Hey y’all! Welcome to the series Weekly Eating.
Here is where I’ll talk about the week’s meal plan versus reality, what we ate for the week, and how we did budget-wise. I hope it gives readers a behind-the-scenes look into our life through the lens of food, and it’s also a way to keep us on track with meal planning and grocery budgeting.
Feel free to share your wins and lessons in the comments below!
February 2nd was #WearRedDay for heart health. Cardiovascular disease is the #1 killer, ahead of car wrecks, diabetes, cancer, and many other seemingly more deadly diseases. More than 600,000 people every year are being killed by their own heart.
And the honest truth that the food and drug industry doesn’t want you to know?
Want in on what many call “the best kept secret in medicine”?
Given the right conditions and fuel, the body can heal itself of almost anything. Seriously.
Don’t believe me? The Cleveland Clinic has an actual “Heart Disease Reversal Program“, which has been proven to take some heart patients from death’s door to healthy and fit in mere months. You can literally reverse heart disease and prevent it from worsening based on what you put in your mouth three times per day.
On a less serious note, here was the popcorn situation last weekend:
Now, if that seems like plenty to you, YOU DON’T KNOW ME. This is a shortage. This is near-panic-level popcorn status.
And then this showed up on our doorstep on Monday. And all was well in the world again.
Breakfast – tropical smoothie. I’d gotten a frozen bag of mixed tropical fruit, and it has chunks of coconut in it. I’m weirded out by coconut, and do not like the chewy-ness. But I will soldier through until it’s gone in the name of not wasting food…
Lunch – I meal-prepped a 3-day batch of my famous salmon and couscous salad to have for lunch at work this week. I also repurposed the old “Green Goddess” container to hold my healthier and more delicious recipe 😉
Dinner – Bitter melon & potato curry. Have you heard of bitter melon? Unless you’re Asian or a foodie, probably not. It is a tropical vine fruit, grown throughout Asia, Africa and the Caribbean. And it totally lives up to the name; raw it tastes horrid.
However, despite it’s off-putting taste, it has many redeeming health qualities. “The fruit contains at least three active substances with anti-diabetic properties, including charantin, which has been confirmed to have a blood glucose-lowering effect, vicine and an insulin-like compound known as polypeptide-p.” (source) It also has been shown to have beneficial or reversal effects on obesity and metabolic syndrome. (source)
By generously salting it prior to cooking with it, and then rinsing the salt off, you can remove much of the bitter taste. And it blends right into strongly-flavored dishes like curries. The boy said that in this dish, the bitter melon was actually great and the green beans were the worst part!
Snack – Grapes & 2 cuties
Breakfast – Over the weekend we went to the thrift store, where I snagged a sweet a$s deal: $0.99 for a waffle maker!! It was pretty dirty, but still worked. It didn’t have a tag, so I took it to the counter and asked the lady what it would cost.
When she quoted me that price, I couldn’t hand over a dollar fast enough! So with it all nice and cleaned up, I made some yummy fresh waffles with a quick (from frozen) blueberry sauce.
Snack – I’m glad I packed an “extra” lunch today, because I was starving yesterday afternoon. I brought the tiny bit of leftover red lentil dal and rice from last week and nommed it around 2pm.
Dinner – I tried a new recipe for vegan tempeh ‘meatballs’, and they were dang tasty! I absolutely love them.
The boy even said it was good, and I’m allowed to add it to the list of “vegan meals that don’t suck” so that’s a huge win.
Breakfast – Wheat Sandwich Thin with pears and peanut butter
Lunch – Salmon & Couscous salad, and a bowl of leftover pork & rice soup with collard greens
Dinner – I went out and met a new friend from the Bull City Food Swap at a local Indian restaurant called Sitar. She’s vegetarian, so I was super excited to split the “vegetarian for 2” dinner. It came with 2 appetizers, 3 main courses, and 2 desserts!
It was so much food, and it was all SO GOOD! We both ate our fill, and had enough left over for us both to take home 2 more meals’ worth. I’d say that’s a pretty great value.
Snack – rice cakes & an orange
Breakfast – tropical smoothie
Lunch – leftover Sitar part 1 – naan, basmati rice, vegetable vindaloo and chickpea saag
Snack 1 – trail mix still leftover from our Texas trip (I paid the ridiculous airport prices of 2/$20 because I was dying of starvation and the mix actually was pretty nutritionally sound)
Dinner – After a brutal HIIT workout, I was ravenous and grabbed the first thing I saw in the fridge: leftover bitter melon curry
Snack 2 – later that night after dinner, I was still hungry and desperately needed a post-workout snack, and nommed a few handfuls of Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Puppy Chow
Annnndddd then I made stovetop popcorn, which I sprinkled with nutritional yeast 🙂
Breakfast – another smoothie! I’m bad at remembering to take pictures of smoothies… maybe breakfast is too early, or smoothies just don’t feel like ‘real’ food?
Lunch – the last of the leftover Sitar. Not gonna lie, I was sad that it was all gone now…
Snack – my coworker had been at a conference all week, and brought back some strange chocolates. They were good though.
This was the appetizer round. In case you haven’t read it yet, here is my review of Rock’n’Rolls sushi in Durham for your enjoyment.
Unfortunately, it seems too many people HAVE read it, because there was a line out the door! Good thing there was only 2 of us and we were more than happy to sit at the bar. After a little less than an hour, this was the aftermath.
They now have a bunch of fried options, including spring rolls, crab rangoon (mostly cream cheese, let’s be real), and gyoza dumplings, as well as a few more specialty rolls.
This weekend is the “Big Game”, I guess, but we couldn’t care less. If you want ideas, though, I’ve written plenty about it:
- Chicken Nests Three Ways: Super Bowl Snacks brought to you by Tyson
- Soups for the Super Bowl
- Last Minute Apps & Snacks
Our plans include reading, writing, and video games. With a chance of brunch on Sunday 🙂
Food Total: $140.54
Ugh, I broke two of my own cardinal rules: never shop while hungry, and never shop without a list!
I did great at the Spice Bazaar, picking up only some fresh produce staples and a few things I wanted to try (looking at you, bitter melon) and the only impulse was a 10lb bag of basmati rice that was on sale.
|10lb basmati rice||7.99||Frozen bitter melon||2.99|
|tamarind paste||2.49||cauliflower head||2.99|
|fresh bitter melon 1||0.79|
|3lb red onions||2.49|
But, I went to ALDI right after, and it was past lunch time for me by then. I’m a sucker for ALDI on my best day, and I hadn’t been since the store had evidently been remodeled! It was huge, and bright, and packed with great deals. Y’all, I lost my mind a little bit. I admit it.
|organic soymilk||2.19||olive oil mayonnaise||3.45||tomato juice||1.39||seltzer 1L x2||1.18|
|cage free eggs 12||2.29||coconut water||2.89||frozen berries/mango||4.18||frozen pizzas 2||3.98|
|1/2 gal whole milk||1.09||plum cherry juice||2.69||frozen edamame 2||3.38|
|org blue corn tortilla chips||1.89||1lb green beans||0.99||Winking owl syrah||2.89|
|org wheat spaghetti||2.18||bix box org spring mix||3.79||Winking owl red 3L||10.89|
|olive oil cooking spray||2.98||celery||0.95||German lager||5.99|
|green enchilada sauce||1.89||cara cara oranges 6||3.95||Amber ale 6pk||6.49|
|spinach wraps 8||1.99||Org Pears 8||3.49||tax||3.77|
|shelled pistachios 7oz||4.49||Pineapple||1.29|
|fresh pico de gallo||4.79||Sweet potatoes||1.29|
|Pasta sauce||1.98||Bananas 11||1.95|
|2lb dry northern beans||1.99||Broccoli crowns 3||1.49|
|green grapes 2lb||2.61|
I also let myself restock on wine & beer, which I had been trying to go all of January without buying more alcohol. But COME ON, their 3L box of “house red” for under eleven bucks?!? And the specials this month were a German lager and an amber ale, my two favorite beer types. Sigh…
My only defense is that at least I bought a sh&t-ton of produce, and we should be able to make it through at least 2 weeks in a row of not buying groceries now. The majority of the spending was on super healthy stuff, which we should be eating anyhow (please ignore the frozen pizzas. The boy needs ’emergency foods’ for when he has no leftovers left).