Thursday, May 10, 2012

#Lowcarb May Grocery Shopping So Far

I didn't need to do any stocking up last month, so this is the month! Because grocery shopping is one of my favorite things to do, that's how I wanted to spend my birthday weekend, so that's what we did :).

May 4th
rutabaga @ 79c/lb $1.94
zucchini & yellow squashes @ 99c/lb $5.82
romaine lettuce @ $1.29/lb $3.21
daikon @ $2.29/lb (!) $5.02
frozen brussels sprouts, 10 oz. $2.09
(2) boxes Celestial Seasonings teas @ $2.49 ea. $4.98
1# butter $2.59
3# sour cream $4.54
10 yogurts $5.00
5# onions $2.99
7 oz instant decaf coffee $5.99
subtotal $44.57

GFS Marketplace
4# can tuna $9.99
(2) 2# frozen broccoli florets $7.58 (decided to pay a little more for the florets; I don't like the stalky parts)
(2) 2# frozen chopped spinach $5.98
(3) 2# frozen cauliflower $8.97
(2) 2# frozen whole green beans $5.98
5# shredded cheddar cheese $11.98
5# shredded mozzarella/provalone cheese $11.49
40-ct hot dogs $8.99
subtotal $70.97

May 5th
Steve's Country Meats
subtotal $124.36 which included:
9.53# English cut roast (which we cut into 12 "steaks"), 2.95 # pollock, 2.78# turkey backs, 6.75# turkey breast, 9.91# bacon, 9.46# pork tenderloin (cut free into 26 cutlets), 12.4# ground chuck, and some cocoa powder and cheese crackers from the bulk food bin. (The average price per lb of meat only works out to $2.31/lb; if I average in the 10# of pork roast I bought from Sav-a-Lot, my fresh meat averages $2.12/lb this month.)

2.24# cabbage $1.10
(2) frozen pizzas $5.58
33 oz can coffee $6.99
12 pack diet Bubba cola $2.79
(3) 18 ct eggs $4.35
28 oz enchilada sauce $1.49
a big green pepper $1.39
30 oz. mayo $2.49
(5) 4 oz cans mushrooms $3.45
8 oz can parmesan cheese $2.99
(2) pork sirloin end roasts @ 99c/lb $10.69
16 oz. ranch dressing $1.49
5 oz shredded parmesan $2.79
(2) pounds butter quarters $4.98
subtotal $54.12

May 8th
(3) half-gallons half'n'half $10.74

May 9th
Bart's Fruit Market (my FAVORITE local produce market!)
3# asparagus $5.13
1 head cabbage $1.50
subtotal $6.63

Dollar General
(2) cans diced tomatoes $1.38

less food bought for others, not for our consumption <$27.76> TOTAL so far in May $285.01

That's a lot, it seems...and I will be spending more (especially now that Bart's is open for the season!). But this bounty will provide the bulk of our meals through this month and probably throughout most of the next! And it always feels so good to have my shelves, fridge, and freezer full :).

Monday, May 7, 2012

#Lowcarb Potluck TexMex Pork Casserole #Recipe

This was cheap (about $12 for the entire casserole, served about 20 people), easy, and delicious! I made it for a church potluck.

Saturday night I heavily salted a 5+ lb. pork roast (got on sale for 99c/lb!) and put it in my roasting pan with a little water in the oven. Covered, set the oven to 275F, and when I woke up the next morning it was falling-apart tender.

I chopped a couple of onions and peppers and put them in a pan to saute with some bacon fat, then used to 2 forks to shred the pork roast into a big bowl. In my food processor I put a can of enchilada sauce (much cheaper than most similar sauces) and 2 drained/rinsed cans of black beans, and processed it together into a nice thick sauce.

Into the bowl of meat, I added the sauce, 2 cans of diced tomatoes, a can of corn, and another can of whole black beans, all drained, and mixed thoroughly. Then I added the onions and peppers which were were cooked but not soft, and a big handful of shredded cheddar cheese, and mixed again.

I pressed the mixture into my 9x13 glass baking dish (so pretty, with all those colors, through the sides!) and topped it all with a couple more handfuls of cheese.

When we got to the church it was heated in the oven until the cheese melted. I served it with a big bowl of full-fat sour cream on the side. I wish I would have taken pictures!

A couple of notes:

- Both the beans and the corn are carbier than most low carb plans allow. I mostly added the corn for the color, but it added nice little pops of sweetness among the spice. The carbs in a can of corn, divided among 20 servings, would add about 2gN of carbs per serving. I think that's worth it, you may not.

- The black beans, all told, added carbs also. If you do soy, you can use black soybeans instead. We don't, so I elected to use the real thing. Divided between 20 servings, that's another 3-4gN per serving. I could have probably omitted one of the cans in the sauce, I didn't want it to be drippy. But it would have saved some carbs.

- This would work equally well with chicken; I would have used chicken, in fact, if I hadn't found those pork roasts on sale for such a great price!

- I don't care for heat, at least not Mexican heat. (But I love horseradish - go figure!) I could have added a lot more spices rather than just going with what was in the enchilada sauce, but when serving a lot of people I opted to keep it a little milder. Maybe a jar of pepper flakes or a bottle of hot sauce on the side would be nice the next time I make this for a crowd.

I loved how the casserole looked, with the chunks of tomatoes, corn, peppers, and beans adding color. And there was a festival of textures and flavors in the mouth as well.

This is definitely something I will make again. For just the 2 of us, I will use lower carb options. But even as I made it yesterday, the carbs per serving are still very low, and it is a great satisfying complete meal!