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Cook Up Some Savings

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Wine Braised Pot Roast
Grilled Pork Tenderloin With Spicy Rub
Shrimp & Sausage Cajun Jambalaya

(Family Features) - Busy families looking to stretch their food dollars are discovering they can save time and money by starting or joining a cooking club. Three or four families team up, pool resources and spend part of one day cooking a week's worth of meals together. It's a fun way to put nutritious food on the table without spending a fortune.

Here's how it works:

  1. Each family chips in $100 per week.

  2. The group determines kitchen host and shopping captain.

  3. The shopper visits a warehouse club, such as Sam's Club, to locate all items for a week's worth of meals.

  4. The group prepares a week's worth of meals in one afternoon.

To help families and the home chef start their own cooking club, here are some helpful tips and recipes.

  • Alternate who does the shopping (it's often easiest for the kitchen host to shop).

  • Take note of the common ingredients in the recipes, add them up and have one person chop or slice it all at one time.

  • Look for large quantity serving recipes to get best results. Simply multiplying ingredients may not yield the best results.

  • It's usually quickest for one cook to work on making one dish and then divide that into family portions.

  • Dishes are better defrosted over night in the refrigerator, then heated in the oven or microwave.

The recipes featured here range from $1.50 to $3.15 per serving. A side dish recipe is not included, but a simple green salad and fresh bread complement any menu.

For more ideas and recipes, visit samsclub.com.

Stock up and organize

To make cooking days easier, make sure to keep the basics on hand.

Shelf basics: olive oil, vegetable oil, wine vinegar, balsamic vinegar, salt, sugar, honey, black pepper, oregano, red chili flakes, granulated garlic, basil, Italian seasoning, cumin, chili powder, bay leaf, cinnamon, ginger, vanilla, chicken broth, ketchup, mustard, peanut butter, jam, brown sugar, soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, BBQ sauce, Tabasco, ranch dressing, black olives, salsa, flour, cornmeal, baking powder, rice

Refrigerator basics: eggs, milk, butter, mayonnaise

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Wine Braised Pot Roast

Prepare this meltingly tender roast and you'll serve a spectacular dinner for four, plus have enough leftovers to make easy French Dip sandwiches or a batch of rich, beefy chili.

  • 3 to 4 pounds boneless beef chuck roast
  • Kosher salt, black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pound onions, thinly sliced (about 4 cups)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 3 cups sliced mushrooms
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme or 1/2 teaspoon dried, crumbled
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary or 1/4 teaspoon dried, crumbled
  • 2 cups red wine, such as Shiraz
  • 1 1/3 cups beef broth
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    1. Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 325°F.
    2. Pat beef dry and rub all over with salt and pepper. Heat oil in an ovenproof 5-quart casserole over medium high heat until hot. Add beef to pan and brown well on all sides, about 6 minutes total. Transfer beef to a plate.
    3. Add onions to pot and sauté, stirring frequently, until soft and gold, about 6 to 8 minutes.
    4. Add garlic, mushrooms, tomato paste, thyme, rosemary, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper and cook, stirring, 2 minutes.
    5. Add wine and broth and bring to a boil. Return beef to pot, then cover tightly and braise in oven, turning once an hour, until beef is very tender, 2 1/2 to 3 hours total.
    6. Let beef stand, uncovered, in the pan until cool.
    7. Package in freezer-safe wrapping and freeze.
    8. To serve, defrost overnight in the refrigerator. Warm in the oven (covered) at 350°F for 20 to 25 minutes. Slice 1/2 inch thick and serve with pan juices ladled over.
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Makes 6 to 8 servings for about $2.75 per serving
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Grilled Pork Tenderloin With Spicy Rub

  • 1 1/2teaspoons dried thyme
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons crushed fennel seed
  • 1 tablespoon garlic, minced
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon coarse black pepper
  • 1 1/4 pounds pork tenderloin
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    1. In a small bowl, blend thyme, cayenne, fennel seeds, garlic, kosher salt and black pepper.
    2. Rub pork tenderloin liberally with olive oil. Then, rub the spice mixture all over pork, pressing it in.
    3. Seal tenderloin in food saver bag or other freezer wrap and freeze.
    4. To serve, defrost overnight in the refrigerator.
    5. Put room temperature roast on a medium high grill for 20 minutes, until the internal temperature is 145°F (or cook in preheated 400°F oven for 15 to 20 minutes until it reaches temperature). Slice and serve.
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Makes 4 servings for about $1.50 per serving
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Notes, Tips & Suggestions
Serve this with honey whipped yams and sautéed green beans.
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Shrimp & Sausage Cajun Jambalaya

Jambalaya is really great party food, so this is one recipe that is always prepared in quantity. Just divide into family size portions when done.

  • 1 1/2 large onions, finely chopped
  • 2 bunches scallions
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
  • 2 stalks celery, diced
  • 1/2 green or yellow bell pepper, diced
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • Kosher salt, fresh cracked black pepper
  • 2 to 3 teaspoons cayenne pepper
  • 1 1/2 pounds Members Mark Garlic Sausage (or hot links, Andouille, etc.)
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 5 bay leaves
  • 7 1/2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 pound Members Mark Jumbo ready to cook shrimp (about 36) defrosted
  • 3 3/4 cups long grain white rice (or jasmine or basmati)
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    1. Finely dice vegetables and put into large flat pan. Liberally dust with kosher salt, cracked black pepper and cayenne pepper. Set aside.
    2. Slice sausage into 1/4-inch discs. In heavy (preferably cast iron) skillet over medium high heat, add oil, then sauté sausage slices until browned. Remove from pan with a slotted spoon. Add in diced vegetables; lower heat to medium, and sauté until well browned. Remove from heat.
    3. Combine chicken broth, browned sausage, bay leaves and vegetables in stockpot and taste for salt and pepper (black and cayenne). Bring to a boil, add rice and return to a boil for one minute.
    4. Lower heat to medium low and add shrimp. Stir to mix and cover. Cook until rice is barely done and has absorbed the liquids, about 25 minutes.
    5. Serve immediately or let cool then refrigerate, or freeze.

Makes 12 to 15 servings for about $3.15 per serving

Notes, Tips & Suggestions
To serve: defrost in the refrigerator, then reheat over low on the stovetop.

SOURCE: Sams Club

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