I am thinking about starting one and want to know if anyone here is in one and if they have any pointers.
Basically how it works is you get a group of friends, ideally 6. For me because there is only technically DH and I eating I would look for friends with similar family size. Since our family is smaller 8X8 baking dish is ideal portion size. So once a month, on our own time, the 6 of us find 2 recipes that can be frozen. We then make 6 8X8 dishes of each recipe, so 12 total. Then once a month on a designated day we get together and exchange. So I keep one of each of my dishes and then give one of each to the other 5. By the time we are done we have 12 different 8X8 main dishes frozen that we can bake during the month whenever we our short on time. If we all had larger families we could make one 9X13 size dish instead of 2 8X8 sizes. You wouldn't get as many dish options however. Does this make sense?
Before hand we all agree on guidelines or rules. Some that I have heard of are it has to be a main course dish, and total for the month for both recipes is you have to spen at least $40 on ingredients. I guess this rule was because some people kept making like tuna hot dish with Campbell's cream of mushroom soup, so by putting a min. of money spent you basically have to have fresh ingredients. If you want to spend more than $40, that is your choice. So you could make one cheaper meal and one more extravagant meal as long as for bothyou spend $40. Each family discusses any food allergies so that everyone is aware of. You can talk foor preferances but don't go over board. If say one person in the group absolutely did not want lasagna they could trade with someone else, so they have two of one meal and no lasagna. The group I know when glass 8X8 baking dishes were on sale everyone went out and bought 12 so they all had the same size and the dishes got rotated.
For me this would be perfect since I work. Just curious if you would add any rules or change some. One possibility is that you would write a recipe card and take it to each container, that way they know what is in the dish and can always make it for themselves, but it would be more work copying 12 recipe cards. To start with we could each make 1 dish per family but then at the end we only have 6 dishes for the whole month and I'm not sure it would really be worth the trouble, I would rather do double the work and get twice as many meals. Any thoughts or suggestions?