Meals this week

I’m mostly settled into my new apartment and the time has once again come to get serious about meal prep. The first week or two in the new place, my options were somewhat limited as I was still lacking some crucial items that didn’t come with me where I used to live (and I was doing enough physical labor that I often allowed myself to indulge in a big burger after a hard day of lifting boxes). But with another trip to Japan on the horizon this autumn, I figured it was a good idea to start saving money again.

My shopping trip at the beginning of the week ran me about $80; mostly on staples that would last a few weeks, like bread, eggs, and a few different types of meat. I took a look at the reduced-for-quick-sale shelf in the produce section and picked up a pound of green beans and broccoli, a bag of plantains, and a bag of poblano peppers for about a dollar each. I also decided, last-minute, to pick up a rotisserie chicken. I usually don’t find the price to be quite as good as people make it out to be, and in most cases would rather prep my own chicken. However, this time I got a pretty good deal and the convenience was enough to push me over the edge.

One of my big plans from the beginning was to make Kapuśniak; a cabbage, bacon, and keilbasa soup that gets a lot of its flavor from sauerkraut. It takes no time to throw together and only gets better in the fridge. I made this on Sunday and ate it throughout the week.

I sauteed the poblano peppers with onions to make a fajita mix, and baked the plantains with some Creole seasoning for a nice mealy bite to mix into burritos (with the rotisserie chicken and black beans). At the end of the week, I finished off the mixture by making a quesadilla — always fun to be able to combine the same ingredients into a new format to keep things fresh. I also ate beef burgers for a few of my meals on days when I was working out particularly hard.

Blanched green beans and broccoli were a quick addition to just about any meal, and I would sometimes just eat them out of the fridge if I was in the mood for a quick bite.

While $80 is definitely higher than I want to be spending every week, this coming week should be much cheaper (I can almost make the meals I want without any additional ingredients). Hoping I can keep up the momentum.