I’m in Week 3 of the annual Clean Out The Pantry Game and starting to see a lot of white space in the cabinets and the freezers.
Yes, multiple freezers.
I’m Southern and it’s in my DNA to cram extra appliances in the garage.
Mid-January I took inventory of the food I had in reserve and put together a two-week menu plan, and this past Sunday I went back through what’s left and found at least another week’s worth of dinners although I’m sure the upcoming canned sardines tossed in whole wheat pasta will go down in history as The Worst Meal Mom’s Ever Served.
For the most part, I’ve stuck to the plan to buy only the essential fresh items (produce, eggs, cheese, etc.) and my grocery bills for the last three weeks have been $10, $50, and $13, respectively.
Clearly, the $50 week was when I sent my husband to the grocery store for milk and bread.
We’ve had a lot of soup (white chicken chili, chicken tortilla, French onion, to name a few) and cornbread (guess who found out she had FOUR containers of cornmeal in the cabinet) but the weather’s been cold and no one has complained too loudly except for the night I served seafood gumbo and the kids discovered that okra, in its original state, comes without breading.
I was able to stay on plan even during the Super Bowl – I combined frozen spinach, a small jar of marinated artichokes and a package of cream cheese for a chip dip, opened a tucked-away specialty jar of olive spread to serve over baguette slices (made the bread from the fifty pound sack of flour I bought last fall), and used one of the six jars of hot sauce from the pantry to toss over the chicken wings.
We’re about ready to wrap up this plan for the year because next week the in-laws are coming for a visit and by that time I’ll be down to storage bags filled with mystery freezer-burned product and the green bean casserole that no one touched the first time and yet I felt compelled to freeze it and try, try again.
Suddenly, that sardine pasta doesn’t look so bad.
Have a nice day.