Friday, July 20, 2012

Cooking while on Vacation


We just got back from vacation last week, and stayed at a great cabin with all my family, my mom and dad, my brother and his whole family. We rotated who was going to make the meals at night, so my husband and I were in charge of two nights. We made:

Grilled Chicken Drumsticks, Summer Picnic Salad, & Steamed Broccoli & Carrots

Dorito Chili Bowls (we were on vacation after all!), Toppings: sour cream, grated cheese, chopped onion, Lettuce Salad as a side

Each family was in charge of their own breakfasts, (I got to try out my brother's infamous egg poacher) and we left the last evening for leftovers. Lunch was out each day.

It's an interesting experience to get off a plane, then drive to the grocery store and buy the items to make two meals and your own family's needs for the week. We tried to be prepared and write our list at home before we left, which was very helpful to keep us on budget and make sure we didn't forget anything. We only had one bottle of barbecue sauce that we left untouched. My brother lived nearby, so he brought the spices for the chili, so that was a great help on the expenses for only one teaspoon of cumin!

Some things that made our week easier:
  1. My mom & sister-in-law brought plastic plates, cups, and silverware. Obviously, this isn't great for day-to-day use, but kept the unwelcome task of doing dishes (and cleaning up after each other) to a minimum.
  2. We hadn't planned for a leftover night, but we had such a full frig that the last night made for a nice break.
  3. I made as much of our meals ahead of time so that I could enjoy putting the meal together and not be rushed. On my two days, right after the breakfast rush, I put together the chili and made the pasta salad (actually my husband prepared the salad while I showered that day!). Then I pulled out the chili at 4 pm, and let it simmer on the stove leading up to dinner.
Of course, we found plenty of great food while we were out. This was the Rushmore Mountain Taffy Shop. Even with my braces, look at all the great flavors we sampled. My favorites were Choco-mint and Watermelon.

Simple Bites also has some great tips for How to Cook for a Family Reunion.

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