I'm trying to get back into my routine of menu planning and crockpot cooking this week. Yesterday I was perusing several blogs for inspiration and motivation, and came across The Busy Cook's pyramid, a fantastic menu planning resource from Menus4Moms. It includes freezer cooking, multi-meal cooking, quick and simple recipes, and more. 

Based on that pyramid, here's the plan I've come up with for the next week:

  • 5 Breakfasts
  • 1 Dinner, tripled; extra 2 meals will add to Freezer Cooking inventory
  • 1 Large Weekend Dinner, for 2 additional meals of Remade Leftovers
  • 1 Large Batch of Sauce, Fermented Food or Prepared Ingredient (i.e. tomato sauce, shredded potatoes, dried fruit) to supplement Quick and Easy Meals
  • 1 Breakfast-for-Dinner
  • 1 Dessert, doubled; extra dessert will add to Freezer Cooking inventory
  • 1 Large Batch of Snack Food for sack lunches or traveling

 
 
Welcome to my new blog, and thank you for taking a look around!

If you're like me, you love foods from Greece, Italy, Spain, France, northern Africa, and the Middle East. Or perhaps you've heard about the fantastic health benefits of following a Mediterranean-style diet. But, also like me, you may not have the time or desire to spend all day cooking these delicious, healthy meals.

I have another reason for using my crockpots almost exclusively -- I live in the Sonoran Desert, and in the summer, it's HOT! High temps of 120+ Farenheit aren't unusual at the peak of summer. I never use my oven from about April until October, and try to use the stovetop as little as possible. Producing extra heat in the house makes our air conditioners work that much harder, and it shows when the electric bill arrives!

During the hottest part of the year, I even put my crockpots outside while they cook, to avoid the slightest amount of extra heat, and I'm taking advantage of solar power. ;-) Things cook a little faster in all that heat, plus I drape a hand towel over the lid to keep insects out, which insulates the cooker and speeds up the process a bit, too.

So, now you know why I'm on a mission to adapt dozens of my favorite recipes for my favorite cooking method, the crockpot, while still retaining all of the flavor and texture of the original dish.

Join me in my culinary adventures, and please be sure let me know what you think!

Here's what's coming up:

(These links will be activated as each recipe is published.)

Italian-Style Roast Chicken
Greek Yogurt
Torta di polenta gialla (Orange Cornmeal Cake)
Torrijas (Spanish Sweet French Toast with Citrus Syrup)
Ratatouille