Tuesday, July 21, 2009

$3.33 a day: Busy Busy Busy

One of the benefits of being a chef is getting to bring home leftovers sometimes. This is a super dense chocolate cake with ganache. At work, I serve it with whipped cream and raspberry sauce. It is so intense, I can only eat two or three bites. The cake itself is vegan (otherwise I would not be posting it here)..

I realize I have been very lax with my postings... but I am sticking with my $3.33 a day budget even if I'm not posting as much. Frankly, I it is not a matter of choice even though I am working. I still only have $100 a month to use for food. It is NOT easy to make ends meet. My Ex is still unemployed. Today is my day off so I made some food for the week. Above is a variation of a curried groundnut stew. It is full of eggplant, onions, ginger, zucchini, spices, tomatoes and a tiny bit of peanut butter. I need to run to the store and get some cilantro and lime juice to finish it off.

I also made a huge batch of ratatouille/chunky vegetable sauce. It has been a base for many meals.. (I made a batch last week and another today).. You can see in the background, brown rice, chickpeas and brown rice pasta. I am going to boil up the peas and add them to both stews for protein and choose either brown rice or the pasta with each dish. We can get 8 good sized meals out of these two main stews and beans. We'll probably go through half the rice this week and all of the pasta as well.

Knowing me, I'll turn the stews into a soup at one point as well and probably get a few freezer meals.

Ratatouille stew with yellow squash angel hair and tofu

Yellow squash spaghetti with tofu and veggies

In the next couple of months, I'm going to be a guest chef for several weeks at a program run by the New Hampshire Food Bank. I am really looking forward to meeting the people who will take the classes. I think my first classes will be with Seniors. I am going to introduce them to green smoothies!

I am also going to be speaking at the Maine and New Hampshire La Leche League conference in November on meal planning on a budget. It is a 70 minute presentation (without cooking!).. Again, I'm looking forward to doing that. I believe so strongly that it is possible to eat healthy and delicious food on a budget, so having a platform to share what has worked for me and my family is really exciting to me.

Monday, July 06, 2009

$3.33 a day: June weight loss and stats

Raw sushi collard roll

Super spicy ginger, siracha, daikon, avocado.. so delicious and good for you!
The ginger root I got was incredibly fresh and pungent.. probably the best ginger I've ever eaten.

That reminds me; back when I was a kid I used to goto the hole in the wall Japanese restaurant in Denver. They would bring out fresh tofu that was sitting in ginger infused water. It was amazing. Maybe I'll make some fresh tofu tomorrow and use the rest of the ginger that way?

Indian spiced potatoes, peas and shan tofu. So good. I think plain chickpeas would be better than the shan tofu though. The heat level on this dish was off the charts. Lately, I have become even more addicted to heat. I have to be careful when cooking for others. (especially at my job since people in New England can't seem to tolerate the smallest amount...) The other day I made some chipotle cinnamon spiced truffles for work and they were too spicy for my boss.

Wasabi daikon raw slaw... my lowfat sesame ginger wasbi dressing mixed with lentil sprouts, wasabi, cilantro, carrots, scallions and red pepper and topped with Siracha of course. I finished it off with some fresh lime juice as well. The leftovers went into a collard roll up. (no pic)

I made a big batch of burgers to keep in the freezer... Sometimes a veggie burger is the perfect meal..

My baby girl.. I wuff wuf wuff her!

I lost 10 lbs last month! woohoo! 13 the month before. I'm officially on a weight loss roll again. Here's hoping I don't screw it up.

I did a huge stock up at Trader Joes this month. I used 15 bucks of my bulk food fund. I spent 80.81 at Trader Joes and 21.69 at market basket and 6.00 at a farm stand and 6.50 at the health food store on FYH cheese and some herbs.

Trader Joes haul:
Baby Spinach
Chocolate chips
Soy Creamer
7 lbs tofu
Balsamic Vinegar
Brown Rice Pasta (14 lbs.. should last me at least 6 months)
Brown Jasmine Rice
Candied ginger
Blue corn chips
Avocados (8)

Market Basket Haul:
Red peppers
frozen broccoli
bok choy

Farm Stand:
baby arugula

Health food store:
Follow Your Heart Cheese
Dried herbs

I have $17.49 left in my bulk food fund.

Finally, I have been having major issues with my email... so if anyone has sent me something in the last 3 weeks and I haven't responded, please send again. It should be figured out now.. but I think I lost a lot of emails from that time period.