Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Holy Cow!

I have to admit, I was amazed today.  I had absolutely no clear idea just how expensive meat is at the grocery store.  I have completely taken for granted the fact that Dan, Allspice, and Cinnamon have blessed our house with food for the freezer each deer season.  We eat a lot of venison.  Each year we process the meat ourselves, saving some money, and bring in the meat to have it ground into hamburger.  When I take into consideration the deer tags and the processing fee, I pay about a dollar a pound.  I haven't had to purchase hamburger in the store for a long time and so it took me by surprise when I was looking today just to see how much it was.  $2.18 a pound, when buying in bulk, was the cheapest I found.  That can really put a crimp in your budget!

I was similarly surprised by the cost of bacon and pork products.  We raise two pigs each year.  This year, a more expensive year than typical, our pork costs $2.89 a pound whether it is ground pork, bacon, ham, pork chops, or even ribs.  After looking at the prices at the store, I will try not to complain when my kids are off dancing or camping, leaving me to feed the pigs.  Even when they tip the food bin over causing me to fetch it.  Even when it results in being pig kissed by two grinning swines with incredibly dirty noses.

Yes, this is the pig that kissed me!

Speaking of hamburger, tonight we had tacos.  This is a definite menu item each month.  Paprika would have it each week if she were in charge of the menu!  It is her favorite meal. 

When I make tacos, I usually fry four pounds of hamburger.  We use some for dinner and I freeze two containers to use at a later time for quick menu nights.  This is simple to do and a real time saver.  I use the method of batch cooking whenever I can.

For tacos we have the usual components like refried beans, sour cream, lettuce, olives, avocado, cheese, and tomatoes.  When tomatoes are out of season or when I do not have any on hand I do something different.  A few winters ago, when tomatoes were expensive and looking less than appetizing, I came up with this "taco topper".  It is a family favorite and is often requested over fresh tomatoes.


1 can diced tomatoes (do not drain)
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
2 cloves of garlic minced
1 onion chopped
16 oz package of  peppers (red, green, yellow), thawed
olive oil
Mrs. Dash Fiesta Lime seasoning

In a skillet saute your onion and garlic in olive oil until translucent.  Add peppers, black beans, and the tomatoes and juice.  Cook over medium heat.  Add Mrs. Dash Fiesta Lime seasoning (I am pretty liberal with this) to taste.  Continue to cook over medium heat until juices are absorbed.  We top our tacos with this mix, as well as, use it the next day on leftover quesadillas.  Tonight our taco meal came to approximately $10.15.  The Taco Topper itself was $2.78.  It would have easily fed six and we have enough leftovers for tomorrow's  lunch: quesadillas.

I am sure this post will quickly become Dan's favorite, since I am basically giving him the double thumbs up to his deer hunting.   So, this weekend when deer season opens, I am sure to hear, "Honey, I am only trying to help the budget!"

1 comment:

  1. I am currently very familiar with the price of bacon :). And it ain't cheap!

    Wow- a dollar a pound for your hamburger, huh? Yes, that's very good indeed. I usually buy our meat at Costco, but I know we pay over two bucks a pound for it (easy).

    Where do you buy chicken?

    (and psst... next time Dan disappears on one of his selfless budget-saving trips, call me and come over! ) :)


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