The Sunday Cook-off (or how I learned to get my shit together for the week)

  • May 10, 2015

This is an article about how I like to organise my food shopping and meals, not a sermon on how you should be eating. The most important thing that I wanted to get across is that if you make an effort to plan your meals, you can save yourself some time, money and stress.

Firstly, I don’t subscribe to any name brand diet or nutrition protocol, whatever you eat is your “DIET”. My diet matches my training and energy requirements and includes the foods and dishes that I like to eat. Simple.

I work long hours, train most days, and have very little time at the start and end of the day for anything more than sleep. By getting my weekly cooking done in advance I can ensure that the food I want and need is ready to eat when I’m hungry.

There is also the cost factor. A weekly shop like the one below costs about $200. Even if I include the 1 hour that it takes to cook all this food and the 20 min that it takes to put it in a trolley and get it home, it still works out to less than $10 per meal and there is always plenty of leftovers.

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The Cook-off (pronounced “Kook-ov” in a rough Eastern European accent 🙂 begins with roasting the chicken breast with my favourite spices, and getting the bolognese started. While this is going I make up jars of salad and vegetables and boil the rice. I put the dressing (lemon juice, olive oil, spices) in the bottom of the jar, drop in the blanched vegetables first, softer and leafier stuff at the top. I like to cook some rice too and then everything gets tagged and bagged and loaded up in the fridge at home, then taken to work on Monday. This takes all of 1 hour, or exactly one trashy 90’s R&B playlist.

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A cook like this typically lasts my partner and I, for lunches only, for about 4-6 days. Something slow cooked also works really well instead of bolognese, as does roasted pumpkin or sweet potatoe instead of rice.