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Step 3 – Plan your protein

Your grocery list always need to start with proteins.  

You have to get into your head what counts as a protein; here in the good ol’ Midwest we tend to lean towards beef.  And, yes, of course, it is a protein.

But, expand your thinking: include dairy, eggs, nuts, chicken, pork products, and fish.

All of these are ways to get protein.  If you are planning to cook on four nights, you need four proteins for the week.  So, look in your freezer and see what you have on hand.

If you pick something like a roast or whole chicken, depending on family size, you could get two nights of meals out of that single protein source.

Here’s my typical plan: 

one night beef

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one night chicken

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one night fish

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one night left-overs from one of the above

To review:

write down your schedule for the week, divide your days, and now pick your proteins.

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Posted by on March 24, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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So what’s the story?

Let’s be clear – we are NOT minimalists around here.  I mean – even if we’d want to be – it ain’t happening.  We live in the midwest, in a typical-size, newer, subdivision suburban home, with three children – we are not minimalists.

But, we don’t like alot of stuff.  And on top of that – my husband was in the military.  I’m sure you’ve heard the phrase ‘a place for everything, and everything in its place’.

So, Christmas tends to be hard around here.  We want gifts, we need things and we want things.  But, where does all the new stuff go, what do we give away that we no longer need, and what can we use up.

Last year, after Christmas, I thought that the easiest place to start ‘purging’ old stuff would be the food.  All kinds of leftover cookies and candy.  Leftovers from meals – a few pieces of lasagna, frozen turkey, homemade broth, etc.

I announced that we would be eating leftovers until they were gone. 

About a week later, I made a second announcement (mainly to the kids) that things were going to start getting very interesting around meal-time.  (Read this as kids begin to eat lots of PB&J and grilled cheese sandwiches).

I had decided I was going to use everything before I started purchasing new.  I would buy no proteins and no canned/dried goods until everything was gone.  

I started getting really creative and like the loaves and the fishes – it seemed there was no bottom to the freezer or back to the pantry.  Would it ever end?

And some point, we named this exercise ‘The Great Purge’.  I know – the name bothers some, but it’s stuck at this point. 

So, that’s the story.  And, guess what, we are at it again – The Great Purge, Volume 2 in 2013.

This year, I’m going to capture meals and share on Facebook and Pinterest.  I’m going to blog about it and I’m going to see who wants to join in, who can help me decide what to make, who can guess how long this can possibly go on, and how we all can learn from and share with each other. 

So, here goes!

The first step this year – (cheat on Facebook if you want) – how many meals was I able to prepare last year before buying protein or canned/dried foods?

I’ll share the answer in the next blog post.

 

 

 

 
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Posted by on January 7, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

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