Right now you might be wondering if I’m a teacher–do I get summers off or something? Where have I been? The last time I posted a recipe was June 22, over two weeks ago.
It’s not exactly how I want it in my ideal world. NCK is constantly teetering on the brink of hobby and full-time job, and you know what? That’s probably not going to change quickly.
As much as I love pouring my heart into the blog, using it as a platform to share my new and old favorite recipes and to try to make the food photos look like you want to take a bite out of them, I try to keep perspective. Intentions to “work ahead” (as if it’s a school project) predictably fall through when life fills up with other great opportunities: a visit to my home state for great food and family, a visit from my sister and her hubby to road trip to Boston for an oh-so-American fourth of July, an offer to teach a cooking class for a massive bridal shower, cooking for friends in need, a visit from my mom to see our house for the first time (we moved in last November), and, strangely, a little event planning which I never thought I had in me. Basically, July = cr-azy.
I’m not sure life’s pace will stay this harried for long, but, as I sat down to plan dinners for this week, even amidst all the activity (especially amidst all the activity), I was reminded of the importance of freezer cooking in bulk.
In the winter I’m an expert at freezing chili, soups, and all manner of hot dish (the plural of hot dish is hot dish: fact) so we’re armed and ready to eat even when life is chock full of good stuff besides food. For some reason, it’s harder in the summer, which seems to be my “busy season”. Unpleasant throwback to my old tax accounting days.
I’m doubling up on a couple recipes this week, because hey, if I’m already making it, cooking twice as much adds hardly any extra effort or time, save for chopping an extra onion or washing a few more veggies. As long as Stevie doesn’t find me out, I’ll slip the extra portions, individually packaged, if I’m feeling ambitious, into the freezer for whatever next week (or tomorrow) brings.
This whole epiphany makes for a helpful post, one I plan to flip back to as I up my summer freezer cooking game. It’s so nice to just pop my head back in and say hi, even if this isn’t a real recipe post. It definitely reflects the reality of my life right now, and hopefully it will help you enjoy yours, with less takeout, too!
1. Broccoli cheddar wild rice bake
Starting it off with a classic hot dish favorite. Recipe here.
2. Spaghetti squash pie
I’m making it this week with (gasp!) real whole wheat pasta, instead of squash. Recipe here.
3. Black bean and squash nacho cheese hot dish
Sub zucchini for butternut to keep it seasonal. Recipe here.
4. Caramelized onion mac and cheese
Add a side salad and dinner is done. Recipe here.
5. Cheddar sweet corn pie
All. The. Sweet corn. Recipe here.
6. Gluten free eggplant parm bake
Late summer produce party. Recipe here.
7. Tomato and mushroom polenta pie
For when you want tamales but realize you don’t run a masa factory. Recipe here.
8. Cheesy rice and bean stuffed peppers
The peppers freeze well since they’re roasted. Recipe here.
9. Summer veggie enchiladas
Is there ever a bad season for Tex Mex? Recipe here.
10. BBQ black bean veggie burgers
Okay, more like a quadruple batch on these smoky delights. Recipe here.
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