The cost of this meal (not including the leftover orzo, which runs more because of the POUND of fresh mushrooms it takes) was under $10! ($6.32 for the pork, $3.50 for the grean beans, butter and chicken base, the rest of it I had in my pantry!). And because I stole her magazine, I invited Carol for dinner, so that $10 ended up being dinner for three extremely voracious adults, two kids and one lunch for Dave in leftovers.
The only downside to cooking like this is the TIME. I literally shopped in the morning, dropped my son off at preschool at 1:00, picked up an Rx at Target (which is conveniently located between our house and the preschool) and spent the entire rest of the afternoon in the kitchen. Cooking from scratch has its benefits (like having a happy husband and eating a delicious meal that would've easily cost $20 a plate at a restaurant) but you have to love cooking and actually have that much time available to you.
Instead of sitting down and relaxing/writing/paying the bills, I spent my daughter's two hour nap cooking. (I also baked a pound cake from scratch during that time too). It's definitely one of my favorite ways to pass the time, but I understand it's definitely not for everyone. It helps to LOVE your kitchen and I've definitely been cooking more often and more complicated things since we've been in this house simply because I finally have the space to do it. It wasn't that long ago that we were crammed into a too-small apartment with almost zero counter space and I definitely didn't cook as much then!
The rest of the week is also filled with new recipes:
I did go to Fred Meyer yesterday for produce and some staples. I really prefer their produce, even if it isn't the cheapest. I also had planned to put Alex in the kid's play area, but once he got there, he wanted to shop with me instead. Apparently the kid cart with the steering wheels was more exciting than watching Dora with a bunch of other kids. So I guess I could've saved money by going to Winco after all.
- TUESDAY, October 14th
Bistro whole chicken (from a recipe I found in the Sunday paper) with roasted cauliflower and baked or mashed potatoes.
- WEDNESDAY, October 15th
Homemade pizza. I made an extra crust on Friday, so I'll use that.
- THURSDAY, October 16th
Chicken and broccoli bake (a recipe I found in Cook's Country) with baked potatoes or rice. (I haven't decided yet).
- FRIDAY, October 17th
Crispy pork cutlets (also from Cook's Country but extremely similar to the kind I usually make) with rice and smashed peas.
- SATURDAY, October 18th
FEND. We'll probably have leftovers and I'll make mac 'n cheese for the kids.
What you cooking this week? How much time do you spend in the kitchen?