Tricia’s Thoughts – Benefits of the Batch

by Tricia H on September 23, 2010

Meet Tricia…a girl after my own heart. Except she feeds 9 everyday, and I feed 4 and a baby. Maybe it should be that I am the girl after her own heart…

I love convenience.

And I’ve learned that homemade convenience is best. Especially when dealing with food allergies.
Doubling or tripling a recipe is usually a result of a pep talk I have with myself. Which is often.

    “Now, honey, all the ingredients are out. You’re already making a mess. And you have the extra ingredients needed for this family of seven. The clean up effort will be about the same. But the benefit at busy meal time is immeasurable. Give yourself a break.”

Recently I snuck in a bit of batch cooking without others noticing :) Grandma and Grandpa were over. We were celebrating Grandma’s birthday – brunch style. Before they arrived I decided I’d double the freshly-ground, whole wheat pancake recipe.

We’re visiting. Sipping coffee. All the while I’m flipping pancakes. Even children volunteered. And it was a perfect time to fit in that bit of cooking fun, showing younger ones how to dip the measuring cup. Older ones how to flip without missing the griddle.

The time investment totaled about 30 minutes. A pleasant half an hour visiting with family. Simply no drudgery involved.

Our pancakes on this particular morning were made with buttermilk substitute (since it’s cheaper) and egg substitute (due to our allergy adaptations). But you can have the same type pep talk I did over your favorite box of biscuit mix.

Results:

  • Whole wheat pancakes to feed the seven us, plus Grandma and Grandpa = 9 people fed
  • Plus FOURTEEN 3-stacks tucked away in the freezer = 4 more mornings or 2 more weeknights

Fast forward to predawn hours of a weekday. I’ve only had about three sips of coffee.

“Think. Think. Think.” Meanwhile, littlest is tugging on my pants leg. Juice cup in hand. “Hungry, Mama!”

Aha! The pancakes. In the freezer. Those luscious stacks in serving size. Homemade by me. Ready to meet the morning challenge. Ready to fill tummies with healthy goodness. All because I had a pep talk with myself while I was making a mess anyway.

So, tell me. Do you have pep talks with yourself in the kitchen too?

{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

Diana September 24, 2010 at 6:50 am

Why yes I do have pep talks with myself. Just yesterday the girls asked me to bake pumpkin bread so while the kitchen was already a whirlwind of a mess I convinced myself to triple my batch and freeze two loaves for later. I try to do the same thing with meatloaf, muffins, waffles and pancakes. The kids never complain that they taste different after being frozen so it works out great!

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Cris September 24, 2010 at 8:41 am

May we please have the freshly ground whole wheat pancake recipe pleeeeeeeeease. :)

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Tricia September 24, 2010 at 9:13 am

Diana – I’m so glad to know there are others muttering to themselves in the kitchen. Pep talks often produce great results. Mmmm, a triple batch of pumpkin bread sounds wonderful!

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Cris September 24, 2010 at 9:17 am

Cris I sure appreciate your pretty please :) The recipe came from the Bread Beckers cookbook that accompanied my wheat grinder. You can purchase the cookbook for $6 and enjoy many free recipes on their site here: http://www.breadbeckers.com/store/pc/The-Bread-Beckers-Recipe-Collection-44p2516.htm

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Phyllis September 24, 2010 at 3:33 pm

What a great idea. I have made extra pancakes and frozen them before, but I never thought to involve the kids in the process and make it an enjoyable time all around. Wonderful idea.

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Kerri September 24, 2010 at 3:34 pm

I’d say for me that it’s more like badgering myself into it than a pep talk. “Now look here, you are going to cook all of the ground beef while you have it out and freeze it for suppers later in the week or…yes mam, you will put on your big girl panties and double that chicken pot pie for a handy freezer meal instead of picking up pizza when you’ve had one of those days!”

Maybe I should be a little nicer to myself :)

Love the pancake idea – I will have to try that next.

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Dianamite September 24, 2010 at 3:50 pm

At the risk of sounding clueless… how does one defrost/reheat a frozen pancake? I have to admit that my first thought is that pancakes would be gross reheated.

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Tricia September 24, 2010 at 4:05 pm

Phyllis and Kerri – let me know how the pancakes turn out (love your pep talks Kerri :) Dianamite – the pancakes are frozen when they are nice and fresh (cooled down first). Then I have this handy *Reheat – Bread* button on my microwave. But frozen pancakes also reheat well on a Cook for 30 seconds (for a frozen 3-stack). Just as yummy – especially with toppings!

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Sarah Cassill September 24, 2010 at 7:04 pm

I freeze pancakes in a single layer and then pop them in the toaster. Works like a charm. And since I think frozzen waffle are THE most overpriced thing in the store I feel so SATISFIED everytime I do it! And since I HATE to clean, I’d rather do a huge batch and clean ONCE!

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Alexis R September 27, 2010 at 3:09 pm

LOVE Breadbeckers and their cookbook! I buy my grain from them!!!! Their cupcake recipe is yummy!

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Tricia September 27, 2010 at 3:44 pm

Alexis – I get all my grains from Bread Beckers too. I am going to check out the cupcake recipe. Thanks!

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