If you do stuff, stuff gets done.......

If you do stuff, stuff gets done.......

Saturday, February 19, 2011

saving a little time in the kitchen

when I look over my blog,  it seems like I spend a lot of time cooking.  I do cook most everyday, sometimes I cook several times a day so I do look for ways to save some time.  If you know me or  read this blog much,  you know I also look for ways to use basic ingredients and to spend wisely. 

We like nuts in our baked goods.  Whole walnuts are a good value, as far as nuts go,  I know nuts are high-priced anymore. 

This is a  12 ounce bag of mostly walnut halves and a few pieces.  The halves are way too big for adding to baked goods. 

so instead of getting out a chopper and cutting board everytime I bake a recipe that we like nuts in,  I chop the whole bag of nuts when I open them. 

then all the extra chopped nuts go into a jar.
I store a lot of things in clear glass jars. 
The label is just a piece of masking tape,  with what is in the jar and the date it was put in the jar. 
If I am going to be baking a lot,  I just keep the jar of nuts in the pantry.  But nuts will go rancid if unused, so if it will be more than a month or before they get used,  I put the jar in the freezer. 

About the label,  I have seen some really cute printable labels online and if I had more free time, I would probably use them,  But for now, masking tape works great.  Just use some scissors to cut the ends straight, that looks much better than tearing the tape.  I use masking tape to label things in the freezer too. 

Lyn asked about the dishes the cut up fruit are in, I showed in them in previous post.  They are from Pampered Chef and work fine as you can see what is in them.  The only thing I don't like about them is the lids are not microwave safe and ruin if used in the microwave.  Mine are the one cup size but I think they come bigger, like 2 cups and maybe 4 cups. 

 my other favorite container for snacks and lunchboxes is little jelly jars - mine are currently filled with jalapeno relish and pickle jalapeno relish though.  I think the jelly jars with screw on tops take up less room in a lunch box and it is very unlikely they would leak. 


A Woman that Fears the Lord said...

Ahh.. another woman that likes to cook! :-) I was questioning myself yesterday (after spending hours in the kitchen) if it was 'normal'. But, as a result I was able to get quite a few meals cooked and didn't have to cook last night, tonight or tomorrow plus I have several loafs of bread baked. I just don't see anyway around sticking to a low grocery budget without doing a lot of cooking and baking. I enjoyed your post.

Rhonda said...

Georgene-LivingOnLessMoney, I think you are right that the only way to have a reasonable food budget is to cook and like you, I like to do some cooking ahead. Mostly, I enjoy cooking and don't even mind the clean up either.

Susan in SC said...

I think that nuts never lasts that long at my house. If I buy any to use in cooking, I have to hide them from Dennis! Since the boys can no longer eating nuts (due to their braces) I don't have any in the house. :)

Val said...

I love having nuts in my freezer too. I love your masking tape labels. Simple, but practical. I use a lot of glass jars too.

Audra said...

I love the idea of chopping the nuts for use instead of wasting time chopping them for every recipe. I have to remember to put mine in the freezer though, I had some walnuts go rancid just before Christmas.

Wish you lived closer too so we could yard sale together!

Cindy said...

Hi Rhonda, I like your idea of chopping up a whole bag of nuts and then freezing them. That's what I should do. Currently I have a slowly dwindling bag of pecans in my freezer and I slowly use them up. But the fact that they are whole is always a problem. What a nice simple solution you have presented. Thanks!
Hugs, Cindy

Cindy said...

Me again, after reading a couple of comments here, I just wanted to say that I love to cook, too, I cook a full supper meal every day. Eating out is a luxury on a small budget. Breakfast is usually cereal and or toast and fruit and lunch is a homemade vege soup most days.
That's why I appreciate anything shortcuts that you may have. I really don't mind the clean up, but because we don't have a dishwasher, by hands are always chapped and ugly. Oh well, small price to pay for the other good things in life! Hugs, Cindy

Anonymous said...

Hey Rhonda,
Love the little bowls with lids. Like you, I try to have nuts chopped and ready.

Much of my day is spent in the kitchen. I think one of the things I love the most about cooking is I know it's blessing my family and another is as you mentioned it's really the only way to keep costs down.

Anonymous said...

Hi Rhonda,
I love the tips. You know I love to cook. I made French Bread yesterday for the freezer and today cinnamon muffins.
I sent you a letter this weekend.

Rhonda said...

Good ideas - thanks for sharing!

Betsy Brock said...

Very nice. I love your little organized jars. There is a real sense of satisfaction to put things up that way, isn't there? I love that feeling of a well stocked pantry.

I store my nuts in the freezer, too! But in a ziplock freezer bag. It's better to buy in bulk like that.

❤️ Rhonda ❤️