Friday, October 3, 2014

"Cooking Group"... Getting Started...Teriyaki Steak Stir Fry

I just started doing this really fun "Cooking Group" with some ADORABLE friends.  They had done this before in their old neighborhood, closer to D.C.  I totally lucked out when they all moved to my neck of the woods, in the countryside!  I had them explain to me what exactly a "cooking group" is, since I was not familiar with the term. They explained to me that it's basically a group of friends who trade off preparing one meal a week for everyone in the group.   That means you only have to think about meal planning for ONE meal during the school week and receive three or four (depending on how many people are in your group) meals delivered to you, so you can quickly cook and enjoy a delicious, hot meal, without all the shopping and menu planning!  I instantly LOVED the idea!  It's such a great way to try all your friends favorite recipes, learn how to make them, and incorporate them into your own repertoire. Plus, your family will love trying new favorite recipes that are already tried and true!  I will be featuring our "Cooking Group" recipes in this section of my blog, so you can enjoy them too!  Hope you enjoy this idea and start a "Cooking Group" of your own!

                           HOW TO GET STARTED...

Step One: Get a group of 4 or 5 friends together who want to join.  We have 4 people in our group and cook Monday through Thursday because Fridays are usually a date night.  We plan out a menu a month or two in advance.  This is to ensure everyone is not making chicken every night of the week!  The idea is to try have one vegetarian, one beef or pork, one seafood one chicken dish a week.

Step Two: Everyone is assigned a day out of the school or work week to cook (prep ingredients) for a main course of their choice for everyone in the group.  Everyone is on their own for side dishes.

Step Three: Everyone needs to purchase 4 or 5 (depending on how many people are in your group) 8x8 inch glass Pyrex storage dishes (oven proof and freezer proof) with lids. These are delivered with the meal every time. This way we all end up sharing the same dishes and everyone has 4 or 5 on hand every week. 

Step Four: On your cooking day you measure, prep and bag all of the ingredients for your entree for the entire group. Place some of the ingredients or the meat portion in the Pyrex dish, as well as in zip lock bags as needed. Place all needed ingredients for the meal in a strong "delivery" bag along with the instructions. 

Step Five: Deliver the bags to each member of the group in the afternoon, generally before the kids get home from school is best, so everyone can throw the meal together in time for dinner.  You don't always have to eat the meal on the day it is delivered.  You can save it for another day if needed, or even freeze it depending on what it is. Remember you don't bring the meal cooked and hot.  You just bring all of the prepped things they will need to make it quickly, or prepared (like lasagna) and ready to cook.

Note:  Kelley Miller makes a habit of making one extra dinner on her day to cook to take to a friend or neighbor in need.  I love that idea!  (Kelley is so awesome!)


Teriyaki Steak Stir Fry
Jayne Layne brought this amazing dinner over the first night of cooking group.  We all loved it, even all of the kids!  Jayne is so talented at everything she does...among many other things she is the co-owner (along with her sister Jennifer) of Buffalo Lane Jewelry...check out their awesome stuff at ... AND then try her Teriyaki Steak Stir Fry, it's sooooo good!

Stir Fry Sauce
1/4 cup cornstarch
3 teaspoons of canola oil
1/2 teaspoon of grated ginger ( about a 1/2 inch piece)
2-3 large cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2 lbs. steak, thinly sliced
1 red or yellow pepper
1/2 lb. mushrooms, sliced
3 large green onions, sliced crosswise into thirds

Make sure steak slices are dry, dry them with some paper towel if needed, and mix them with the cornstarch, until completely coated.  Shake off extra cornstarch.  To make the Stir Fry Sauce: heat a little oil in a large non-stick frying pan or wok and saute garlic and ginger for a minute.  Add the soy sauce, water, brown sugar and red pepper flakes. Cook the sauce for about 2 minutes and transfer to a bowl.  The sauce may still be thin at this point.  Turn up the heat and add a tablespoon of oil to the pan. Add beef and cook for a few minutes until until browned.  Pour the sauce back into the frying pan and let it cook with the meat. Saute peppers, mushrooms and green onions at high heat for a few minutes and stir into sauce and steak.  Serve over cooked rice.

This is how Jayne's meal came delivered...vegetables and steak cut, and liquid ingredients measured. So all I had to do was follow simple instructions for the stir fry and cook the rice.  Notice she sent the recipe with the ingredients as well.  However, we often text each other the recipe as well as any preparation hints.   

1 comment:

  1. Love, Love, love this idea! Great pictures as always and your cover image for Cooking Group is beautiful. Thanks for sharing.


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