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Spending now to save later

October 20th, 2013 at 08:54 am

But not really... the West Coast supermarket strike looms. Supermarket parking lots were full yesterday, but rather than gather provisions with the crowd, we thought to use our remaining independent-grocer and "green product" coupons that expire October 31 and order a 31 lb. bulk-box of meats from one county up. The independent grocery was so quiet and there was no wait for service, so we chatted a little with a checkout person about the impending deluge. The independent grocers have better music, believe it or not. I feel that Kroger/QFC tries to get rid of me with the music it plays.

I did notice that the independent grocery prices were not as low as Safeway's and Fred Meyer's, but I know where the cheap vegetables can be had. I don't know how long the strike is going to go on for, but my food budget will be highly uneven as we bulk-shop and eat down the remains. I feel we can last one three-month-supply of sugar, coffee, quinoa, canned vegetables and toilet paper at Costco, literally run to Target for last-minute incidentals, and head to ethnic markets (Mexican, Chinese, Japanese, Mediterranean) for good deals on oils, beans and to Pacific Food Importers for spices.

Rudimentary Food Plan
Sunday: leftovers, maybe with udon.
Monday: That Hungarian Goulash thing
Tuesday: Lentil Soup
Wednesday: Black Bean Soup
Thursday: Spaghetti con Tonno
Friday: Red Bean & Quinoa Chili
Saturday: Wieners & Sauerkraut
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Our favourite video store is struggling, and to be honest, I'd been watching films and TV shows on YouTube and European websites and from our local library; however, these films and TV shows I watch online are not available (yet) on DVD. I feel everyone except corporations is struggling, so we renewed our 10-rental-pack. Maybe I need to budget 3-5% of our takehome income for "saving the struggling" like schools.

This week we learned that my mom's old Hobart KitchenAid food processor is missing two shafts. I've had her 1979 12-cup processor for fourteen years but used it only three times because the set-up seemed arduous and let's not kid, 20 lbs is a heavy weight for a food processor. I scouted the Web to find out what the attachments not shown in the KFP-700 manual were, then learned that Hobart recreated its model and accessories for other companies, so we could still get shafts, although they are pricy. I do want to use all four slicing discs, and I don't want to use the "Whole Body Feed Tube" every time I want to shred carrots or cabbage so maybe I'll treat myself and experiment with the KFP-700 recipes. I kept thinking "hmm, seven minutes to assemble a food processor, or seven minutes to hand-grate or use Cutco knives on vegetables. Which is faster? Which involves less cleanup?"

6 Responses to “Spending now to save later”

  1. rob62521 Says:

    That is one heavy duty food processor!

    I have a smaller one, fortunately, but often times I just cut and shred by hand because of the clean up.

  2. My English Castle Says:

    Tell me about that Hungarian goulash thing, Zsa Zsa.

  3. PauletteGoddard Says:

    Vell dahlink, venn I take my jools off for der cleaning, I make that Hungarian Goulash thing and I cry thinking of my Budapest days. Traditional foods are what keeps us young: Fredrik gave me IV drips of paprika water along with the harvested organs of Cory Monteith and Brittany Murphy which are just as good as embalming fluid: I shall never die.

    PIRKILT
    Brown in large Dutch oven over medium-high heat 4 ounces lean bacon, smoked ham or Hungarian paprika sausage, diced.
    Remove to a small bowl. Pat dry and cube (1-inch): 3 lbs boneless beef chuck, or 24 oz. aforesaid chuck with 24 oz. pork shoulder. Season with salt and pepper, then dredge in 1/2 cup all-purpose flour, shaking off excess flour.
    Heat fat in pan over medium-high heat. If fat is insufficient, add vegetable oil or bacon drippings. Add meat in batches and brown on all sides. Do not scorch the meat or crowd the pan. Remove the meat with a slotted spoon. Add to remaining fat in the pan 3 cups thinly sliced onions.
    Cook over medium heat until onions are nearly translucent and soft, like my skin.
    Add 6 cloves chopped garlic and cook for one more minute.
    Add 2 ounces sweet Hungarian paprika. That is right: 1/2 cup or 1/8 of a pound. This is HUNGARIAN.
    Stir well, coating onions and garlic thoroughly until they are as red as the face of a slapped LA cop. Cook for two minutes more.
    Add vegetables:
    3 red bell peppers, diced
    1 cup diced carrots
    1 tablespoon dried marjoram
    1 teaspoon caraway seeds
    1 teaspoon ground black pepper
    3 bay leaves
    Toss briefly with the onions and garlic. Add:
    2 cups beef or chicken stock
    1 cup beer or dry white wine
    1 pound dried sauerkraut (optional, but fermented cabbage is so good for you)
    1/4 cup tomato puree or 2 tablespoons tomato paste.

    Bring to a boil, scraping up any browned bits and add the browned meat and bacon. Reduce heat to low and simmer, stirring occasionally until meat is tender, 90 minutes to 105 minutes. If sauce needs thickening, remove meat and vegetables with a slotted spoon and keep warm. Skim fat from liquid surface. Boil sauce just until it begins to thicken. Remove from the heat and stir in 1/2 to 1 cup sour cream or crème fraïche, and salt and ground black pepper to taste.
    Stir meat and vegetables back into the sauce. Serve with Spätzle or Egg noodles.

  4. baselle Says:

    Wow. 1/2 cup of paprika. As thick and red as blood.

  5. My English Castle Says:

    Oh no, I knew I shouldn't have opened this link when I'm trying to write a midterm exam. Now my technical writing exam will come out in faux-Hungarian, and I can't stop snickering. Vas is das dried sauerkraut? Must look it up, it sounds delicious and I'll bet it smells fabulous. Thanks, Zsa Zsa

  6. PauletteGoddard Says:

    sorry, that may be drained sauerkraut instead of dried. Give a near-centenarian a break. With all honesty, any dish with a load of paprika (roasted cauliflower, chicken paprikash) is a major winner in my household. Veal & paprika ==> sobbing fits of gastronomic splendour.

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