Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Finally Taking on the Kitchen

I am a major procrastinator when it comes to my kitchen. Don't get me wrong I love to cook, but I am one of those people who will just go out and buy another jar of seasoning instead of searching my cupboards to see if I already have some. As you can guess I have cupboards that are way to full and tons of extras in there. Over the last few months we have been trying to "live off our pantry" so that we use some stuff up and save some money. This has been a really great thing for us and there were some weeks when I only spent $80 to feed all of us! Even though this has been going so well there was still one area of my kitchen that I was to scared to look at....the spice cabinet! AH! Well I finally went through it ALL the last few days and I worked up a written inventory of what I have.....OK no one needs 3 jars of coriander!!!!

So now that I have a written inventory of my pantry I need to do something with it right? Well I have been haunting the large family websites for ideas on how to feed a large family on a budget (yes I know I don't have a large family but if they can do it with 12 kids I can do it with 2!) and I have come up with some really good ideas. Not only do they have tons of recipes on there that are easy and nutritious they also have meal planning ideas and shopping tips. One of the ideas I have heard for a while now is to only shop once a month....yeah this is a little out there for me....I mean once a month???I am taking baby steps here people and I have worked up a menu for a month but only plan to shop every two weeks for a while to get the hang of it all.

Being that I have TONS of certain spices I took my inventory sheet out and then came up with recipes that will use them, as well as setting certain nights every week to the same dish (i.e. Mondays are spaghetti night). This in theory should save quite a bit of money since I can buy certain items in bulk and then actually use them (novel concept over here). Plus all the meals that I chose are simple to make with only a few more buying 12 items for one dish! It will be interesting to see how this project works out. I know that at first I am either going to have way to much or way to little of certain items (milk, bread, etc) until I am able to gage the correct amounts per week so I know that I will be going to the store more than once every two weeks for a while but it shouldn't be that hard to figure out right? I will let you know.....

On another cooking related front by garden was a no go....I managed to get one cucumber plant to grow, one tomato plant, and 3 onions. My bell peppers are scrawny and not producing and my zucchini got ate by snails. I did manage to get some basil and flat leaf parsley to grow by bringing them into the kitchen where I can remember to water them. OK so world famous gardener I am not...but hey I tried! Not sure if I will try again....was a lot of money and work for nothing.

1 comments on "Finally Taking on the Kitchen"

Sweet Tater on May 13, 2009 at 9:50 PM said... sound like me! I was just thinking how I don't even have room to put everything IN my pantry it's so crowded with stuff I never use...and yet I still go to the store and buy more. Naturally. :) Hey, feel free to send some ideas my way...and maybe a link to one of those websites or two. :) I do know I have found out how to freeze all kinds of things, and that helps. I make homemade biscuits, bread, and even pancakes in double quantity, then freeze what's leftover, so I have quick heat ups for later in the month. Works really well, actually, and it's cheaper and tastier than the storebought, usually. Figured if I'm gonna' mess up my kitchen baking, I might as well make a bunch so I don't have to do it again for a while. Works out pretty well.


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