Last week a challenge was sent via bloggieland from Stephanie at Keeper of the Home, to create a menu, a money saving menu, from pantry and freezer items. ¬†This is not the first time I have seen these challenges sent out, it is a common theme, but it is the first time I have felt compelled to not only read it, but to comment, and throw my own personal menu list into the proverbial ring.
I need to do better in the menu planning department, and my freezers(oh yes, plural, three in fact) are all full to bursting, but I am not sure with what! ¬†I also need to do less grocery shopping, and utilize better what we already have in the pantries(oh yes, again plural!).
Also high on my list of reasons for throwing in on this challenge is the savings. ¬†I really would like to try to save money for the adoption we hope to begin next year. ¬†so, for the challenge, since I have already gone on a large shopping trip just before this began, I would like to keep my spending to $60 per week, for the rest of the challenge. ¬†I spent $20 today on milk, onions(4 lbs) cabbage, sauce and cream for making butter, oh and garlic, lots of garlic:-)
For this challenge from Keeper of the Home, we had to plan what we wanted to save, I planned my savings per month, and also inventory what we had in the freezers and pantries. ¬†After the inventory we then had to create a menu using these items. ¬†Whew, that was a challenge in itself, and just a bit astonishing about just how much food we have sitting around waiting to be used. ¬†I should not need to get anything but veggies, fruit and milk for quite a while with what I
unearthed, ahem found.
Found in the freezer;
Sausage, 3 packages, BBQ chicken, 2 lbs ground beef, 1 lb of ground chicken, hot dogs, lotsa lotsa fish, and fresh mussels in broth.
4 packages of shredded zucchini, 4 packages of chopped mixed peppers, 2 bags of stewed tomatoes, 2 bags chopped broccoli, 2 bags corn, 2 bags peas, and a bag of green beans.
There were lots of other random bits of things, but that sums it up for the most part.
Found buried in the pantry;
2 cans pumpkin, multiple jars of tomatoes, both salsa and italian(from last summers harvest), canned mandarin oranges, canned pineapple, canned olives, pickles, jars of spaghetti sauce, jars of canned pears from last summer, 5 lbs of brown rice, multiple bags of dry beans, chickpeas, and lentils, etc. jars of applesauce and lots of pasta, both Gf and regular.
Wowza, that does not even take into account the fresh food I have on hand, yikes we have a lot of food, and yet still have ¬†grocery list of things I need to get, how does that happen?
Can I just now take a moment to let all who have read up to this point know that I do have an inordinate amount of food in my house, but I also feed 3 adults, and three rapidly growing kids, two with nearly hollow bodies in need of constant nourishment, it all gets eaten, all the time!!
So on to the menu
Monday: church softball so it was a simple meal of pizza biscuits with sauce for dipping, carrot sticks and ranch dressing, cheese sticks and juice.
Tuesday: cabbage, carrot potato and keilbasa saute, with applesauce on the side
Wednesday: fish cakes and ambrosia salad, also tortilla chips and leftover pineapple salsa
Thursday: veggie soup with croutons and parmesan cheese(the croutons are from leftover stale bread, and GF bread experiment that went ¬† slightly awry, so will be reborn as toasted herb croutons:-)
Friday: greek salad with grilled chicken, hummus and chips
Saturday: tuna wraps with veggies and dip
Sunday: fresh fish or calamari, thanks to my dad the amazing fisherman!!