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So we bit the bullet today and bought a meat grinder attachment for our KitchenAid.

For the iron-intensive-meat diet, I am p.i.c.k.y.  Because I really was a vegetarian for the last…16 years, and I still eat a vegetarian diet with the exception of 3 oz, 3x/week, of ground beef (for iron), I really only eat cows that had a SUPER healthy, happy life.  Like they ate grass, and didn’t get antibiotics, and…well, you get the picture.

Meat like this is not cheap.

So when DB was going to make chili (onion-free, of course) for us this week (note:  I also do not cook the meat.  I do not interact with it.  Really, I am pretty much a passive participant in all steps of the meat process, mostly because if I interact too much with it, I get really disgusted and cannot eat it for months, which is really costly), and he was heading to buy yet another $10 package of beef from the grocery store, I suggested that maybe we should *grind* our own meat.

Like, you know, we could buy *steak* and grind it up and, um, have really gourmet…chili.

DB reacted as though I had suggested that we…I am not in a position to think of a good analogy.  He was really excited.

So…we he is in the process of grinding our first meat here.  It was about 1/8th of the cost, and we can control a lot more of the fat, bacteria…etc about the meat.  I am actually kind of intrigued by the whole thing, although I looked over at what was coming out of the grinder into the bowl and I almost vomited.

And our kitchen kind of smells like a meat packing factory.

OK, so it’s not perfect.  But it should be interesting.  Has anyone reading this ever grinded their own meat?  Should we be doing something that wouldn’t be obvious? I did a quick Google search but then got yelled at by DB for not studying bio.

…which is, um, going.  Not well, but going.

OK, I was going to stick to the whole PW thing, right? But this is just too much:

What we’re having for dinner.

I am in class 4 nights/week, so I rarely eat dinner at home. This means DB generally eats spaghetti by himself (I hate long stringy noodles – it works out perfectly). Anyway, he had to go to the store last night to get some groceries (I guess we were out of spaghetti. This is not my area of expertise. Did I mention how much I hate long stringy noodles? We have tons of penne. That’s all you really need, right?)

Anyway, I called him this afternoon to find out what he wants for dinner tonight, since I don’t have class and I am busily avoiding a paper now. (I have a week to write said paper. PLENTY of time.) He said, “Waffles.” And I said, “We don’t have waffles.” And he said, “Yes, we do! I bought some yesterday! I bought a can of waffles!”


Yes, seriously. I looked in the fridge, and what I thought was whipped cream was definitely not. He bought a CAN – like whipped cream in a can – of ORGANIC fake batter.

On so many levels, this boggles the mind.

So that’s what’s for dinner. The organic Betty Crocker Spam.  He said, “I just thought the name was cool.”

Yep.  That’s how we select our foods:  By their alarmingly catchy names.

Has anyone heard of this?!? Has anyone tried it? I’ll let you know how it goes.

P.S. In case you are wondering how this might fit into seasonal eating? It doesn’t. At all. In fact, it is antithetical to the whole concept of eating seasonally. Yeppers, that’s us. Being all consistent.

And in case you are wondering, we are totally FAILED seasonal eating people.  Um, this is really hard.

I am so excited that I just had to post about this.

I made food, and no one died.

More than that, I MADE UP A RECIPE, and no one died. And it even tasted good!

Unfortunately, we cannot count a huge victory on the small group front, because the wife of the couple got sick and couldn’t make it. We had a long chat and planned to meet next week, instead.

But since I was all nervous about it, we decided to cook the stuff anyway – the rice recipe, and the beans. The rice turned out good – I omitted the onion (DB’s kryptonite) and accidentally pureed the jalapenos, which were very hot and potentially not jalepenos. (We had two different green things that did not look remotely like each other, but both looked very close to the picture on line. So we threw them both in.) That meant that the rice was probably hotter than it should have been, since I pureed it and all of the flavor hotness really got mixed in.

Also? The recipe isn’t lying about how long it takes. So if you’re gonna make it, allow an hour. I don’t know how I thought I would cut any time on it.

And also? They are serious when they say, “Heat oil for 90 seconds”. It is plenty hot – and plenty of enough fire risk – after that period of time.

(I cannot believe I am posting about cooking. This is hilarious for anyone who knows me IRL.)

(I forgot to add this:  after we finished eating last night, our conversation:

Me:  “Now I can make at least one thing that is edible!” (exaggerating about my ineptitude, but still happy about how it worked out okay)

DB:  “No, you can make TWO things!” (talking about the one recipe that I made LAST week that he also liked.)

I glared at him, and we both cracked up.)

Anyway, so rice was very good.

The beans! Here is what I did. It is crazy cheap, which is good for this economy.

Economical vegetarian black beans

Drain and rinse can of beans. Dump in saucepan.

Add a cup of vegetable broth (you could use water, too. I buy those cubes – they are $1.50 for 6 cubes, which makes 12 cups of broth total), some minced garlic (like a clove’s worth) (OK, so I buy a jar. It is 1/2 tsp of the jar stuff), some cumin (like a shake/tap), some pepper (not salt because there is a ton in that broth), maybe a little red pepper (I did, I don’t know if I liked it or not), and bring to a boil.



No kidding – it tasted really good! And it tastes like fast Mexican food, but it’s cheap.

So…now I’m all inspired. Do you have any favorite recipes, preferably made cheaply? Share!! I’d love to hear them!