My husband recently passed away and life has changed so much. One issue I have had was cooking for one. Buying things like celery and carrots was beginning to be a waste since I couldn't use up the fresh vegetables as fast. I finally realized the other day when making a pot pie that why wouldn't it make sense to buy frozen carrots since they would be cooked anyway instead of using fresh. I waited for a sale on frozen vegetables and got a bag of carrots to use when I want to do a casserole or soups. Celery was solved by just getting what I needed at the time at the salad bar. No more throwing a whole bag of celery away because it too would go to waste before I could use it. Time to learn to save smarter.
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there are lots of cookbooks out there that feature cooking for one or two, might be worth taking a look in your local bookstore or library.
Why not continue to "cook for two" and freeze the second portion for a quick meal later on.
Being alone and cooking can be fun. I'm a mother of 5 grown sons,5grandchildren and 3 grand grand so cooking for family was quite a shock to cook for one. Then I found this site and it made me unlock my brain. One woman wrote how to make containers of slice veggies.
When you get the celery, clean what you need and wrap the rest securely in foil..lasts a looooooong time.
Was told that before the celery i had wrapped in foil went very fast...wont do it again
So sorry for the loss of your husband. My mother in law was recently widowed, I know it is a big change for her, too.
Lifestyle changes are not easy. The financial delima of cooking for one is a toughy. I buy large chicken, pork etc when it's on sale...cutting into dinner size portions and tossing into freezer baggies with whatever spices -Tai, Mexican etc.
I have been a widow for a long time and cooking for one is a new learning. I would buy the celery and dice the whole thing up and put in zip-lock bag and freeze and that way have it ready when I cooked and didn't waste any of it....and also did onions, bell peppers, and carrots. At Thanksgiving or Christmas when the kids are at their in laws I would get a turkey roast and bake with a small pan of dressing. I would make a few frozen meals but not over load the freezer, was good when I worked too late in the evening.
I had to start cooking for one just two years ago. And went from a family of 4 children, their friends and others some nights I felt like I was cooking for an army. To now cooking for just me. I LOVE TO COOK!! It is my passion. I cook still in quantity and feed my working neighbors, they love coming home to a full cooked dinner. They think I am nuts, but I have fun doing it.
Thanks for the great suggestions. I hate wasting food so hopefully I can use them to keep celery a little longer. I do end up with extra meals and freeze them for later use. Cooking for one is not only difficult but lack of motivation to cook for myself is an issue. Thanks again for the great ideas.
Just cook for four servings eat one when you're done cooking. Put one serving in the refrigerator for the next day and freeze the other 2 in single serving plastic containers.
I chop up vegetables into soup and stew packs, and freeze them. While I wouldn't like to be alone, it must be also very noticeable on the routine things like cooking and cleaning. Not much of a silver lining, perhaps, but one of the easier steps in adjusting. I wish you well.
I also recently became a widow. When i purchase celery, onion, green pepper, and carrots, i clean, pat dry, then chop or dice into separate freezer bags. Then when making soup or something requiring these veggies, i just measure out what i need and nothing goes to waste.
I second the advice on wrapping your celery in aluminum foil. It lasts for weeks & weeks. Also, iceberg lettuce lasts a long time when wrapped in foil.
Onions and green peppers, I've always diced and/or sliced immediately and put in baggies in the fridge for cooking use.
So very sorry for your loss. Please know that you, my Thrifty Fun Friend, are in my prayers. Change can be tough, especially trying to learn new habits. Although my boys have been on their own now for almost 20 years, once in a while I still 'slip' and prepare a mountain of food! I fill the freezer and / or give it away! Some things I only know how to make in LARGE quantities, such as stuffed cabbage!
Please accept my sincere sympathy on the loss of your husband. I lost mine almost 6 years ago after 50 wonderful years. I have learned to cook for one & make a chicken dish once a week which lasts me for a few meals. Making soup once a week is a given as well as either egg salad or chicken salad which also takes me through a couple of days. When chicken goes on sale I purchase it, divide it into freezer bags & into the freezer it goes. When eggs go on sale (usually 69 cents for a dozen large ones) I buy 2 dozen.
Add to that invites to friends houses and a once a week restaurant meal & I'm good to go. Peanut butter & yogurt are my fill ins. Over time I have adapted to my life change. I hope you also will learn to adapt. Best of luck to you in adjusting to your new life.
Rubbermade Produce Keepers (green lids) keep produce fresh for a long time! Unbelievable how long some things last! I keep my fridge filled, with them, and seldom compost anything. I've been a widow almost 11 years. I have no problem cooking (from scratch) for 1 and easily scale down recipes "for me". I am not a cook it/freeze it cook as I prefer freshly prepared foods.
My husband passed away about 18 months ago. and I know what you mean about having to much food. I still cook for two but divide my food in two and freeze the rest , so all I need to do is place the next meal out to thaw. As to vegetables, I make a curry or soup and use the leftover vegetable instead of throwing them out. the leftovers go to my dog so I have very little wast.
Oh my gosh, that's amazing suggestion. I never thought of doing this.
Thank you for sharing this.....!!!!!
Wrap your unwashed celery in foil, it's keeps a long time.
No one mentions the grief. You all make it seem its just about cooking.
If you wrap your celery in foil, it will last for weks.
I'm glad to hear you are adjusting well. Another option for vegetables such as celery, carrots, onions, etc. is to still buy fresh and freeze the extra yourself. I like to cut these vegetables like I will use them and freeze them on cookie sheets in the freezer. Once frozen, I scoop them into zipper freezer bags and they are quick and ready to use when I need them for a meal! If you freeze them so they are separated and then bag them, they will move freely and won't be a big clump.
You CAN continue to buy fresh veggies if you want to. I lost my husband 17 years ago and had to adapt to cooking for one. I have a good sized veggie garden, and rather than waste food, I found that if I blanched and froze what I couldn't possibly eat all of, I could stock my freezer with home=grown veggies for the winter. I have a vacuum sealer and use it for everything. When I prep veggies to freeze, I blanch, drain and portion them out to what I know I can use up for: meal side dishes, soups, stews, etc. I even grate zucchini squash and bag up portions for zucchini bread. Doing this in the summer when the garden is producing, not only preserves my garden's bounty, but saves me money and having to go to the store to restock on veggies during the winter. You could do the same with store bought produce, especially if on sale....even celery and carrots. Freezing veggies at their peak retains all their vitamins and minerals, even better than canning.
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