Thursday, May 10, 2007

Frugal on a Time Budget Meal of the Day

Last week I committed to buckling down on frugality while trying to find time to do everything else. My current duties besides the everyday of keeping up with my paid job, keeping the house within health code standards, and keeping the family fed and clothed, include working on my church's Mother's Day for Peace event (more on that later) and working on Someday Garden's biggest consultation job to date. Not to mention, our own gardens are established and filling out, but the weeds are still competing and there are always things to be moved, pruned, watered, you name it. However busy I might be, I did find time to make a big pot of veggie chili. I made my standard from diced tomatoes, bulk kidney beans, corn, onions and seasonings, and added some bulk barley to fill it out nutritionally and budget-wise. (Saute the onions, then add remaining ingredients. Cook the barley ahead of time or add a goodly amount of veggie broth with the dried barley into the chili, and let it simmer gently until the barley is tender.) It turned out great. The first night, I decided to keep things interesting by serving it over a baked sweet potato, with a dollop of plain yogurt. For some reason I thought some steamed broccoli on top sounded good, and it ended up complimenting the whole thing quite nicely, giving a sweet freshness to the savoriness of the general dish. It may not look like much, but it was absolutely delicious, and very filling. I believe the cost per person was about $1. The kids are currently shunning tomatoes, but gobbled up a Sprout-Friendly chili version with just beans, corn, and (shhh) a little bit of tomato juice mixed in. It helps to find new ways to make old frugal favorites interesting.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Eco-Mama, it's V'girl from the WW Veggie Boards. I just love this site and the information and delicious inspiration. I know you are busy this time of year but just wanted to say I miss you! :)