Hello dear friends! TA-DA! We've reached day seven of the big $20 experiment. Honestly, it hasn't been too painful, although I will be glad to go back to having a bit of salad dressing on my salad. BTW, since I had about a tablespoon of barbecue sauce left over, I stirred it into some mayo and thinned it with some buttermilk to make a dressing for tomorrow. I did taste it, so shame on me if this is cheating, and it tasted pretty good. I'd say this little bottle:
Another key to making it work was using everything up, from the fat skimmed off of the broth, to grinding the oatmeal for flour, to adding water to the barbecue sauce bottle and shaking it up, to get the last bit of flavoring from the bottle. Every time I emptied a dish which stored the beans or vegetables, I would slosh some warm water around the container and add it to the soup broth. I also used all the water from boiling the potatoes and carrots. Cate, just a few minutes ago, left a comment, suggesting that I could have zested the orange rinds and froze them for flavoring muffins. Good idea, Cate! Probably would have helped the oatmeal, some.
What We Had For Lunch
I made a soup of the leftover bean and rice, the last carrot and kale. Thanks to Rhonda's hint about squeezing the air out of the package the kale lasted the entire week without going bad.
What We Had For Dinner
For dinner we had a baked potato with cheese and the rest of the beans on top and the remaining lettuce.
Thoughts On The Week
Beans, carrots, potatoes, all things everyone knows are cheap and filling are really going to be your staples. People that insist on eating meat at least once a day are going to have to do so at the expense of getting vegetables into their bodies. Mrs. Shoes, commented that with all those beans, she probably wouldn't be able to sleep in the same room as her husband. Ha! Mrs. Shoes is a card! Surprisingly, we didn't find ourselves to be overly eh, er, gassy. To eliminate some of that problem, we soaked our beans overnight, changed the water then prepared them (in a pressure cooker) then rinsed the beans again. I saved the bean broth separately and refrigerate it overnight. All the little gas bubbles expell, then I used the broth as needed to heat the beans or in soup.
The other thing is that you need to be a planner. You have to plan that in three days I'm going to need a cup of those beans, save the carrot water for the soup, don't throw out the potato peels, etc.
What I'd Buy For Next Week
I won't be doing this experiment next week, it is cheaper for us to eat from our pantry than the $20 challenge. Usually I spend about $15 on groceries when eating from my pantry, but then I have a very well-stocked pantry. I've already bought my groceries for next week; two heads of Romaine lettuce @ 99 cents each, a quart of Brussels sprouts @ $2.99 and 3 pounds of bacon ends and pieces for $7.99 (actually it's about 3 1/2 pounds, I weighed the packages to get the most for the money) The bacon ends and pieces are not for any meals, but just to stock up for baked beans and soups. So that's how I spent $13 this week. Here's what I'd buy if the experiment were to continue:
I'd use about 5 pound of those 29 cent chicken quarters for $1.50
Carrots were 2lbs/ $1.50 in the store
Another package of tortillas $1.50
A bottle of salsa from the dollar store $1
A 1 pound box of brown sugar (for the oatmeal) $1.50
8 oz. of Cheddar cheese $2
5 lbs. potatoes $3
that box of Jiffy muffins that I paid 15 cents for
Another bunch of reduced for quick sale 33 cent bananas $1
a head of Romaine lettuce 99 cents
a bag of plain rice from the dollar store $1
a container of cinnamon from the dollar store $1
another bag of those reduced for quick sale oranges $1.50
a dozen eggs,I've seen prices range from 50 cents-$1 so I'll just say $1
That amounts to $18.64. I'd use the remaining $1.36 for whatever I could find on the reduced vegetable bin, maybe peppers)
Plus I'd use the free mayo I got from the thrift store last week.
So that concludes the $20 challenge. I'll now resume my regular program. Ha! Hope to see you next Sunday!