Sassy and Shabby

For the love of all things Vintage

Friday, May 8, 2015

FOODIE FRIDAY....Feeding A family on a budget

The cost of everyday living continues to go up...sometimes pay rates commiserate with the increase and sometimes not....I LOVE being thrifty and saving money whenever I can (it feels AWESOME to get a great deal and that way I can spend money in other areas of life). The last few months each time I go to the grocery store I can't believe how EXPENSIVE everything is (at least the healthy items). I once joked with the cashier that NOW is the time to become a vegetarian because meat is so costly. I am ALWAYS on the hunt for a good deal...My mom is always shocked that I get such amazing prices BUT that's because I buy off season, I'm always on the look out and I USED to have the bad habit of buying for "some-day" use (which has come in HANDY a lot BUT I have a TON of things and I do only buy IF I have a purpose now). You're probably saying "Ok, what's all this got to do with feeding your fam on a budget?!??!". When I go to the grocery store I always check the meat for the reduced labels (typically the grocer has to sell the meat within a couple of days so WE still have time to cook it or freeze it before it is past the sell date). Case in point...

I got almost 3lbs of EXTRA LEAN ground beef for $2.99/lb or $8.70 for the package (THIS IS A GREAT DEAL because I went to the store yesterday and got about a pound and a half of 85% lean for $8.25 - a lesser lean meat, less weight and almost the SAME price). When shopping it helps to e aware of current market prices so you KNOW when you're getting a deal. I took this meat and split it into 3 packages....enough for chili or burgers....and I got 3 meals.

Another day I was at the SAME store and there was reduced produce...THIS is good if you are going to cook or bake with it...There was a package of 9 roma tomatoes for .99. They were too soft to slice and eat BUT PERFECT for my homemade spaghetti sauce....featured in the pic on the right.
Here is the first stages of my sauce (the stuff in the back of the pan is the insides of tomatoes...when I make pico de gallo or guacamole I REMOVE the tomato insides and save them in a freezer bag for my sauce). 

I lightly fried up 1 italian sausage (mostly for flavoring) in garlic cloves....added the tomato guts and the roma tomatoes I got on sale and cooked down to a puree....once this was done I let cool and refrigerated overnight. The next day I poured the mixture (MINUS the sausage) into the magic bullet and blended....then I strain into a container (to omit the seeds). My kids made an INTERSTING sauce is an orange-y daughter said "yes, because it's not preservative red". SMART girl!!! Not only am I saving money BUT I feel good about the food I am serving my family and I know EXACTLY what went into the sauce I have prepared. 

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