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Friday, December 30, 2011

Co-op Gift Card: Year Three

The whole spread (minus the chicken feed)

If you've been following our blog for a while, you might remember that one of our most anticipated and useful Christmas presents is a gift card to our absolute favorite place to shop: the Willy Street Co-op. Mr. and Mrs. Claus have bestowed upon us this wonderful gift three times, and each time, I believe Andy and I have gotten better at figuring out how to get the most bang for our buck.

Veggie Burger Ingredients
Before heading to the co-op, we sit down to brainstorm a few meals to make in bulk and freeze - we try to coincide those with our financial and dietary pitfalls. Anyone who knows Andy knows he has a slight addiction to pizza. So,this year, we canned extra pizza sauce, and with our gift card, we bought enough mozzarella cheese to make me reconsider our need to own our very own cow!  Another way that we fail to live sustainably, both in terms of ethical food production and our personal finances is going out to eat during the work week. Usually this is because we don't have the time or the energy to use the ingredients residing in our fridge and cupboard. So, we bought all of the ingredients to quadruple our recipe for veggie burgers. This way, hopefully, when one of suggests going to Chipotle, the other can counter-argue that by pointing out we have veggie burgers in the freezer and potatoes in the cupboard.

Oftentimes, an argument against shopping for whole, organic, local foods is that it is too expensive. This is where being shopper savvy comes in handy. The back of our Subaru is loaded with canvas totes, Ball jars, canisters, and reused glass bottles because we buy nearly everything that we can't get from our CSA or garden in bulk. Local and/or organic bulk foods are surprisingly reasonable. Yesterday, we stocked up on maple syrup, honey, oats, peppercorns, coffee beans, milk powder, a few spices, and chicken feed.
Ingredients for granola
Milk powder for yogurt

A few other necessities...

Our personal New Year's Resolutions involve financial, dietary, and sustainability goals. This co-op trip and the cooking resulting afterward were a perfectly wonderful way to work towards those....for FREE! Thanks to Mr. and Mrs. Clause for once again helping us reach our goals.

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