My friend Denise Laitinen just had this piece published in The Honolulu Civil Beat, which I found to be thought-provoking. On the same day that I read it, I had also overheard a conversation where the folks were complaining about the local food prices, including bread and milk. They were new to the area and quite surprised about prices.
It is definitely not cheap to live here. A quick google search turned up "30% higher cost of living" (2013 study). From my perspective, which is largely food writing, I really had to change habits when we moved. I used to just go buy whatever, whenever, with very little regard for prices. Now, I check grocery-store ads, use up leftovers (see hash, above), cook a lot from scratch, grow what I can in the garden and buy in bulk.
A reader once commented that I use "too much frozen food" and "should be buying all organic." Well, sure, I'd only buy fresh meat, fish, and organic vegetables, if we could afford to do that. A food budget, though, is part of an overall budget, and I do my best to stick to it.
Much of this weekend has been dedicated to garden prep, speaking of produce. Mr. L and I just got back from taking the "green waste" to that section of the dump. Now we need to prepare the soil. That usually means that Mr. L does the heavy digging while I putter around with my shovel. We're planting green beans, beets, kabocha squash, and bok choy, plus some herbs. A neighbor showed us how to plant squash near a sturdy fence so that it "climbs," and the bugs don't get them. I hope it works.
Speaking of food and menus, here we go.
Sunday: Sausage, Spinach, and Parmesan-Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms; Kabocha Squash; Chive Rolls
Monday: Grilled Chicken Breasts over Apple-Cherry-Bleu Cheese and Pecan Salad; Raspberry Vinaigrette
Tuesday: Pork Skewers with Green Peppers and Mushrooms; Rice
Wednesday: Home-made Chicken Noodle Soup; Leftover Rolls
Thursday: Cheeseburger Pie (stuffing piecrust with turkeyburger, cheddar cheese, mustard and chopped dill pickle); Salad
Friday: Cauliflower "Steaks" with Mushroom Gravy and Mashed Potatoes
Saturday: Panko-Fried Chicken Thighs, Tater Tots and Salad
Here is an interesting article on the history of Memorial Day. Did you know the 3:00 p.m. part? I didn't.
Hope you have a good week.
- C. Ironing