Last time I had a baby, I had a really good birth experience – outside of the fact that I tore several places, had a few stitches, and was in pain for 6 or more weeks afterwards recovering from that. I would sooner have given birth again 3 times than dealt with the recovery pain. I’m a wuss, apparently.
Anyway, during this recovery time I was obviously not super mobile, and I was spending a lot of time with GooGoo latched onto my breast suckling, so doing a lot of food prep or housework was very difficult. Two very lovely people brought us food. I appreciated this very much. But I couldn’t help feeling a little bummed that more people didn’t offer. The church where I grew up saw to it that 2 meals a day were brought to any new mom for at least 2 weeks, sometimes more depending on how the mom was doing. I really miss that. I’ve tried to do my part to make sure any new mom at my current church gets a few meals out of me, now that I know from experience how helpful that is.
That all being said, I’ve decided I’m going to not count on anyone bringing me food this time based on my experience with GooGoo’s first few weeks of life. Because this time I’m going to have a toddler to tend to and it’s going to be the depths of hot summer and my husband has a lot on his plate, I’m going to initiate the Postpartum Freezer Food Project of Doom, starting now. I’ve gotten my menu all written up and I’m going to get started on it so that by mid-late July all will be ready for Baby Lou Who’s arrival.
So, I’ve decided that instead of being silent here every other week, as I had originally thought to do, I’ll do a post about freezer food, share the recipes that I’m using, and what I learn along the way. I’m going to freeze some things I’m familiar with freezing, and some things I’ve not tried before, and I’m going to be doing some recipes that are new to me as well.
Today I’m going to simply share my list of what I plan to do, and we’ll go from there. You can feel free to skim. I’ll be coming back and updating it with links as I create posts that correspond with the various meals.
Freezer Meal Plan: Breakfasts
My husband makes breakfast 99% of the time anyway, so we don’t need as many breakfasts pre-prepared, but I’d still like to have enough ready to cover at least the first 2 weeks while we’re adjusting to our new addition and making sense of a topsy-turvy schedule. So here’s my plan for 14 freezer breakfasts:
1-6. Waffles. I will do a double batch on a couple separate days to break up the hours doing it. Quadruple batch should feed us for 6 or so meals at least.
7. Baked oatmeal. I haven’t tried freezing this before, so I’m going to do just one batch and we’ll see how it fares.
8-10. Pancakes. I’ll do a quadruple batch or thereabouts of these.
11-14. Breakfast burritos. Tortillas filled with fakey bacon, cheeze sauce, rehydrated or diced potato, shredded zucchini, whatever. Make 1-2 dozen (I imagine we’ll each eat at least 2 apiece per meal if not more)
Extra fill-ins: blueberry muffins (double batch, double bagged), bran muffins, savoury oat patties. Tofu available to make scrambles.
Freezer Meal Plan: Lunches (lunch is our main meal of the day)
I’m getting a tad ambitious here, and I reserve the right to change/omit at any time. None of this is set in stone… or ice… yet. But if I was to make the whole list, this is the bulk of enough main meals for a little over a month.
1-4. Pasta sauce. A quadruple batch would be 12 cups sauce, do half tomatoes and half sauce to be cheaper. Divide into 4 3-cup portions for 4 meals of spaghetti. Pasta can be made as needed.
5-7. Black bean soup. Double or triple batch frozen in 4-cup portions.
8-9. Curry: Double batch, freeze in quart bags and serve with rice.
10-11. Easy Baked Burritos. 2 13×9 pans.
12-15. Pizza pockets. Do 2 batches, maybe chicken/bacon/ranch and a more traditional sausage/tomato/pepper. 32 pockets – 4 meals – freeze 8 to a bag
16-17. Mac and cheeze. 2 13×9 pans. (May also do a couple of these with rehydrated sliced potatoes!)
18-21. Pizza crusts. 4, ready to have toppings added + make pizza sauce frozen in portions.
22-24. BBQ Gluten. Served with rice this is one of the best things ever and should last us at least 3 meals.
25-27. Hot dogs. Just for fun; recipe makes 8-10 and they’re quite large.
28-31. Chickpea cutlets. Chicken nuggety yumminess to fill out a meal.
32-33. Soybean patties with golden gravy. Simple and good for bulking up a meal.
34-35. Taco filling.
So, here’s my game plan: I’m going to shoot for completing one of these a day, and I’m going to try to group together things with similar ingredients (like I’ll cook up enough garbanzos to make the golden gravy and chickpea cutlets on consecutive days). I’ll also make enough extra of the various recipes that we can use a portion for that day’s meal so I don’t have to make something else on top of a large batch.
I’m going shopping now and plan to get at least some of the ingredients I haven’t on hand at the moment to start working on all of this. See you back here in two weeks… or you can come back next week and read about grain mills.