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-   -   Monthly menu! (https://www.discusscooking.com/forums/f164/monthly-menu-97813.html)

CakePoet 03-30-2017 02:39 AM

Monthly menu!
Is there any one else who is on a fixed budget and do monthly menus?

Well here is my menu for the month, I have four days over Easter where we are not eating at home, I have set aside money for this. I sort of know what menu will be. Kassler is a warm smoked whole row of pork chop ( I dont know what that part is called when it isnt chopped up) and falukorv is a Swedish sausage, it is used instead of whole meat in dishes. It thick and is served sliced, not whole and there is a ton of recipe out there.

Swedish meatballs with potatoes, sauce and lingon.
Mince and tatties.
Salisbury steak meatballs with gravy.
Chili in cornbread bowls.

Kassler fried rice:
Pasta with kassler sauce
Kassler potato bake
Pizza Kassler bake with rice.

Fried falukorv with pasta
Falukorv stew with potatoes
Korvstroganoff with rice
Fried falukorv and potatotes in milk sauce
Korean beef with rice
Spag bowl
Jamacian beef patties with a green salad

Pork tortillas
All that we like but no one else does.

Indian butter chicken with rice
Smothered asiago bacon wine chicken with pasta.
Supreme chattanaid chicken

Pork and carrot stew with potatoes.
Pork shish kebabs ala Freja with Spanish rice salad ( not Spanish at all but, well that is what the 70:ties cook book calls it)
Grandfather's beer stew .

Addie 03-30-2017 02:48 AM

It is called a pork rib roast.


For special days we will have the butcher tie two full ribs roasts together, to form a hollow space in the middle. That is usually filled with some sort of stuffing or other family favorite.

CakePoet 03-30-2017 03:06 AM


Nice, well this is apparently similar to Canadian bacon according to one site, it cost me 4 USD per kilo and for me that is cheap. The falukorv cost me the same for 1.6 kilos.

CraigC 03-30-2017 06:18 AM

We do weekly planning. Never know when we might run across a recipe or get an inspiration to make something. Waiting for next week to put it on the list is fine, waiting a month is too long.:mrgreen:

larry_stewart 03-30-2017 06:26 AM

We also ( or I guess I should say "I" not "We", since Im in charge of cooking) do a weekly menu.

For me whats on the menu is more based on my work schedule ( am I off and can cook, or does it need to be prepared ahead of time , and just reheated). There are 4 days I can cook. 1 of them we usually either go out or take in, the other 3 days are my cooking days where I prepare food for that evening , and preprepared food for days I won't be able to cook.

Occasionally there are surprises that i come across while food shopping, and they may bump one of the other meals off the list.

On Occasion, we have a ' left over night'. If i see the fridge not emptying as quick as it should, and if its a late night where I can't cook, we may just try to use up what on hand to avoid waste.

CakePoet 03-30-2017 08:01 AM

CraigC: I dont have the money to just wing it and we get paid once a month and I go with my neighbor in for her monthly shopping, so that is the only time I have a car. So I base all my meat around what is cheap at that moment, this time it was stew pork, chicken, ground meat, kassler and falukorv. Everything is frozen into portion size.

Larry_stewart: Going out is at moment to expensive and also there is no restaurant in my village, there will be one next month.

I use up everything, since I am poor I believe in eat up what I cook. Stews that are less then a portion is saved in the freezer for left over rolls, which becomes my husband lunches.

Katie H 03-30-2017 09:24 AM

When Buck and I moved to Kentucky we lived in an area that was quite rural. The nearest grocery store of any size was about an hour away, plus we were running our store-front business. These two factors made it nearly impossible to shop more often than once per month. More than that was a luxury.

What I began doing was making "skeleton" monthly menus with the aid of blank calendar pages I found on the Internet.

I'd target the month, add small numbers for the date and write in the initials for the days of the week.

Once I did that, I began by noting "fish/seafood, poultry, beef, pork, meatless, leftovers" in the blocks. These are only six categories and, occasionally, our days would be bumped because of being out for something, having someone bring us a treat, etc.

It worked for all the years until he died. This method gave me the opportunity to go through my "to try" recipes and target them to enjoy.

When I checked the marketing ads, I could compare what was on sale to what I'd sketched in on the calendar and be able to take advantage of specials.

I haven't applied to the monthly menu system for quite a while for assorted reasons. Not the least of which is that both Glenn and I are retired and our schedules are very irregular. However, I do pick up a few weekly specials at the grocery store. One of the nicest luxury to living where I live now is that I can shop weekly. The (multiple) grocery stores are only about 15 minutes away

CakePoet 03-30-2017 09:38 AM

I have 15 minutes by train and bus to the stores, yes small shopping I can do my self, but anything large and heavy is too much. So it is nice to have neighbours who help out. We have a local store, it is a bit more expensive then in town when they do speacials on meat, I buy . The stew pork was from them, the lady knows how I like it and does it perfectly for me.

jennyema 03-30-2017 09:58 AM

No I only do weekly menus and then stray off them when we want to eat out or have friends over

And pretty often we do a daily menu and I stop at the store or the farmers market on the way home and cook what I bought

tenspeed 03-30-2017 10:03 AM

When we were both working and the nearest store was 15 minutes away, I had to plan the weekly menus so we could shop on weekends. Now that we're both retired and live in an area with several stores within 3 miles, I usually don't plan more than 2 days meals, if not daily. If I go any direction I'll be driving by a grocery store. Today is a rarity, as I planned 3 days meals due to a snowstorm predicted for tomorrow (hurry, spring!). I can ride somewhere around 8 months of the year, and the stores are only 10 minutes away by bike.

Aunt Bea 03-30-2017 10:23 AM

I check out what I have on hand and the weekly grocery fliers, then I make a loose plan for the week. I sort of wing it as I go along, depending on my mood, the weather, etc... Before I know it the week is over, the refrigerator is empty, and the whole thing starts again.

Steve Kroll 03-30-2017 02:28 PM

I plan a rough menu about two weeks out, subject to change due to spontaneity or mood. :chef:

Addie 03-30-2017 02:55 PM

Saturday I get my food stamps as does Spike. So I guess we will be going shopping on Saturday. We better get there early. It has been a long month. The store is going to be very crowded.

The store is set up so that you go to the left and start there. It is where all the refrigerated foods are. Butter, milk, cheeses, etc. Frozen is at the other side of the store. I know there is a science to the way the store is laid out. But I will be danged before I can figure it out. Make the refrigerated foods right before the frozen. That way the frozen stuff will sit on top of your fridge foods keeping them cold. But I am only a customer. What do I know.

roadfix 03-30-2017 03:17 PM

We plan out our menu only for the day depending on what we have on hand in the fridge or freezer.

CakePoet 03-30-2017 03:28 PM

roadfix: So when the freezer and fridge are empty, you eat the shelves? Some one must stock your fridge , freezer or does it magicaly restock it self ( and if it do, can I have one?). ;)

Addie: you know how it is to have a fixed budget, we dont have foodstamps here, it is seen as pointing out some one is poor.
So I get money on my bankcard, but these has to last a month and I cant hope there will be good deal all through the month. yeah sure pork tenderlion from Swedish pigs 16- 18 USD per kilo is bargain for the rich not the poor. Last month there was only 2 weeks with good deals, in the start and at the end and I get 10% of my shopping too at one store around the 25.
I do save money this way.

roadfix 03-30-2017 03:45 PM


Originally Posted by CakePoet (Post 1505181)
roadfix: So when the freezer and fridge are empty, you eat the shelves? Some one must stock your fridge , freezer or does it magicaly restock it self ( and if it do, can I have one?). ;)

They're never empty. None of our grocery shopping or menu planning are structured. If I see something interesting in the ad I might swing by the market on the way home from work and pick up a few items in addition to the featured item. My wife does the same. She also likes to go to Costco every 10 days or so.

Addie 03-30-2017 05:16 PM


Originally Posted by CakePoet (Post 1505181)
roadfix: So when the freezer and fridge are empty, you eat the shelves? Some one must stock your fridge , freezer or does it magicaly restock it self ( and if it do, can I have one?). ;)

Addie: you know how it is to have a fixed budget, we dont have foodstamps here, it is seen as pointing out some one is poor.

Just about every elderly person in this building are on food stamps. Actually, Food Stamps are no longer called by that name. Now it is SNAP which stands for Supplemental Nutritional Allowance Program. But everyone calls it Food Stamps. Old habits are hard to break.

When checking out at the grocery store you have an EBT card and the value of how much food assistance you receive is on that card in US dollars. Also if you receive financial assistance the money is on that card also. It looks like a bankcard. So at the checkout, unless someone is really nosey and stretching their neck to see what you are doing, no one knows how you are paying. With food stamps or cash from your bank account. If you are receiving financial assistance otherwise known as "being on welfare" folks with their nose up in the air can get real snotty about the subject.

My part of Boston has always been a place that immigrates flock to. First the Jews, then the Irish, then the Jews again, then the Italians and now Hispanics. So a lot of them are on financial assistance and food stamps when they first arrive. I have no problem with that. It gives them a foot up, until they can find a job and learn the language. And like in your country, there is shame attached to being "on the dole." In spite of the language barrier, they immediately head for the local Spanish speaking office to find out where they can learn English. They are the lowest paid on the pay scale. And they don't know any better. They make friends, they are quick to assimilate into the community. They value education and register their children in classes where English is spoken as a second language. Most of them hold down two jobs. Some even three part time jobs. I think immigrants are our hardest working people. They came to make a better life for their children, and they are going to do whatever it takes.

In this state, all elderly qualify for food stamps. Every time we get a new resident in the building, I let them know about it and print out the application for them. I am one of two folks who have a computer in the building. Most residents receive over $100 in food stamps a month. And then there are those whose private income is too high, so they receive only $10. Enough to buy milk, cream for coffee or any other food item. No taxable items.

Just Cooking 03-30-2017 05:59 PM

Since retiring 15 years ago I have tried every menu trick I could find..

I quit that and instead have gathered a folder of recipes with foods we like.. I have a list of items needed for those selections and keep products on hand all the time.. We might say we want XXX and end up using the ingredients to make YYY.. Depends on mood, etc.

Cooking Goddess 03-31-2017 12:15 AM


Originally Posted by Addie (Post 1505209)
...In this state, all elderly qualify for food stamps...

Just to be clear, not ALL elderly in MA qualify for food stamps. You have to be below a certain amount in savings and monthly income to qualify. Just being old doesn't get you that benefit.

CakePoet 03-31-2017 12:31 AM

I also have things with having stuff in the fridge and freezer that I wont use or get told old before used up, it wasteful.

And my fridges holds a little more then 1 months food for a family, so I need have clear attack plan.

Social welfare here, if you are under 65 is geared toward helping you get skills to get a job. My husband got an education in driving forklift, which proved to be useless so far. I am now working in a coffee shop, only 2 days a week to prove I am ill .

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