Meal Swap

So I briefly mentioned in my last post that the pulled pork and buns were my contribution to a monthly meal swap I'm involved in.  I'm sure most of you have heard of something like it but the idea is brilliant. 

Positively brilliant.

If you have no clue what I'm talking about, let me explain.

The first Thursday of every month a group of moms I know (and you certainly don't have to be a "mom" to participate in something like this!) get together to trade meals with one another.  Basically the premise is this:

You, as a participant, make four 8x8 Gladware reusable tupperware dishes (oven-safe) full of one specific meal.  All you have to do is take a recipe for anything in a 9x13 pan and double it- or make a bit 'ol batch of your favorite soup/stew and split it into four containers.  Or you can do what I did and quadruple a huge batch of something entirely different and fill four Gladware dishes.

I always like to be a little different :) 

Anyway- once you've prepared your meal and split it into four containers, you write the recipe on four index cards and attach them to the top of each dish.  Then, you all email each other to share what you are bringing (so each person can make a "wish list" of sorts).  Upon arrival to the host's home that month, you all place your dishes in piles on the table.  The host writes numbers on pieces of paper, 1 through however many people you have participating (we had 12 this time).  Each person draws a number.  Number 1 goes first and chooses ONE of the dishes they'd like, #2 goes next and so forth.  Once you reach the top number, you go back down the list, so in our case, #12 got to pick two times in a row, then #11 went, on back down the list.  Then you start at #1 again and repeat the process.  By the end, everyone should have four entirely new meals to take home! 

Told you it was brilliant.

I don't know who thought this thing up, but it's the perfect way to have four new meals to try without the fuss and hassle of making as many meals yourself. 

Did I mention this idea is brilliant?   If I haven't already, that is.

So here's what I did this month, if you happened to forget already.

I first quadrupled my normal recipes for spicy pulled pork and hamburger buns, 12 pounds worth of meat and 32 buns total to be exact.

Once all was done cooking, baking, and cooling, I placed the meat in four oven-safe Gladware containers.

Then packaged the buns into four large ziploc bags, 8 buns per bag.

Make sure the buns are cool though- you don't want condensation accumulating in those things.  It makes for soggy-ness and festering bacteria.  Ew.  Nobody wants that.

Then, off to the swap!  It was fabulous. 
And I came home with these four fun meals (in no particular order):

#1- Chipotle Chicken Pasta
(a take off the Diablo Chicken dish at Carlos O'Kelley's)
#2- Lasagna
(always a fav 'round these parts!)
#3- Lite Chicken n' Broccoli Alfredo
(a fav of Mr. K)
#4- Chicken Tetrazzini

(Sorry for the dismal lighting- it was late in the evening!)

Some other dishes there (that I didn't nab in time) were:
Stuffed shells, zuppa toscana (an italian soup), upside down pizza bake, vegetarian enchiladas, five cheese penne, and brown sugar chicken (a stir-fry dish).

All fantastic-sounding. 

Yum, looking forward to four easy evenings in my near future!

I suggest you get yourself one of these Meal Swap things.
It's the way to go.

Did I mention the idea is brilliant?

Sidenote:  Because most of the moms in my group have, at most, two children who are younger than 3 years of age- the 8x8 containers are enough to feed our current family size.  However, if you have older (or more) children and 8x8 wont cut it, I suggest forming a swap with other moms like yourself and filling four 9x12 oven-safe Gladware pans with a specific meal of your choice (and having the other moms do the same)- then you all will have four full-size meals for your full-size families!  You can tweak this idea any way you want!  Just let me know what you did...I don't like to be left out of a good idea :)


Rachel Farley said...

Wish I lived closer to you!! This is awesome!

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