Thursday, January 27, 2011

Project Food Budget - Week 3: My Cravings Led Me Astray

This week started out not too shabby. Since I bought so much last week, the only things I needed to refresh were milk and bananas. Seemed easy enough. I don't know what got into me but when I went into the store yesterday to buy the two items, my estrogen had other plans. Stupid, silly hormones!
I guess part of it was just being out and wondering if we needed anything in addition to what we had at home, plus the boredom of having leftovers.

I tried to talk myself down from my proverbial ledge, even putting one item back. I tried to talk myself out of certain things: "This will not benefit you. You will feel like crap later and feel sad. You will only crave more." It didn't work.
The 'bad' items in question were: baked goods, in particular, a chocolate-iced gob-like chocolate cake sandwich stuffed with bright yellow cream and topped with matching dollop, in Steeler-esque style. The other two items were chocolate-chip cookie pie slices topped with Steeler colors. Seriously. Need I say more?
I also bought fried chicken (from the deli) and a pre-made pizza, baby food and a loaf of Mancini's bread. Yikes.

Sigh...well, I was right about feeling like crap later that day. After the sugar binge, within a few hours I felt tired, moody, and achy. Yep, I know. Why do I keep letting myself do this?

All in all, I spent $35.21 for the week, which is under my $75/week budget, but monthly, that puts us a little over the $300/month. I guess it's not too bad considering what I used to spend.

With that being said, here are some recipes I made over the last part of last week and over the weekend.
Bacon and Tomato Frittata
Serves: 4

1 carton (16 oz) fat-free egg product or 8 eggs
1/4 tsp. salt-free garlic-and-herb seasoning (like Mrs. Dash)
1/4 tsp. salt
1 T. canola oil
4 medium green onions, sliced (1/4 cup)
2 large plum tomatoes, sliced
1/2 cup shredded reduced-fat cheddar cheese

2 T. real bacon pieces (I used more)
2 T. reduced-fat sour cream

In medium bowl, mix egg product, garlic-and-herb seasoning and salt; set aside.
In large ovenproof skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Add onions; cook and stir 1 minute. Reduce heat to med-low. Pour in egg mixture. Cook 6 to 9 minutes, gently lifting edges of cooked portions with spatula so that uncooked egg mixture can flow to bottom of skillet, until set.
Set oven to broil. Top frittata with tomatoes, cheese and bacon. Broil with top 4 inches from heat 1 to 2 minutes or until cheese is melted. Top each serving with sour cream.

Pepper Pasta (this was modified from the original that used sweet Italian sausage and rigatoni)
Serves: 4

8 oz. pasta (I used fettuccine)
8 oz. ground turkey, browned in skillet
2 bell peppers (I used red and yellow), cut into 1 1/2" x 1" strips
1 cup thinly sliced red onion
1 tsp. dried Italian seasoning
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 cup Light Creamy Caesar salad dressing
2 T. grated Parmesan cheese
Chopped fresh parsley

Cook pasta according to directions. Drain; reserve 1/2 cup cooking water. In large skillet, cook ground turkey until no longer pink. Remove turkey and with drippings in skillet, add peppers, onion, seasoning and salt. I think I added a little olive oil to this as well. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until just tender, 15-20 minutes. Remove from heat, stir in pasta, dressing, reserved pasta water and cooked ground turkey. Serve with sprinkle Parmesan and parsley.

Creamy Carrots (I got this from my MOPS group. It's delicious!)

2 lbs. carrots, peeled and cooked until tender, cut into 1/2 inch pieces (I used the baby carrots in a bag)
1/2 cup carrot cooking liquid
1 cup mayo
2 T. minced onion
2 T. (I added more) horseradish
salt and pepper
1/2 cup breadcrumbs (I used Panko variety)
Fresh parsley
Parmesan cheese
4 T. butter, cut into small pieces
(I also added some leftover ground turkey)

Mix mayo and cooking liquid (always 2 parts mayo to 1 part liquid; adjust to your liking)
Add onion and horseradish, salt and pepper. Mix with cooked carrots, and spread into a 9x13 pan. Top with breadcrumbs, paprika, parsley and parmesan. Dot butter all over. Bake at 375°F., uncovered, for 15-20 minutes.

Here are other fellow food budget bloggers:


reluctant veggie said...

i always find that when i just "go" to the store, i end up with a lot of impulse buys and things we don't need.

maybe it would be helpful to make sure you only go to the store when you have the list in hand. might prevent the sugary snacks from ending up in the cart too.

Jenna said...

I'M SO HUNGRY RIGHT NOW. Love these recipes.

Yum Yum said...

Chocolate gob like dessert with Steelers colors? Oh my. Must have. When I tried to cut down on bad food and cut the budget, I avoided the chips/snacks/cookie aisles and the bakery. Wouldn't even let myself glance at them. I only allowed myself stuff on the list. Eventually I stopped craving chips but every so often, I simply must devour Fritos or Sun Chips! The frittata looks sooo good!