Friday, March 8, 2013

Eating from the Pantry is BS

Have you heard of a "No Shop Week" or an "Eat from the Pantry Week"? As the name implies, you skip doing big shopping for a week and eat the stash of food already in your panry/cupboards. The Yankee and I tried this idea this week and for us, it was a bad idea.
I decided to really committ to this and use all the freezer, fridge, and cupboard food we have and only buy a few fresh items to stretch. Bad. Bad idea. Bad. First, we ended up eating some boring food. That's to be expected when you're hitting up staples, I guess. It was a lot of beans and rotel and basically everything tasted the same. Yawn.
The biggest problem we're facing now is that we are totally wiped out and have to restock everything, which means buying a whole lotta meat and replacing our staples. If we only buy what we need for the week, then we won't be prepared for an emergency- which is the whole reason for keeping your pantry stocked anyway! We had a smaller grocery bill last week but now it is way higher than normal this week. It has also been snowing here since I woke up this morning and now I have to go to the grocery store and find something for dinner.
I think that unless you have a really big stash or are really having a financial pinch, the "eat from the pantry" idea isn't a good idea. If your cupboards have rows of cans and bags and you think foods are getting close to expiring, then this might be a good idea. Of course, if you are having an emergency (whether financial or weather-related), then this is exactly the reason your pantry is stocked. But if you aren't in either of these categories, I'm not sure how well this will work.
The Yankee and I are back in a our food-rut and I confess that I have found myself less than prepared for a lot of things lately. I haven't been making meal plans, I haven't been making my usual life lists, and I haven't been planning my time well at all. I spent a  lot of time in 2010 trying to become more proactive and it seems like I have gotten complacent. This has been weighing on my mind a lot lately and as much as my brain is resisting the need to get a bit more organized, I know I need to do it. For me, this "eat from the pantry" business was tempting because I thought I would have to get creative to make interesting food from what we have; in the end though, you can only do so much with beans, rotel, and tomato sauce.