For primary school teacher Rebekah Freeman, the nightly chore of dinners was beginning to weigh heavy after a long day in the classroom.
Listen to Rebekah’s story in the audio player above.
The mum of three was also struggling with a debilitating condition known as hemiplegic migraine, which left her in a similar condition to someone suffering from a stroke.
“My body will mimic a stroke, and it can come on very quickly, and I don’t know how long it’s going to hit me for. I would often get sick at the end of a long day, and we were relying more and more on cheese toast for dinner.”
To try and counter-act the unknown arrival of another migraine, Rebekah decided to engage her planning skills honed over years as a primary educator. And with that Once A Term Cooking was born.
“It’s the same as teaching, I plan for a term at a time. I plan out all the meals, and do all the prep and cooking over two and a half days.”
Rebekah told 96five that the key to preparing 10 weeks’ worth of meals in a few days comes down to the initial detailed meal plans.
“I sit down with a cup of tea, my iPad and some cook books and work out what we’re going to eat for the term. But to do that I try to stick to ingredients that will work well within different meals, and things that I can buy in bulk.”
Rebekah also said that some routine can also assist in the planning stages before the marathon cook up!
“I try to stick to having one roast a week, we have one chicken dish per week alongside one soup, one fish dish, one vegetarian meal, and something that is super quick to prep like tacos. We also plan for one spare a week which allows you to go out for dinner or have leftovers.”
From Little Things Big Things Grow
Even though the concept of once a term cooking can be quite daunting, Rebekah reckons that like anything, it’s easier to start small and build from there.
“You start small, cooking double or triple batches and then freezing the extra meals. Then plan for a week and once you can do that double it. Then you can do a fortnight, and from there double that and plan for a month.”