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    How to eat well on a food stamp budget: $68.88

    How to eat well on a food stamp budget: $68.88
    By Pervaiz Shallwani, For The Associated Press Wed Apr 14, 11:41 am ET


    How well can a family of four eat on just $68.88 a week? For more than 38 million Americans, it's more than a matter of conjecture.

    With job growth and the economy still only sputtering along, a record number of Americans have turned to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, the formal name for federal food stamp program.

    At the end of last year, roughly 1 in 8 Americans received food stamps, the highest rate ever, according to Lisa Pino, the program's deputy administrator. During the past two years alone, another nearly 12 million people enrolled in the program.

    How much a family gets per month is determined by a number of factors, but typically ranges from less than $100 to more than $500. The national average for a family of four at the end of 2009 was $275.53 a month, or about $68.88 a week.

    Despite growing dependence on food stamps, the popular impression is that the meals you can make with them are bleak.

    To find out how well you can eat on food stamps, the AP asked two chefs and a magazine food editor to plan out seven days of meals for a family of four using that budget: $68.88.

    Food stamp officials note that the program is meant to supplement a household's food budget, not be its only spending. But to best illustrate what's possible or not on a very tight budget, we asked the participants to work with the food stamp budget only. "It was tough. You really have to think outside the box," says Jose Garces, a Food Network Iron Chef and James Beard award-winning chef from Philadelphia. "When you are used to creating food the way we do, it takes you back."

    Though not everyone succeeded in staying within budget, the lessons learned were universal. All three said planning and careful shopping were key, as was a willingness to recast leftovers. They also championed chicken as an inexpensive and versatile protein.

    Here's how they managed:

    ~~~~~

    Bill Telepan of Telepan restaurant in New York


    Telepan approached the food stamp challenge with the same sustainable eating philosophy he uses at his restaurant. He favors high-quality, unprocessed ingredients (organic when possible) and plenty of from-scratch cooking. "The problem with the way some people spend food stamps is by buying processed foods," he says. "I wanted to buy everything fresh and cook from scratch. You are not going to do it every day. But do it two or three times a week and then make enough so you heat it up."

    Processed foods may sometimes seem less expensive, but they are harder to stretch and generally not as healthy. Telepan also looked for more seasonal foods, which generally are cheaper. But even without buying the organic, grass-fed meats he favors, Telepan still came in nearly $20 over budget. Some aggressive use of coupons, sales and bulk shopping probably could bring his total closer to the goal.

    When constructing his menu, Telepan began by selecting the protein and building out from there. This ensured the meals were satisfying.

    He also assembled his meal plan backward, starting with each day's dinner, then sorting out how to use the leftovers in other meals. For example, the leftovers from Monday's roasted chicken dinner became a salad for lunch on Tuesday. And ziti that was served with broccoli, toasted garlic and shell beans on Wednesday got a makeover with meatballs two nights later.

    Of course, cooking from scratch is more work, which many busy families will find daunting. Telepan advocates involving the whole family in the cooking. "People look at cooking as a chore," he says. "In the end, if people all help out it makes it fun."

    Where the money went:


    Telepan's menu came to $87.76, nearly $20 over budget. The biggest chunk of that $31.01 was spent on produce, with another $22.48 on dry goods such as bread, pasta, rice, beans and oatmeal. Meat two whole chickens ands 2 pounds of ground beef accounted for another $18.62. A savvy shopper could use coupons, sales and bulk purchases to get his menu closer to budget.

    ___

    Anna Last, editor of Everyday Food magazine


    Last focused on stretching her ingredients as far as possible and budgeting her time as much as her cash.

    When planning out the week, she was careful not to schedule too many time-consuming recipes in a row. When she planned the chili garlic chicken legs one night, she followed it with an easier rice and beans the next.

    Like Telepan, she avoided processed foods. Not only are whole foods often more nutritious, they usually are easier to stretch. "Cooking on a budget and actually cooking means cooking without using packaged foods," she says. "Packaged food can often be not as nutritious for you. You are also paying for the convenience sometimes. Pasta sauce is a convenience. Cooking it yourself, you know what's in it. There is less sodium. There is less fat. It's those sorts of things that you have to think of as well."

    How she shopped also was part of her plan for staying on budget. If possible, she says don't shop when hungry or with your children, both of which can prompt unplanned purchases. And always use a list; it makes shopping faster because you only look for what you need. "It also helps you avoid buying extra things," she says. "To me, writing the list is the most important thing."

    When selecting foods, Last started with foods she liked, as well as basic staples. She also made sure to buy foods with multiple uses such as flour, oil and spices. But she splurged where she could, as with buttermilk and andoiuille sausage. She simply bought those items in smaller amounts or made sure she had uses for leftovers. "Throw out nothing," she says. "If you want a special ingredient, figure out what else to do with it."

    This is where Last turned to a kitchen sink stew, building around extra chicken legs and adding anything that was leftover from the week. "You can use almost any vegetable in it."

    Where the money went:


    Last spent a total of $68.49, giving her 39 cents to spare. Nearly $22 of that was spent on about 14 pounds of meat, mostly chicken, ground beef and a bit of bacon. About another $22 was spent on produce, with the remaining money split between dry goods and dairy, including milk, eggs and cheese.

    ___

    Jose Garces of Philadelphia


    Garces' signature style is to dress up simple foods with plenty of ethnic flavors. And because seasonings both dry spices and fresh herbs_ tend to be inexpensive, his is an approach that works well when trying to make the most of a small budget.

    Inexpensive basics such as pasta, beans, greens and potatoes can get tons of flavor from spices and herbs. The same foods also can taste radically different from one meal to the next Indian flavors one night, Asian the next and Mexican on the third.

    Garces suggests that budget shoppers start in the grocer's ethnic aisle, where the products generally are less expensive. Budget cooking "traces back to roots in ethnic cooking," he says. "If you look back in history, people had to survive, and using inexpensive products became ways to survive and using those inexpensive products became traditional dishes."

    To create his menu, Garces drew on his Mexican roots, as well as his love of Indian food. Beans, spices, herbs and produce are at the heart of both cuisines and are among the least expensive ingredients at the grocer. If cooking ethnic dishes intimidates you, head to the library, which should have plenty of books covering plenty of cuisines.

    On his menu, an inexpensive chipotle pepper gives a kick to meatloaf. Smokey paprika adds depth to roasted chicken. "It's all about shopping and buying the right amounts," he says. "Buy products that contain a ton of flavor. Chorizo typically has paprika, black pepper, garlic, cumin and a lot of pork fat."

    Where the money went:

    Garces spent $69.54, just 66 cents over budget. Nearly $23 went to meat, including high-flavor items such as chorizo and bacon. Another $18 was spent on dry goods and flavorful foods, such as salsa, roasted peppers, chipotles in adobo sauce, paprika and maple syrup. The rest was split mostly between dairy and produce, including garlic, avocado and lemons.

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20100414/...g4aG93dG9lYXQ-
    Laissez les bon temps rouler! Going to church doesn't make you a Christian any more than standing in a garage makes you a car.** a 4 day work week & sex slaves ~ I say Tyt for PRESIDENT! Not to be taken internally, literally or seriously ....Suki ebaynni IS THAT BETTER ?

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    I never soak dry beans and they cook fine for me, usually in a hour and a half to two hours. But I can never get brown rice done no matter how long its cooked. I don't see how anyone could feed four for that amount a week.

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    On A Budget? Ways to Eat Ramen for Dinner
    by Babble.com, on Wed Jul 6, 2011


    Times are tight, budgets are pinched. We had two dollars left in our food budget on Tuesday of last week, so I buzzed to the store and bought the only thing I could think of. Ramen. At 17 cents a package, ramen has to be the best food deal out there. And, it’s a fun deal, too. Because a packet of ramen isn’t just soup waiting to be made. It’s actually a blank canvas ready to be turned into art. Here are 10 super-simple ways to pimp out your ramen and make it into a simple, satisfying dinner.

    1. Veggie Ramen : Toss a tablespoon of butter into a skillet. Add 2 tablespoons each of thinly-sliced carrots, frozen green beans, frozen white corn, and edamame. Cook just until softened. Add a packet of Pork Ramen, 2 cups of water, and cook until the noodles are cooked through, about 6 minutes. Add seasoning packet. Serve and enjoy.

    2. Egg Foo Ramen. In a small bowl, whisk an egg with 1 tablespoon of water until well beaten. Bring 2 cups of water to a boil in a small saucepan. Pour egg into the water, then add the noodles. Cook just until tender. Season with seasoning packet. Garnish with sliced green onions.

    3. Chinese Chicken Salad. Shred 1/4 a head of cabbage, 1 breast of chicken, and 1/4 white onion. Add 1 package of crushed Chicken-flavored Ramen. In a small bowl, whisk together the seasoning packet, 2 tablespoons of oil, 2 tablespoons of white vinegar, and 2 tablespoons of sugar. Toss dressing into salad, serve and enjoy.

    4. Ham Fried Ramen. A simple take on Fried Rice, cook a packet of Pork Ramen until the noodles are tender. Drain completely. In a skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of sesame oil and 1 tablespoon olive oil until sizzling. Add 1/4 cup diced ham and 1/4 cup of frozen peas & carrots to the oil. Immediately toss in the noodles. Crack an egg into the mixture and stir until well cooked and distributed around the noodle mixture. Season with soy sauce, garnish with a handful of diced green onions.

    5. Parmesan Ramen. Cook a packet of ramen noodles. Save the flavoring packet for another day. Once the noodles are cooked, drain the water from them completely. Top with a pat of butter, a bit of freshly-shredded parmesan, and some chopped parsley.

    6. Chicken Noodle Ramen. Boil 3 cups of water, 1/4 cup carrots, 1/4 cup of celery, and 1/4 cup shredded chicken. Once the carrots and celery are softened (about 6-8 minutes), add a packet of Chicken Ramen and the seasoning packet. Cook until the Ramen is tender.

    7. Chili Lime & Shrimp Ramen. Cook a packet of Chili Ramen according to package directions. Toss with 1/4 cup diced scallions, 1 cup of cooked shrimp, and a lime wedge.

    8. Easy Ramen Lasagna. Place 4 squares of uncooked ramen noodles into the bottom of a 911 baking dish. Cover with a layer of cooked and crumbled Italian sausage, your favorite canned spaghetti sauce, and a layer of cottage cheese mixed with chopped spinach. Top with an ample amount of spaghetti sauce. Cover with a hefty bunch of shredded mozzarella. Cover and bake in an oven preheated to 350 degrees for 30-40 minutes. Remove the foil 10 minutes before baking is finished to brown up the top of your cheese.

    9. Pad Thai Ramen. Cook a packet of Pork Ramen according to package directions. Just before you add the flavoring packet, drain most of the water from the pan (leaving about 2 tablespoons worth of water), then add 1/2 teaspoon cream peanut butter, the juice of 1 lime, 1/2 teaspoon of vinegar, 1/2 teaspoon soy sauce, a pinch of garlic and onion powder, and a drizzle of sesame oil. Mix together until very well mixed. Garnish with chopped cilantro and peanuts.

    10. Mandarin Ramen Salad. Cook Chicken Ramen according to package directions. Drain water completely, reserve spice packet for dressing. Toss cooked ramen with 1 small package of coleslaw mix, 2 stalks of diced celery, 1 can mandarin oranges (drained), and 2 tablespoons of white vinegar mixed with the flavoring packet and 2 tablespoons sugar. Garnish with diced scallions.

    http://blogs.babble.com/family-kitch...en-for-dinner/
    Last edited by Jolie Rouge; 07-07-2011 at 09:42 PM.
    Laissez les bon temps rouler! Going to church doesn't make you a Christian any more than standing in a garage makes you a car.** a 4 day work week & sex slaves ~ I say Tyt for PRESIDENT! Not to be taken internally, literally or seriously ....Suki ebaynni IS THAT BETTER ?

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    I saw that on Yahoo yesterday, some of those look really good!!

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    u would be surprised on what u have to do when thats all u have. food stamps and local food banks i make it with the 3 of us and no help anywhere else

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    15 Crock Pot Meals in One Day – Frugal Meal Planning for Busy People



    Mama Inspired website shares a shopping list, prep instructions and recipes for fifteen crock pot meals that can be frozen until your ready to cook. A little planning and a couple hours of concentrated effort can help a busy parent have a selection of pre-measured packaged meals to choose from.

    Just select a meal from the freezer, unthaw, unpackage and place in a crock pot, set timer and hours later a delicious meal will be ready to eat upon your return.

    Click here to read the article and recipes: http://www.mamainspired.com/2013/01/...t-dinners.html

    I did it again! Only this time- I didn't cook any meat (apart from ground beef) ahead. Everything is going in the crock pot! So, it only took me 2.5 hours to create all of my dinners into individual bags. Honestly, 30 minutes included me trying to figure out how on earth to use my food saver system!

    All recipes are my own creation. No "measurement" is exact. When I say "onion", I mean "grab a handful of chopped onion and add it into the bag". Same goes for all the veggies I have listed. Also, when I say "onion" or "potato" it means chopped up. MOST of my dinners are Paleo, or have a variation for Paleo. A couple are not, but they're good!

    All recipes are crock pot recipes. ALL may need a little more liquid added in the last few hours of cooking. All recipes will feed 4-6 (adult) people. OR for me: dinner one night and leftovers the next!

    When I do "mass crockpot dinners" I do at least 2 bags of every recipe. Some I do 3 or 4, that's how I get to the total of 40. No, there are not 40 different recipes, that'd be too hard!

    *****

    Here are 15 of my favorite crock pot recipes.

    *When preparing the bags, keep the meat raw. Take proper precautions and appropriate cleanliness for raw meats!*

    POT ROAST- 1 chuck roast (2.5-3 pounds), carrots, onion, potatoes (red, or sweet for paleo) garlic, thyme, salt and pepper. 16 oz beef broth.

    FRENCH SHREDDED BEEF- 1 chuck roast (2.5-3 pounds), 4 tsp homemade ranch seasoning, 1 tsp homemade italian seasoning, onion, garlic, 16 oz beef broth. Serve on bread, or serve alone for paleo as shredded beef.

    GREEN CHILI BEEF- 1 chuck roast (2.5-3 pounds), 1 jar green salsa, garlic, onions

    CHICKEN FAJITAS- 4-6 breasts. Onion, red pepp, green pepp, tons of Mexican seasonings, 8 oz chicken broth.

    ITALIAN CHICKEN- 4-6 breasts. 6 tablespoons Italian seasoning. 8 oz chicken broth.

    CHICKEN & DUMPLINGS 4-6 breasts, 1 cream mushroom, 1 cream chicken, 1 cup coconut milk last 45 minutes, in last hour- add one can of cut up biscuits (uncooked) (cut them to about 1" pieces before adding into the crock pot)

    CHEESY CHICKEN - 4-6 breasts, 1 can of mushrooms, 8 oz chicken broth, Last hour add: 1/4 cup coconut milk, 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese, bag of frozen broccoli.

    HAWAIIAN CHICKEN- 4-6 breasts, 1 can pineapple, 1 jar of Hawaiian BBQ sauce. Add 1/2 cup water when it goes into crock pot.

    RANCH CHICKEN 4-6 breasts. 1/4 cup homemade ranch seasoning. 16 oz chicken broth. 4-6 potatoes (red or sweet for paleo) .

    GREEN CHILI CHICKEN - 4-6 breasts, 1 jar green salsa, garlic, onions.

    PORK TENDERLOIN single pork tenderloin. Onion, sweet potatoes, 2 tablespoons homemade ranch seasoning, 1 tablespoon italian seasoning, 6 oz red wine. Last hour: add a bag of frozen mixed veggies.

    RANCH PORK CHOPS- 4-6 chops. 6 tablespoons homemade ranch seasoning. 4-6 potatoes (red or sweet for paleo). Carrots. 8 oz chicken broth.

    ITALIAN PORK CHOPS- 4-6 chops. 6 tablespoons Italian seasonings. Last hour add: bag of frozen peas or veggies, 1/4 cup coconut milk.

    CHILI 1 pound cooked ground beef or turkey, 2 cans BBQ beans, 2 cans tomatoes, 1 can black beans, 2 cans white beans, garlic , Diced onion, tons of seasonings (add red chili pepper flakes if you want it spicy, or even sub out tomatoes for ro-tel).

    PHILLY -cube steak, raw cut into strips. Red bel pepp, green bel pepp, onion. 8oz beef broth, seasonings. . Last 30 min top with provolone cheese (or leave plain for paleo). Serve in bread or alone.

    *****

    If it were me, and I were doing this for the first time- I would make 15 bagged dinners, and follow this list pretty closely. It can be very overwhelming to do 40 dinners at one time. Literally ALL items in the recipe go into one bag. (yes, even the liquids). The bag then goes into the freezer. Use either a gallon size bag, or a food saver system. Yes, the meat is uncooked.

    When you want to make the dinner- either thaw out for 12 hours in the fridge, or thaw out in some warm water for 15-30 minutes before putting it in the crockpot. YES, it is ok if the meat is still frozen when it goes into the crock pot.

    *****

    Here is the shopping list for these 15 dinners:

    Meats: look for sales! This is where most of the money goes!
    6-8 pounds of chicken breast
    3-5 pounds of pork chops
    1 pork tenderloin
    1 pound ground beef or turkey
    4-6 cube steak patties
    3 chuck roasts (I do about 2.5-3 pounds each)
    Since these are going in the freezer, don't use frozen meats! Only fresh!

    Produce:
    5 pounds of potatoes (I do red or sweet for Paleo)
    3 onions
    2 green bel peppers
    2 bel pepper
    1 bag of mini carrots
    fresh thyme
    garlic (I use the pre-minced in a jar)

    Canned items:
    1 can pineapple (or fresh)
    1 can mushrooms (or fresh)
    1 can black beans
    2 cans white beans
    2 cans BBQ beans
    2 cans diced tomatoes

    Other Grocery Items:
    2 jars of green salsa
    1 bottle hawaiian bbq sauce or marinade
    1 box Beef broth
    1 box Chicken broth
    freezer gallon size bags or Food Saver bags (either work- just use a good quality!)

    Dairy/refrigerated items:
    coconut milk
    sliced provolone cheese
    shredded cheddar cheese
    1 bag frozen peas or mixed veggies
    1 bag frozen broccoli
    1 can of refrigerated biscuits. NOT the flaky layers style.

    Expect to spend about $100 on groceries (I spent $150 to do 40 dinners, and the meat sales were not stellar)

    ***

    You may have noticed I mention "homemade ranch seasoning" and "homemade italian seasoning". Here are the recipes for those. Sometimes I sub out a few things (or use what I have on hand) and it always comes out awesome.

    HOMEMADE RANCH SEASONING- store in airtight container (double or triple!)
    2 tbsp dried parsley, crushed
    4 tsp dried dill weed
    4 tsp onion powder
    1/2 tsp paprika powder
    3 tsp dried onion flakes (tastefully simple onion onion)
    4 tsp dried chives
    2 tsp garlic powder
    1 tsp ground pepper

    HOMEMADE ITALIAN SEASONING- store in airtight container (double or triple!)
    2 tsp dried basil
    1 tsp garlic powder
    1/2 tsp paprika powder
    2 tsp dried onion flakes (tastefully simple onion onion)
    2 tsp dried oregano
    2 tsp dried rosemary
    2 tsp dried thyme

    *****


    DIRECTIONS ON HOW TO DO IT!

    {set aside about 2 hours!}

    1. Get your bags ready & labeled
    2. PREP: wash produce, and chop it all up. Leave it on a cutting board on the counter. Open up the cans that you will use, have spices out & ready. Have everything out on the counter and readily available.
    3. cook your ground beef or turkey, set aside
    4. Now it's time to start bagging! Do ONE MEAT at a time. I personally start with chicken.
    5. I, place the first meat I'm working with in all of the bags. Do not add any other ingredients yet, only the meat. (now you can wash your hands!) It is extremely helpful if someone can hold open the bags for you... this way you don't get meat germs on the bags. My 4 year old can do it perfectly.
    6. Now, look at your list and add according ingredients into each labeled bag (e.g.: chicken, jar green salsa, garlic, handful of onion) and seal the bag. Lay flat on the counter.
    7. Continue with that meat, one bag for each recipe.
    8. Place all the finished bags of this meat in the freezer.
    9. Start with another meat and do steps 5,6,7 & 8
    10. Do another meat and do steps 5,6,7 & 8
    11. Do the last meat and do steps 5,6,7 &8
    12. clean up

    *****
    Of course, I took no pictures

    These dinners will be good in the freezer for 6-12 months.
    Be sure to label your bags, because once frozen it is hard to tell what the items are!
    Ziplock freezer bags will work perfectly if you don't have a Food Saver system, just know that they may only last 4-6 months in the freezer.

    **All crockpot cooking times differ! YOU know your crockpot. Cook according to your crockpot, and make sure all meats are always cooked to 165* internally***
    Laissez les bon temps rouler! Going to church doesn't make you a Christian any more than standing in a garage makes you a car.** a 4 day work week & sex slaves ~ I say Tyt for PRESIDENT! Not to be taken internally, literally or seriously ....Suki ebaynni IS THAT BETTER ?

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    Have you seen the price of Hershey’s Chocolate Syrup lately? At my two favorite grocery stores, the price was nearly $5 for a 24-ounce bottle! Time to learn how to make homemade Hershey’s chocolate syrup!

    While I was trying to decide if I really needed to add the Hershey’s Syrup to my cart, I took a minute to flip over the bottle and read the ingredients: high fructose corn syrup, salt, monoglycerides, diglycerides, polysorbate 60, artificial flavors…yes, cocoa and water were also included, but I decided I wasn’t going to spend $5 to buy all those chemicals.

    Haiden and Piper like to have chocolate milk with their vitamins at breakfast, and I wanted an easy way to keep giving it to them. Plus my husband enjoys a little chocolate syrup on his ice cream, and it’s an easy way to dress up a dessert .

    So, I wanted to share my new recipe for how to make homemade Hershey’s Chocolate Syrup. You’re not going to believe how easy and delicious it is!


    Homemade Hershey’s Chocolate Syrup Recipe
    Makes about 16 ounces (2 cups)

    ◾3/4 cup cocoa powder
    ◾1 1/4 cups water
    ◾1 1/2 cups sugar
    ◾1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
    ◾Dash salt

    Directions:
    ◾Use a big saucepan – at least 2 quarts. This will expand when boiling, and overflows will make a big mess on your stovetop! (I use this 3-quart saucepan that was part of a bigger set I received as a gift. It’s my favorite!)
    ◾Combine the cocoa powder, water, sugar and salt in a saucepan over medium heat. Mix with a whisk until smooth.
    ◾Stir constantly with a whisk or a wooden spoon until it boils.
    ◾Allow it to boil for 1-2 minutes.
    ◾Remove from heat.
    ◾Add vanilla.
    ◾Syrup will be very thin/watery. Allow to cool completely and it will thicken to about the same consistency as Hershey’s syrup.

    Store the syrup in a mason jar or any other container. It will keep for several weeks in the fridge. If you want to be really sneaky, pour the cooled syrup into an empty or almost-empty Hershey’s syrup container and see if anyone notices the difference!
    Laissez les bon temps rouler! Going to church doesn't make you a Christian any more than standing in a garage makes you a car.** a 4 day work week & sex slaves ~ I say Tyt for PRESIDENT! Not to be taken internally, literally or seriously ....Suki ebaynni IS THAT BETTER ?

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    I never qualified for food stamps and I would have killed to have $68 each week for food when my kids were younger. We survived with much less. I still tell my grown kids now how I stretched $40 a week (sometimes less) to feed my 3 kids and myself. I used the HECK out of coupons, I bought things on sale and the basics, beans, pasta, rice, hamburger meat, chicken etc. And freeze leftovers so no waste. I would look for items (with my coupons) that didn't need other ingredients to make as in pancake mix add water only, jello etc, for close to the end of the month when I was getting really broke. They never knew I was having money issues and enjoyed the pancakes for dinner (thought it was cool to eat breakfast for supper)

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    You can stretch out your food budget by making things homemade from scratch rather than purchasing the boxed meals. For a family of 5, we have a food budget of $300. That also includes making food for our 2 dogs. Skip the freezer section and make the pancakes, waffles, etc yourself. Here's something I wrote for my blog this month:

    http://foodstampcooking.blogspot.com...groceries.html

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    My mom talked about Victory Gardens during the war. She grew up in a large family and they had a half acre garden which is more room then most of us have but they used the entire front and back yard, containers and they raised chickens. Look for what you can grow yourself, leaf lettuce is very easy, put it in a tray give it a little water and put it in the sun and you will have the makings of a salad in no time. Snow peas, tomatoes, green peppers, etc can all grow in containers just laying around. One of her big things even when I was growing up was to wonder around and see who had fruit trees, a lot of fruit especially apples just fall on the ground and people just leave it there. She would go up to the door and ask for it, yes it was bruised but she would cut it up and make apple sauce, apple bread, apple butter she would also freeze it in one cup baggies to use in recipes. We picked black berries in the park. We picked up black walnuts in the fall and have green hands until Thanksgiving. She traded, she bartered, she didn't waste a thing and although meat is great it's expensive so we had a lot of meals with dried beans. Mom is a genius and she was generous to a fault because someone was always worse off then we were. She had a network, everyone called Emma, she knew someone who could use something someone else didn't need. There were a lot of people who had clothes and shoes they wouldn't have had and didn't go to bed hungry because of my mom. Her and now I believe we depend to much on the government and not enough time helping each other, it's time we get to know our neighbors, people from church, people from clubs, turn off the TV and game boxes. Concentrate on a roof over your head, utilities, a way to get around, and dump the stuff you don't need you will be happier in the end. When you get to your end will you regret all the time spent in front of the TV, playing games, texting, and not spending time with family and friends, it had taken me years to finally understand what she is talking about, I had to hit 54, she is 89 with no regrets, I wish I could say the same. I finally looked at what a serving was and I was eating at least 2, we cut the junk food and soda, we have always had only one TV but are cutting Dish, paring down the cell phone packages, got rid of a car that just sat around in case. Making real life changes. I know this was how to eat well on $68 a week but I think this is all relevant because this is our life. Stepping off my soap box.
    Keep your hands to yourself, leave other people's things alone, and be kind to one another.

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    magickay (09-19-2018)

  18. #11
    Mary_Jo3's Avatar
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    I am replying to "15 Crock Pot Meals in One Day – Frugal Meal Planning for Busy People"
    This is a wonderful idea but I can't get to the website. I get "It doesn't look like you have been invited to read this blog. If you think this is a mistake, you might want to contact the blog author and request an invitation." Please let me know how to get into this blog.
    Thank You
    Last edited by Mary_Jo3; 02-17-2017 at 01:18 PM.
    Keep your hands to yourself, leave other people's things alone, and be kind to one another.

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