Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Publix Bargain Meal February 26 - March 4


You know one of the things I love about Publix? Because they are based in Florida, they get all this great Florida produce, of course, in season. But, because it's Florida, the seasons run a little ahead of us. This week, strawberries!! Around here, the you-pick places aren't quite ready (it'll be April-ish), so what a treat.

A couple of years ago, we joined our first CSA. Since then, we've moved towards more eating with the seasons. It is cheaper (the initial reason), things taste better, better for the environment, and well, after a while, it just seems right. One of the other benefits (that we didn't anticipate) is that we really, really (and I mean really ) look forward to the season for various fruits and vegetables. We've been looking forward to strawberries for a couple of months now. Woohoo!

For this meal: cuban picadillo over rice and of course, strawberries and whipped cream. This picadillo is no where near authentic, but our family loves it. It comes from a great cookbook, The Dinner Doctor, by Anne Byrn, who also wrote The Cake Mix Doctor. But, authentic or not, it's still a great dinner. My toddler is especially fond of it.

1 pound ground beef round--on sale $1.99/lb--use 1/2 pound--$1.00
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 cup chopped onion
5 cloves garlic, sliced
2 (14.5-ounce) cans diced tomatoes with green chiles
1 (6-ounce) can tomato paste
1/4 cup dry red wine or water
substitute spicy pasta sauce for above ingredients--on sale--$1.25
1/4 cup raisins--$0.25
2 teaspoons dried oregano--pennies
Salt and black pepper--pennies
1/4 cup sliced pimiento-stuffed green olives, optional--$0.25
2 teaspoons drained capers, optional--$0.25
1 cup white rice (that's what we like this served with)--$0.30
hot sauce for serving--pennies

Cost for main dish--$3.30

Strawberries--on sale--$1.67
Cream (about 1/2 cup)--$1

Cost for dessert--$2.67

Total cost for two courses--$5.97 (not too shabby)

Erin at $5 Dinners hosts the gathering of many, many $5 meals, based on sales circulars from all over the country. If you need inspiration for a cheap meal, you're sure to find it in one of those ads. Check it out if you haven't already.

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