Happy Holidays… the 100-Day Challenge is complete! This is a recap of how it went and what’s coming next.
100-Day Challenge, by the Numbers
- Actual length: 75 days (from Day 10 – Day 85)
- # of meals cooked: 24
- # of dishes memorized: 3
- Money saved by not eating out: $716.71
2016 – Goals
I’m feeling great about my progress and want to keep my momentum going into the new year. Here are my high level goals:
- Buy groceries in larger quantities and freeze/store them for future use. For the past few months I’ve been shopping for groceries the same day that I cooked, and it was stressful. Going forward, I want to keep the shopping/cooking process as low-stress as possible.
- Prepare proteins into Single Serve Portions and freeze them for easier mid-week cooking. The Pioneer Woman suggested this and I want to see if it makes my life easier.
- Spend Sundays preparing meals for the following week. Lots of people swear by this and I want to try it out. The idea is to simply reheat the pre-prepared meals when you’re hungry.
- Re-learn the fundamentals. I want to start my cooking journey all over again, making sure I cover the basics.
2016 – Monthly Plan
I created a learning plan that covers the first part of 2016.
- Learn how to be a smarter grocery shopper
- Re-learn how to cook eggs
- Read Cooking Basics for Dummies
- Learn how to eyeball measurements
- Re-learn how to use a knife
- Cooking Equipment Deep Dive 1: Nonstick Pan
- Read The America’s Test Kitchen Cooking School Cookbook – “Everything you need to know to become a great cook”
- Learn how to Meal Prep (an entire week’s worth of food)
- Learn how to make some Filipino Food
- Cooking Equipment Deep Dive 2: Pot
- Read Learn To Cook: A Down and Dirty Guide to Cooking (For People Who Never Learned How)
- Freezer Meals
- Cooking Equipment Deep Dive 3: Sheet Pan
- Read The Can’t Cook Book: Recipes for the Absolutely Terrified!
- Cooking Equipment Deep Dive 4: Slow Cooker
- Read How to Cook Everything The Basics: All You Need to Make Great Food
2016 – How I’ve Been Preparing
- Invested in 12 Mason Jars to use for Food Prepping.
- Updated my Bucket List. In addition to Restaurants to Try, I added sections for Dishes to Make and Techniques to Learn.
- Started exploring a new resource to help me learn: Cooking Blogs. I looked through 600+ of them and made a list of the top 10%: 61 Blogs for Aspiring Cooks to Follow in 2016 (myself included). I’ll be following these closely next year.
Looking forward to keeping my momentum going! See y’all in a few days when I’ll be wrapping up the 100-Day Challenge (and 2015) with some final thoughts.
OTHER POSTS IN THE 100-DAY CHALLENGE SERIES
Day 1: Intro to Me & My Goal
Day 4: “Why Learn?” and My Cooking Background
Day 7: What Should I Learn to Cook FIRST?
Day 10: Pasta + Meat Sauce (Tomato Bolognese)
Day 21: Pasta + Meat Sauce (less Tomato)
Day 28: Pasta + Meat Sauce (Beef Stroganoff)
Day 35: Oven Roasted Chicken Thighs
Day 42: Pan Roasted Chicken Thighs
Day 49: Pan Roasted Chicken Thighs (coated with flour)
Day 56: Pan Roasted Chicken Breasts
Day 63: Miso Glazed Baked Salmon
Day 70: Miso Glazed Baked Salmon II
Day 77: Miso Glazed Baked Salmon III
Day 84: Final Exam
Day 95: What’s Next?
Day 100: Final Thoughts