIS simple beef curry … except I did mine on the stove as we don’t have a slow cooker … and portioned it up when cool for the freezer … again this is a quick meal  only needing to be defrosted in the morning and a batch of rice made up when I get home which only takes 20-30mins … nice and easy … made 8 portions …
  • Beef Stew – this is another staple around these parts … its a really simple stew … basically beef cubes, onions and carrots slowly cooked on a low heat in a tomato sauce with a mixture of herbs (basil, oregano, parsley) … for a couple hours until the beef is tender and falls apart … I add some Chilli Flakes for a nice kick … its a perfect one pot dish where you can chuck everything into the pan and leave it for a couple hours … it tastes even better the next day when the flavours have developed making this a perfect recipe for freezing … Usually we serve this with Cauliflour mash, regular mash or on its own with some salad … made 8 portions …photo 1
  • Taachin – this is a really tasty Iranian dish … Perry absolutely loves it too … and my Mum taught him how to make it before we moved to Dubai … simply put it is chicken and rice just fancied up a little bit … its basically sliced up cooked chicken between two layers of rice … and baked in the oven until golden … the rice is mixed with egg and yogurt so the final dish can be sliced when served … I’ll be sharing a recipe post about this one soon … best thing about this dish is it can be popped straight into the oven from frozen … it takes about 45-60mins to cook from frozen but its great for those days when the fridge is empty and you forgot to take something out the freezer in the morning … I made up 4 foil trays of this each one plenty for Perry and I to share … so made 8 portions total … (picture from a previous time I made it) …
  • Khorest Karafs – Another Iranian dish … this one is more of a Celery stew … traditionally made with lamb or beef I made it with Chicken breast … mostly because I had used all the beef on the other dishes and had a lot of chicken left … but its really tasty either way … and its served with rice … I’ll share the recipe for this one soon as well along with the Taachin above … made 8 portions … _MG_9134-1

All in all I made up a lot of food … in total 46 portions of food … or 23 meals between the two of us …

_MG_9165-1The only mistake I had made was I hadn’t really checked to see how much space was available our small freezer … It took quite a bit of reshuffling and moving things around before I got everything to fit …

Now over a month later we still have about 10 portions of food in the freezer … we have still cooked during the weeks and on weekends … but it’s been nice not to have to think about it every day of the week … usually 3-4 nights a week we have had a homemade ready meal … and now the freezer is getting empty again I’m starting to think what dishes to make next for the freezer …

Anyway I just wanted to share how batch cooking has been a real help to us and has saved us a lot of time when we are really busy … Perry and I both enjoy cooking … but it can be a real time suck … sometimes its just nice to have something ready in less than 30mins after you get home from work without having to dirty up a lot of dishes in the process …

That is it for this one … I will have a couple of recipe posts up soon …

Till next time …

Mina X

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4 thoughts on “Batch Cooking … Such a Time Saver …

  1. Pingback: Taachin … Chicken & Rice … Iranian Food Recipe … | Our Adventures In The Middle East

  2. Pingback: Khoresht Karafs … Celery Stew … Iranian Food Recipe … | Our Adventures In The Middle East

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