Monday, July 25, 2011

Chick Pea and Cucumber Salad

Last night was the study group for the mid-term I had today. I love that we always do study groups at my house, because it means I get to make lots of food and everyone is well fed while working. I made meatballs, fresh bread (I honestly don't have a recipe to give you for this, but I basically just pour "enough" flour into a bowl, add in some salt and yeast, then mix it together with some room temperature water until it feels right. Then I knead, let rise, shape, let rise, bake) and this salad.

Although the base of this recipe uses beans, I still wanted it to be light and fresh tasting. To that end, I kept the dressing simpler than even I usually do, and really just tried to let each individual ingredient speak for itself, as well as speaking together as a group. Hope you enjoy!

1/2 pound chick peas, cooked and cooled (or two cans)
2 leaves red cabbage, minced
1 stalk celery, minced
1 large cucumber, peeled and diced
1/8 cup parsley, chopped
salt to taste
1 teaspoon white wine or citrus vinegar
2 tablespoons each: lemon juice, vegetable oil

Mix all together. Chill. Serves 4.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Sunday Storage

Over the last week or so (or whenever the last time I did this update was), I've used the following:

Jasmine rice
pasta
most of the chick peas (uh oh. I actually will need to replace these)
1 pound calrose rice
most of the all-purpose (which I also need to replace)

And, I think that's it. I'm probably wrong, but I think that's it.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Saturday Spending

Yay groceries. I got some. I mostly got produce and stuff I was missing for lasagna (okay, stuff I thought I was missing that it turned out I wasn't). Next week I'll probably be a little more focused on meat. I've got plenty of meat in the freezer, but it isn't the stuff I actually am craving, so there's that. Anyway, here's what I got this week:

Fiesta:

$3.25 - orange juice (which you know I can't live without)
$0.66 - yellow onion
$1.69 - popcorn (I don't know)
$1.29 - cream (yay scones)
$0.39 - scallions
$0.34 - sweet potato
$1.00 - cucumbers
$0.39 - bell pepper
$0.41 - tomato
$1.38 - lots of parsley
$0.88 - celery
$1.56 - red cabbage

subtotal: $13.24

Wal-Mart: (really weird Fiesta didn't have these items)

$1.94 - ricotta
$0.92 - lasagna noodles (I know; I actually had these and even if I hadn't I should've made them myself since I'm not supposed to be buying pasta anymore)
$0.41 - tomato (Fiesta had this, but I wanted this one too)

subtotal: $3.27
total: $16.51
total for July: $25.66
remaining balance for July: $14.34

Friday, July 22, 2011

Food Waste Friday

This week, I wasted:

NOTHING!!!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Chocolate, Fig and Ginger Mandelbrot

Mandelbrot are similar to biscotti, except they have fat in them. They're really delicious, and while I don't make them most of the time, this seemed like a good opportunity to use some butter for treats. :) The chocolate flavour is really understated, as I didn't want it to drown out the figs or the ginger. Hope you enjoy!

20 ounces pastry flour
1 heaping tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup butter
4 eggs
1 1/3 - 1 1/2 cups sugar
3 tablespoons cocoa powder
1/2 cup crystallised ginger, chopped
1 - 1 1/2 cups dried figs, chopped
1 tablespoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350F. Sift together flour, baking powder, cocoa powder and salt. Cream butter and sugar. Add eggs, one at a time. Mix in vanilla, then mix in flour mixture until just combined. Stir in figs and ginger. Shape into 5"x2" logs (this should make four) and bake 30-40 minutes (I like to do it closer to 40 minutes, since I seem to break fewer of them while slicing later) and cool for 20 minutes. Slice into 1" thick lengths, and bake again another 15-20 minutes. Cool and store in an airtight container. Makes approximately 4 dozen.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Chicken and Acorn Squash Tagine

I had some chicken, and some acorn squash. I also had a bag of ras eh-hanout that had been sent to me by my friend Warda. I wanted to use them in some way, so I decided to do a tagine. Technically, this isn't really a tagine, since I used a different pan, but we'll all pretend anyway. I really enjoyed this meal, and I hope you all enjoy it as well!

2 stalks celery, chopped
1/2 red bell pepper, chopped
1/2 onion, chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil
pinch ras el-hanout
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 tablespoon harissa

2 chicken breasts, cut into 2" pieces
1 small acorn squash, peeled, deseeded and roughly chopped
1 tablespoon ras el-hanout
1/2 cup olives
1 preserved lemon, chopped
1 can chicken broth

Heat oven to 350F. Fry the celery, bell pepper, onion in the oil, ras el-hanout, tomato paste and harissa. Add to tagine. Rub remaining ras el-hanout into chicken and squash, then add those and all remaining ingredients to the tagine. Cover and bake for one hour. Serves 4.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Sunday Storage

I used up the rest of the kidney beans. I believe I used up some other stuff too, but other than the figs, I've forgotten what those things may be.

Saturday, July 09, 2011

Saturday Spending

I did a little shopping this week too.

Save-a-Lot:

$1.99 - dill pickles
$2.00 - tortilla chips
$1.69 - dill pickles

total: $5.68

Kroger:

$0.68 - potato
$2.79 - eggs

total: $3.47

grand total: $9.15
total for July: $9.15
total available for July: $40
remaining balance: $30.85

Friday, July 08, 2011

Sunday, July 03, 2011

Sunday Storage

I really didn't get a whole lot used up from the pantry this week, aside from some flour. I haven't really been home over the last week, so I'm not too worried about that. More progress next week!

Saturday, July 02, 2011

Saturday Spending

Well, when the dam breaks, it really breaks. I went to the grocery store and kind of lost my mind in there a little bit. I bought a lot. I did need the stuff I got, though I completely forgot to buy eggs. Thankfully, July is a new month so I can buy eggs now. :)

So here's what I spent at Fiesta:

$1.50 - tortilla chips for nachos
$1.89 - bagels
$1.99 - cheese (cheddar)
$1.99 - cheese (blend)
$2.19 - cheese (parm)
$3.51 - whole chicken
$1.69 - 2 cans chicken broth
$2.19 - sugar
$2.19 - cheese (cheddar)
$1.00 - cheese (moz)
$1.18 - corn
$1.99 - salsa
$1.00 - ramen (I know, I know)
$3.22 - apples
$0.35 - zucchini
$1.99 - cream cheese
$0.86 - oranges
$1.62 - eggplant
$2.80 - lychee
$0.99 - cantaloupe
$0.97 - nectarine
$3.38 - apricots
$0.34 - guava
$0.99 - honeydew
$0.84 - plums

Totals:

Money spent: $39.50
Monthly allotment: $40
Amount over monthly allotment for June: $6.71
Remaining balance: $0

All in all, I'm going to call that a win, even though I went $7 over my monthly budget. I hadn't bought groceries since April, and if I can get away spending under fifty dollars for groceries over the course of two months, I feel pretty okay with not having stuck 100% to the monthly budget, since I'm still way under budget for the summer.

Friday, July 01, 2011