Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Making do with what you got

Here we are again, Wednesday, two more days until payday! My DH gets paid every two weeks and you can always tell what is the "off" week. I always shop for two weeks at a time. So on payday the fridge is always bulging and you can't find anything in there. The pantry is nice, neat and full. Then comes the week before payday . . . dum, dum dum - LOL More precisely like two or three days before payday. The fridge is now almost empty and you can clearly see what you don't have, and the indignant cries of the children echo in the empty pantry as the find out their favorite snacks are no longer there since they ate them all the first day! I have a notebook where I plan all my meals and keep my shopping lists, so I always know what we are having to eat or at least what my options are for the week . Sometimes however we do run out of the basics and I wanted to share with you a couple of options I used this week when it happened to me.

First I just want to mention that any recipe that calls for wine or sherry you can always substitute chicken stock/broth. I never by these wines for cooking, even though I know that it does enhance flavor. I just can't justify that expense out of my grocery money. I buy a 5lb. bag of low sodium vegetable broth powder from a local food co-op for about $12 and it lasts me about 6 months. I would easily spend that much on one bottle of wine for cooking. I also ran out of B.B.Q. sauce this week. I usually make my own with ketchup and brown sugar plus some other good stuff, but I also didn't have enough ketchup! I always keep a ton of tomato sauce on had for everything. I can buy a 29oz. can at Wal-mart for .85 (was .79 up until a month ago) and use it for pasta/pizza sauce. Cheapest "pasta sauce" they have is still $1 and had bad stuff in it for you. So see, win win situation. Anyway, I found a great ketchup recipe in one of my lo-carb cook books, surprising place to find healthy recipes, but it's true. Turns out to make ketchup all you really need is tomato paste, yup, those little .33 cans! Had that too - LOL So now you can make your ketchup, than turn that into B.B.Q. sauce! You should feel great since you didn't spend any extra money and you didn't waste gas to go to the store. Besides, you know if you did go to the store you would buy way more than just ketchup or B.B.Q sauce, law of nature. Again, win win situation. Finely, this morning I needed some steak sauce . . . You guessed it. out of that too. But I do still have some ketchup, so with a little lo-carb magic I made my own steak sauce. All of these taste great by the way. You can control the amount of salt and sugar in your own food. So now you feel totally empowered - You save money, you save gas, you are using the resources at hand, and controlling the nutrition of your own food !

So with a little planning, having a staple stocked pantry and a little time and energy you can make the best of what you got!

Blessings, Beth Ann


Anonymous said...

Cooking wine is $12 where you live?!! Sheesh!! I can get it at my regular grocery store for like $3! One more reason I love Pennsylvania, ha ha!

Danielsen5 said...

No, no - LOL Cooking wine is only about $3 here at the local Piggly Wiggly also. I ment like a semi- nice drinking wine. Rachael Ray always says to never cook with something you wouldn't drink! LOL