Every location is different, and I’ve found that by adjusting to the taste and products of the location, I can save some money. This helps me accomplish my goal of living within my budget, and still supporting the local/organic movement. My first discovery was organic mustard greens. Who else used to spend at least $5/week on baby spinach? While trolling the organic section at Safeway, I noticed this beauty.
Organic and local for $1.99. That’s the size of my microwave! Enthusiastically I brought it home, made a large salad, and may have thrown up a little in my mouth. Mustard greens everyone, are called that because eating a bite raw tastes like dumping a whole bottle of mustard in your mouth. Why do people even grow these things? Is it easier because wild animals won’t even touch them? I have noticed a similar phenomenon when I once bought local dandelion greens, or very mature kale. But hey, for three dollars savings a week, you find a way to make it work right? My answer? Fry, I mean, sauté the things and add them to a curry. Cooking the greens makes them loose much of their bite, and leaves you with a subtle spice. They are fantastic in eggs, and mixed in with rice and beans.
The other thing I noticed was that (gasp) the cuties I had been buying for $5/week were not organic. Committed to saving the planet one purchase at a time, I desperately looked through the organic produce to find a solution. Apparently apples in California are incredibly expensive, and local organic oranges are $6 a bag. However, red grapefruit, local and organic, are $5 for 6.
The problem? I loathe grapefruit.
This week I have sugared them, I have blended them, I have cut them multiple different ways, and each time hated my life as my eyes burned from the bitterness. Don’t get me wrong, I feel like my body was jumping for joy. Grapefruit are superfood. According to health.com, they curb hunger, smooth rough skin, and are fantastic for both your metabolism and your cholesterol. Attempting to enjoy one grapefruit a day can help you lower “bad” LDL cholesterol levels by 15.5% and triglycerides by 27%. Furthermore, in a 12 week study, eating half a grapefruit before each meal caused subjects to lose 3.5 pounds in 12 weeks, without any other diet changes. Um, mom and dad, are you READING THIS? Thus, for my extra dollar, the world, and my health, I had to find a way to eat them. After some trolling around the internet, I came across a good looking solution. Broil them.
So I didn’t have brown sugar, butter, or the spices, and who wants to spend the time cutting the grapefruit like that? I just peeled it, tore slices out, and through them in the oven with some coconut oil and sugar. The result? Palatable. Even remotely good.
In summary, make cheap and local work for you and your budget. If you don’t like it, cook it, and you also may reap some unexpected health benefits. It is true that sometimes the healthier it is for you, the stronger the taste. I just found out that according to healthdiaries.com mustard greens provide some of the highest concentrations of three awesome antioxidants: vitamin K, vitamin A and vitamin C! So if you don’t know what it is, and it is local and cheap, find a way to stick it in your mouth. That is all.
This Week in Updates: Hair Removal is Expensive
Hello fellow P3bg’s. It’s halfway through the month, and I’m on about the 3rd week of my budget program. This is where things start to get a little difficult. My initial purchases of big ticket items, like olive oil, are beginning to run out and will start taking their toll into the grocery store list. I had a little setback this week too, my total at the grocery store coming $1.67 over what I wanted it to, which combined with my weekly ice cream run, will leave this week’s grocery budget over $5. My plan? Get it back! To be truly disciplined I don’t think I can just bite the bullet and move on, I think I need to take it off of next week’s budget, and go for an even $50. Wish me luck!
The big ticket items this week were olive oil (California grown, thank you), deodorant, and yes, bikini wax. I was stunned when I actually paused to consider how expensive my favorite brand was. Given this brand is very high quality, and satisfies my OCD at getting even the smallest hairs, but the pack for $7, if I skimp, will probably last me about 3 weeks. In this regard, I am completely open to suggestions. If you’ve found a better wax pack for mustache and bikini line, please let me know! It’s amazing what we spend on freaking hair care. Through Dorco I spend about $25/year on razors, but if I get a pack of wax a week this raises me 12*7 or $84 dollars a year. That means I spend over $100/year on hair removal products! I think this is unreasonable. Fellow women, help a girl out!
Cottage cheese (another food I hate but it is high in creatine, a body building nutrient), mustard greens omelet
Ingredients: 2 eggs, ½ cup cottage cheese, mustard greens, olive oil
Optional: Thyme, salt, pepper
Note: If you are going to invest in any spice, I suggest thyme. The difference it makes as an addition to any egg dish is irreplaceable!
- Sauté mustard greens in olive oil until tender
- Beat eggs and cottage cheese together in separate bowl, then poor over mustard greens
- Add spices to taste
Jean’s makeshift broiled grapefruit
Ingredients: 2 grapefruit, 2 tablespoons coconut oil, 4 tablespoons sugar
- Preheat oven to broil
- Peel and slice/tear up grapefruit in your desired fashion
- Mix ingredients together in oven safe pan
- Cook 20 minutes, stirring occasionally
- Enjoy hot or cold