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Old 02-18-2012, 03:20 PM   #21
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The only meal I plan for is the Saturday one. I work 7 days a week so I've fallen into the trap of a quick meal.

Sometimes I might take the extra time to prep a few different ingredients that I can use throughout the week to keep it interesting.

Saturdays are my experiment days where I cook something new and exciting and hopefully don't screw it up! ;)

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Old 02-18-2012, 04:30 PM   #22
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A bit of all of them. I plan some, when I think of something or read of something the week before. More often, I make snap decisions at the grocery according to what's priced right and what looks good. If fresh Dover sole appears, that will be on the menu. If all the shrimp is farm raised, any shrimp plans get put off. Doesn't mean I know what I'll do with the shrimp or whatever. I keep little in the freezer but frozen peas, my own frozen pesto, and calves' liver, because it only comes frozen. And I could probably go for a week or two without going to the store, cooking off what I had stocked, albeit without much meat.

This week, I wanted pizza, and the arugula is going wild where it came up as volunteer on the site of last year's herb garden, so I bought mozzarella and will make a plain cheese and pile on the arugula when it's done. I found that pork loins were on deep sale, real big, whole ones, so I bought one. I'll figure out what to do with it later. And a photo in the new Saveur made we want beans, so I bought Anasazi beans, mottled like paint horses, and chorizo to put in with them. Neither the Anasazis nor the chorizo were in the magazine recipe.

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Old 02-18-2012, 04:45 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by DampCharcoal View Post

Saturdays are my experiment days where I cook something new and exciting and hopefully don't screw it up! ;)
Good idea. This way, you have Sunday to get over it.
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Old 02-18-2012, 05:13 PM   #24
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I'm not sure I can accurately answer this. After 40 years of cooking I think the planning has all been done. But we volunteer with a food ministry and as such we end up with lots of veggies and such left over after the deliveries have been made and people have made their choices. So I try to figure out what I can make from that food so it won't go to waste. Since I work evenings I cook dinner for my family during the day and usually take out the protein in the morning when I get up. So I guess we have a weak weekly plan and an even weaker daily plan. About once a week, usually in the middle of the week any leftovers we have become a meal with little additons to fill it out. If another leftover day is necessary it is usually Sunday immediately after church and then we have a more substantial Sunday dinner much later in the evening. I try to keep munchie stuff that is somewhat nutritious made up and ready to go so my family doesn't grab garbagy stuff every time. So, do I have a plan...kind of.
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Old 03-07-2012, 03:40 PM   #25
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I missed this thread because I was MIA in northern MN without daily Internet access. I don't plan. I have a well-stocked pantry, fridge, freezer. I take an ingredient, say chicken breasts, and then go from there based on what I have on hand. Because we have a HUGE garden in the summer (we fill 9 freezers), 16 laying hens, lots of homecanned goods, process our own maple syrup, etc., we tend to only buy dairy, fresh produce in the winter, some meat (not a lot). We make our own bread, crackers, tortillas, etc., so if I want to make enchilladas, I also have to make the tortillas and the sauce. Now, however, I do plan "big things" (roast a turkey, marrow bones for stock, baked beans, beef roast, venison roast) around TOU (time-of-use) electricity rates. Since TOU rates came in, I do my "big cooking" on the weekends (and spend all week planning what I'll cook on the weekend--it is tough adhering to this "no big cooking" during the week--self-imposed because I do not agree with how the government and Hydro company have forced this on us--there are days I'm really envious of what everyone else is cooking without no regard to TOU rates) and then use the leftovers during the week for things than can be thrown together quickly, cooked on the woodstove (used to simmer soups, stews, and chilis), microwave, or stove top under 20 minutes. I improvise using what is on special/sale. The oven is not used M-F.
I've got OCD--Obsessive Chicken Disorder!
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Old 03-07-2012, 04:00 PM   #26
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I'm in the some-and-sometimes group. Unlike in Europe, daily shopping just means more gas, and the grocery stores don't have fresh produce anyway.

I don't have children or near family. What I'm most likely to do is plan for one really nice meal a week for the two of us. One day a week I don't get home until after 5; one other day we go out to dinner. So I plan for one really good dinner a week. I cook another 5, but out of the pantry, or re-inventing leftovers. But I keep a very fully stocked pantry; I could (and have done) make dinner for 6 or 8 at a heartbeat.
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Old 03-07-2012, 04:25 PM   #27
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Well it depends for me....
I will plan it if I had something special coming up like family visiting. Or I will plan ahead if there is a recipe I really want to try. Other than that I would just open my freezer and look inside. Tonight I'm having fried tilapia fish with...etc etc etc etc. (Might be a caned something or other.)
Murphy's Law - a satiric principle principle based on the theory that if anything can go wrong, it will; nothing is as easy as it looks; and everything takes longer than you think.
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Old 03-07-2012, 05:32 PM   #28
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I make kind of a loose plan when I shop, based on what is on sale and what I am in the mood to cook. I am going to have to start doing a little more advance meal planning however, since I found out my blood glucose levels have been elevated lately. After my dad got sick and then died, I went on a huge junk food diet, eating tons of tortilla chips and nacho cheese. We are both working on our weight and health, so I am going to plan ahead for more sensible meals.
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Old 03-07-2012, 07:26 PM   #29
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Being a poor grad student. I plan my meals to be $20 a week.

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