Channeling my inner Ina Garten: Part 1 – The Shopping

I love Ina Garten! She is an amazing cook and I love her simple, understated and elegant style. (Oh to be from the Hamptons!) I love that on the show, she’s always cooking for her husband Jeffrey. She always says things like “Jeffrey just LOVES these marcona almonds.” or “I think Jeffrey will really enjoy this roasted lemon chicken” or “I just can’t wait until Jeffrey comes home and tries chocolate pudding!” I think that is so sweet and honestly, a lot of the reason why I enjoy cooking is because I am married to a guy that appreciates my cooking so much regardless of what I put in front of him.

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Usually Mondays I spend the morning meal-planning by looking through my favorite cookbooks, blogs and magazines and planning out a menu for the week. Here are a few of my recent favorites:

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And my favorite cooking blogs:

  • The Pioneer Woman http://thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/ (I just love her personality and how yummy her food is)
  • Nom Nom Paleo http://nomnompaleo.com/ (This woman made me think that maybe, just maybe I can eat Paleo. Many paleo blogs had recipes that seriously looked GROSS. Sometimes it seemed like eating like a caveman necessitates that you have a palate like a caveman. I like that she is a MAJOR foodie. I think that gives her recipes a lot of credibility.

After I am sufficiently starving from looking at food for an hour, I grab my bags and do something that I swear only a person who has nothing to do every day can do: I hit up the San Antonio and El Camino corner go to four grocery stores. Here’s the order I hit them up in:

  1. The Milk Pail (Loves: Cheese, herb bundles for $1, produce on the CHEAP; Gripes: This can’t be your one-stop-shop because the meat section is pitiful, the produce has usually started their sunset season in life and must be consumed PRONTO)
  2. Trader Joe’s (Loves: Frozen fruit selection (I dont’ know where else I can get frozen pineapples for under $2 and frozen mangos for under $3), hummus, bananas, emergency entertaining foods, milk, butter, cheese, pantry staples: chicken broth, prewashed and bagged kale/spinach, spaghetti sauce, sparkling water, Orangina; Gripes: Though better than the Milk Pail, the meat selection leaves me wanting, produce is hit/miss, EVERYTHING is packaged (lots of waste)
  3. Whole Foods (Loves: The MEAT, coconut water selection, hot food bar, yogurt selection, one-stop-shopness of it, variety of produce; Gripes: $$$$$$$)
  4. Sprouts (Loves: the bulk bins!!!, nuts, consistently good and cheap produce, bulk spices; Gripes: the meat)
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This was my Milk Pail loot from a couple weeks ago. All of this came out to $7.

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But I quickly undid the awesomeness of the Milk Pail by hopping to Whole Foods. This loot cost me $51.42. #stupidmeat

Up next: my favorite recipes of the summer!

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2 thoughts on “Channeling my inner Ina Garten: Part 1 – The Shopping

  1. haha, i love this post! we love loved shopping at that corner, but we did 1. Milk Pail; 2. Safeway. Not as fancy as you are, and quicker since you don’t have to move your car (but I think they moved the Safeway? we would be totally hosed now). We still cry inside a little bit every time we go through a produce section outside California. All-time fav buys at MP: a flat of mangoes for $3, which quickly made their way into rum-flavored mango sorbet, and pomegranates when they go on sale for $0.99 or less a pound.

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