Before Covid 19, all the other supply change challenges, and the rising cost of living, buying groceries was easy. You decide what you want, you go get it.
Now, however, this may be a challenge. If you’re anything like me, you’ll buy a couple of extra…whatever…so that you will have extra, lessening how often you must run to the store to pick something up. I have a small deep freezer for extra meat, vegetables, and fruit. And an overflow pantry in my basement, to house extra shelf-stable items, such as beans, peanut butter, and coffee. (Must not run out of coffee, not ever)
The overflow pantry is easy to manage. Everything is out in the open- it’s just dedicated shelving. I love having it, and it works. My issue lies with my small deep freezer. It’s adorable and it fits in my space, but it only has 1 basket and 1 shelf. The rest is just empty space where my food is stacked from the bottom up. Sure, I have pork items over here, beef over there, and chicken in the middle. Oh, and there’s fish somewhere in there too. But that is the problem. To get to anything I need to open my freezer and dig. Sometimes I forget where something is. Sometimes I forget I even bought that something.
Today, for instance, I inventoried my ground meats (because I love how versatile these are, I always watch for sales) And I found the pork roast I’d bought last fall (with very good intentions!) for this delicious roast dinner that cooks together with vegetables, beans, and a flavourful herby tomato sauce. I never found the right time to make it…and then I forgot it was in there. There were more ice crystals in the package than I like to see, and I don’t want to risk it getting too freezer burned to use the beginning of next fall!
Now it’s in my fridge thawing, to be cooked tomorrow, to add to my summer prepped food in the freezer. I’ve already meal planned for the next couple of days, and those are already thawed for cooking today and tomorrow (Asian-style brisket and oven baked chicken). That’s more than enough for the three of us to eat, especially when the second son is a …selective eater.
So back to the title- what did I do again? I shopped all winter without a proper inventory of what was in my freezer. That’s a mistake that can potentially lead to hundreds of dollars of wasted food. Take a lesson from me and be certain you know what you have before you shop. Keeping track of what you’ve already spent in the grocery store is a solid way to wrangle your budget.