Because I still have a little price-checking to do, last week I didn't account for the cost of the herbs and spices I already own. Few people have a completely bare cupboard, of course, and if you've cooked anything at all from scratch you likely have salt and pepper and a few herbs lying around.
It's been very difficult to even come up with accurate weights for these items.
My scale weighs to the ounce, so when the needle moves just a little, it's hard to know if I'm looking at 1/8 of an ounce , or 1/16. In a couple of cases, the needle didn't seem to move at all. I've assigned a weight of 1/8 of an ounce to those items. I've collected nearly all the costs for last week now and the cost of my pantry items comes to about $27!
Once the end spice weights are subtracted from the beginning spice weights, I expect to still be within my budget. But if I did have a bare cupboard to start—if I did have to go out and buy every herb and spice I used last week—I would have been over budget by some $20.
This applies even more-so to the outlay required to prepare last week's meals at those prices. For example, I bought the mozzarella cheese on sale in a 5-pound block to cut up and freeze. I was able to just pull a chunk out to use, but starting from nothing would have required me to buy the full amount—if I could even find it on sale. I'll post all these prices once I get them fully sorted out.
Tuesday is hot again. By the end of the day I find I've already consumed most of the Summer Tea. I fill another mason jar and set it out on the deck.
Breakfast is my usual coffee, muesli, and yogurt. Lunch is peanut butter on toast, carrot top soup, and an orange. Jesse just has the peanut butter on toast and he's full. He'll have the soup and orange for lunch tomorrow. I guess all those mothers feeding all those kids peanut butter sandwiches when I was growing up were on to something.
I make an ambitious dinner, and regret it. It's a dish we've had before, Chickpeas cooked in a Moghlai-Style. It's a delicious dish, but requires quite a few steps. I decide on Chapatis to accompany it, and a quick preparation of sugar snap peas with cumin seeds and thyme. It's a rookie error: both of these require last minute attention, and I find myself harried trying to time everything properly and do everything right at the end. Dinner is 30 minutes behind schedule. It tastes good, but I'm frazzled by the time I sit down. This might be better as a Saturday meal when I really do have all the time I want for cooking.
Tuesday total: $5.14. Remaining weekly allowance: $53.45.
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