“Plan your final meal.” Well, I’m not sure what I did nor why my lawyer couldn’t get me a stay, but if I was really planning my last meal it would probably be Krispy Kreme donuts and cereal and I definitely would not be paying for and making it myself. For the sake of following the guidelines for a three course themed meal, I chose bacon. Mark and I had a long sit down this morning, after my Beer Olympics hangover subsided, and decided bacon was an excellent course of action. A macaroni with prosciutto, tomatoes, and whole garlic cloves (p.514) served cold as a salad would start our meal, followed by bacon turkey burgers with green beans to satisfy MyPlate, and finally a maple bacon apple crisp (p.884 of How to Cook Everything Better Than Mark Bittman by Amanda Pederson). I already had a lot of the needed ingredients and chose recipes based on things I had in my kitchen. Disappointingly, using already purchased ingredients is not a common theme in the coursework for the class, which focuses more on purchasing entire recipes’ worth of ingredients to prove a point that food can be expensive. The ingredients I still needed and purchased from Cub are as follows:
plum tomatoes- $3.49
green beans- $2.00
The purchase came to be around $24 and I had a lot of extra food left over. This is more than I would normally spend on a meal. I do not usually eat three course meals at home and found the meal a little excessive. Here I am, once again, spending ridiculous amounts of money on food to take pictures, write a little blurb, and throw away the leftovers. I was able to use my leftover pasta from the food desert assignment, but had I actually needed all the ingredients, the meal would have been far more expensive. I also used fresh basil and fresh tomatoes, which could have been replaced by their much cheaper dried and canned counterparts. That’s the type of thing on which the class should focus. Getting the most bang for your buck and hypothesizing scenarios rather than requiring students to spend extra money outside of the already additional class fees. The class is actually pretty inappropriate for anyone actually living on a college budget. Pricing out meals 3 times is not going to help someone modify recipes to save the most money. Before this class I was spending a minimal amount money weekly on my food budget because I was following a strict meal plan utilizing meal prepping in bulk. Now, I’ve been spending extra money each week simply to complete the weekly, albeit entertaining, blogs. How does all this tie into “Cooking on a student’s budget?” My food budget is more than adequate to support a nutritionally balanced diet, eating well is pretty simple if one has the nutrition knowledge and a little extra time for planning and meal prep, of which I have both. This class has reintroduced me to a lot of ideas to the left of where I normally stand and has strengthened my beliefs. I still believe people should take responsibility for their own health instead of blaming others and this was made ironclad by the redundant articles of victimized voices representing the obese and food deserted. Someone can better spend his or her time making smarter choices and taking that extra time to walk to a real grocery store than blaming the food scientists who are nearly too good at their jobs.
The maple bacon apple crisp is the crown jewel in this meal. By adding baked bacon to the crisp topping and sugar free maple syrup to the apple dressing it became the most delightful dessert. I also used Splenda brown sugar, just to make sure the processed food industry was getting a little love. Mark would definitely be impressed by my ingenuity.
From my blog for class.