Hearty Lentil Soup with wrinkled napkin. (Click on pic for recipe)
Last week I spent $2.50 on two bulbs of garlic at the Farmer's Market. I am still trying to get over that one. This week I was a little more careful. I skipped the Farmer's Market. Actually, in all fairness, it closed at 3:00 and I didn't get there until 3:15, but I still skipped going in theory.

So off to my regular super market I went with my $151.06. This week was a little easier shopping wise as I didn't have to purchase 1/2 cup of cashews, and 4 Tbsp of peanuts. After yesterday's freezer cleaning I have enough little bags of nuts, (don't go there) to last me a life time, well a few weeks at least.

Again, due to my once a decade freezer cleaning I had little meat to purchase and therefore I was able to stock up on some much needed staples. Olive Oil, Raw Honey (which interestingly enough is cheaper than organic), white wine vinegar, mayonnaise, and coffee. I am very happy to report that I was able to purchase my week's worth of groceries (less some broccoli which I will get at the end of the week for a stir fry) for under $150 and come home with some change.

I did have some meat to purchase - chicken breast. The free range chicken breast was priced at $25/Kg at the grocery store and I simply refused to pay that much. I almost started a sit in. That's ridiculous!

So I left without the poultry and wanting to write a letter to the President of Save On Foods - not really that's too much work, but sufficed to say I was ticked.

Then I remembered a client of mine had told me about a market not too far away. A Persian market. She said they had great meat and she purchased her lamb there all the time. Hmmm.... worth a try. I went.

Oh joy, oh bliss. Why did I not go earlier? I used to frequent the Persian markets a lot a few years ago, but I had grown out of the habit and forgotten how wonderful they are. First, the desserts. Those people know how to make dessert. Creamy, with nuts and oh ... heavenly. But I digress. I was not there for dessert. Dessert is something that I personally do not need. Want? Maybe. Need? Uh, no. So, I listened to my inner voice that said "Step away from the dessert Cayla". I did.

Second, It was packed which in my books is always a good sign.

Third, the prices. I saw the same brand of eggs that I just bought on sale at Save on Foods, for a dollar cheaper. They had olive oil at much better prices. Then I saw the chicken. Certified Organic Chicken Breast $5.99 lb.  I was happy enough that the price was stated in pounds rather than kilos - thank you (metric has only been in Canada for 35 years), but $5.99? You've got to be kidding me. I'll take two.

So when it was all said and done I had spent less than $150. In fact, I have .... drum roll please ... $18.42 left over.

So, I encourage you to check out a specialty market. You never know what you'll discover. We happen to have Persian here, but an Asian, Italian, Indian - they all sound so lovely. I'll certainly be going again BEFORE I go to the large chain.

Oh, as a complete sidebar, I have to tell you what the checkout girl at Save on Foods says to me. I had bought some toilet paper etc. (not included in the $150) and put the items through separately. She was young so I forgave her inquisitiveness as to why I had to buy them separately. Apparently I was adding to her already heavy work load. I told her I was writing a blog and had challenged myself to feeding my family for $150 per week, with whole foods, no packages, blah blah blah so I needed to keep the household purchases and food purchases separate. She looked at me, rolled her eyes (no kidding) and said "So? What's the big deal with that? That's easy. I could do that no problem." I just looked at her, knowing that mommy probably cooks everything for her and she hasn't bought anything but a doughnut in her whole life. Then she says to me "So, whadya get if you do it? A prize or something?" to which I responded "More money in my pocket." "Oh. Hmph. Whatever." she grunts.

I kinda wanted to smack her up the side of the head belittling my challenge like she did. But I managed to restrain myself. After all, she's a teenager which automatically makes me stupid. Then, I got home and realized I was overcharged for the TP by around $10. For that she is not forgiven.

By the way, they were much nicer at the Persian Market. Very friendly in fact.

The picture at the top of the page is tonight's dinner. "Hearty Lentil Soup". It's cheap and easy, kinda like me. :) You can get the recipe by clicking on the pic. Enjoy.



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