Trish Berg doesn’t worry about dinner time while managing her household and toddler’s life.
She says she’s not wealthy but she has found a way to do what she calls “The Great American Supper Swap.”
“It is really simpler than you might expect,” she said. “You don’t eat with your friends; you simply share the cooking responsibility for your families.”
Berg said Monday through Wednesday supper is delivered to her door, stress free.
Once she arrives home she prepares four identical meals like baked spaghetti and bread and put them in her fridge. Since she buys in bulk meals are less expensive and her grocery bill is reduced.
Some swapping groups are neighborhood co-ops.
Here are some suggestions for starting your own swapping group from Berg:
1. Ask a few close friends to try supper swapping with you.
2. Choose families around the same size as yours, with similar tastes and lifestyles, and who live nearby so delivery is not an added burden.
3. Choose recipes to start with that are your family favorites and kid-friendly.
4. Purchase inexpensive, glass baking dishes with snap on lids and inexpensive semi-disposable containers to share meals; do not expect to get the exact dishes back you sent out.
5. Buy in bulk for your meals, when items are on sale, and try to budget recipes so you don’t make two expensive ones in a row.
6. Plan meal calendars two or three months at a time.
7. Write out meal calendars so each member knows what is coming for supper each night, and can add appropriate side dishes.
8. Be flexible with one another when life throws you a curve ball, like a sick child, a broken down car, or unexpected circumstance.
9. Relax and enjoy the ride.
For more information on supper swapping, recipes and advice visit trishberg.com.
Susan Thacker trades simple, low-carb meals with a friend so she only cooks once a week. She began swapping with a friend in 1997 and wrote about it in 2001.
She says she knows the current and future trends and knows about meal assembly businesses.
On her website, superswapping.com she offers tips on simple things chefs do to make meals delicious.