This is my 100th post! I anticipated that my 100th post would be on my one-year blogiversary, but I was a few days off. This post isn't a recipe, it's a tip.
I cook a lot of food, especially on weekends. I live in a household of two, but it's not unusual for us to grill a pack of hot dogs, several hamburgers, four chicken breasts, a pork loin, and a few steaks in one day. We love getting that hickory smoke/charcoal flavor in our food and we tend to grill enough meat for three days of lunches and dinners. E has even been known to grill bacon for breakfast.
I've learned through experience that there's no point in having a bunch of meals cooked and planned if you don't have ample storage. This goes for your cabinets, your spice rack, your dishes, glassware, and of course your food storage containers. My husband makes fun of me because I'm obsessive about freshness and organization when it comes to leftovers. My favorite containers are the Premier collection from Rubbermaid. I bought a set at Costco two years ago and they still look (almost) as good as new.
I prefer these containers becaues they are as clear as glass and I haven't had them shatter, break, or cloud up. The lids are flexible rubber with a tight seal (and a transparent window on top). They don't stain (hello spaghetti sauce and chili) and they don't seem to hold odors (hello raw onions). I can open my fridge and figure out what's cooked and prepped for use within seconds. Whole watermelon? When cut up, it fits in two of the larger containers. Grilled chicken? Sliced and ready to go? Lunch for tomorrow? Packed and ready to grab and go. They come in several sizes and configurations.
I even go as far as to use tiny labels to put the date each item was cooked or prepared on the lid of each container. I don't like to keep cooked food more than 72 hours, and this stops us from having to decipher mystery food on trash day. Fortunately, there's not much waste because we pack our lunches and plan our meals to incorporate leftovers.
These containers aren't cheap (I think I paid $26 for a set of 12), but they will last. Plus, it seems that Rubbermaid will offer a replacement if yours are defective.
If you're going to cook, you need to have a plan for storing and using leftovers. You also need a plan for storing your groceries so you don't buy duplicates. It also helps to have a clean and organized fridge and freezer. I know I'm always inspired to cook meals when I come home to a clean, well-organized kitchen. I'm not perfect (there's a sink full of dirty dishes waiting for me today), but I do like to organize with these Rubbermaid Premier containers.