Use it up, use what we have, continues to be our mantra.
Friday (not pictured) was the tortellini soup I made ahead, served with l/o holiday fancy crackers, now moved to a smaller, yellow, Tupperwar storage tub.
Florentine style lasagna, normally an expensive treat, but much more affordable when I do the following:
-no cook noodles from Dollar Tree
-grated Parmesan-Romano cheese on sale plus coupon, I paid about 99 cents for this tub
-69 cent 29 oz can of tomato sauce turned into a quick marinara with the addition of spices
-sale plus coupon cottage cheese mixed with sale plus coupon ricotta to cut down on the amount of more expensive ricotta
-marked down block of mozzarell ($1.99) that I hand grated.
-2 cans of spinach that I got on sale plus cpn, paying something like 49 cents/can
While we are in a spending freeze, adding special meals like this makes it not seem like we are depriving ourselves. I am also offering up alternatives, digging deep into the pantry as I do. We are out of juice, and down to one bottle of medicinal soda that I like to keep on hand for unexpected migraines. Instead, I am offering up homebrewed iced tea and generic "koolaid" using up surplus sugar bought around the holidays for little $, spending something like $1.49/4 lb bag, a few of which were 99 cents due to added coupons.