Saturday, November 17, 2012

Frugal Foodie

Are you a self-described "foodie".  The type of person who classifies grocery shopping and meal preparation as a hobby or joy rather than a chore?  If so, we are in the same group!  And being a foodie does not mean that you have to spend you whole paycheck at the grocery store.  Case in point, our meal tonight.

Chicken was the focal point.  Pulled from the freezer, this bird was the free one I wrote about earlier.  Acquired via coupon from UW Provisions.  Once baked, it provided tonight's meal and will reappear in chicken omelettes as well as pasts with tomato sauce.  Whole chickens will get the most use for your dollar.

Acorn squash provided warmth and buttery sweetness on the plate.  Plucked from the kitchen counter by my four year old, it was acquired at the last out door farmers' market for $1.  Large enough to offer enough for not only this meal, but a small portion tucked in the fridge for a meal of leftovers later in the week.

And rounding out the plate was a quick quinoa salad thrown together at the last minute.  The left over grain was mixed with lemon juice, olive oil, fresh mint, diced cucumber and grape tomatoes along with some salt and pepper.  While more of a summery taste, it was a great way to use up the grain leftover from earlier in the week as well as some of the veggies.

For dessert I tried out the homemade applesauce, and was disappointed.  The vendor I bought the apples from had said I did not have to peel them -- just cook them all down and you'll have lots of fiber.  And fiber there was, a bit too much.  Plan B will be to use the sauce in pancakes, scones, muffins, etc.  I had a hard time with it, and so did the kids!  Live and learn, next year I'll take a different approach.

The part of this meal that feels the most frugal is that I was pulling from my stores....the chest freezer, the pantry and the leftover area of the fridge.  I am currently in a mode of eating what is on hand.  Grocery trips are for essentials we are out of, and I am trying not to stock up on tasty items that catch my eye or bargains. I have lots of food tucked away, and now is the time to start putting a dent in them.  As a foodie I find myself buying food items like some people buy shoes.  So, I'm cutting myself off a bit -- maybe I should say re-directing myself a bit.  Digging in the back of our stored food, rediscovering all of those fun things I had tucked away.

Thanks for reading and following our frugal life.  Leave a comment if you have a thought to share with others -- we can all learn from one another.

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