Day 2 of the Hunger Action Challenge: Impulse Shopping

Worst Budget Shopper EVER: I bought rib-eye steaks. Okay, I’ll be honest, they weren’t that expensive and I didn’t go over my budget, but it just felt ridiculous. Also I’d been sent to the store for tofu. And came home with steak. I might be the only girl whose boyfriend would complain in this situation “but I’d been looking forward to a nice meal of tofu and vegetables!” I’m dating freaking Vince the vegetarian here!

imgp4275With a day like today’s in Seattle, there was no question that we wanted to bust out the grill, so I was off to the store for tofu. I took a little wander by the meat department, and well, you see what happened next.

For the rest of the meal, I want to back up a minute. When I took this challenge, I understood that everything had to be bought specifically for the challenge. Since then I’ve seen a lot of fellow participants using groceries from their cabinet and just charging for them selves. In fact Cook and Eat had a good little discussion going about this practice. Because I had it in my head that this wasn’t allowed, I’m sticking with my plan not to use anything I previously owned. I think it is a little more challenging, but also more realistic. I know, if I were on food stamps for a long time I probably would already have flour, oil, etc. but on the other hand, I also wouldn’t be buying espresso, no matter how cheaply it portions out to be. So I’m sticking with my way–though I don’t necessarily think there is a ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ way. I think it is probably for the best that there are people doing various different methods. 

So tonight we grilled the two steaks, a pile of baby bok choy and grilled masa cakes, which basically were thick tortillas with extra salt for flavor, grilled. I chose masa as my starch because I don’t have a ton of time and it is easy to make various things with the masa without waiting for it to rest or rise, as if I’d bought a flour for breads or pastas, especially since I’d already bought the bread for the week.

For lunch today we had Chicken Bahn Mi on a baguette, with the homemade mayo, cilantro, thai basil, jalapenos and cucumbers. Also: olives, orange, banana. Breakfast was lentils.

For the record, here’s what we’ve spent so far and what we have to pick from:

Dong Hing Market–$17.46
Pork Cheeks (6)
Garlic (4 heads)
Ginger (1 knob)
Cilantro (1 bunch)
Korean Roasted Seaweed (3 bags)
4 Oranges
6 bananas
1 large bag of baby bok choi

Grocery Outlet: $10.40
4 baby artichokes
2 large cucumbers
1 jar of salad olives
1 5 lb Chicken

South Sea Grocery (Indian Convenience Mart): $11.36
Olive Oil
Curry Powder
Garam Masala
Sardines in Tomato Sauce

ABC Supermercado: $7.10
2 rib eye steaks

Seattle Deli: $1.75
4 Baguettes


Total Spent so far (of $60 for the week): $48.07


4 Responses

  1. […] Day 2 of the Hunger Action Challenge: Impulse Shopping from The Gastro Gnome […]

  2. Awesome post and awesome job. Looks like you’re able to very well.

  3. Do all of those specialty markets accept food stamps? You should try the challenge using only markets that do, to better simulate the reality.

  4. Ha! Artisan, these are not specialty markets and i’m quite confident that they all take food stamps. Given the neighborhood that I live in (I can walk to all of these places…and do) I would even wager a guess that they take in a fair amount of their money via food stamps.

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