What’s For Dinner?
And how about what’s for lunch tomorrow? …Those were the words my dear Husband asked me when he got home. Actually that’s what he asks all the time.
I know that for some and It would comfort him, keeping a menu plan helps organize their time and helps with the grocery shopping. Me I just can’t stick to one and find the hour or so it takes to figure it all out isn’t worth the time when I don’t follow it in the end.
One reason is I don’t do my groceries off a traditional weekly list. I do my shopping from my pantry, freezer and fridge. All of the foods my family likes is there ready to be put together into a meal or two. All of the ingredients I use are already there. If I come across something we don’t have, we do without until I can bring it home.
A shopping list is very important to me but it is added to over the course of weeks and things don’t always get crossed off every time I go to the store. Let me explaine, I know that usually our family will use about 20 lbs. of flour in a couple of months. When I see that our flour bin is down to about 1/2 empty I will write flour on the list. This is when I start looking for flour on sale and coupons to go with it if that happens to work out the week I am buying it. If I make an unexpected trip close to the natural food store I will stop and pick up the flour and what ever else is on my list that comes from that store. If I happen to see it at a better price that the normal sale price I will pick it up. I do check the grocery sales flyers every Sunday for the super sales I can’t pass up. But mostly I don’t go to the grocery store just to do groceries. I will stop if I am already going by. I also don’t shop every week.
Out side of fresh produce, milk, cheese, and cream I don’t buy anything unless it is in a qty. that will last until the item is on sale again. I know when the sales for a particular item are because I keep track of it in my household note book. I also write down where I bought it and what the price/lb. was I paid last.
I have noticed lately there isn’t any such thing as a good sale, some items are marked down a bit but that price isn’t better than the regular price at another store. Oh’ the games these stores play.
I am not brand or store loyal. Actually since most of our groceries are basic ingredients it matters even less. Flour is flour, salt is salt, oats are oats. I am particular that they are organic and local if I can find it.
I do most of my shopping from the outside isles of the store and only venture into the isles to pick up things in the baking isle, the frozen section to get ice cream or juice, the canned food isle for things like pineapple that I can’t get often fresh. The ouside isles of the store are where you are going to find the most wholesome foods that receive very little processing if any at all.
I will also check the reduced rack at the back of the store, this is where you will find dented cans, discontinued items and produce that has to be sold and used that day. Recently I found 5# bags of carrots in this section, they were fine except the tops had sprouted green again. I brought them home, cleaned them up, chopped, blanched and froze them.
Before I head out shopping I will take a good look at the pantry and freezer as well as my lists so what I have or might need are fresh in my mind. But mostly if it isn’t on my list I won’t bring it home. One exception to this was a few weeks back I ran across boxes of baking soda for $.10 a box. They were not out dated, our local store was starting a remodeling project and they were trying to make room I suppose or avoid moving some things a 100 times.
Back to what’s for dinner, well that depends on what I feel like in the morning. I will first check what produce and left-overs need using first, then build a meal around that.
Tonight’s dinner will be a cole slaw salad with left over baked pork chops, stuffing and gravy. Then there will be vanilla ice cream with crushed strawberries and whipped cream. Later in the evening we will have more of those tasty Dandelion root brewed into a yummy tea.
For anyone interested here is the Cole Slaw recipe. My mother would always place on top maraschino cherries cut in half. We are not cherry eaters around here so I don’t add them.
- 4 cups finely chopped carrots
- 3 cups finely chopped cabbage
- 1 (16oz.) can pineapple, finely chopped and drained, reserve juice.
- 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
- 1/2 cup mayonnaise
- 2 Tbl. sugar
- 2 Tbl cider vinegar
- 1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
Toss together carrots, cabbage, pineapple and walnuts. In a small bowl whisk together remaining ingredients and pineapple juice. Pour over cabbage mixture and toss gently. Chill for 2 hours and serve.
Also maraschino cherries can be cut in 1/2 and added to the top for decoration.