Wednesday, October 29, 2014

My Little Bistro

I've not had a Stoptober for spending, but have tried to get a better handle on food waste, and not overstocking items that may end being wasted if I don't manage the kitchen better.  I've not done a big grocery shop for weeks, instead have filled in along the fringes.  We've had some interesting and makeshift meals.  Last night was  a frozen taco pizza, steamed frozen sweet corn, and a garlic shells pasta side dish.  Everyone at home got fed, my daughter got to basketball practice on time, and I used what was on hand.  It was quicker than waiting in line in a drive through or ordering and waiting for a pizza, as I was tempted to do after a chaotic work day.  It definitely was cheaper to feed the three of us, probably about $5.00, and not totally unhealthy. 

I've planned a bit better tonight, though am still relying on convenience food, and store short cuts.  I bought a bag of frozen cheese ravioli , mixed it with jarred pasta sauce, served a salad and bread, and voila, a quick Italian home made meal.  The cost is a bit higher than last night, but the addition of a loaf of bakery  Italian bread at $1.00, and  salad dressing push the meal to just over $6.00.  There will be left over bread, probably a snack later for my daughter with some humus. There might even be a bit of spinach to cook up with eggs or in a quiche tomorrow.  I didn't count the wine in the price.

DD#1 is away visiting college friends for a last opportunity before she moves in mid November.  I have to get used to cooking for just three of us again. Even though she is often gone at meal times, she likes the leftovers  being available for a quick warm-up in the microwave after her odd work schedule. 

There are gads of recipes out there for pasta dishes, quick and thrifty.  I'm sure there are clever cooks that easily make their own ravioli.  This bag is quite large and will feed four people, or three with leftovers, very well. The pasta and sauce allows me to dump things in a baking pan, or a slow cooker, and  get other things done. What short cuts do you allow yourself, in spite of trying to stay on a lean budget?   If your tempted to just call it in and get take out, how do you think yourself out of it? 

I'm happy with our nice meal tonight., As the sun is setting, I can imagine I am at a little Italian bistro-minus the price of airfare.

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