Sunday, November 23, 2014
An affordable Thanksgiving
Yesterday found me wrapping up my shopping for Thanksgiving, which we will have here at home, just the family of 6, ages 16 and up so almost 6 adults, as far as appetites are concerned. I played the game of grocery store roulette and bought what I wanted at the cheapest prices:
Turkey: I took advantage of a price match and now have one 39 cent/lb turkey in the freezer for another time. Joining it,is a 59 cent/lb turkey. I am splurging on an organic, pasture raised, local, heritage breed turkey, that I am able to access through my organic CSA, I will pick that up tomorrow. It's pricey, even with my CSA member discount, at $7/lb. From the turkey, naturally we have our meat portions, but I will also make my own gravy, using butter, all purpose flour, salt, pepper, Bell's seasoning (just bought my one a year box @ $1.99). The caracass will be picked clean, sliced meat reserved for sandwiches and some frozen. Cubed meat will be fzn also for a stew/pot pie/tettrazzini and scraps will be diced and frozen for tacos/chilli/enchilladas. The bone stock will be defatted, frozen in quart containers for future soups, stews, gravies. I still would like to pick up 2 more birds by Christmas, to help get us thru the Winter months. By cooking one turkey/turkey breast a month, we can have affordable meat protein at the table. Meat prices are shooting through the roof!
Mashed potatoes: no need to buy any as we've amassed about 10 lbs recently from the CSA. Milk, butter, salt/pepper and onion powder already on hand.
Sweet potatoes: 3 lb bag @ 99 cents from Aldi's (other shops: 59/79/$1 a lb) I will turn these into sweet potatoe casserole using butter, brown sugar cinnamon, marshmallows ($1/bag)
green bean casserole: lots of deals recently on canned veggies, so I will grab 2 cans off of the pantry shelves knowing that I paid approx 40 cents/can. Cream mushroom soup on hand (50 cents), milk, pepper, soy sauce, french fried onions ($1.99 large tub)
relish tray: home made bread and butter pickles, homemade dilly beans, canned black olives ($1), homemade pickled green tomatoes
Cheese/crackers: box of Ritz ($1.88), tub of Alouette garlic and herb soft cheese $3 (bogo)
sausage stuffing: Jimmy Dean roll pork sage sausage ($3.50), seasoned bread cubes (Aldis-forget the price, but cheap), onion/celery on hand, along with butter, turkey stock from pan, mushrooms ($1.19 large tub)
Crescent rolls (a request): 2 tubes @ $1.27 each after sale plus cpns
White wine (under $10)
Creamed onions: fzn box of Birds Eye onions in cream sauace ($1), add some black pepper, done
Cranberry sauce: homemade and canned-less than $1/jar
Cran-orange relish: navel orange (paid $4/approx 8 oranges), bag of fresh cranberries ($1 Aldi's vs $2.50 at S & S), sugar on hand
Dessert:pumpkin pies will be homemade BUT, I will use Pillsbury pie crusts ($1.50 ea after sale plus cpn), baked pumpkin puree (from CSA), sugar, spices, eggs (Dollar Tree 8 count/$1) and evaporated milk (89 cents). I have a pint of whipping cream ($3? at Price Rite) as well as a tub of vanilla bean ice cream ($1.99) to top a final pie: apple, which I will make again turning to the Pillsbury pie crusts, apples already on hand (paid less than $1/lb) sugar, tapioca, spices, butter.
Tea/coffee always available but I also grabbed a bottle of Cranberry juice for a starter ($1.88)
I cook for a 12 noon serving time, then clean up the kitchen, get the carcass squared away, the bone stock in the CrockPot, and then I can relax. Y.O.Y.O. for supper-grab a plate and heat it up or make a sandwich. Planned overs will get incorporated in the days immediately following, to be sure.