I was talking with a friend of mine the other day and the subject of buying 1/2 a cow for stocking up came into conversation. Of course, she and I are frugalistas so we were all excited at the prospect of it.
I was doing my grocery shopping and my husband and I decided that with some of our tax money, we would stock up on some meats to put into our deep freezer. Boy howdy, did I stock up!
I bought a case of ground beef from Sams Club. My intention was to divvy it up and freeze it for meals, as well as pre-make some meals and other useful things.
So my idea was this:
20 lbs: into 1 lb sectioned bags.
20 lbs sectioned into 2 lb bags.
10 lbs of meatballs
10 lbs of meatloaf
10 lbs of taco meat
10 lbs of random ground beef for incidentals like sloppy joe or to throw into pasta sauce.
Well, when we first brought it home, it was easy and we sectioned it out- I tetris'd the freezer so everything fit- WITH extra room as well as all the other meat we brought home. (I'll post on that in a few minutes!) And even frozen vegetables. The next day I delved into the refrigerator and was able to make some 5 lbs of meatballs. I'm doing the other 1/2 today, as well as making and freezing the meatloaves. The only problem I'm having now is finding the room! Seriously both the deep freezer and the smaller fridge/freezer are packed full. It's going to get creative here soon!
Anyway, what did I pay for all that ground beef you ask? in total it was 233.33 not including tax. Yes, I probably could have found it cheaper doing sales, but I really didn't feel like waiting until meat went on sale considering I had the money now for it. So, my family will eat well for a while -guaranteed- and this will help me once the baby comes, having pre-made freezer meals, something that can easily be popped out of the freezer and thrown into a crock pot so I don't really have to "make" anything. :)
So, with all of that said, Smart: planning ahead always is! Savvy: for the most part- buying in bulk is usually cheaper than sales, so yeah, that's pretty savvy!
I have been cooking so long that I have no idea what measurements I used for the meatballs but they came out amazing! here's what I did:
Italian meatball recipe:
5 lbs ground beef
garlic powder (about a 1/4 cup)
onion powder (about 1/8 of a cup)
salt and pepper to taste
breadcrumbs to suck the extra moisture out.
mix everything until completely and thoroughly combined- do NOT skimp this part! no really.
deep fry on a lower heat. You want it completely cooked through but not super crusty on the edges. Let drain on paper towels and once cool, toss into a bag and pop into the freezer! pull out what you need when you need it. Btw, these make some GREAT meatball stroganoff.... just putting that out there. (yes, that recipe will come eventually!)