Lemme just say it again, oooooh man.
I have become such a little b*tch for Trader Joe's.
Gad, I love that place.
I never thought I'd become one of those people who are all about Trader Joe's...but I am.
Well, it all started about last year when the ol' economic climate got a little weird.
And The Good Man and I started looking for all sorts of ways to save a buck here and there.
We've cancelled our cable (buh bye Comcast! I giggled when I made that call!), reduced our home phone services, got discounts on the cell phones, turn off lights at every turn, keep the heat low, and then started taking a look at grocery bills.
Well, we knew we could improve our food costs and not sacrifice quality.
So I agreed to start cooking more. It helps stoke my creative fires, saves us a couple bucks, and is awfully nice to have a home cooked meal at the end of the day.
But if I was going to do this, it needed to be easy.
So The Good Man got a cookbook from the Library called "Cooking with all Things Trader Joe's."
The authors, Wona Miniati and Deana Gunn say they use Trader Joe's as their sous chef, since there are so many prepared items ready to incorporate into dinner plans.
So I picked a couple recipes from that book and found them both easy to make and tasty to eat. We read labels carefully to be sure we're getting good quality stuff (we try to keep both corn syrup and wheat to a minimum due to food sensitivities for both of us.)
And *then* we found out that Wona and Deana had yet a NEW book coming out!
It's called "The Trader Joe's Companion and Wona was coming to a local bookstore for an instore event.
Oh man...this got me hooked.
Wona whipped up a couple easy cold dishes right there in the bookstore, threw out a couple other tasty ideas and when we spoke with her, we found her so kind and generous with her time.
She just basically fully convinced me to embrace Trader Joe's.
What sealed the deal is when I went in with a list to support six dinners, breakfasts for a week, snacks and lunches for me.
I walked out with five full bags of groceries, good quality stuff, and I'd spent just $120.
Wow. For about sixteen or seventeen meals plus snacks. Not bad.
Now, I'm ALL ABOUT Trader Joe's. Yup. I don't do things halfway.
If you are curious, last night for dinner I made Shepard's Pie with turkey left from Thanksgiving, a bag of veggies from TJ's, made gravy from their chicken stock packets, and frozen mashed taters.
It was *delicious*!
Other greatest hits?
Almond crusted pork loin
Herb crusted Tilapia
And my own lime chicken green chile enchilada recipe
Oh little bit of heaven, each one!
I'm happy making the food, The Good Man is happy eating 'em and it's all good all the way around.