First Shopping Aventure in 2008

Well, I’m proud to say it (high atop my box): today we did our weekly grocery shopping. Between Wintertime Farmer’s Market & Eastside Market in Providence we were able to purchase most everything within the Rhode Island community, most of which was organic and/or free range / hormone free. I was surprised at how little difference in money it is, overall.

At Winter Market we spent $23 on:
5lbs Apples ($5)
1lb fresh Clams ($4)
1 Narragansett Creamery Aged Cheese ($8) (the last bar we got lasted us 15 days)
1 Narragansett Creamery Feta Cheese ($6) (a good, hefty block)

At Eastside Market we spent the following:

Cabot sour cream (VT) 2.19
Little Rhody Cage/Hormone/ Free Brown Eggs, XL*(RI) 2.50
Rhody Fresh Milk (No rBGH, RI) $2.79 1/2 gal
Rhody Fresh 1/2 & 1/2 (no rBGH, RI) $1.20 pint
Supreme Shred Mozzarella (NH) $9 2lbs
Best Yet Mayo (NH) $2.99

New England Produce is pretty much over until Spring, so we get what we can at Farmer’s and supplement as necessary, buying local when possible; and at the very least
Avacado, Organic, (not local) $1.29
Blueberries Conventional (not local) $1.98
Tomatoes Conventional (Canada) $2.02

Around $25 before tax.

The only reason I list all this out is to show that the prices for local food is usually comparable to distant food; it’s fresh and accountable, too, often with less junk as filler or preservative.

* I want to talk about the eggs for a second. Usually I spend $3 on the 24pk of small, conventional (i.e. hormone induced/ corn fed eggs) so it all washes out to be around the same price about because these are XL and the smalls are usually pretty small.

From our shopping list, it might not seem like we have enough food to get through the week, but we still have 2 yams, a half bag of potatoes, celery, a green pepper, a parsnip, a turnip, red leaf lettuce, some lemons and some tangerines to eat up. The pantry is fairly full, too, from when Mama Lewis was in town: we stocked up on dry beans, canned vegetables and other dry goods while she had a rental car.

Tonight we made black bean soup (which 1 cup is appx 125 glorious, fiber-rich calories), fresh guacamole and a green salad with creamy guac dressing…

Black Bean Soup (Turtle Soup)
1bag (2c) dried black beans, soaked or 4 cans of black beans, rinsed
1 onion
2 cloves of garlic
1 green pepper

herbs & spices to taste:

chili powder
garlic powder
onion flakes /powder
or any other spices you like

put all ingredients in a crock pot or dutch oven (preferred) until all ingredients are soft enough to chew. pour soup into a food processor or blender and puree most of it, reserving just a little chunky goodness. Add spices to taste. Keep warm, allowing the spices to meld with the soup – maybe 10-15minutes. Serve hot with a sprinkle of melty cheese, guacamole and green onions.

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