Thursday, January 6, 2011

Single in the Kitchen

As a single woman, I find that even though I try not to, I always end up wasting food.  Either things go bad before I can eat it or I get so sick of eating something, I let it sit in the freezer until it has gotten major freezer burn.

A few tricks that I've been using include:
  1. Buying small veggie trays-these can be bought from Sobey's for around $5.  It might sound like a lot of money, but buying everything individually you either pay a lot or waste some (which means you end up wasting your money).
  2. Reconsider looking in the freezer section-there are some excellent meals out there!  My new favorite is President's Choice Blue Package Individual Butter Chicken meal.  For $4, you get butter chicken in lots of sauce (enough for a whole naan bread) with basmati rice.  I used to buy PC's bottle of butter chicken sauce for the same price, but then would have to bake my chicken with a hot paste (which was around $3), then add it to the sauce.  If you calculate it, 1 individual meal is $4 while buying hot paste for $3, butter chicken sauce for $4, and then your chicken for around $8 (if you're lucky) comes up to $15.  You might get 3-4 servings, but you're still saving money by going the individual meal route. 
  3. Try bulk-Bulk foods are an awesome thing as you can buy as little or as much as you want (I've seriously purchased something for only $0.05 before!).  As you're not buying packaging, you do save quite a bit.  Most grocery stores have bulk sections now or check out The Bulk Barn, located in most urban centres.
  4. Consider making a staple food that can be used in different recipes.  For example, I make a great honey garlic chicken.  I can bake 4 breasts, eat 1, then cut up the rest, packaging it in freezer bags to be used for a salad, wrap, or stir fries. For a treat, I've included the recipe.  Try it and tell me what recipe you decide to use it for!
Elaine's Honey Garlic Chicken
4 Servings

4 chicken breasts
1/2 cup water
4 tbsp heaping honey
2 tsp garlic powder
2-4 tsp soya sauce

Fill oven safe dish partially with water and place chicken inside.  Bake at 350 F for one hour. 

In small pot, combine remaining ingredients.  Bring to a boil.  Remove from heat.

Place chicken on a meat rack (I like to cut slits in my chicken to absorb more sauce).  Brush sauce over meat.  Cook for 15 more minutes.  Baste again, using up rest of sauce.  Cook for 15 more minutes.

Serve as desired.

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