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Old 02-19-2010, 01:43 AM   #11
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Beans! Bean soup, bean & rice burritos or tacos w/ fresh salsa and avocado (or guac obviously). Dry beans are cheapest. I would experiment with some small bags of beans, and find some that you like. Then when you find which beans you like best you get the biggest bag they have. I saw some pretty large bags of beans at Walmart, and there are no doubt bigger ones at Sams Club or other bulk stores. Flour and other staples like rice are usually considerably cheaper at the bulk stores too. Find a good basic bread recipe and have fun!
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I agree with this idea...Mexican food are really 'cheap' meals and with the Mexican Vegetarian movement there are many recipes to choose from
Vegetarian Mexican Food Recipes - Vegetarian Mexican Food - Vegan Mexican Food - Tofu Tacos - Vegetarian Burritos
Vegetarian Mexican Recipes - Vegetarian Tex-Mex Recipes - The Veggie Table - Vegetarian Recipes and Info
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Old 02-19-2010, 08:38 AM   #12
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I agree with this idea...Mexican food are really 'cheap' meals and with the Mexican Vegetarian movement there are many recipes to choose from
Yes! I made corn tortillas not long ago. Not too hard, but then I saw a pack of 30 at Walmart for 94 cents! I bet the pack of 100 is even cheaper/unit. Anyway, I made beans and rice early in the week and have been making lunch (and breakfast one day) with these 3 ingredients since. Just add whatever leftover you have in with the beans and rice on a tortilla. I suppose you could bake the shells, but I've been frying them in a but of veg oil.
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Old 02-19-2010, 07:54 PM   #13
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Back in my theatre days we used to make a lot of stir frys and rice and lots of chili (rice in chili..YUM) and there were always potatoes in the house.
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Old 02-22-2010, 06:57 AM   #14
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mexican ingredients

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Yes! I made corn tortillas not long ago. Not too hard, but then I saw a pack of 30 at Walmart for 94 cents! I bet the pack of 100 is even cheaper/unit. Anyway, I made beans and rice early in the week and have been making lunch (and breakfast one day) with these 3 ingredients since. Just add whatever leftover you have in with the beans and rice on a tortilla. I suppose you could bake the shells, but I've been frying them in a but of veg oil.
Im happy you made great progress in just 3 ingredients, rice, beans and tortilla can really stretch and diversify meals..i also use these ingredients if not everyday but every week...
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Old 02-22-2010, 10:42 AM   #15
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One of my favorite dishes, which happens to be Chinese (from my mom) and conveniently vegetarian, is a sauted mix of mostly dried ingredients you can get in any Chinatown and sold in packs. Ingredients such as dried soy bean curd skin, dried lily blossoms, dried wood ear, dried shitake. These just need to be soaked and rehydrated overnight. Because of rehydration, just a little of the dried ingredients increase in volume and therefore goes a long way. Throw these into a hot wok with fried ginger slices and fried fresh firm tofu. Season with soy sauce, add water, simmer for tastes to combine. Et ... voila! A very hearty vegetarian meal that costs almost nothing, stocks very well in the pantry, and is very hearty. Serve with rice.
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Old 02-22-2010, 11:55 AM   #16
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I made a really tasty bean soup yesterday. I love the Goya package of 16 different dried beans. Soak them overnight and the next day, saute up some onions, celery, carrots, peppers, garlic and then put in your beans. Add about 16 cups of water (filtered is better) and season with about 2 teaspoons dried herbes de Provence, a couple of pinches of crushed red pepper flakes, and a few grinds of each white and black peppercorns, and a couple of dried bay leaves. Don't salt until the beans are almost cooked, then taste before you do.

The package of beans costs about $1.25 here in New York, and the veggies aren't expensive. You can eat for quite a few days on the 3 quarts of soup you should get from that.
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Old 02-22-2010, 03:03 PM   #17
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I just (re)discovered falafel in a magazine I was reading the other day. We didn't have all the ingredients in the house, but even with what I had they turned out so tasty! It's basically cooked chickpeas (pureed), garlic, parsley, salt, cumin, a little oil of whatever variety, a little bit of flour and then you just make patties out of them and cook them in a little oil in a pan or you can deep fry them... cut open a tortilla, fill with lettuce and tomato if you like, and drizzle on some plain greek yogurt. It is tasty and cheap, too!
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Old 02-23-2010, 02:32 AM   #18
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Fresh fruits and vegetables aren't expensive if you're cooking for one. One apple or pear can go towards a salad AND serve as a desert for less than 80 cents. Canned pineapple is often a regular and popular item on-sale at least once a month. Just watch the grocery ads on whatever day they normally appear in your local newspaper.

Spaghetti squash will serve for two or three meals, making it a real value. Acorn squash is good for two meals, and in-season fruit such as tangerines and plums can be had for 3/$1. They're only expensive when you buy them out of season.
You took the words right out of my mouth. That is my favorite squash!! I prefer that over regular spaghetti pasta.
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Old 02-23-2010, 11:57 AM   #19
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My answer is soup ! soup! and more soup! It has been shown scientifically that soup stays in your stomach longer-so causing you to feel satisfied longer. Use chickpeas / garbanzos to make a Spanish garbanzo soup. Traditional Leek and Potato is one of the easiest to make, or try a spicy Tomato and Lentil. The choices are endless. Add some homemade bread or even easier-cornbread....and you have a satisfying and cheap meal. Cook up batches of two different kinds on the weekends...and there is your food for the week.
Bored with soup, or want a change mid-week??...Baked potatoes.....fill with cheese,beans or veggies and you are sorted.

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Old 02-25-2010, 12:06 PM   #20
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Take Advantage of Sales and Coupons

I stock up on caned and frozen fruits, vegetables, soups and the like when they are on sale. I call it my Depression Pantry. I always have canned tuna and canned salmon and can often make a meal with those, pantry and frozen items, and with left overs from the fridge.

I also use as many coupons as I can as well. But my niece, who is in college, really has coupons down to a science. She once had a store owing her a few pennies. I don't know how she did that.
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