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Grilling for the month


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I thought I'd share something I've been doing lately with you guys.  

 

My wife doesn't work so typically she would cook the meals during the week.  We'd eat on them a couple days and any leftovers would be frozen in tupperware type containers for my lunches.  Unfortunately starting a few months ago, she had to go on a very limited diet for medical reasons.

 

This left me with several problems.  I couldn't very well ask her to cook for me when she couldn't eat it.  While I can cook, I don't particularly want to come home from work, cook my dinner and have a messy kitchen to clean up.  Where was I supposed to get my lunches?

Luckily for an everyday type meal I just need a meat and a vegetable.  I want some variety but, I can handle a little repetition.  So, my solution was grilling for the month.

 

Now there are better ways to cook and eat all of what I cook here but, I'm going for a cheap convenient way to have good food available for a long period.  I'm not necessarily going for the absolutely best of anything here.

 

To do this you'll need to have a freezer, a vacuum sealer and a pile of tupperware type containers. The cooking is a one day affair.

I did this Friday.  Every thing came from Sam's except the chicken leg quarters which can be found at any grocery store.  Here's what I cooked:
 

  • 10 lb bag of chicken leg quarters (I prefer dark meat)
  • A four pack of Hillshire Farms smoked beef sausage
  • Family pack of pork chops
  • Two top round roasts for london broil - This amounts to 4 london broils

 

Everything cooks at 350 deg. F but, you'll be opening the grill fairly frequently.  So, keeping an even temperature is difficult.  You need to adjust cooking times to take that into account. You'll also need to know how to do this, if you have an Akorn like I do.  You can do that with the meat on the grill. I'm not sure how effective smoking wood is in this situation but, pecan is a good neutral one to use.  I use it.

 

The night before, prepare the lamb. It comes in netting and it has a lot of fat on the outside that needs to be trimmed. I use a Rapala filet knife for that.

LambTrimmed.jpg

 

Next sprinkle kosher salt inside and out. I rub the inside with rosemary and mustard.  Then tie it back with butcher's twine, wrap with plastic wrap and put it in the refrigerator till morning.  In the morning rub the outside of the lamp with mustard and rosemary and heat the grill to 350 deg. F. While it's heating is a good time to skin and dismember the chicken leg quarters. 

 

Once it's heated up, put the lamb and smoked sausage on.  You want the sausage skin a little darkened but, not bursting.  It takes between 15 and 20 minutes. Here's a pic I snapped getting the sausage off.  The lamb stays on.

LambSausage.jpg

 

I have no idea how other states do it but, if you aren't from Texas, you might not know the proper way to slice sausage.  You do it diagonally.  They don't seem to know that in North Carolina. :)
SausageCut.JPG

 

The four pack of sausage gave me 10 servings.

 

I like lamb cooked to an internal temperature of 145 deg. F.  It takes between 2 and 2 1/2 hours. Unfortunately, I got distracted and overshot a bit this time. 

 

LambCut.JPG

 

While the lamb was cooking, I got the chicken prepared.  I skin and dismember the leg quarters and sprinkle them with Adobo and lemon pepper. Time to put it on.

ChickenPrepared.JPG

 

After about 40 minutes, I check the chicken with a handheld thermometer.  I look for an internal temperature of around 180 deg. F.
ChickenDone.JPG

 

While the chicken was cooking, I got the pork chops ready.  I sprinkled them with kosher salt and Durkee's Six Pepper blend.

PorkPrepared.JPG

 

Sorry but, I missed a pic of the porkchops done.  You want a temp of around 160 deg. F.  Start checking them at 25 mins.  I just spot check the largest ones at different places on the grill.  I wouldn't go below 150. You might have to do two rounds of the pork chops.  It depends on how many of those large mutant chops (I like those) are in the package hidden under the nice looking ones on top.

 

While the pork chops are cooking, I get the london broils ready.  I sprinkle them with kosher salt fresh ground pepper and chili powder.

BroilPrepared.JPG

 

I like these cooked to 135 Deg. F.  However, I have to confess that it's tricky to get it right because they vary in size.  Depending on the thickness, I start checking at 20 mins.

 

BroilDone.JPG

 

These get sliced crosswise for lunches and dinners.

 

I've covered everything but, how I use these.  For lunches a serving of meat goes in a tupperware type container with a half can of veggies. I prefer frozen to canned but, for this, the canned is just too convenient.

Lunches.JPG

 

They get heated in the microwave at work.

 

One interesting thing is my lunches seem to taste better.  I think that's because previously, we ate on what was in my lunches for a day or two before the food was put into lunches.  These get frozen shortly after cooking.

 

For dinner the meat gets vacuum sealed and frozen. To use it, if it's pork or poultry I use a steamer with the vacuum sealed meat in the bottom with frozen veggies on top.

Steamer1.JPG

 

Just cover it, bring to a boil and let simmer for 15 or 20 mins.

 

For beef or lamb, I want to avoid cooking it further.  So, I use separate pans and try not to boil the meat.

 

For this day of cooking I got 50 servings of meat.  That was made into 27 lunches and 23 vacuum sealed servings for dinner.  I usually just use these during the week.  So, weekend cooking will stretch that to about 6 weeks.

 

I hope you found this interesting.  Please reply if you have any suggestions.

 

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5 hours ago, Shortyque said:

That is really neat.  I do the same, on a smaller scale.  On Sunday afternoons I will grill a weeks worth of chicken tenders, etc., and have them for lunch for that week.  In my mind, that is way healthier than lunch meat, if you don't salt them too much.  

 

The main advantage to doing it on a larger scale is that if I happen to be busy on a weekend, I have more flexibility.

 

1 hour ago, skreef said:

To bad your SO can't enjoy all of your grilled feast.. Hope she can get into a healthy state. Maybe then she can enjoy some here and there. Great cooks. 

 

She's doing okay but, it's likely to be a while.  OTOH she sees the advantage of what I'm doing.  I have a feeling that this is going to be part of our lives going forward.

 

48 minutes ago, bbqboss84601 said:

Having just acquired a foodsaver I can't wait to try these types of cooks for meals throughout the week.

 

Being a relatively new, as in not having had one for years foodsaver owner,  I'll give you some advice.  The rolls are more flexible but, the pre-made bags are a lot more convenient.  The foodsaver brand bags are crazy expensive.  The other brand bags are fine.  Just make sure they are at least 4 mil.  I've had problems with 3.5 mill bags.

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8 hours ago, MickeyRat said:

 

The main advantage to doing it on a larger scale is that if I happen to be busy on a weekend, I have more flexibility.

 

 

She's doing okay but, it's likely to be a while.  OTOH she sees the advantage of what I'm doing.  I have a feeling that this is going to be part of our lives going forward.

 

 

Being a relatively new, as in not having had one for years foodsaver owner,  I'll give you some advice.  The rolls are more flexible but, the pre-made bags are a lot more convenient.  The foodsaver brand bags are crazy expensive.  The other brand bags are fine.  Just make sure they are at least 4 mil.  I've had problems with 3.5 mill bags.

I don't know what Ckreef and I  would do without a food saver.. We buy big packs of meats to split in portions for meals. Since we live bout 40 minutes away from any decent store,  it is a must for us.. You will enjoy having one. Especially when you can buy selective meats on sale.

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1 hour ago, skreef said:

I don't know what Ckreef and I  would do without a food saver.. We buy big packs of meats to split in portions for meals. Since we live bout 40 minutes away from any decent store,  it is a must for us.. You will enjoy having one. Especially when you can buy selective meats on sale.

 

I'm not that new with the foodsaver.  I've had it for about 6 months and I do love it.  This is the third time I've done one of these cooking marathons.  One thing I really like about it that I didn't expect is how you can vacuum seal portions of a block of cheese.  No more cutting the mold off later.  It's something I should have bought years ago.

 

Funny you mention meat.  I bought it because there's a food overstock place here and they had whole New York strips.  I bought one for $85 and got a foodsaver on the way home.  I got 16 steaks out of the deal.  What I saved came close to paying for the foodsaver. :)

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