Friday, June 20, 2014

Fridge cleaning and saving the food budget

 While I try in earnest to keep an eye on perishables in the fridge, pushing what has to go or freezing it for another time, there comes a time when a major overhaul is needed. I do go through the fridge weekly, but now that I am off work for a while, and before my hand is casted, I wanted to go through the fridge, ruthlessly. I limited my scope to the refrigerator portion of the fridge. All freshly wiped down, sorted, organized, I am quite happy with my efforts. This is a smaller than I care for, sized refrigerator, but since we're renting, it'll have to do. Pictured above, on the top shelf, working left to right: quart of Greek yogurt with some individual yogurts behind. Summer's cost cutting means that only quart containers are expected to be purchased over the Summer. OJ made from concentrate, home made and canned apple sauce, a tub of lite sour cream (I am thinking Ambrosia salad soon), a pint of whipping cream (cheaper than the stuff in an aerosol canister and a small luxury atop home made Jello or pudding), baggie of hard boiled eggs (Dollar Tree 8 ct/$1-soon to be made into egg salad for Sat sandwiches), a large tub (blue lidded) of home made chicken noodle vegetable soup (today's lunch with crackers), a container of home made stock on top of that, and finally a small container holding l/o rice and green beans (just add a protein and it's a lunch for one). In the center front: an open pkg of hotdogs (thinking beanies and weanies soon),  a baggie with some roast chicken (tacos? chicken salad?),  a plate with about 2 sandwiches' worth of meat loaf (or perhaps atop a pizza or in a pasta dish), a small tub of home made apple sauce,. Finally, to the far tight, a tub of turkey breast, a pkg of honey ham, a pkg of bologna (all Aldi's products). Summer months rarely see purchased lunch meats (another cost cutting measure).
 The middle shelf, to the right, holds the meat/deli drawer. We usually only ever have cheese there, along with Aldi's sliced Pepperoni. To the left, are various jars containing home canned goods-mostly condiments such as taco sauce, pickles, home made tartar sauce, relishes, jams.

The bottom shelf holds (from left to right): a pkg of pie crusts, a baggie of organic rhubarb, a pint blueberries,a large baggie with l/o salad, a large head of leaf lettuce with a huge cabbage behind it, in the back. To the right, a tub of fruit salad (see below) and 3, 8 ct pkgs of eggs. The one in the front, with the pink writing, holds the free range eggs from the organic farm. In back are the $1/8 ct medium sized eggs that I use in baking, cooking and to hard boil (another cost saving measure). The very bottom bins hold my fresh vegetables: savoy cabbage, mustard and turnip greens, arugula, carrots, 1 Vidalia onion (a huge one for burgers), 3 mushrooms in a baggie, 1/2 a head of organic leaf lettuce, a head of Romaine, Japanese salad turnips, 1 cuke, some French radishes, celery. Going into the new month, I feel good, food wise. Additionally, we will continue with Monday pick ups at the organic CSA.

Large jars of like items were decanted together, large jars with little remaining had their contents decanted into re-purposed food jars to open up real estate in the fridge. I did toss a tub of pumpkin spice cream cheese-I directly asked DD if she'd ever eat it; she replied, "No." so out it went. No use hanging on to it.
 Fridge clean out pushed me to make this fruit salad, to use up the rest of a cantaloupe, one of the pints of blueberries that I had, some linguering Italian kiwi. I also added a chopped apple, a can of pineapple chunks. If not a snack, this will also be served for bfst. I like to have fruit in the morning. I also have some grapes and cherries that have been out for snacking. As this fruit cup is eaten down, I envision adding grapes and cherries to it. Use it before we lose it.  Besides what little is stored (fruit) in the fridge, my fresh supply is currently limited to bananas, 1 pineapple, apples. Canned and frozen are also available.
DD asked me to make her a lunch to take to work, while she got ready this morning. Since I was doing a fridge clean out, chef's salad it was! Leftover tosssed salad (organic baby salad greens, Japanese salad turnips, cuke, French radishes, topped with 2 hard boiled eggs, 1 slice each turkey breast and honey ham-chopped up, some grated cheese (a mix of NY state sharp Cheddar and goat's milk Cheddar), chive, the remaining pickled onions, some dill pickle chips, 2 sliced tomatoes-cut up. I poured the rest of the creamy Italian dressing into a small, Tupperware container, along with a bit of Ranch dresssing. Added an apple to her lunch beg, she was good to go! As mentioned in an earlier post, the boys and I will have the aforementioned chicken soup.

1 comment:

Aunty Bee said...

I now will have to look through my fridge tomorrow after seeing all your hard work. The salad looked good, no salad for us at the moment more like soup and leftovers it's cold.
Sitting by the fire watching the rugby tonight.