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somehow, in spite of our impending tax refund, we are skint again. i… - Frugaluxe [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]

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[Feb. 15th, 2005|10:43 pm]


[music |the hold steady--killer parties]

somehow, in spite of our impending tax refund, we are skint again. i know it's not wise to budget around our tax refund, but some things are unavoidable, and so we're catching up on bills and doing some urgent car repairs and much needed home repairs and now there's nearly nothing left for groceries, so we're doing that dollar stretch once again. eating well is important to us, so we're trying to come up with healthy meals that taste great and are easy on the wallet. it seems like all we ever eat is oatmeal, beans and rice, pasta and soup, but none of us are complaining because everything is satisfying and delicious. we could certainly benefit from some more interesting fresh produce than what we've been eating, but squashes and greens and root vegetables and bananas are all seasonally available cheap and organic. here's what we've been eating lately--

crock pot oatmeal with dried cranberries or raisins, walnuts and cinnamon
breakfast "rice pudding" with coconut, cardamom and pistachios
"pumpkin" pancakes (made with butternut squash)
peanut butter and jam on homemade bread
hummus and falafel with mini pita
pasta fagoli
lentil soup
roasted squash soup with sage brown butter
roasted potato and garlic soup
tuscan white bean soup
black bean burgers with cumin oven fries
lentil dal burgers with apricot chutney
pasta with white beans and sundried tomatoes and olives
carrot cake, applesauce cake, oatmeal cookies, apples, bananas, popcorn and coconut/oatmeal/jam bars as desserts/treats

we haven't been grocery shopping in two weeks and we need to restock our larder ASAP, and sometimes i'd like a meal that required a little more "chewing" (soup doesn't require much...) but i think we've been doing really well. we bought dried fruit, peanut butter, jam, sundried tomatoes, and nuts at trader joes, and olives, coconut, beans and grains from the bulk bins. our pantry is pretty much bare right now, no more chips or crackers or cereal bars fruit leathers or treats of any kind, so i'll be heading out for some grocery shopping on thursday, and i want to be inspired by you frugaluxers--what are y'all eating these days? what are your favorite recipes when money's tight, but you won't compromise taste? what pantry essentials are worth splurging on when you're feeling flush? what is your "ace in the hole" cheap but tasty meal? inspire me, even if it's with another soup recipe!


[User Picture]From: rochelle
2005-02-16 04:58 am (UTC)
I'm sure you already go to these place, but just in case... I've found stores like Grocery Outlet to be absolutely wonderful. I spent $42 at Grocery Outlet last weekend, and got more than enough food for 2-3 weeks for two people.

If you have any liquidation stores in your area, they are often excellent, too. Look up "liquidation" in the Yellow Pages.

I'm also a fan of foods that will keep me feeling full for a long time rather than make me feel hungry a short time later. Eating a hard boiled egg will keep me full for much longer than a piece of toast, for example. I'm willing to spend more on foods that will keep me full than on foods that taste good but aren't filling. Carbs in general, for me, don't fill me up well and I'm hungry again a short time later.

I also use a lots of spices, as it looks like you do. Spices can really make a plain food a lot more exciting and tasty. Spending money on spices is okay to me, since I know I'll get a lot of mileage out of one container of a spice and spices can do so much to improve an otherwise rather "blah" dish.

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[User Picture]From: cheryljill
2005-02-16 03:00 pm (UTC)
breakfast "rice pudding" with coconut, cardamom and pistachios
black bean burgers with cumin oven fries

Can we do a recipe swap or something because YUM those sound amazing!
We eat the same few things over & over, partly because it's easier to not have to think about what we are going to eat and partly because Aaron is going through a picky toddler phase.

Right now we're eating a lot of this seared tofu and chard with pine nuts. The recipe is really easy, really yummy, and chard is pretty abundant at the moment (not to mention good for you and Aaron-approved). Pine nuts can be spendy, but they can be substituted, left out, or used very sparingly. I'll get the recipe if you are interested.
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[User Picture]From: tansyjane
2005-02-16 03:34 pm (UTC)
Would you mind sharing the rice pudding recipe? I love, love, love cardamom and pistachios! I can relate to the craving of fresh produce. Legumes, rice, and pasta are filling but I am so ready for a spring salad with sorrel, endive, radicchio, etc.
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[User Picture]From: mimimimi_word
2005-02-16 03:38 pm (UTC)
I was going to ask for the rice pudding and the crockpot oatmeal recipes... the pumpkin pancakes sound good too. It all sounds good. You eat well.

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