I know. I know. I made this statement last month that I would NEVER cut my food bill….(click here)………BUT, a funny thing happened to me the last time I went food shopping. I went alone. Hubby didn’t trail along with me…..and guess what? I was able to stick to my list, I paid for everything in cash (I’m on a new kick to pay for groceries, as well as other minor expenses, in cash only) and when the cashier rang up my total for the week, I only spent $42.83 instead of the usual $75 to $100. I was within budget!
Granted, three of the things on my hubby’s fave list weren’t in stock. I bought substitute (less expensive) items for him instead (salad, low-salt bread and 85% cocoa bars). Plus, because I shopped alone, I was able to take my time, look around the stores for bargains (found one!) and somehow just stick to my plan, which is to lower our monthly food expense category yet still buy the things we love and want. I thought it was going to be impossible, but I stand corrected. I pulled it off!
I also made good use for turning leftovers into brand new, fresh meals. For example, I was able to buy a cauliflower head for only .99 because it was slightly bruised. When I went to look at the regularly priced $2.19 heads of cauliflowers, I found them all to be mostly slightly bruised too! So, I bought the .99 one. Every Sunday, hubby makes a big pot of Italian marinara sauce. During the last 10 minutes of cooking, I tossed in the cauliflower, chopped up into bite-sized pieces. I learned this recipe from my mother. It makes a delicious pasta sauce OR you can just eat it alone.
At the end of the day, we had leftover pasta. Usually we just finish it over the week, but it never really tastes as fresh. Hubby’s old Italian grandmother used to turn spaghetti into a pasta pie. She would whip up a half-dozen eggs or so, toss in some grated Parmesan cheese (at least a cup) some parsley, salt & pepper, combine it with the leftover pasta and fry the whole thing up in a cast iron pan. The result was always pure deliciousness!
Lesson learned: shop alone. Take your time. If your Significant Other insists on tagging along, treat him or her as you would any other minor child. Learn to say “NO!”. LOL. I did so well food shopping that I was able to stop in my favorite gourmet, specialty grocery store and buy a few treats I had been missing. Only spent $14.67 and was STILL within budget.
Lastly, I just wanted to share some neighborhood photos with you. Fall is in the air here and the leaves are starting to change colors. Many of my neighbors raise horses. It’s so nice to go on a stroll, take in the scenery and say hello to the horses. They’re just magnificent!