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Five Steps to a Perfect Cottage or Staycation Weekend – Secrets from Personal Chefs at manjya

As seen on Rogers TV Peel


  1. Menu plan

    • Think about your menu well ahead of time
    • This way you can see where any issues are – such as needing more variety etc.
    • From your menu comes your shopping list. A shopping list keeps time and cost under control when shopping – no piling carts with impulse.  It’s also less stressful when you don’t need to think and shop at the same time
  2. Work ahead

    • Shop early in the week for dried goods. Put them in a box by the front door
    • Thursday is a good day to get fresh ingredients
    • Thursday night is the best prep night. Grab a glass of wine, put on some music and enjoy, knowing that you won’t be doing it on the weekend when everyone is in the water and you’re stuck inside.
    • With your menu planned, your shopping and most of the prep work done you can head to work on Friday without worrying about all the stuff you have to do.
  3. Maximize your efforts

    • Double up on recipes. You’re cooking anyway.
    • Have similar/same ingredients between recipes. This keeps your shopping list to fewer items.  This is where having a good menu plan really helps.
    • Prep each ingredient once. If you’re chopping one onion, chop all the onions you need for every recipe, then divide into containers and label.
    • Use a crock pot – let it do the cooking for you. Prep ingredients ahead of the weekend.  On the morning of your crock pot dinner, dump them in, turn it on and go have fun.
  4. Transform your leftovers

    • Create two different recipes from your doubled-up recipes.
    • Make having leftovers part of your meal plan. Once again this keeps your shopping list slim and you’ll be amazed how empty your cooler will be on the trip home.  No dragging stuff back to rot in your fridge the following week
  5. Relax…

    • This is about time shifting. A smart plan decreases the overall amount of work.  Working ahead breaks it up into smaller tasks that are easier to accomplish before you get to your weekend.  The reason to do your work now is so that you can relax later!!

For more tips and recipes, check out Seven Easy Meals for a Long Weekend.

As a special treat for viewers, we have created an entire meal plan for the Labour day weekend.  It has these chicken recipes, a crock pot recipe, plus more.  It includes a shopping list and a step-by-step workplan to follow before the weekend and instructions on putting together each meal during the weekend.  If you would like to get the full menu, please contact us.

 Have a great, and safe, long weekend!


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