by L. C. Peterson
In this "gotta have the newest gadget" world, let us not forget that some "old" ways are perfectly useful in today's kitchen. I recently recalled some techniques that my Mom used to save money and time. In this article, I share some of Mom's tips. Use the ideas that apply to your situation. Brainstorm your own.
Learn to serve less expensive meats and slow cook, tenderize, or use a pressure cooker. Today's appliances for this type of cooking are much easier to work with than in the past.
Serve reasonable helpings. This prevents waste especially if your family doesn't like leftovers. Reasonable helpings keep weight down and it is also healthier.
Buy breads at "day old" stores. You can't tell a difference especially when toasting. If you can't use fresh bread quickly enough before spoilage occurs, freeze it.
Save time on repeat items. Mom made enough homemade biscuits at breakfast for supper too. We refrigerated the made-up biscuits in a pie plate at breakfast. When it was near dinnertime, we left them out for a few minutes to bring them to room temperature and then we cooked them.
Bake one and freeze one. Enjoy desserts? Make two pies, freeze one, and eat one. One of our favorite pizza dough recipes allows us to freeze one dough ball, and cook another.
Buy no junk food. Prepare "good" desserts, such as cobbler, crisps, and fruit pies. We grew up with no weekly consumption of candy, sodas, potato chips, etc. These were saved for special occasions if we ate any at all.
Avoid convenience costs. Buy a whole ham and slice it yourself. Buy a chicken and cut it up yourself. Bake your own snacks and freeze in serving size portions.
- These are just a few ways to eat better and save. Adjust these tips to fit your location and lifestyle. Few people butcher their own pigs now, but today's equivalent would be getting together with a friend and buying meat in bulk during a store sale. Or create a food club where each member makes a large amount of a particular product, packages it per number of club members, and swaps with the other members. This idea is used by many at Thanksgiving and Christmas.
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We're still paying off last Christmas and worry how we'll afford the holidays this year without charging it again! Tell us: Yes, we could use help getting out of the debt trap we're in! or No, debt is not a problem for us but I'm always looking for ways to trim my family's expenses further!