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Old 09-24-2010, 08:09 AM   #41
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So many good ideas with the beans and rice. So, after scratching my head a bit, I thought I'd ad some other inexpensive items.

1 cup Rice with one can each of water chestnuts, and bamboo shoots, one sliced onion, one sliced carrot, and two eggs, scrambled, or tofu, all stir-fried together and flavored with soy sauce, garlic, ginger, and 5 spice powder. This will make four servings.

Split green pea soup. Just follow the directions on the package. Add a chopped onion, a bit of liquid smoke, and bind it with a couple tbs. of blonde roux. Again, you could add firm tofu to this soup.

Yellow dried pea soup. Again, follow basic package directions. But this soup has a bit more onion flavor, and the addition of black pepper. Add a touch of liquid smoke to this one as well. Completely different flavor than split green pea soup.

Dahl - Cooked lentils, flavored with cumin and coriander. Add sliced onion if you want while the lentils are cooking. Can be made with curry.

If you use dairy, then there are a great number of creamed veggie dishes that you might enjoy.

And don't forget using squash and pumpkin to make desert breads.

Apples can be inexpensive and can be used in salads, with deserts, in smoothies, in quick breads, in pancakes and muffins, or as a topping for savory foods.

Scalloped potatoes are inexpensive and can be enhanced with herbs and spices, then broken into single servings and frozen.

Chili! Need I say more? I mean, beans, tomatoes, TVP, celery, peppers, herbs and spices. How much healthier or flavorful can you get?

Gazpacho - the dish that's made by taking your leftover veggies, throwing them into a pot with tomatoes, peppers, and cilantro, all cooked through, then served ice cold. Refreshing and delicious.

Pies, all made with fresh fruit, or a very economical pumpkin that you process yourself.

And speaking of pumpkins, after the meat of this versatile veggie is cooked, it can be used in desert breads, pies, soups, or just eaten as is with a bit of brown sugar and butter (or margarine).

Just a few ideas. Hope they help.

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Old 09-24-2010, 09:49 AM   #42
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I would look at Indian dishes.They are masters of tasty,cheap vegetarian dishes.

I love chickpea curry.Tons of flavor on the cheap.

To keep my grocery bill low and my diversity high I compare all the supermaket flyers and decide where to shop for the week based on what I need to shop for.I also frequent an asian/mexican market and our local (huge) flea market for produce and other bargains.Our flea market covers quite a few acres and has about 100 food stalls selling anything from fresh fruit and veggies to fish.It is truly like a third world market.

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Old 09-24-2010, 09:52 AM   #43
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Originally Posted by 4meandthem View Post
To keep my grocery bill low and my diversity high I compare all the supermaket flyers and decide where to shop for the week based on what I need to shop for.
I do the same. I usually spend the better part of an hour each week looking thhrough all the ads, my coupons, and planning meals for the week. It takes time but it saves a lot of $$. I have no problem shopping at 2 or 3 stores.
Quoth the chicken, "Fry some more."
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Old 09-24-2010, 10:10 AM   #44
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Originally Posted by larry_stewart View Post
also meals that can be used different ways so you can make in bulk, and take advantage of left overs.

eggplant parmesan
with the leftovers, toss on a hero bread, now u got an eggplant parmesan hero
with more leftovers, toss on top of some ziti with sauce and bake with cheese.
you can even mash the eggplant parmesan with some grated cheese, then stuff them into pasta shells = eggplant stuffed shells

so eggplant parmesan may not be the cheapest meal, but if made in bulk, can be used in different ways, over the course of a week or be frozen if necessary.

soups ( pea, lentil, black bean) are just about as cheap and easy as they get. just serve with some bread and maybe some kind of rice pilaf.

veggie burger variations.
pizza burger ( sauce and cheese)
guacamole veggie burger ( guacamole + onions + tomatos )
mushroom onion veggie burger ( fried shrooms and onions )
Originally Posted by expatgirl View Post
even cheaper is to take an Asian noodle soup mix, add some frozen veggies, garic/onion powder, bean sprouts and or shredded cabbage, let it cook the 2 minutes and then stir in an egg that's been scrambled by a fork to thicken it up.....so good.........f you have some leftover pork, shrimp, or chicken add that at the end, too.....so good, easy, nutritious, and cheap....
Originally Posted by expatgirl View Post
doctored up good pasta spaghetti sauce ( I added a bit more sauteed onion, garlic. 1/4 red wine, fresh parsely, and mushrooms and cook into the pasta sauce for about 15 minutes)....near the end I add 1/2 teaspoon or so of Italian seasoning and maybe some garlic powder and cook for an additonal 10 minutes.....for my family I always have to add some sugar........I will also add a can of clams as well at the beginning

TY, Michelle

If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world. -Tolkien
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Old 09-29-2010, 01:29 PM   #45
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Soup can be made to fit with a varying budget.

Stock, onions, garlic and any vegetable make a basic soup.

When the budget allows you can add a one or more of the following.
More vegetables
Various pureed vegetables
Sugar and Vinegar adds a nice flavour to not just soup, but other dishes too
Curry powder
Fresh and/or dried herbs
Sun dried tomatoes
Olive oil

And, there are likely more that could be added to this list. I often let what goes into my soup depend on budget and ingredient availability. You can even make a basic soup to freeze in portions and then fancy it up by adding a variety of other things to it, when you heat up a portion.


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