Week 17 Budget and Menu

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Nothing like fresh, NC strawberries to bring out the food hoarder in me!

 

Spring is finally here in central North Carolina and along with it, we have the opening and rejuvenation of all our smaller, seasonal farmer’s markets! Hurray! If you have been following our blog for a while, you know that this enters dangerous territory for me. After a long winter of eating collards, kale and sweet potatoes, I want to snap up every lovely spring vegetable I see. This makes staying on a budget even more of a challenge. Who can resist beautiful strawberries or the season’s first carrots? Not me, that’s who.

So while I am trying to be good and stick to my budget, this week clearly isn’t going to cut it. We are having lots of salads this week and we are eating mostly local, which is great! Our big expense this week is a mini boneless ham from Mae Farm, which will provide us with some meals next week as well. This is by far the best ham I have ever eaten in my life. Hopefully, we will actually have leftovers 🙂

Our Produce Box delivery service is in full swing again, so we have fresh, NC vegetables and fruit delivered every Wednesday–that is saving me some running around the farmer’s markets, but I still get out there and support our farmer’s market vendors!

One big change in our dinner preparations is that Ellie and Tom are both playing spring softball. That means I need to get my act together and whip up some healthy food we can eat quickly! While I don’t usually buy pre-cooked chicken, we are using Trader Joes’ chili lime chicken strips as the basis for salad wraps tonight. Salad on the go!

Budget [$115.58]

  • The Produce Box (double strawberries, 2 kinds of lettuce, carrots, radish, white potatoes, green onions, arugula and rosemary sourdough bread): $37.01
  • Mae Farm (ham): $15.00
  • Farmer’s market vendors (eggs, asparagus): $10.00
  • Trader Joes (Ezekiel bread, pre-cooked chicken, avocados, garlic, soy milk, yogurt, frozen fruit, tortillas): $53.57

Menu

  • Wednesday–Chicken salad wraps, carrot sticks, homemade pickles
  • Thursday–Wilted romaine salad, rosemary sourdough; vegan strawberry chocolate “ice cream”
  • Friday–Parisian salad with prosciutto, roasted asparagus and sourdough toast w/melted goat cheese; vegan strawberry ice cream
  • Saturday–Sautéed Swiss chard with eggs and mushrooms, strawberry shortcake
  • Sunday–Ham, roasted asparagus, potatoes, fruit cobbler

Monday–ham and cheese omelets
Tuesday–salad with chopped ham and goat cheese

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Week 16 Budget and Menu

Well, while I was gone last week, spring finally arrived in North Carolina! When I left, the trees just had little leaf buds and nothing was blooming. I came home to green, green, green and beautiful spring flowers everywhere!  What a glorious time of year!

In addition to all the flowers, our farmers markets are showing signs of spring as well. We have asparagus, strawberries, lettuce and onions! Yay!!! And our Produce Box deliveries start this week as well. Double yay! We are a bit over budget at $106.60 and interestingly, we are not eating much meat this week, but we are eating more seafood, which tends to bump our budget up a bit.

This week’s menu is taking advantage of our spring crops as well as the delicious salads we had in Paris last week. Now that we have reworked our menu for spring, I need to find time to rework my closet!

What’s fresh at your farmer’s market this week?

Budget [$106.60]

  • Rare Earth Farms (buttermilk, mozzarella, eggs): $14.28
  • Locals Seafood (shrimp): $10.00
  • The Produce Box (organic kale, organic cucumber, organic hothouse tomato, organic radish, organic pea tendrils): $22.00
  • Various farmers market vendors (asparagus, greenhouse tomato, strawberries, romaine lettuce): $19.00
  • Trader Joes (chicken thighs, mushrooms, salmon, lemon, frozen fruit, yogurt, Ezekiel bread):$41.32

Menu

  • Wednesday–Power Salad (kale, lettuce, tomato, avocado, pine nuts, egg)
  • Thursday–Slow cooker cashew chicken, rice
  • Friday–Pasta with shrimp, asparagus, mushrooms
  • Saturday–Salmon with veggie risotto and citrus beurre blanc
  • Sunday–Egg salad on toast
  • Monday–Tomato and cheese pizza, salad
  • Tuesday–Omelettes, salad
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