Tuesday, January 22, 2013

The Challenge!

 I am challenging myself. Our grocery budget is completely out of control for four people at home!
 So my challenge is to cook with what is in the kitchen with out running to the grocery store, multiple times or at least minimally.  We shop with at list, that helps, but I am not a meal planner. :( That is something I must rectify.
 I work six days out of fourteen day period. My hours are 7am-7pm with a twenty minute commute each way. So with the days off, I should be better organized for dinner and the girl's lunch.
  I have couponed over the years, BIG problem though, I usually don't have a coupon for most of what we buy and use. I have read multiple sites and have signed up for updates to glean tips and alerts but alas.. the most success I have had  is any where from 1-10 coupons for the things that I purchase. Granted, most purchases are store brand products with several exceptions. There are those must have name brands; such as Heinz Ketchup, French's mustard, Hidden Valley Ranch dressing, Scott tp, just to name a few.  Wouldn't it be awesome to go shopping and come out with all my needs for under $50.00, like those extreme couponers!!
 The few items that has to be in my pantry for my security are: #1....Drum roll please... Kidney beans. That's right, Dark Red Kidney beans, my all time fav!! At least 6 cans! Or else anxiety ensues! 2) Black beans 3) Chick Peas 4) Cannellini bean 5) Diced tomatoes 6) Rotel mild stewed tomatoes 7) Whole wheat pasta 8) Paul Newman's spaghetti sauce (sockaroni) 9) Rice.
So with those staples, one would think I could throw together a gourmet meal on the fly. But I don't have the skill yet but that is a goal that I plan on remedying for 2013!

Yesterday, I pulled out the crock pot to try a recipe that I found on # http://www.frugalupstate.com: Overnight Crock Pot Oats. I was very satisfied with the results. I had tried to do steel cut oats on stove top before and it was an EPIC fail. This recipe gave me the courage to try again and I am glad that I did.