Budget Day 40: Almost Halfway and Tortilla Fail

Oh my gosh…here on day 40 I can’t help but think about how we are almost halfway there. I still plan to be on a budget when all of this is over (and we will still of course be eating “real food”), but I am pretty sure I will be giving myself more than $125/week to spend. And it is hard not to look forward to that! In the meantime I will just have to keep dealing with the temptations of all the delicious expensive food I see (and can’t afford to buy) every time I go shopping…including things like artichokes, scallops, mangoes, proscuitto and other cuts of meat, fresh mozzarella, and olives. This list could just go on and on!

So back to reality…as I mentioned I tried shopping at Bi-Lo the other day, but couldn’t get everything on my list so I had to make another run to the store. I still needed some staples like nuts, seeds, and cheese, so I decided to go to Trader Joe’s since they seem to have the best deal on those items (and I also needed bread which is right next door). Here’s what I got for $31.74 from Trader Joe’s…

  • Pumpkin seeds $5.49
  • Sunflower seeds $1.49 (it is hard to beat that deal!)
  • Sliced almonds $2.49
  • Mushrooms $1.99
  • Monterery Jack cheese $3.07
  • Cheddar $4.29
  • Raisins $2.69
  • Cashews $5.49
  • Parmesan cheese $4.12

I also spent $5 on a loaf of honey whole-wheat bread from Great Harvest. And then I had to run back to Trader Joe’s the next day to get…

  • 1 Avocado $1.32

I also “charged myself” to pull some local meat out of our freezer since it was purchased pre-budget…

  • 1 pound of local ground pork $4.17

Then right when I thought I was doing okay with about $15 left to spend at the Farmer’s Market on Saturday I forgot that I had to take out $4 more for some vanilla beans that I’d ordered from the internet. I make my own vanilla extract (which is a very simple process by the way) and ever since I found this website that only charges $2 per bean (and free shipping) I’ve never bought them from anywhere else. So long story short…I only have $11 and change left and we desperately need eggs! So unfortunately I won’t be getting much else this weekend. That sucks.

In other news we enjoyed chowing down on the ground pork this week and managed to stretch it over three meals. First we made tacos and to help make the meat go further we laced it with a whole container of diced mushrooms (pictured above) and some chopped carrots as well. I attempted to make some corn tortillas to wrap everything up in, and while they tasted delicious they looked quite disastrous. This is my second time making them and in my opinion they are nothing but a pain in the neck to try to keep together! They just fall apart and crumble so easily no matter what ratio of masa harina/water I use. And I find it difficult to make the tortillas thin enough without having them break into a thousand pieces. I can’t believe how much easier it is to make the flour ones. If anyone has homemade corn tortilla advice (or has experience with a tortilla press) please share! Otherwise I will not be attempting these again anytime soon, which is too bad because all four of us loved the dinner.

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  • Comments

    1. Dawn Bowerman |

      Our family (2 parents 3 kids) has been trying to cut out processed foods and also eat gluten free. We don’t have allergies but I thought it might help with my low energy and sore joints. I went to Great Harvest and bought their gluten free bread. It’s fine (at $8 a loaf!) but there are a lot of ingredients that I don’t know about like xantham gum, tapioca starch and rice flour as far as processing. It got me thinking that maybe it’s healthier for my family to choose the Honey WHole Wheat bread with only a few ingredients, all of which I know over the gluten free version. So many choices….
      Thanks for your input-

      • Assistant to 100 Days (Amy) |

        Hi there Dawn. If you do not have a gluten sensitivity, then stick with the bread that has the fewest and most whole ingredients. All the bread from Great Harvest is delicious! :) ~Amy

    2. Jen |

      We’ve been making corn tortillas for a while. The hint is to let the dough rest for 20 minutes before you go to press it, use a little more of the dough than it says to, place plastic wrap or a plastic bag that you’ve cut in half against the press and flip the tortilla and press it. I never liked corn tortillas until we made them on the press.

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