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Archive for September, 2012

Monday

Tuesday

  • eggs; peaches; water kefir
  • hurry curry
  • ? probably just leftovers for me

Wednesday

Thursday

  • peaches and kefir; broth
  • tuna quiche*; oranges
  • leftover hurry curry

Friday

  • tuna quiche; oranges
  • leftover stew and carrot cake
  • burgers; cauliflower; something green (arugula?)

Saturday & Sunday

  • ? leftovers (just me)

*if oven is fixed or weather is clear for Sun Oven

Azure Standard order comes tomorrow, at which time I will be overrun by organic apples, carrots, cauliflower, and onions – all but the cauliflower for $1/lb or less.  I bought almost 10 lbs of zucchini for just $2 at the farmer’s market yesterday, so if we get our oven in working condition soon we will be having some GAPS zucchini cakes and muffins!  Also, a friend gave us a bunch of bell peppers and jalapenos, and we have lots and lots of cayenne coming on in the garden now so we’ll be set on heat for a while.  :D  It is time to source some squash and pumpkin as well – I’d like to keep it under $0.50/lb again this year.  Yep…I’m feeling that fall food frenzy!

I’ve estimated our food costs at around $60, including generous snacks.  Our biggest costs this week will actually be for the nuts & nut flours in the baked goods.  Yesterday I was shocked to see no-spray almonds almost half the cost of the walnuts at our local food co-op!  It makes me glad that I stocked up when walnuts were much cheaper last year, even though I’ve been missing that freezer space.  And of course I bought several pounds of the almonds yesterday in anticipation of costs rising later in the year.  :)

Out-of-pocket expenses for this week are $130 for bulk purchases at Azure, $9 at the farmer’s market, $14 for raw milk, and $84 at our food co-op.  However, this included our multivitamin and $20-worth of almonds.  These purchases will last us the better part of a month and we should have little to spend other than for milk and eggs for the rest of the month.  Having said that, I’ll be buying squash and pumpkins when the opportunity presents itself so we may have another tight week or two somewhere during that time.  Also, our food co-op will be having a 10% off sale in a few weeks and I will be stocking up then.  I am trying to decide if I will buy the bulk container of honey – it really never goes on sale, so 20% off would be a great deal…however, spending $200+ on the bulk container would hurt.  I will mull this over…

 

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Some days you’re the pigeon..

Complete fiasco.  Catastrophe.  Misery and woe.  Yep…that pretty much sums up our past week.

My oven is not working.  And I broke a slow cooker crock.  And we’re out of propane.  And it’s been cloudy enough I can’t rely on the Sun Oven to cook anything.  Yeah…a baneful week.

I’ve been so busy prepping my Etsy shop that I’ve relied heavily on my menu and daily schedule to make it through the week.  Unfortunately, I had to shift to “fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants” mode after The Challah Disaster and I pretty much suck at that.  So what started as a brief acknowledgement that the oven was taking longer than usual to heat up turned to alarm when I googled “gas oven won’t light” and realized I had a ticking time bomb 10 feet away.  Then I shifted into “I-can’t-deal-with-this-right-now” mode and tried to pretend nothing was wrong for a few days.  I finally escaped denial and moved into acceptance…meaning I went straight to Craiglist to look for a replacement oven.

Lowest quote for service call + part: $140

Lowest price for used gas oven on Craigslist: $210

Ok.  I have neither of those.  A quick trip to Youtube and Amazon provided me with a generic form of the part I needed for $16.89, and a tutorial on installation for free.

A contractor friend has said he’ll come over and prevent me from blowing anything up if I get into trouble, so I should be good to go when the part gets here next week!

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Monday

  • granola with kefir; broth
  • leftover beef roast – stir-fry?
  • bbq or honey-glazed chicken; squash (butternut?); broccoli

Tuesday

  • eggs and sausage; oranges
  • leftover beef stuff
  • leftover chicken

Wednesday

  • eggs & sausage; oranges
  • chili
  • brown bag – turkey & arugula sandwiches; apples

Thursday

  • ?
  • chili
  • roast & veggies in slow cooker?

Friday

  • apple crisp or peaches and kefir?
  • leftover roast & veggies?
  • liver and onions; sweet potatoes; sauerkraut

Saturday

  • ?
  • ?
  • ?

 

Sunday

  • ?
  • ?
  • ?

 

Busy, busy week last week and this one will be as well.  Plus…it’s my birthday week!  I’ll be 35.  That sounds much more ancient than I feel, and I am so thankful for that!!  Maybe I’ll get a birthday post with an update on my health on Tuesday.  Oh, who am I kidding… :)

Lots of question marks here.  I did not check my cupboards before I left for church this morning and then was interrupted as I began my menu, so I didn’t get everything pulled together like I usually do.  We’ll see what the end of the week brings.  I’m trying to limit my indoor baking because my oven isn’t working properly and sends lots of natural gas into the kitchen before the flame ignites.  I need to fix that but haven’t had time yet.  For now, I’m trying to rely on the Sun Oven.  Hopefully we’ll have a bit more sun this week so I can actually cook something outside.

I bought bananas yesterday and will buy milk this week.  Other than that, no out-of-pocket expenses. I’ll be making my Azure order tomorrow and I think it will be a biggish one this time.  I’ve decided to buy a whole case of cauliflower and maybe I’ll try some of those pizza crust or tater tot recipes I see floating around for those.  I’m disappointed that the organic nectarines I had in my cart are no longer in stock – at $1/lb, they were a steal!

I’m making challah with 1/2 freshly ground kamut (soaked overnight in whey) and 1/2 white flour for my kids in honor of Rosh Hashanah tomorrow.  I meant to get it done today but ended up spending a lot of time trying to set up a new phone instead.  :/

Too tired to work a budget and my menu is incomplete anyway.

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Okay, I’ll admit it: I am completely overwhelmed.  The idea of menu-making has me ready to run away.  This week will be busy and I really have no idea how much time I’ll have in the kitchen or what the weather might be like.  (This factors greatly in how I cook.  For instance, last week I planned to cook a lot in the Sun Oven and it ended up being much more overcast than was originally forecast; then our cool front came through late and I wasn’t able to cook in the oven like I had planned.  Result: J was scrambling through most of the week to come up with something different than was written on the menu.  Not fun for J.  Yeah, I know, boo-hoo, J!  Sigh.)  Anyway, I like to plan and I don’t like wrenches in my plans.  This week will likely be a series of huge wrenches so I’m gritting my teeth, planning some, and leaving room for some flexibility.  Hang tight.

Monday

  • eggs; peach parfaits with kefir and blueberries; broth
  • leftover beef tongue; green peas; something orange or starchy – carrots? potatoes?  both?
  • stuffed peppers (use filling from freezer and peppers from garden)

Tuesday

Wednesday

  • tuna quiche; oranges
  • chicken soup leftovers
  • brown bag – turkey & arugula sandwiches (MAKE BREAD); grapes or apples

Thursday

  • eggs; oranges; broth
  • hmmmmmmmm…
  • roast & veggies in slow cooker

Friday

Saturday & Sunday

  • ? leftovers (just me)

Confessions:

  • I still have not made mayo.
  • I spent $17.50 on splurge items at the grocery store today.  Ugh!!  I work so hard to save and then blow it on items we can make at home.  That is stupid.  I MUST make some goodies soon so I won’t be tempted next time.   I also must not go shopping at lunchtime.
  • I plan to eat lots of potatoes in the near future.

Good news:

  • My freezer is finally getting a teeny tiny bit uncluttered and I found a few food items I had been looking for.  Yippee!  Of course, it’s almost time to stop by the butcher for cheap cuts/bones for our English Mastiff which means the freezer will be overflowing again for a while.  Sigh.
  • We only needed to turn on the air conditioning for a few days this week, which means we’ve gone almost a month without it – and that equals substantial savings this summer!  Another yippee!

I’m too tired to work my budget this week.  Obviously I did not stick to necessary items…but out-of-pocket expenses were only $45 total and I don’t intend to purchase any other food this week.

Snacks will be milk, fruit, and hopefully cookies!

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So I’ve been playing around a bit with my topping for apple crisp and I am definitely getting closer.  It’s still so stinkin’ hot here that I have only used the oven 4 times since May, which means I rely on my solar oven to do most of the baking…and that often means crispy baked goods are not happening.  I’ll be trying this out in the oven once it finally cools off for good, but in the meantime, here’s a pretty good version:

  • 10-12 apples, sliced and drizzled with coconut oil (about 1 Tblsp) and sprinkled with cinnamon.  You could also drizzle with honey if you like your apples in a syrupy sauce.  Toss these ingredients together and put them in the dish you plan to bake them in; set aside.  In a mixing bowl, whip together:
  • 1/4 cup butter (can sub coconut oil for dairy-free)
  • 1/4 cup softened or melted coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 Tblsp coconut flour
  • 2 cups almond flour
  • 2 cups shredded coconut
  • 2 cups walnut pieces
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda (optional)

Simply beat well in the order given, then dollop spoonfuls of the mixture over the apples in the baking pan (this recipe would be good for a 9″x13″ pan; I used a round 2-quart pan and it was full to the top).  I baked this in my solar oven at about 300 degrees for a little over an hour; with the honey in this recipe I think I’d be careful not to heat your oven above 350 degrees.  I’ll probably try this at 325 degrees when I make this inside.  As soon as the apples are soft and the topping is browned to your liking, the apple crisp is done!  Serve with homemade ice cream, fresh milk or cream, or coconut milk.  Or just eat it right out of the pan, like I did.  You can always have the ice cream later.

 

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Monday

  • ? just me for breakfast/lunch…scrounge for leftovers
  • beef & broccoli stir-fry w/zucchini & banana squash that are about to go bad

Tuesday

  • eggs and pork sausage; water kefir
  • leftover lentil soup
  • garden arugula salad w/sliced steak, avocado, garden tomatoes, hardboiled eggs, cheese, and fresh lime juice

Wednesday

  • eggs and pork sausage; oranges; broth
  • leftover stir-fry
  • brown bag – turkey & arugula sandwiches; grapes; dilly carrots

Thursday

  • granola and kefir; broth
  • tuna quiche
  • “spaghetti” and meatballs from freezer (bake spaghetti squash and Friday’s breakfast while tuna quiche is baking)

Friday

  • baked eggs; oranges; broth
  • arugula salad w/sliced steak, avocado, garden tomatoes, hardboiled eggs, cheese, and fresh lime juice
  • pizza-topped baked potatoes? (bake apple pie and/or peach crisp while supper is in oven)

Saturday

  • baked apple thing or baked peach thing with kefir
  • lunch at my parents’ (they don’t know this yet, heehee)
  • supper at my parents’ (again! surprise! hehehehehe)

Sunday

  • leftover tuna quiche
  • slow-cooked beef tongue with carrots, onions, and sauerkraut
  • baked chicken of some sort – honey-glazed wings or bbq legs perhaps; whatever veggies need to be used up

Budget-wise: I spent $30 on eggs, sausage, and veggies today.  I’ll be spending less than $10 on milk, and that should be all of our out-of-pocket expenses for this week.  Actual costs for meals and snacks should be around $60, below my $75 budget.  Some of the items on this menu are carry-overs from last week (and were included in last week’s budget) so I’m only figuring actual costs based on the new foods.

Things I need to make but probably won’t: lemonade; mayo; pickled garlic; apple pie (FIND AND MAKE A GAPS CRUST ALREADY, J); banana muffins

Snacks will likely be milk, fruit, and…okay that’s really all I can think of.  We are out of Larabars so I’ll have to make some if I want to use them.  We will head full swing into extracurriculars this week so between that and my teaching schedule I may be scrambling to get meals on the table almost every day of the week.

Now, on to actual food discussion: we’ll eat rice with the stir-fry (probably less than 1/4 cup cooked for me, though the kids will eat more) and I am planning on baked potatoes this week as well.  We have done okay with reintroducing those foods so far, and I feel comfortable about serving them once a week (well, twice with the stir-fry leftovers).  Any more than that, and I feel like I will be compromising by substituting a cheap, less-nutrient-dense food for eggs or a high-quality meat/bone broth or a squash.  I really want to make sure we are concentrating on nutrient density – I believe that is one of the strengths of the GAPS diet.

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