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Thread: For how many days ahead can/do you plan meals?

  1. #1
    Kalmia Guest

    Default For how many days ahead can/do you plan meals?

    This seems to be my bete noir. I have a plan for tonight, tom'w and
    possibly Sunday night, but the mind shuts down after that. It's not
    that I don't have tons of recipes etc - but I just can't make myself
    plan past a few days. I think it's the whole idea of having to lay
    out a bunch of bucks. Yet, I hate shopping.

    Any ideas on how to overcome this bad habit?


  2. #2
    Chemo the Clown Guest

    Default Re: For how many days ahead can/do you plan meals?

    On Aug 19, 10:16*am, Kalmia <tweeny90...@mypacks.net> wrote:
    > This seems to be my bete noir. * I have a plan for tonight, tom'w and
    > possibly Sunday night, but the mind shuts down after that. It's not
    > that I don't have tons of recipes etc - but I just can't make myself
    > plan past a few days. *I think it's the whole idea of having to lay
    > out a bunch of bucks. *Yet, I hate shopping.
    >
    > Any ideas on how to overcome this bad habit?


    We usually eat day to day but occasionally will make plans a couple of
    days in advance.

  3. #3
    [email protected] Guest

    Default Re: For how many days ahead can/do you plan meals?

    On Aug 19, 1:16*pm, Kalmia <tweeny90...@mypacks.net> wrote:
    > This seems to be my bete noir. * I have a plan for tonight, tom'w and
    > possibly Sunday night, but the mind shuts down after that. It's not
    > that I don't have tons of recipes etc - but I just can't make myself
    > plan past a few days. *I think it's the whole idea of having to lay
    > out a bunch of bucks. *Yet, I hate shopping.
    >
    > Any ideas on how to overcome this bad habit?


    We shop once a week and simply make sure we have plenty of stuff on
    hand in the freezer and in the pantry. Unless it's a special meal, we
    don't decide what we're having until that day.

  4. #4
    zettinger Guest

    Default Re: For how many days ahead can/do you plan meals?


    I used to have the same problem, when I actually tried to plan. But
    making up a specific plan takes so much energy. What I do nowadays
    instead, is just go to the food store and buy lots of stuff without
    having any specific plan, and then improvise with what you have when
    it's time to cook!

    I actually find it more fun, and easier, to cook when I have the
    constraint of already having the battery of ingredients in my kitchen.
    They also inspire!


    --
    zettinger
    Message origin: TRAVEL.com


  5. #5
    George Leppla Guest

    Default Re: For how many days ahead can/do you plan meals?

    On 8/19/2011 12:16 PM, Kalmia wrote:
    > This seems to be my bete noir. I have a plan for tonight, tom'w and
    > possibly Sunday night, but the mind shuts down after that. It's not
    > that I don't have tons of recipes etc - but I just can't make myself
    > plan past a few days. I think it's the whole idea of having to lay
    > out a bunch of bucks. Yet, I hate shopping.



    We seldom plan meals more than a day ahead of time unless it is an occasion.

    We buy most of our food when it is on sale so there is always an
    assortment of stuff in the house. Usually, in the morning at breakfast
    we decide what we will have for supper... based on what we want and what
    we have in the freezer. Tonight we are having pork chops on the
    grill... we bought on sale for $1.29 a pound a couple of weeks ago.

    There are exceptions. We are bringing a meal on Sunday to a friend who
    had an operation. Becca is making a Mexican dinner (enchiladas, refried
    beans, Mexican rice) so she made the beans yesterday and we will have
    our own Mexican dinner tomorrow night.

    George L

  6. #6
    Steve Pope Guest

    Default Re: For how many days ahead can/do you plan meals?

    [email protected] <[email protected]> wrote:

    >On Aug 19, 1:16*pm, Kalmia <tweeny90...@mypacks.net> wrote:
    >> This seems to be my bete noir. * I have a plan for tonight, tom'w and
    >> possibly Sunday night, but the mind shuts down after that. It's not
    >> that I don't have tons of recipes etc - but I just can't make myself
    >> plan past a few days. *I think it's the whole idea of having to lay
    >> out a bunch of bucks. *Yet, I hate shopping.
    >>
    >> Any ideas on how to overcome this bad habit?

    >
    >We shop once a week and simply make sure we have plenty of stuff on
    >hand in the freezer and in the pantry. Unless it's a special meal, we
    >don't decide what we're having until that day.


    There are three farmers markets per week... so, I do not have to plan past
    the next one.

    (Actually there are more markets than that, if I wanted to travel
    more than a couple miles.)


    Steve

  7. #7
    Lou Decruss Guest

    Default Re: For how many days ahead can/do you plan meals?

    On Fri, 19 Aug 2011 10:16:37 -0700 (PDT), Kalmia
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    >This seems to be my bete noir. I have a plan for tonight, tom'w and
    >possibly Sunday night, but the mind shuts down after that. It's not
    >that I don't have tons of recipes etc - but I just can't make myself
    >plan past a few days. I think it's the whole idea of having to lay
    >out a bunch of bucks. Yet, I hate shopping.
    >
    >Any ideas on how to overcome this bad habit?


    We just go load the cart up and figure it out later. Today I might
    think I want a burger tomorrow but tomorrow I might want something
    else.

    Lou

  8. #8
    Dave Smith Guest

    Default Re: For how many days ahead can/do you plan meals?

    On 19/08/2011 1:16 PM, Kalmia wrote:
    > This seems to be my bete noir. I have a plan for tonight, tom'w and
    > possibly Sunday night, but the mind shuts down after that. It's not
    > that I don't have tons of recipes etc - but I just can't make myself
    > plan past a few days. I think it's the whole idea of having to lay
    > out a bunch of bucks. Yet, I hate shopping.
    >


    I am pretty much an impulse shopper. When I go shopping I pick up meat
    and vegetables with a plan for that night (usually Friday) and for
    Sunday. Then I get enough meat and staples for the week. Planning
    involved looking in the freeze i the morning to get something out to
    thaw for dinner.





  9. #9
    Sqwertz Guest

    Default Re: For how many days ahead can/do you plan meals?

    On Fri, 19 Aug 2011 10:16:37 -0700 (PDT), Kalmia wrote:

    > This seems to be my bete noir. I have a plan for tonight, tom'w and
    > possibly Sunday night, but the mind shuts down after that. It's not
    > that I don't have tons of recipes etc - but I just can't make myself
    > plan past a few days. I think it's the whole idea of having to lay
    > out a bunch of bucks. Yet, I hate shopping.
    >
    > Any ideas on how to overcome this bad habit?


    Don't hate shopping. Shop by sight, not by a plan. Buy what's fresh,
    on sale, and/or what tickles your fancy. And don't stick to recipes.
    Buy stuff you don't necessarily have a plan for at the moment but will
    be able to use somehow.

    IMHO, if you don't like grocery shopping, then you don't like to cook.
    You may just like to "prepare" food.

    -sw

  10. #10
    Jim Elbrecht Guest

    Default Re: For how many days ahead can/do you plan meals?

    On Fri, 19 Aug 2011 10:16:37 -0700 (PDT), Kalmia
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    >This seems to be my bete noir. I have a plan for tonight, tom'w and
    >possibly Sunday night, but the mind shuts down after that. It's not
    >that I don't have tons of recipes etc - but I just can't make myself
    >plan past a few days. I think it's the whole idea of having to lay
    >out a bunch of bucks. Yet, I hate shopping.


    Unless it is something special, in which case a month or two is no big
    deal, I decide what is for supper sometime between 5AM & noon.

    I might be inspired by something I read here, see on TV, trip over on
    the web, or just feel like *something*. The other day a can of
    mackerel jumped off a pantry shelf [literally] so it became dinner.

    I have been known to Google an ingredient list if I have some stuff in
    the fridge, freezer or pantry that I'd like to use up.

    [tonight's dinner got 're-planned' when a 2pm appointment went long &
    I ran out of gas. It is leftovers night & everyone is happy.]

    >Any ideas on how to overcome this bad habit?


    It is only bad if it bothers you. And if it bothers you-- change
    it. . . or not.

    Jim

  11. #11
    Melba's Jammin' Guest

    Default Re: For how many days ahead can/do you plan meals?

    In article
    <[email protected]>,
    Kalmia <tweeny90[email protected]> wrote:

    > This seems to be my bete noir. I have a plan for tonight, tom'w and
    > possibly Sunday night, but the mind shuts down after that. It's not
    > that I don't have tons of recipes etc - but I just can't make myself
    > plan past a few days. I think it's the whole idea of having to lay
    > out a bunch of bucks. Yet, I hate shopping.
    >
    > Any ideas on how to overcome this bad habit?


    I usually decide on supper at about 4:30 or 5:00 p.m.
    We eat at 6:30. If it's hot, I might decide in the morning, cook then,
    and reheat at mealtime. I work with what's in the freezer, the shelves,
    and what appeals to me.
    --
    Barb,
    http://web.me.com/barbschaller July 27, 2011. Read it and weep.

  12. #12
    Brooklyn1 Guest

    Default Re: For how many days ahead can/do you plan meals?

    On Fri, 19 Aug 2011 10:16:37 -0700 (PDT), Kalmia
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    >This seems to be my bete noir. I have a plan for tonight, tom'w and
    >possibly Sunday night, but the mind shuts down after that. It's not
    >that I don't have tons of recipes etc - but I just can't make myself
    >plan past a few days. I think it's the whole idea of having to lay
    >out a bunch of bucks. Yet, I hate shopping.
    >
    >Any ideas on how to overcome this bad habit?


    You're supposed to have your regularly used ingredients stocked in
    your larder.... you really should only need to shop weekly for
    regularly used perishables (dairy/fresh produce) and to restock your
    larder as items get low (keep a list). I can easily prepare a
    different meal every day for a month without having to buy anything,
    probably three months. The trick is to stock up on things you will
    actually use, do not stock up on items you don't use... do NOT be an
    impulse shopper... impulse buying destroys ones budget. And most
    importantly, learn to love left overs... I very rarely cook only
    enough for one meal, typically I'll cook enough for several meals, eat
    the same thing two or three day in a row and freeze portions for down
    the road.... a freezer filled with assorted "stoups" comes in very
    handy for when one is lean on cash and/or time.

  13. #13
    Sqwertz Guest

    Default Re: For how many days ahead can/do you plan meals?

    On Fri, 19 Aug 2011 16:00:55 -0500, Melba's Jammin' wrote:

    > I usually decide on supper at about 4:30 or 5:00 p.m.
    > We eat at 6:30. If it's hot, I might decide in the morning, cook then,
    > and reheat at mealtime. I work with what's in the freezer, the shelves,
    > and what appeals to me.


    I'm surprised that everybody had pretty much the same answer I did.
    All these threads about weekly meal planning I'm usually the only one
    poo-pooing the idea.

    So for some of you, it finally sunk in. Good! ;-)

    Just buy food and figure out what to do with it later.

    -sw

  14. #14
    sf Guest

    Default Re: For how many days ahead can/do you plan meals?

    On Fri, 19 Aug 2011 10:16:37 -0700 (PDT), Kalmia
    <[email protected]> wrote:

    > This seems to be my bete noir. I have a plan for tonight, tom'w and
    > possibly Sunday night, but the mind shuts down after that. It's not
    > that I don't have tons of recipes etc - but I just can't make myself
    > plan past a few days. I think it's the whole idea of having to lay
    > out a bunch of bucks. Yet, I hate shopping.
    >
    > Any ideas on how to overcome this bad habit?


    I don't think it's a bad habit at all. Food is fresher, you're more
    in tune with your wants and whims and if plans change, food doesn't go
    to waste. Hubby thought he was doing me a favor and bought meat for
    the week. Gee, thanks but *no thanks*. I do *not* like planning that
    far into the future because it never fails that plans change. The
    kids decided to come over with their families tonight. They usually
    bring the food and cook when it's a last minute deal like this, but I
    have a big chicken waiting for me to do something with it - so I'll
    make a recipe that Christine D turned me on to when we cooked together
    here a couple of weeks ago - Jacques Pepin's roasted chicken with
    mustard crust. http://www.kqed.org/w/morefastfoodmyway/episode204.html

    PS: I love to grocery shop and don't think it's a chore... but I love
    to cook too.


    --
    I take life with a grain of salt, a slice of lemon and a shot of tequila

  15. #15
    sf Guest

    Default Re: For how many days ahead can/do you plan meals?

    On Fri, 19 Aug 2011 16:16:32 -0400, Jim Elbrecht <[email protected]>
    wrote:

    > Unless it is something special, in which case a month or two is no big
    > deal, I decide what is for supper sometime between 5AM & noon.


    For me, it's between noon and 5PM if I have everything I need on had.
    If I don't, I like to go grocery shopping and see what strikes my
    fancy for dinner.

    --
    I take life with a grain of salt, a slice of lemon and a shot of tequila

  16. #16
    Ed Pawlowski Guest

    Default Re: For how many days ahead can/do you plan meals?


    "Kalmia" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]..
    > This seems to be my bete noir. I have a plan for tonight, tom'w and
    > possibly Sunday night, but the mind shuts down after that. It's not
    > that I don't have tons of recipes etc - but I just can't make myself
    > plan past a few days. I think it's the whole idea of having to lay
    > out a bunch of bucks. Yet, I hate shopping.
    >
    > Any ideas on how to overcome this bad habit?
    >


    You plan? Sure sometimes we know a few days ahead that Saturday will be
    this or Sunday may be that, most times it is just a grab bag.

    The freezer is well stocked so if one of us decides a pork roast or chicken
    is desired, we have the ability to do it easily. There is always potatoes,
    rice, pasta and frozen veggies. Some days I get home from work and we
    still don't know what's for dinner.

    I don't know why laying out money is a factor. Eating is a necessity so
    shop wisely and you can save a bunch of money. Shop a few things ahead so
    you have them when you want them. Or at least see what is on sale and
    build a meal around it.


  17. #17
    =?iso-8859-1?Q?TFM=AE?= Guest

    Default Re: For how many days ahead can/do you plan meals?

    On Fri, 19 Aug 2011 17:05:28 -0400, Brooklyn1 wrote:

    > On Fri, 19 Aug 2011 10:16:37 -0700 (PDT), Kalmia
    > <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    >>This seems to be my bete noir. I have a plan for tonight, tom'w and
    >>possibly Sunday night, but the mind shuts down after that. It's not
    >>that I don't have tons of recipes etc - but I just can't make myself
    >>plan past a few days. I think it's the whole idea of having to lay
    >>out a bunch of bucks. Yet, I hate shopping.
    >>
    >>Any ideas on how to overcome this bad habit?

    >
    > You're supposed to have your regularly used ingredients stocked in
    > your larder.... you really should only need to shop weekly for
    > regularly used perishables (dairy/fresh produce) and to restock your
    > larder as items get low (keep a list). I can easily prepare a
    > different meal every day for a month without having to buy anything,
    > probably three months. The trick is to stock up on things you will
    > actually use, do not stock up on items you don't use... do NOT be an
    > impulse shopper... impulse buying destroys ones budget. And most
    > importantly, learn to love left overs... I very rarely cook only
    > enough for one meal, typically I'll cook enough for several meals, eat
    > the same thing two or three day in a row and freeze portions for down
    > the road.... a freezer filled with assorted "stoups" comes in very
    > handy for when one is lean on cash and/or time.




    That is really good advice.

    Not that it means anything to you coming from me, but you have really
    changed for the better in the last 10 years.

    TFM®

  18. #18
    =?iso-8859-1?Q?TFM=AE?= Guest

    Default Re: For how many days ahead can/do you plan meals?

    On Fri, 19 Aug 2011 15:17:06 -0700, sf wrote:

    > On Fri, 19 Aug 2011 10:16:37 -0700 (PDT), Kalmia
    > <tweeny90655@mypac[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    >> This seems to be my bete noir. I have a plan for tonight, tom'w and
    >> possibly Sunday night, but the mind shuts down after that. It's not
    >> that I don't have tons of recipes etc - but I just can't make myself
    >> plan past a few days. I think it's the whole idea of having to lay
    >> out a bunch of bucks. Yet, I hate shopping.
    >>
    >> Any ideas on how to overcome this bad habit?

    >
    > I don't think it's a bad habit at all. Food is fresher, you're more
    > in tune with your wants and whims and if plans change, food doesn't go
    > to waste. Hubby thought he was doing me a favor and bought meat for
    > the week. Gee, thanks but *no thanks*. I do *not* like planning that
    > far into the future because it never fails that plans change. The
    > kids decided to come over with their families tonight. They usually
    > bring the food and cook when it's a last minute deal like this, but I
    > have a big chicken waiting for me to do something with it - so I'll
    > make a recipe that Christine D turned me on to when we cooked together
    > here a couple of weeks ago - Jacques Pepin's roasted chicken with
    > mustard crust. http://www.kqed.org/w/morefastfoodmyway/episode204.html
    >
    > PS: I love to grocery shop and don't think it's a chore... but I love
    > to cook too.



    I love the grocery shopping too. I don't mind going every day. Prices
    change on a daily basis, new stuff comes in, older stuff gets marked down.

    There are also 5 major grocery stores within 5 miles.
    3 of them are the same chain, but the prices are different at all 3. Go
    figure.

    TFM®

  19. #19
    Christine Dabney Guest

    Default Re: For how many days ahead can/do you plan meals?

    On Fri, 19 Aug 2011 19:17:25 -0400, TFM® <[email protected]>
    wrote:

    >On Fri, 19 Aug 2011 15:17:06 -0700, sf wrote:

    I'll
    >> make a recipe that Christine D turned me on to when we cooked together
    >> here a couple of weeks ago - Jacques Pepin's roasted chicken with
    >> mustard crust. http://www.kqed.org/w/morefastfoodmyway/episode204.html
    >>
    >> PS: I love to grocery shop and don't think it's a chore... but I love
    >> to cook too.


    I adore grocery shopping...which is why it takes me forever to grocery
    shop. I go from place to place..look at everything..make decisions,
    etc.

    I have another recipe of Jacques I want to try soon..from that same
    series.
    http://www.kqed.org/w/morefastfoodmy...cipes.html#210
    >
    >
    >I love the grocery shopping too. I don't mind going every day. Prices
    >change on a daily basis, new stuff comes in, older stuff gets marked down.


    I tend to do it once or twice a week or so. I work 12 hour nights,
    and on my stretch on, I don't tend to do much in my off time. Eat,
    sleep, and go back to work is mostly it.

    Right now, I am in the south bay of the SFBA...and I am trying to get
    a new contract/extension...so I can be here longer. There are
    farmers markets almost every day of the week here...so I try to plan
    my shopping around those. Haven't had much inclination to cook here,
    as I have been in a tiny little place with not much room..and just a
    cooktop with two burners. Most of my stuff is still in the van: just
    no room here to get it out. It is sort of stifling to my wanting to
    cook.

    With a new contract/extension, that can change. I will be moved to an
    apartment with a regular kitchen, and a place to entertain! I can get
    my stuff out...along with my cookbooks and go to town!! I have all
    sorts of new things I want to cook, from the book Plenty by
    Ottolenghi, and from some other new cookbooks. Those farmers markets
    will be wonderful then! As well as jaunts to my favorite places to
    shop in Berkeley.

    I am lately not planning that much ahead on what to cook. Maybe a few
    days..depending on what is on special and what looks good in the
    markets. I may have some things in mind.

    When I have a regular kitchen and pantry, I keep it well stocked, so
    that if something is being craved, I generally only need to get one or
    two things for it. I can cook pretty much spur of the moment
    then.... When I am traveling as I do right now, it becomes much less
    practical to plan to get too much...

    Christine, in flux.



    --
    http://nightstirrings.blogspot.com

  20. #20
    jmcquown Guest

    Default Re: For how many days ahead can/do you plan meals?


    "Brooklyn1" <Gravesend1> wrote in message
    news[email protected]..
    > On Fri, 19 Aug 2011 10:16:37 -0700 (PDT), Kalmia
    > <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    >>This seems to be my bete noir. I have a plan for tonight, tom'w and
    >>possibly Sunday night, but the mind shuts down after that. It's not
    >>that I don't have tons of recipes etc - but I just can't make myself
    >>plan past a few days. I think it's the whole idea of having to lay
    >>out a bunch of bucks. Yet, I hate shopping.
    >>
    >>Any ideas on how to overcome this bad habit?

    >
    > You're supposed to have your regularly used ingredients stocked in
    > your larder.... you really should only need to shop weekly for
    > regularly used perishables (dairy/fresh produce) and to restock your
    > larder as items get low (keep a list). I can easily prepare a
    > different meal every day for a month without having to buy anything,
    > probably three months. The trick is to stock up on things you will
    > actually use, do not stock up on items you don't use... do NOT be an
    > impulse shopper... impulse buying destroys ones budget. And most
    > importantly, learn to love left overs... I very rarely cook only
    > enough for one meal, typically I'll cook enough for several meals, eat
    > the same thing two or three day in a row and freeze portions for down
    > the road.... a freezer filled with assorted "stoups" comes in very
    > handy for when one is lean on cash and/or time.


    I agree. I generally cook enough for four people and eat leftovers during
    the week. I freeze the rest. Then when I don't feel like cooking I can
    thaw and nuke an already prepared meal. I don't like shopping so I
    definitely make a list.

    Jill


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