May 01, 2011

Cooking Day

On Friday I had my first cooking-with-a-friend day.  Bethany and her family are on the GAPS diet as well, and we started roughly at the same time.  So it's been REALLY nice having a buddy to go through all this with.  We decided it would be beneficial to us both to get together to work on some cooking projects.  She brought her kitchen (nearly!) and Eliana, her two-year-old, who did very well playing at our house for the nearly 7 hours that we were working!

So, are you ready to be impressed?  Here's what I got done:

  • 3 whole chickens cooked in our ginormous stock pot...bones went back into the pot for a more healthful batch of broth, which I finally finished canning today.
  • 8 one-quart jars of yogurt made.
  • 2 batches of mayo...which never emulsified.  Sigh.  But I think it will work well enough for salad dressings.  (I made a batch of Ranch tonight and used 1/2 yogurt and 1/2 of the mayo, and it looks and tastes fine!  Slightly runnier than I usually make, but hey.)
  • 5 pounds of carrots peeled and chopped.
  • 4 1/2 dozen cinnamon coconut muffins baked.
  • 4 batches of meatloaf prepped--one for dinner, 3 for the freezer.
  • My first attempt at macaroons sans sugar--they are quite good!
  • A batch of peanut butter balls--the PB mixture is in the fridge...haven't yet gotten around to actually rolling the balls and wrapping in wax paper.  That will be a job for when I can have the kids help!
Bethany got quite a bit done as well.  I didn't keep track of all she did, but I know she at least did the following:
  • 2 batches of mayo, one of which emulsified.  (We decided the egg whites were to blame.)
  • 3 pounds of carrots peeled and chopped.
  • Lots of banana muffins baked--don't know how many her batch ended up making.
  • Macaroons--which I nearly burned by forgetting they were sitting in the oven when I went to preheat the oven for my muffins!!  Oops!
  • A big pot o' spaghetti sauce.
  • Cucumber salad.
Not a bad day's work, all in all!  We decided that we should plan these approximately every other week.  It was nice to plan for it and try to have the kids' school work finished (we didn't make it, but that's another story) so they could have a day off while I could feel good about accomplishing something useful and not feeling guilty about neglecting them!  Actually, I asked Stefanie if she would mind having the boys play with Justin at her house after lunch, and that worked out well for all of us.  It was a gorgeous day, so they were able to be outside with a buddy and out of my hair, LOL.

Charis was supposed to "babysit" the younger ones, but I had to call her out for duty a few times.  She initially liked the idea, but when it came down to it, I think she just wanted her own free time.  But she was helpful when she needed to be, and Kenna was pretty patient with Eliana.  Lucan and Eliana played well together aside from a few inevitable sharing battles.  I was so thankful it was a nice day so the kids could go in and out as they pleased.

We did learn that we'll need to build in some clean-up time next time!  We had to rush out of the house to get Charis to church for her T&T girls' sleepover.  I was very glad I had made meatloaf and squash bake ahead of time so dinner was waiting for us when we got home!  It took me awhile to clean the kitchen, and then Kenna and I whipped together the macaroons--I had all the supplies out, and I didn't want to leave the egg whites.  I figured if I didn't do it before bed, it wouldn't get done!  I was so glad we made them...Kenna and I had a good time together while the boys played their Wii games from the library (which we picked up on the way to church), and they are sooooo yummy!

I'm already looking forward to our next cooking day.  It was wonderful to get together and be mutually encouraged.  Even though we didn't have much time for "deep" conversation, spending time with another sister in Christ who is on a similar food journey is just so encouraging!  Another blessing!

No comments: