Summer Pantry Challenge - Stock up, Use it Up, Preserve It to Save Money - Page 3 - Mothering Forums

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#61 of 112 Old 06-06-2009, 08:44 PM
 
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Hit a good sale yesterday. A two day sale. I have limited funds so, I'm being very cautious with money. HOWEVER, DD and I both love cantaloupe, and they were $1 each. I bought 4, and made cantaloupe pickles (more like spiced cantaloupe actually) and it is boiling in the canner right now.

I'm going over my canned foods from last year, and putting them right on the counter so they're there when I plan/cook meals. Mulberry season is right around the corner, so, I got some jars ready. I usually freeze some, but, if I can get enough, I'll make some jam or fruit strips (with my dehydrator) with them.

Also, that same sale, I got almost 4lbs of ground beef, which I divided up and put into the freezer, hot dogs for DD's b-day bbq (buy one, get TWO free), and 4.65 lbs of ribs, which I cooked half yesterday (we'll eat that well into the week), and froze the other half. And two pounds of cherries at 1.99 lb. I *may* go back and get some more later this week before the sale ends (those were an extended sale). I have some more ground beef in the freezer, and am contemplating doing up some chili to can, which would free up space to freeze cherries/berries.
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#62 of 112 Old 06-07-2009, 03:07 PM
 
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With these long term challenges, I am really able to divide up areas and know exactly what we need etc.

So today I hit Aldi and Trader Joes. They are both next to each other. The funny thing, its in a nicer town so the TJs is jammed all the time and the Aldi is brand new and the cleanest and nicest one around. A lot of people in that area would turn their nose up to the store so I consider it the best kept secret. LOL The other ones in the area dont hold a candle to this place. So we did some comparision shopping. Both girls wanted those smaller yogurts so we bought 2 at TJs and 2 at Aldi. Also they eat bagels every morning so we bought them both at both stores. The yogurts are 79 cents a piece at TJs and at Aldi 39 cents a piece. The bagels are $3 at TJs and $1.47 at Aldi. So hopefully The Aldi ones are better since we recently switched to the Aldi cereals which are half the price. DH and I eat cereal/granola every morning and I eat yogurt (organic in the tub at TJs) so the Aldi discovery has been a nice eye opener in the food budget.

We have tried making granola but its just not jiving with us.

I used up all the rotting bannanas and made 3 breads. DH took one to a class he is at this weekend and he said it was all eaten in 20 minutes. He also had several people come up and say how awesome it was. I will make a few more next week since I found some more rotting bannanas.

Tonight is salad night to use up some things and have soup too.

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#63 of 112 Old 06-07-2009, 05:59 PM
 
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We have tried making granola but its just not jiving with us.

.

That's so odd. I was just coming to comment on the fact that I had sunflower seeds, macademia nuts, and diced sweetened pineapple I was trying to use up. I made....

Tropical Granola.

I took a regular granola recipe, subbed macademias for almonds, added shredded coconut, subbed coconut oil for veggie oil, and added the pineapple after toasting....

I'm going to make a double batch again sometime this week. It's goooooooood.

Also, I had both buttermilk and jam I was trying to use up. I made some dressing with the bm, but still had some leftover, so I made Buttermilk Cornbread (which was great because it also used up some applesauce - I went overboard making applesauce last year - AND some cornmeal...sweet!). GREAT cornbread. Between savory and sweet. I ate some with strawberry rhubarb jam for dessert last night, and had some with leftover ribs for lunch today.

I still have buttermilk leftover, though. I will probably just make some pancakes for the freezer or something....

ETA: I used 1.75 C whole wheat flour, and .75C white for the bread, and it was perfect, in my book.
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#64 of 112 Old 06-07-2009, 06:13 PM
 
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I had no clue that you could can ground beef. :

You can can just about anything if you have a pressure canner. Beef, venison, lamb, pork, etc. Chunks or ground.

The Ball Bible o' Canning (whatever the whole title is) has the directions
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#65 of 112 Old 06-08-2009, 10:53 AM
 
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Well, I made the inventory lists, and I am TOTALLY overwhelmed!!! I have a calendar printed out for meals... I haven't filled it in yet. I just keep staring at this list.

I did make a run to the store to get milk, eggs, dried fruit, soy cheese, soy yogurt and half-and-half. Oh, and apples and bananas.

But I am committed to not buying any more bread for the month. Of course, the kids blew threw the two loaves we had in one week.

They've almost decimated the snacks, so I am going to bake some banana bread today. Plenty of liquidy bananas, lol.

One of my zucchini plants died, ack!, and so there went a source of food, and my tomato plants are producing, but the tomatoes are tiny. Just one bell pepper so far, the corn should be ready soon, and cabbage worms have destroyed my broccoli

I'm throwing black beans in the crock for dinner, serve over quinoa and gold summer squash with fresh oregano! mmmmm

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#66 of 112 Old 06-08-2009, 12:02 PM
 
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Dh is really not helping me out here. He brought home steaks, pork chops, salad and rice from his weekend away that now we have to do something with. So my meal plan for this month needs some major tweaking.

I'm so jealous of the gardens that are already producing! Mine just got planted a few weeks ago, so nothing to eat yet.
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#67 of 112 Old 06-08-2009, 07:09 PM
 
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Wow! I don't know how you guys keep so much food in your houses, with my growing family, we are eating up everything! Since my mom moved in and the baby has suddenly become a voracious toddler, we are consuming a huge amount of food.

I buy most of my bulk pantry goods once every three months. Here is my list that I am compiling right now (we are dairy, egg, wheat free, so our list can be a bit odd):


50 pounds of oats

25 pounds of the following:
red lentils
black beans
brown rice
basmati rice
quinoa
gluten free flour


10 pounds walnuts
5 pounds currants
8 pounds flax meal (egg replacer)
6 jars peanut butter
6 boxes of cake mix (special treats)

Big jugs of apple cider vinegar, olive oil, canola oil, coconut oil

1 pound bags of cinnamon, cumin, chili powder

I think I will also add a few bags of corn chips for fun and some Clif Bar type of thing for easy snacks.

And that will feed us for three months. I do have some things in the pantry, but we are really low on all of our basic beans and grains. I do buy meat 3-4 days a week, we garden for a lot of salads and veggies and I buy fruit and some other produce. Our food sensitivities make it necessary for us to eat at home 100% of the time and most our our food is pretty basic. I still spend about $800 a month to feed us.

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#68 of 112 Old 06-08-2009, 08:08 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Ruthiegirl View Post
5 pounds currants
Can you post some of your recipes that call for currants? I have 2 Turkish recipes that we use once or twice a month, but we love their flavor and I'd like some more ideas for them.

TIA!
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#69 of 112 Old 06-08-2009, 08:15 PM
 
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Making lentil something for dinner, not sure what yet. We have probably a good 10-15lbs of lentils and the kids love them. I was feeling very motivated to do a bunch of cooking yesterday and made a double batch of gluten free blueberry pancake batter and then some whole wheat bread for dh. Today I am feeling pretty blah...but there really isn't anything easy that is ready to go.

I need to pick a day and do a bunch of baking for the freezer and put some extra dinners away in the freezer as well. Between being really busy and pregnancy/3 small kids kicking my butt I think that sounds like a good plan! Today is one of those days that I really, really wish I could afford to eat out

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#70 of 112 Old 06-08-2009, 10:17 PM
 
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Originally Posted by velochic View Post
Can you post some of your recipes that call for currants? I have 2 Turkish recipes that we use once or twice a month, but we love their flavor and I'd like some more ideas for them.

TIA!
I love this recipe (in fact, I am eating some right now). The original recipe calls for raisins, but I like currants better:


1/2 med onion chopped
1 tbs veg. oil
1 cup uncooked brown rice
1 tbs tomato paste (I don't use this, since we have a tomato sensitivity)
2 1/2 cups water or stock
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 cup dry lentils
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup currants
1/2 cup pine nuts, toasted

In large saucepan, over medium heat, cook onion in oil until soft. Add rice and stir for several minutes. Combine tomato paste with water and cinnamon. Add to rice along with the lentils. Bring to boil, cover and lower heat. Simmer for 30 min.

Preheat oven to 350. Stir salt, currants, and pine nuts into the rice mixture. The mixture should be a little watery; add 1/4 cup of water if it is dry. Place the mixture in a greased 2 1/2 qt baking dish. Cover and bake for 20 to 30 min.



We also eat a lot of currants in our morning oatmeal or oat crisps. I love them so much more than raisins and since we buy them in bulk, they are quite cheap. I used to make currant scones, but have yet to come up with a good wheat/dairy free version.

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#71 of 112 Old 06-09-2009, 01:50 AM
 
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I read a restaurant review that says some Indian restaurants use pizza dough for their naan bread, so I bought a pizza-type bread that was bigger than the naan bread I found.

We had red lentils (dal). Seasoned with salt, asoefitida, cumin seeds, ghee and 2 cloves of garlic for 1.5 cups red lentils (masoor dal).

The recipe had called for dried red chiles (3?) and I substituted garlic, instead. I'm learning how to substitute! I'm doing a pantry inventory this week

Here's a really terrific food website, I'm hoping to really clean out my pantry: http://www.supercook.com
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#72 of 112 Old 06-09-2009, 08:28 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Ruthiegirl View Post
I love this recipe (in fact, I am eating some right now). The original recipe calls for raisins, but I like currants better:


1/2 med onion chopped
1 tbs veg. oil
1 cup uncooked brown rice
1 tbs tomato paste (I don't use this, since we have a tomato sensitivity)
2 1/2 cups water or stock
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 cup dry lentils
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup currants
1/2 cup pine nuts, toasted

In large saucepan, over medium heat, cook onion in oil until soft. Add rice and stir for several minutes. Combine tomato paste with water and cinnamon. Add to rice along with the lentils. Bring to boil, cover and lower heat. Simmer for 30 min.

Preheat oven to 350. Stir salt, currants, and pine nuts into the rice mixture. The mixture should be a little watery; add 1/4 cup of water if it is dry. Place the mixture in a greased 2 1/2 qt baking dish. Cover and bake for 20 to 30 min.



We also eat a lot of currants in our morning oatmeal or oat crisps. I love them so much more than raisins and since we buy them in bulk, they are quite cheap. I used to make currant scones, but have yet to come up with a good wheat/dairy free version.
Yeah, that's almost identical to one of my 2 recipes. In Turkish, they call it Iç Pilaf. The only difference is that the original recipe calls for chicken livers (we use just a bit of shredded dark meat). The other recipe I have is a dessert, that again has cinnamon in it.
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#73 of 112 Old 06-09-2009, 02:08 PM
 
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I've actually done well not buying "stuff" and my pantry has stayed pretty clear since Passover. I'm going to try and cut back on my grocery bills for the next two months and then do a big stock-up again in August for the winter holidays.

I have found that I don't enjoy a lean pantry because it seems like I always need something that I'm so used to keeping on-hand. Like last night I needed some tomato sauce/chopped tomatoes of some sort and I had a handful of grape tomatoes. I couldn't even use fresh tomatoes! So the girls and I walked to the store.

I am taking advantage of this, though, to get into the habit of keeping a list of pantry foods. I used to have a list of freezer, pantry and fruits/veg that I would mark off as I used them. Then I could tell what I needed at a glance and I could tell what I had bought too much of before. I got out of the habit but with empty-ish cabinets it is easier and if I forget I can easily catch back up. I'm hoping this will stick with me when I stock back up.

I still have quite a bit of grains and a fair amount of beans and rice so I'll be cooking up those plus summer is a big fish eating time for us.

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#74 of 112 Old 06-09-2009, 03:07 PM
 
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Yeah, that's almost identical to one of my 2 recipes. In Turkish, they call it Iç Pilaf. The only difference is that the original recipe calls for chicken livers (we use just a bit of shredded dark meat). The other recipe I have is a dessert, that again has cinnamon in it.
Ah well. I like the idea of adding a bit of meat to the dish. I'll try that next time.

I love rice/dried fruit/nut combinations. We make basmati rice dish that is similar to the one above. Saute an onion, some curry powder, rice, currants, add water/stock and steam till done. We eat this a lot with salty cashews on top.

I'll have to look around for more Turkish dishes, we tend to eat a lot of Middle Eastern food since it generally can be made without wheat/dairy/eggs.

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#75 of 112 Old 06-09-2009, 05:31 PM
 
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I've been doing very good for not shopping for what we don't need (DH on on the other hand....). This week I bought 2 heads of lettuce, a bunch of bananas, a tray of watermelon for my sick son, some donair meat (DH was craving; I make my own low carb kind), a gallon of milk and a big box of plain waffles since those are the only ones the kids like.

I've been using up a lot. We had a casserole on sunday that we didn't care for it so I repurposed the base into a chili, which was good (it was cauliflower topped but we weren't crazy about it). I am thinking of making and freezing pizza crust since that is a big thing around here. I make mine out of cauliflower (I have tons frozen). I have lots of frozen veggies that need to get used up too and I need to get creative.
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#76 of 112 Old 06-09-2009, 08:05 PM
 
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Great ideas.
I am shopping Aldis this week. I will be away at a conference, plus we have some busy weeknights/weekends coming up, so I want to pick up a few odd ball items for dh to put together quick meals. Otherwise between our CSA and another program, we are set.

Use up- pork chops, chicken and more chicken- ideas?
We have pasta, rice and beans plus most seasonings. I also have tomatoes.

My goal is to spend $50 or less for the week, which is way below our budget.

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#77 of 112 Old 06-10-2009, 08:30 AM
 
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So, I saw a mulberry bush with lots of ripe berries yesterday. Problem was, it is on someone's lawn. A strangers'. But, I figured, can't hurt to ask.

They said I was more than welcome to harvest them. They kind of made a face about someone even thinking to eat them. I guess they're not big fans. I borrowed a container from my employer, and filled that up yesterday after work.

I made up 4 half pints, 4 quarter pints, and a full pint of mulberry jam, and still have some fresh ones for DD.
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#78 of 112 Old 06-10-2009, 09:35 AM
 
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Yum! I've never seen mulberries before.

I heard on the radio early strawberries are out here so I may have to get some of those since I've been waiting on pins and needles for local ones!! I'm also on the fence as chicken pieces are on sale for 97 cents a pound; I've been waiting months for it to get that cheap and I use a lot of chicken! ($2 a pound is the norm here for chicken pieces). There is also fresh haddock for $1.99 a pound....mmmmm.

I made chickpea cookies last night. I made the deceptively delicious recipe but used less sugar and less butter. I have so many canned and dried beans but we don't eat them. I eat low carb (beans too carby for normal consumption until I lose more weight) and the family doesn't like to eat beans so I have to hide them. I also made chocolate cake this week which I *can* have out of beans, recipe is on this blog, my favorite source for goodies for the family: http://healthyindulgences.blogspot.com/ (I keep almost all the ingredients on hand for all her recipes so I can just pull it up and make; I usually use stevia or xylitol since I can buy those in town)
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#79 of 112 Old 06-11-2009, 11:53 AM
 
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We just went and picked another 3 qts of mulberries from around our apt. complex. I wish I had more room in my freezer.

Semi-on-topic/digression:

One thing that I think isn't truly appreciated by a lot of people is having a connection to our food. I grew up in the country, and my grandparents had a farm. So, I grew up knowing how to berry, understanding that if I wanted carrots in my salad, I had to help plant, weed, harvest them. I understood that if I wanted a hamburger, it was coming from one of their cows, so, that meant taking care of the animals and helping with the haying so they would have stuff to eat in the winter. I'm not *always* mindful of where my food comes from, but, I think I have a basic understanding beyond what a lot of people today have.

Which is something I want to give my daughter. But, we live in an apartment in a city. So, I like to seek out things like berrying. I want her to understand that food doesn't just appear in stores - someone had to do work for it to get here. Now, she's not even three, so, I'm not having her plow fields or anything. But, she "gets" that if she wants mulberries, then she's going to have to help pick them (you can't even find them in stores here). And, from a financial perspective, she will hopefully understand in a year or so that if you choose one food, that may rule out another. Or that if she's willing to pick mulberries, and I don't have to pay for fruit that week at the stoe, she may be able to get another item she'd like at the store. Or that if she helps (well, not so much helps right now, but, you get the intention) me make bagels/dressing/pizza instead of buying them, then that means we have more money to, say, give to the food pantry or whatever.

I don't know. Food waste is one of my pet peeves, and I think one of the reasons there is so much food waste is the disconnect between people and food.
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#80 of 112 Old 06-11-2009, 11:56 AM
 
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We just went and picked another 3 qts of mulberries from around our apt. complex. I wish I had more room in my freezer.

Semi-on-topic/diversion:

One thing that I think isn't truly appreciated by a lot of people is having a connection to our food. I grew up in the country, and my grandparents had a farm. So, I grew up knowing how to berry, understanding that if I wanted carrots in my salad, I had to help plant, weed, harvest them. I understood that if I wanted a hamburger, it was coming from one of their cows, so, that meant taking care of the animals and helping with the haying so they would have stuff to eat in the winter. I'm not *always* mindful of where my food comes from, but, I think I have a basic understanding beyond what a lot of people today have.

Which is something I want to give my daughter. But, we live in an apartment in a city. So, I like to seek out things like berrying. I want her to understand that food doesn't just appear in stores - someone had to do work for it to get here. Now, she's not even three, so, I'm not having her plow fields or anything. But, she "gets" that if she wants mulberries, then she's going to have to help pick them (you can't even find them in stores here). And, from a financial perspective, she will hopefully understand in a year or so that if you choose one food, that may rule out another. Or that if she's willing to pick mulberries, and I don't have to pay for fruit that week at the stoe, she may be able to get another item she'd like at the store. Or that if she helps (well, not so much helps right now, but, you get the intention) me make bagels/dressing/pizza instead of buying them, then that means we have more money to, say, give to the food pantry or whatever.

I don't know. Food waste is one of my pet peeves, and I think one of the reasons there is so much food waste is the disconnect between people and food.

I completely agree with all of that! My kids help in the garden, they help feed the cows. My 7 year old fully understands where food comes from and he's extremely interested in how it works in and with your body. I'm so glad my kids are going to experience this even if we don't have the huge farm I grew up on.
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#81 of 112 Old 06-11-2009, 03:17 PM
 
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I agree, Kathee. I remember being embarrassed by my farming family when I was in college. Now I'm proud of what they do and enjoy the fruits of what was taught to me as a child/youth. At some point, hopefully not for a very long time, I will inherit the farm that dad has cash rented right now. It took me until my 30's before I became more interested in the science of farming and appreciated it as a vital part of the food chain. I learned a new respect for people who are connected to their land... even if that land grows mulberry bushes around the apartment complex.

On to the topic of my current pantry issue. My father called a couple of days ago and told me that the lamb meat he is bringing is going to be about 60lbs. Dh really appreciates the thoughtfulness that has gone into my dad's father's day gift to him, but we really just don't need any more meat. I found a meat locker about 10 miles away and took about 50lbs. of beef, chicken, turkey and ham to the locker (it costs only $3/month). It will hold up to 200lbs. I have about 15 lbs. of hamburger meat thawing to can this weekend. That will be about the right amount for 12 pints of hamburger. I almost ALWAYS have one jar that fails, so I am working that into the meal plan for next week. That being said, I don't think we will need to buy meat for the next year to year and a half.

We are still eating exclusively from the pantry and have bought nothing but fresh fruit and dairy this month. I have crackers, ketchup, meatballs, frozen cooked beans, a ham hock, 2 qts. of UHT milk, and canned fruit that needs to be rotated out by the end of the month.
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#82 of 112 Old 06-11-2009, 05:05 PM
 
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We are set on dairy for the next 10 days and mapping out the next few days menus, we are pretty set w a few exceptions. Our local grocery has a huge sale on pastas etc and tomato puree, which should get me thru until we get our tomatoes to make sauce. Also, I am bring a veggie dip spread to a party at BIL/SILs house this weekend so I want to get the fresh stuff.

Regarding food and its sources: I think most of our modern day society is very dis connected from their food source and where it comes from. Several years ago, I brought dd1's preschool teacher veggies from my garden. She was holding a tomato and a boy asked why she had it. She replied Mrs L brought these from her garden and grew it. He said, no you dont grow those, those come from a store. I told the teacher, "thus the reason we have a garden!" the following year, I gave the school 4 pumpkins because my one pumpkin plant gave us 9 pumpkins!! They talked about DD1 growing them, picking, and then cut them up and took out the seeds and counted, roasted and had a snack. Kids could not believe they were from my backyard. But if you grow up in suburbia or the city, you might just get your food from the big huge box down the street and you might also buy your clothes and tv there as well. Not a farmers stand, your relatives farm or even a smaller back yard garden.

Or you just might be used to convenience foods like the ones from that huge wall of freezers at costco. I have had many people my age
(late 30s) who have flat out told me they do not know how to cook like I do because even their parents did not cook this way.

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#83 of 112 Old 06-11-2009, 08:47 PM
 
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I'm so proud of me. I'm doing so well with eating out of the pantry and freezer. I've been planning meals around our freezer contents. We've had some pretty eccentric meals, but they've mostly turned out well.

The best thing I've made in the last week was rhubarb bread. I had several bags of frozen rhubarb from my grandma, and I was at a loss of what to do with it. I didn't want to make a pie. In the past I've made rhubarb sauce to put on pancakes, but it requires so much sugar to sweeten it to the point that my kids will eat it. So I decided to use my banana bread recipe and substitute rhubarb for bananas. It has been a HUGE hit- we've eaten rhubarb bread for breakfast all week long. Yummy!

So far we've consumed about 25 items from the freezer, and I have 27 items left to clear out before we butcher chickens next weekend.

New signature, same old me: Ann- mama of 2 boys and 2 girls, partnered to a fabulous man.
I'm an unintentional weasel feeder and I suck at proofreading.
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#84 of 112 Old 06-12-2009, 10:11 AM
 
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(which includes the fridge and freezer)

We'll be here till the 23rd then CA till the 7th. So I need to get things out of the fridge to prevent scary return fridge. In no particular order, this should clean out the majority of what's lying around, I will still have plenty stockpiled so it's not a huge deal, especially staples. I am just afraid of return fridge!

Plan:

Salmon Fillet
Gnocchi with kale
Steak

Lamb pizzas - went bad before I could make them, the lamb was partially defrosted from open freezer overnight and I was just nervous of it
Pork tortiere
tortellini soup
pasta red
mac cheese
pasta white
Hamburgers
salmon burgers w/guac (& cheese for DH)
Pulled pork BBQ
pierogies
Chix some kind
hot dogs
mini hot dogs
grilled cheese
turkey s/w
shwarma chix
arroz con pollo (saffron rice, diced tom, chix, chickpeas)
hummus
bean dip (refried, sour cream, avocado, cheese, tom)
sausage "gravy" (white beans, chix broth, sausage, sage, s&P)

The really don't want to eat or make it list:
quiche
bean pie (cornbread topped)
shepherd's pie.
We probably won't do those.


Liz

Wife, and mother to a small fairy, a demolition expert, a special new someone this fall and a small dachshund.
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#85 of 112 Old 06-12-2009, 11:02 AM
 
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Originally Posted by annethcz View Post
I
The best thing I've made in the last week was rhubarb bread. I had several bags of frozen rhubarb from my grandma, and I was at a loss of what to do with it. I didn't want to make a pie. In the past I've made rhubarb sauce to put on pancakes, but it requires so much sugar to sweeten it to the point that my kids will eat it. So I decided to use my banana bread recipe and substitute rhubarb for bananas. It has been a HUGE hit- we've eaten rhubarb bread for breakfast all week long. Yummy!
.
I'm going to have to try this. I assume you stewed the rhubarb till it was mushy first? Or did you just mix it in as it was?
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#86 of 112 Old 06-13-2009, 11:59 AM
 
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Oooh. that rhubarb cake DOES sound good. I wonder if I'll get any in our CSA next week (none this week).

I'm making non-alcoholic mulberry cordial. I'm thinking it will be a good summer drink mixed 1:2 with some carbonated water, and a nice occasional treat for DD.
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#87 of 112 Old 06-13-2009, 12:24 PM
 
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Originally Posted by katheek77 View Post
Oooh. that rhubarb cake DOES sound good. I wonder if I'll get any in our CSA next week (none this week).

I'm making non-alcoholic mulberry cordial. I'm thinking it will be a good summer drink mixed 1:2 with some carbonated water, and a nice occasional treat for DD.
So how do you do this?

My thing to do with rhubarb is to chop the stocks, boil in lots of water, strain out the pulp and drink the juice, sweetened to taste or mixed with other fruit juce. It'd be nice with carbonated water, which I have a stock of. My grandmother used to can the "rhubarb juice" and I think I will, too, this year. Usually it doesn't last long enough!

My rhubarb is almost big enough for a first cutting. Sometime this week....we still have rhubarb sauce in the freezer from last year so I think I will just "juice" most of it this year.
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#88 of 112 Old 06-13-2009, 02:34 PM
 
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I'm late to the party here! Been kind of busy actually working on organizing freezer and pantry. I had to clean out the freezer to make room for chickens and beef. So, now I have 34 meals in the freezer. My focus right now is more organizing. I need to keep things well organized so that I can freeze what I need to freeze. I have more chickens coming(just got 30 yesterday) and 1/4 of a beef.

My big goal is to do a lot of canning now as well. I am due in November, so instead of using my freezer meals I really, really want to stay on the ball and save them until the end of pregnancy or after the baby is born! So, I need to stay on top of things to make sure I am keeping meals planned and cooked so I don't use my freezer meals.

I also want to can a bunch more meals as well. I am working on a huge stockpot of chicken soup right now- that should be about 10 qrts worth. I want to also can a lot of ground beef items when that finally gets ready as well. I know for the first 3 months or so it will be crazy, so I actually want to be well prepared this time!

I need to be working on the garden as well, but I am pregnant and only have so much time and energy and it has been crazy lately. Yesterday- I spent 4 hrs on the road driving and 7 hrs on my feet helping w/ chicken processing, will be doing the same next month. So, today I am taking a respite and trying to organize.

In 2 wks we are going to some u-pick blueberries and I will probably get about 20-25 lbs. I will freeze a fair amt, but want to look into canning some as well for baked goods. However, I don't want a lot of sugar. I have some pomona's pectin that I *think* means you can add as little sugar as you want, but am not for sure. I need to restock on a few things. Getting a bit low on sugar and salt, but pretty good on other staples. Need more tomato products and other canned goods as I used a lot of tomatoes in my various freezer meals. That is about it here!

So, interesting reading what everyone is doing! Some great ideas. I know I also need to do better w/ using what we do buy at the store! I will have a lot of cash outlays buying bulk for the meat and some of the produce, so I need to reduce where I can. Right now I also have some refugees from the freezer as I had to clean it out for the chicken so I need to make sure we eat those things first. So, chicken breasts tonight and chili tomorrow. Hotdogs for lunch next week! I had bought a bunch of better hotdogs as I had got them on sale, but then the kids decided they don't really like them. So, I actually gave the rest away, but kept a pack. WE can get through 1 more pack, but I am tired of trying to get them to eat them. Besides even better hotdogs are not great. I gave away a bunch of butter as well, as we are not tolerating it anymore and haven't for a while, so it has been many months and I have given up on that.

Happily Married to my : 11 yrs- Mama to wild-eyed monkey boy 7-04, fiery little girl 4-07, and the happy smiley baby that sleeps 11-09!
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#89 of 112 Old 06-13-2009, 02:38 PM
 
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I went to the store yesterday and picked up some not real necessary stuff like tortilla chips and marshmallows. This week's meal plan is almost completely out of the freezer.

Sat-ham steaks, roasted potatoes
Sun-ham, some kind of potatoes, green beans
Mon-panini's with leftover ham and bread from the freezer
Tue-quesadillas, with chicken from the freezer
Thur-nachos
Fri-fish sandwiches
Sat-haven't decided yet
Sun-steak, salad, baked potatoes

Today I made a breakfast casserole with leftover roasted potatoes, sausage from the freezer, spinach that wasn't going to last much longer, cheese and eggs. I also made my 7 year old a sausage and egg scramble for his breakfasts this week. I mixed up some pancake/waffle mix for dh to make some breakfasts this week too and we'll have lots of ham for lunch sandwiches.

I have some frozen zucchini I need to turn into muffins and I think I'll make some cookies too. Oh and tomorrow I'm going to attempt some pizza pocket type things with leftover pepperoni.
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#90 of 112 Old 06-14-2009, 05:39 PM
 
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In the process of doing this process of using up what we can in the pantry/freezer and planning a more frugal meal rotation. I have been slacking

Would anyone have any good sites that has recipes broken down at cost per person, per meal?

 Mama to my tribe
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