Suburbanmomcooks’s Weblog

August 12, 2008

Fleece on the Beach

Filed under: Demarle,garden,Recipes — by CarrieK @ 6:36 am
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We’re just back from a wonderful camping trip on the coast of Oregon. Two things one needs for a happy trip to the beach in Oregon, fleece and a kite. Thankfully we had both!

I have a HUGE to-do list:

Re-do all my links (finished with recipes, onto to my Demarle pages next…)

Work on my Cost page

Take “before” pictures of my yard for the Garden page…the tree guy will be here next week!

Start a Camping page to organize my outdoor kitchen and all our camping gear

I’ll be back tomorrow night!

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August 3, 2008

Week 3 Starts…

Filed under: grocery,Recipes — by CarrieK @ 5:23 pm
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I’m off to the grocery store on my bike today. The hardest part about getting there is getting past all the garage sales!

I’m past the worry of last week and feeling good about our grocery budget. I found amazing fish at Costco; bought 5 meals worth of salmon (wild caught only!) and halibut (wild caught only!) for about $26. Pretty cool. We are camping at the end of the week, so I have to get really creative with The Menu and The List. I will probably go over budget a bit, but I figure that’s OK….we are camping with 2 other families and we are all bringing extra food.

Last night we had leftovers; salmon with green beans and rice, I had mashed potatoes with chicken, the kids had…..bagels of course. L had some smashed beans with cheese too. Tonight I’ll roast some broccoli to add to our Annie’s Soup. I will save some for the Broken Lasagna on Tuesday night.

Using the cash envelope for grocery money is working well. My goals for Week 3 include:

*tracking exact expenses; how much each item cost

*post my weekly menu

*start tracking bulk food and non-food costs; homemade jam, fish, peanut butter, cleaning supplies etc.

*post more pictures!

I think it will be a few months before I have a better idea of bulk food costs. Gotta start somewhere. I have to say though, I don’t feel like we are doing without or eating boring food. I am getting creative with storage and leftovers, we are eating well, and I’m still blogging!

Day 21

Filed under: Demarle,grocery,Recipes — by CarrieK @ 4:54 am
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Lovely dinner tonight. Poached chicken in the Flower Mold with the Octagonal Silpat, sauteed green beans, and a pot of organic long grain brown rice. Lots of leftovers. Very economical.

We are doing great this week grocery-wise. I am up $15 because my DH bought the wrong bread and wrong beans at Trader Joes. He also missed a couple of items that I clearly don’t miss! Well, that’s not true. I was missing my sourdough bread yesterday.

Been working on The Menu and The List for next week. I am riding my bike to the grocery store on Sunday. I’m holding on to my excess grocery money for our camping trip next weekend. Hmmm, beer? S’mores? Maybe both!

Planning on blueberry picking Monday and “jamming” that afternoon. I picked up more of that amazing raw honey from the Farmer’s Market today. Man that stuff is gooooood! My goal is to pick about 7 pounds of blueberries and can about 9-10 half pints of jam.

Since I reorganized my pantry, it’s looking even more bare. Oddly, I’m not as panicky about it this week. I’m holding off until my Meal Planning and Grains class with Monique from Sustainable Budget on the 13th. I am hoping to get some info on bulk food that night. I really want my Menu Plan to include healthy food, easy food, real food. I am curious about grinding my own grain for making my own bread.

July 26, 2008

Day 14 I’m not worthy!

Filed under: Demarle,grocery,Recipes — by CarrieK @ 6:16 am
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Ok, it’s Thursday and I am jonesing for a trip to the grocery store. I do have $14 left in my grocery budget for the week and I do need cheese. So, on my way back from a meeting I stopped at the store and ended up getting ricotta cheese for the Broken Lasagna, raw mild cheddar for the burritos and ….a loaf of bread and a package of bagels. And in a weak moment, 2 boxes of crackers for my hungry kids (it was 5:30).

I went over my $100 weekly budget by $13 😦

I fixed Broken Lasagna for dinner tonight. It was yummy with the ricotta cheese. I didn’t have any leftovers for it so I improvised and used canned marinara, fresh chard, no boil noodles, some frozen broccoli and the ricotta cheese I picked up at the grocery store. I cooked it in my Demarle Fluted Square Mold.

I can already tell my grocery list needs revision. We can’t get through the week with one loaf of bread or 1 package of bagels. I am out of butter and only have 3 eggs left. One day left…one day left….one day left…

July 19, 2008

Day 6: Salmon Burgers with Rice and Salad

Filed under: food,grocery,Recipes — by CarrieK @ 6:34 am
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It’s Day 6 of my new menu plan. I’m halfway thru the week and my kitchen is practically empty. (OK, I admit to a small, quick visit to the grocery store today – don’t tell my DH! – and I used cash, way less than I have spent in the past!) Today, for our trip to the zoo I stopped at New Seasons and picked up lunch for me (salmon and avacado sushi and Kombucha) and for the kids I got string cheese, Veggie Booty, fresh blueberries, and Z bars. And water. Tomorrow’s lunches will be interesting….PB and J for sure, leftover Veggie Booty, more blueberries, more cheese…Ok, well that doesn’t sound too bad. There’s some hummus in the fridge, I could toast some bread to go with that for me. And carrots, I know I saw carrots in the fridge too.

I’ve been reading a great blog about Bento lunches (is that redundant?) Check out Lunchinabox.net. She’s got great ideas for lunches (Ok, so my kids won’t eat octopus or skate, but rice balls and mini jello cups sound great!) I especially like her preparation times. She gives you a good idea of how long these lunches take to pack. Not long at all. She utilizes leftovers like no one I’ve ever seen; she finds a way to use even a tablespoon of food. She relies very heavily on plastic and microwaving (I don’t use either) but her pictures are pretty and she is a great resource for everything Bento.

So, on to the Salmon Burgers with Rice and Salad. Originally, it was with Chard, but I used that in the Turkey Meatloaf Patties and then again in the Broken Lasagna. Not a bad dinner tonight, very healthy, fairly quick to make. Leftovers included an extra salmon burger for DH’s lunch tomorrow and LOTS of rice. Good rice too, it’s organic, long-grain brown rice. Yum! What shall I do with it? Maybe fried rice? No, I’ve only got 2 eggs left until Sunday and I’m making blueberry muffins tomorrow. Plus I’m out of veggies. I’ll have to come up with something else….

Salmon Burgers

I purchased a package of premade salmon burgers from TJ. I grilled them on the stove top in my iron skillet. (They are also great on the BBQ) I served them on toasted sourdough bread with Garlic Dill Mayo

The salad I served tonight was a combination of creativity and desperation. Well maybe not desperation, but I am seriously running low on food. It’s not like we are going to starve, but flavor and variety will not be around for long. Is it Sunday yet?

Day 6 Salad

2 hearts of Romaine lettuce, chopped

1/4 cup crispy walnuts (recipe follows)

1/4 cup dried cranberries

1/2 cup homemade croutons

1/3 cup Oriental Dressing from Nourishing Traditions

Add all ingredients, toss well.

Day 5: Broken Lasagna

Filed under: Recipes — by CarrieK @ 5:50 am
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I am going to use a Broken Lasagna recipe inspired by Rachel Ray for Day 5. I am going to incorporate yesterday’s leftover Turkey Meatloaf Patties plus some leftover marinara from Day 3.

Broken Lasagna

1 box of no boil lasagna noodles, broken up into bits

2 cups cheese (any kind; ricotta, mozzerella, cheddar, whatever you have on hand); reserve about 1/2 cup for the top

2 leftover Turkey Meatloaf Patties, broken up into bits

1 1/2 cups of marinara (use leftover or store bought)

Mix all ingredients well and pour into a Demarle Flexipan Mold. I like to use the Fluted Square Mold. Top the mixture with the reserved 1/2 cup of cheese. It’s important to do this: all the broken bits of no boil noodles need to be covered with cheese, otherwise they stay kinda crunchy.

Cook in a preheated 350 degree oven for about 25 minutes. Serve with a spoon right out of the Fluted Square Mold. You can flip it onto a plate too if you are looking for a nice presentation.

The Broken Lasagna turned out great! It was easy and quick to prepare, it utilized leftovers and there’s enough left for more leftovers. Guess what my DH is having for lunch tomorrow? For me the best part is always the easy clean up. Hot soapy water in the Fluted Square Mold and I’m done. No spraying, soaking or scraping.

Day 4: Hot Dogs and Hamburgers

Filed under: Recipes — by CarrieK @ 5:42 am
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I’ve skipped to Day 4. Days 1-3 went well, not bored yet! No grocery shopping this week, although we are going berry picking Thursday and possible Friday. I have cash for that 🙂 The “real” grocery shopping starts on Sunday, 7/20, what I call Week 2.

All L wants to eat is hot dogs right now. C won’t eat much of anything. So it’s hamburgers for the grown-ups! I don’t really want a hamburger, but that’s what the plan is for today so I’m sticking to it, sort of. I am going to use ground turkey to make a meatloaf, sort of. But I don’t have time to cook a meatloaf so I’m going to cook it as patties.

Turkey Meatloaf Patties

1 package ground turkey from Trader Joes

2 eggs

2 tblsp mustard

4 leaves of Chard, de-veined and finely chopped

1/2 cup Sourdough Croutons

1 tblsp Soy Sauce

Mix all ingredients together, form into patties and cook in a skillet roughly 5 minutes on a side.

Serve on toasted sourdough bread. It’s especially good with homemade Savory Plum jam (can’t find this recipe right now but I’ll keep looking). We had it with guacamole and organic tortilla chips.

L ate a bunless hot dog with organic ketchup, some guacamole from Trader Joes and some organic tortilla chips.

C ate…organic tortilla chips? I can’t remember what the little guy ate, but I guarantee you it wasn’t much. 😦

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