It feels like it has been a long time since my last post; however, not much has happened.
I got to the grocery stores around 1pm today, meaning they had everything I needed in stock! No free items today. Sad, but I sort of stuck to my budget.
At CVS, I stopped in for some chocolate. The big bags on M&Ms were on sale 2/$5. I used $1/2 coupon that was in the paper this morning, paying $2 each. I saved $1.99 on each bag. And I’m eating them right now.
At Kroger I picked up a few things needed for my meal plan this week. I used only 2 coupons, so that’s not good. $42.68 originally, spent 39.99. Wow, there’s my budget right there!
At Albertson’s I found many good deals. Sunny D 64oz are on sale for .,79 (limit 4), so you know I bought four bottles! GM cereals are on sale for $2 each. I bought Golden Grahams and Trix and used a $1/2 coupon, paying 1.50 each! Yoplait yogurts are on sale for .40 each! I bought six and used .40/6 coupon, which was doubled, paying only .26 each! Red Baron forzen pizzas were on sale for 2.88! A great deal! I combined this deal with $1 off coupon, paying only $1.88! Whoohoo! My total would have been $24.50, but I paid $11.63, saving $12.87!
Total Before: $78.61
Total Spent: $55.62 (bad girl)
Total Saved: $22.99, not doing well, October, not doing well at all)
Alex and I share four dinners together this week. Here’s the meal plan:
Steak With Bernaise Sauce, serves 2
I got this out of a French Cookbook I bought for $1.99 on the clearance rack outside of Borders. I’ve never made it before, so it will be a first for you and me. It sounds delicious!
2 beef sirloin steaks, about 1″ thick (I’m using steaks from Albertson’s buy one get two free fiasco last week)
salt and pepper
1/4 c unsalted butter, diced
1 stalk of tarragon (could not find stalks at Kroger or Albertson’s, so I paid $5 for the only bottled Tarragon spice I could find)
1 stalk of chervil (same as above)
1 t chopped shallot (I found this at Kroger; it’s a hybrid of a garlic and an onion)
2 black peppercorns, crushed (bought a peppercorn grinder for 1.99 at Kroger)
1 T dry white wine
1 T white wine vinegar (there was only one brand at Kroger; it was between the japanese rice vinegar and regular vinegar)
1 egg yolk
1/2 t each of tarragon, parsley and chervil, to garnish
Preheat broiler. (I use “broil” on my oven [it makes the top burner inside the oven turn on instead of the bottom one])
Oil broiler rack, add steak and season with salt and pepper. (I suggest using tin foil underneath)
Broil 1 to 3 minutes on each side, according to taste.
Meanwhile, make sauce.
Melt butter in a small saucepan.
Put tarragon and chervil stalks, shallot, peppercorns, wine and vinegar in a small saucepan, bring to a boil and boil until reduced to 2 teaspoons.
Put egg yolk in food processor with 1 t water and process briefly to combine.
With motor running at low speed, pour in reduced liquid.
Then pour in butter slowly to make a thick sauce.
Add herbs, salt and pepper and serve immediately with steaks.
My book says to serve with French Fries. Those French…
Pork Chow Mein, serves 2
6 oz med. egg noodles
12 oz pork filet
2 T sunflower oil (find it with olive oil)
2 crushed garlic cloves
2 T dark soy sauce
3 T chinese rice wine or dry sherry
1 T toasted sesame seeds (I used bottled, found in the spices)
Cook noodles, then drain
Thinly slice pork
Heat sunflower oil in pan and cook pork over high heat
Add sesame oil with garlic
cook on high 3-4 minutes
reduce heat and stir in noodles, soy sauce, and wine
stir fry 2 minutes
if noodles begin to stick, add water
Sprinkle with sesame seeds.
Entrecote Bordelaise, serves 2
You guessed it, another recipe from my French cookbook.
7 oz bone marrow (optional) (Yes, defintely optional. I am not brave enough to try it yet)
1/4 c butter
2 oz shallots, finely chopped
3/4 c red Bordeaux wine (I could not find this wine at Kroger. You might have to stop by an actual wine store. I just got Merlot at Kroger and am hoping it turns out ok)
Bouquet garni (this is a bunch of spices [usually parsley, thyme and a bay leaf] and put in a coffee filter and tied with string. You often soak it to let the essense of the spices seep out into the broth, without having the actual tangible spice in your broth [thank you, French cookbook])
1 T olive oil
1 lb piece boneless beef sirloin steak
salt and pepper
1 T chopped parsley
Put marrow, if using, in a saucepan, add enough water to cover and bring to a boil.
Remove from heat and set aside.
Heat half the butter in a saucepan, add shallots and cook, stirring occassionally, 3 to 5 minutes.
Add wine and bouquet garni, bring to a boil and boil until reduced by half.
Meanwhile, heat oil in skillet, add steak and fry 2 to 4 minutes on each side, according to taste.
Transfer to warmed plate, season and keep warm.
Remove bouquet garni from sauce and season sauce with salt and pepper.
Reduce heat and whisk in remaining butter.
Cut steak diagonally into 4 thick slices.
Drain marrow, cut diagonally into 4 slices and add to sauce.
Pour sauce over steak, sprinkle with parsley and serve with fries. (Ha! Fries)
Baked Pork Chops With Rice, serves 4
If you’re like me after a long day at work, sometimes you don’t want to stand over the stove for 20 minutes straight. This is the recipe for you.
8 pork chops
1 1/4 c. evaporated milk
3/4 c. water
1 tsp. dehydrated parsley
1/8 tsp. pepper
2 c. instant rice
1 can cream of chicken soup
2 T. dehydrated onion
1 1/2 tsp. salt
Brown and cook chops for 20 minutes. (or in a george foreman, a family favorite)
Blend milk and soup.
Add water, onion, parsley, salt and pepper.
Mix with rice.
Pour 1/4 of mixture into 9 x 13 x 2-inch baking dish.
Place chops on top, then remaining rice mixture.
Cover with foil. Bake at 325° for one hour.
So there’s the meal plan. Enjoy!
This is getting to be a long post, but I must tell you, Alex gave me an Ipod Touch for my birthday and it is the BOMB (whoa, stay back in time, 8th grade…)! I have downloaded way too many apps, but I have two that I am dying to tell you about, all you Iphone people. The first one is called “Produce Guide” by Shroomies. It has information (including pictures) on loads of fruits and veggies. It tells you the season, what part of the country they are found in, and, are you ready, what to look for when picking fruit at the market. How many times have I gone to the store and bought a “shallot,” knowing nothing about it, only to find out I bought a gross one! Ok, never, but thanks to “Produce Guide” I know I bought a good shallot today. And it’s not generic. Under “apples,” it lists alphabetically all the diff types of apples. Best of all, it’s FREE! Download this one today, grocery shoppers; I give it an A+!
The second app you must not live without is called “Groceries Grocery List” by Ontomni. Now I have previously bought Grocery IQ, Grocery Gadget and the Price Book, hoping to find an all-inclusice app which combines a grocery list, coupons, and lowest price history all in one. I have yet to find it. BUT, “Groceries Grocery List” is the closest thing. It comes with an index of all the types of food you could possibly want to buy at the market (well, chervil wasn’t in there) and you just point and it adds it to your list. This app also lets you have multiple lists for people like me who go to two different stores. You have to enter in the prices though, of course, but it let you enter normal price, sale price and how much your coupon is worth. It lets you set a budget. Today I had a list totaling 5 bucks, so I knew I needed to cross of those Oreos. It was very helpful and it organizes your list by the store’s aisles. It cut my shopping time in half today. It costs 1.99.