Another great gift from Mikemax appeared in our Inbox:
What you do when you don’t have time to cook, or aren’t feeling well, can have a huge impact on your grocery bill. At least 3 of our members TODAY are in exactly that boat.
Mother Connie and Carol M are both recovering from surgery. I have to be gone all day today, come home briefly, and leave again. Reasons like these—not to mention kids’ activities—are a prime reason we often succumb to takeout.
I’m not a fan of takeout. If I’m going to spend for restaurant food, I want to be served and have someone clean up afterward. And it’s expensive. Even a trip through a fast food drive-through will cost more, and take longer, than a steak dinner cooked at home. Which would you rather have?
I’m eating out of the bottom of my freezer this month. That means I’m eating the good stuff and the soup bones…there’s nothing left in between, LOL. Tonight, it’s the good stuff.
This morning I spent 5 minutes prepping a bone-in pork loin roast and figuring out how to set my oven so it will come on at 3:30 p.m. and automatically turn off at 5ish. I scrubbed some potatoes and put them into the oven to bake along with the roast. I didn’t peel them so they wouldn’t turn black. At dinnertime, I’ll heat up a canned or frozen veggie-or maybe make a salad, if I’ve got the stuff-and put the bowl of leftover applesauce on the table.
That roast, just under 3 lbs., was $1.98 lb. and cost $5.56. It will produce enough meat for two meals for my family of 3 adults. Dinner tomorrow—an equally busy day–will either be roast pork sandwiches or pork noodles made with Top Ramen, green onions and sliced hard boiled eggs—just like the Chinese restaurants used to make.
When I find a good deal on steak, I buy it and freeze it. Used to be, I could occasionally afford T-bones or rib steak on sale, and I’d keep around a few for nights when I couldn’t, or didn’t want, to cook. Prices have gone so high, I’m now buying boneless top sirloin, when I can find it for $4 lb. or less. With a baked potato and salad it’s cheaper than the dollar menu at the fast food joint. Faster, too…and nobody at my house ever complains about a steak dinner.
Now I’m going to turn this over to YOU. I’m curious what Connie is cooking as she recovers from cataract surgery this week. I already know what Carol fixed last night, because I read her blog, but maybe she will repeat here. She’s down to the use of one hand, and will be for awhile. What do YOU cook when cooking doesn’t seem to be an option? How do you handle nights when you’ve got to take 3 kids to a Little League game and there is no time to eat, let alone cook?
Nights like these can make or break your food budget. Let’s share ideas on how we handle them and help each other stay on track.
PS/You can find directions for the Timed Bake feature on your oven in the instruction book that came with your stove. With mine, I first set the length of time I want to cook, then I set what time I want it to come on, and finally I turn the oven dial to the desired temperature. Also, with a big piece of meat—like the pork roast—you can partially thaw it and let it finish thawing before the oven comes on. I’ve put completely frozen meatloaves in the oven in the morning and let them thaw until late afternoon, when the oven came on. Much faster and safer, too.
Good GRIEF, Mikemax! You’ve got me drooling! What have I been cooking? Actually, when you live in a small town and your life has “issues” food arrives at your doorstep! *EG: instead of having eye surgery you wind up in an ER, making every effort to avoid having a stroke. Or, if you have a paper route and your wife is in the hospital you have TEAMS of people delivering those papers.
So cooking has not been much of a priority for the past number of days. When Mother Connie is back on top of her game, there will be recipes posted from the goodies that have been bestowed upon us! We are so blessed.
We also have been blessed recently to have an influx of new Club Members, as well! The newbies have found our opt in box in the upper right hand corner of the blog and the website so they have offered up their email addies in order to receive our series of cooking tips. YAY! And we have received lovely messages at firstname.lastname@example.org. YIPPEE!
If you know of anyone who avails themselves of the EBT card supplied by SNAP or WIC or if you know folks who use Angel Food Ministries foodstuffs or food commodities or have things from a Food Pantry or use Farmers Market Coupons, feel free to share this blog with them. They may have great ideas none of us has thought of yet and they might share! Hector Pector! They might just be like Mikemax and Carol and me-FRUGAL to the core! They will love what we are doing here.
Let’s all cheer for Mikemax: All together, now, boys n girls: HIP HIP HOORAY for MIKEMAX!
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