Saturday, November 17, 2007

Planning My Onslaught On The Grocery Store

What, you're not? Listen, you need to. Tomorrow is THE day. Even if you're not a coupon-clipper (and just don't tell me, if you're not, because it would cause me to weep), the grocery sales right now, they are fierce, and include probably the widest variety and largest number of items than at any other time of the year. And the beauty part is that much of what you can get on sale now can be stored for some time, and used later. The rest of my life may be in a shambles (yes, STILL), but this? This, I can do. Here are some things you can be on the lookout for good deals on between now and Thanksgiving--I have coupons for all of them, but even if you don't (*sob*), they're still on store sale most places:

*Frozen or fresh turkeys and chickens. Who says you can only cook a turkey at Thanksgiving? If you follow Barbara Kafka's roasting directions, you can do a big bird in two hours. Now is also a great time to buy roasting/baking hens, and turkey breast roasts (those are fantastic--they're still on the bone, with skin, but it's just the breast and rib meat). Buy them fresh and freeze them, or buy them frozen. Or, heck, buy them fresh, take them home, roast 'em, and debone and freeze all that great cooked meat, then boil up the bones for a rich stock, and freeze it, too!
*Fruit. Fresh, frozen, and canned. Some fruit freezes, some doesn't, but lots of flash-frozen fruit is on sale right now because people use it in pies and chutneys/sauces. Stock up. You'll wish you had some cranberries in late February, and think, "Why didn't I listen to Belinda?"
*Nuts. No, I'm not calling you names. Nuts of all kinds are on sale right now, both pre-packaged, and in bulk in the produce section. And they're normally pretty expensive, so why not get them now, even if you don't need them? They freeze VERY well--in fact, I store nuts in the freezer as a matter of course, to keep the oils in them fresh.
*Dairy products. Milk and cheese freeze, people.
*Canned broth and cream soups. These are on SERIOUS markdown right now, and armed with my coupons, if I don't bring home a sackful for free, I'll be disappointed. Like canned tomatoes, you just can't have too much canned broth or "cream of" soups, especially now that cream soups are available in low-fat, low-sodium varieties.
*Baking supplies. ALL baking supplies. Think big, here. I'm not talking about just flour and sugar, but spices, vegetable oil, pie filling (canned fruit), frozen pie crusts, chocolate, condensed milk, EVERYTHING. The whole aisle is on sale NOW. If you have room, store flour in an airtight container in your freezer.
*Bread. Again, bread freezes well.
*Root/bulb vegetables, i.e. sweet potatoes, white potatoes, onions, shallots, garlic, etc. Store these just right, and you can keep quite a few on hand.
*Dried grains/legumes, i.e. all kind of rice, dehydrated potato flakes, beans, barley, lentils.
*Cereals, especially the ones used for snacks like Chex Mix and Rice-Krispie Treats.
*Snacks. Not that YOU will eat them, but you know, your guests might be wanting to graze on dips and chips and crackers and cheese-balls and stuff.
*Sodas. But don't drink sodas. They're bad. Evil. I don't even know why I said sodas. Forget I did that.
*Dish detergent and cleaning supplies. Because, you know, people (ahem--SOME people) will be doing a lot of house-cleaning in preparation for houseguests.
*Kitchen supplies, i.e. paper towels, garbage bags, aluminum foil, plastic wrap, parchment paper, wax paper, etc.
*Toilet paper. Really.
*And in what I consider a stroke of marketing genius, ANTACIDS. Pepcid, TUMS, Pepto-Bismol, Mylanta, everything. See also: Immodium.

So yeah, hit the store for whatever's on your Thanksgiving list, but for stuff that keeps a while, freezes, or can be stored indefinitely, STOCK UP, Baby!

I'll report back with what I hope will be my tale of cutting a wide swath through the stores, leaving checkout clerks exhausted and store managers weeping. I also have some recipes I need to post that are based on using leftovers from roasted chicken or turkey.

Meanwhile, my home? A wreck. Thank you.

By the way, do we need to have The Coupon Talk? You should really only be paying for about half of your groceries, if that.


Sarcastic Mom (aka Lotus) said...

I think if I got to know you well enough, over time, I'd be thinking, "Why didn't I listen to Belinda?" every day.


That's pressure, man.

paper napkin said...

I wish I had an extra freezer so I could stock up on sales.

Belinda said...

Dude, GET an extra freezer. They are not expensive used, and come in all sizes. You can tuck a little chest freezer away in your garage, and cram an amazing amount of stuff in it. Our current one is an upright, that we bought used from an ad in the paper for $90.

The trap to avoid is stuffing it with things you then forget about. Freezer clutter. Ugh. Labeling and dating stuff helps.