Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Bountiful Stockpiling

Food City is my choice this week for general stockpiling. They have boneless chicken breasts for $1.39/lb. I don't know if the chicken breasts are also skinless. Even if they are not, it's still a great price.

Also, on Thursday, Food City has some great prices on produce. This week it's

White Onions - 20c/lb
Barlett Pears - 33c/lb
Granny Smith Apples - 25c/lb
Peaches- 50c/lb

Bananas are 33c/lb, limit 10 lbs, until Sunday

Also, the Bar-S Bologna is still 49c/package, limit 4 packages and sandwich bread is 79c/loaf if you're looking for something cheap to make school lunches.

Here's what I'm doing this week - I'm purchasing from Bountiful Baskets. This is a local co-op that offers high-quality produce at good prices. This is only my second time purchasing from them and I enjoyed my first basket so much, I decided to give them another try. In addition to their normal 'basket' ($15.00 for repeat customers, $18.00 if it's your first purcahse) I'm purchasing a 38 lb box of Gala Apples for $16.50 (that works out to about 43c/lb) and a 32 lb box of Utah peaches for $20 (that's 62.5c/lb).

If you want to give Bountiful Baskets a try, you have to order by 10 pm tomorrow night. The pickup date is Saturday and they have a variety of pickup spots around the city and the state as well as sites in other states. Check them out. Be sure to read all their terms and conditions before you purchase. There are no refunds and if you miss your pick up, your order will be donated.

Yes, apples and peaches are cheaper at Food City, but the apples aren't galas and I don't know if the peaches are from Utah, so I'm giving this a shot. Since I'm a repeat customer, I'll pay $53.00 total for a big basket of fruits and vegetables and the Galas and the Peaches. Were I a new customer, it would cost me $56. By the way, the produce from my first basket with them lasted my produce loving family more than a week. Pretty good deal for 15 bucks.

And yes, it's a lot of fruit and no, I'm not canning it. I'm not even freezing most of it.

I'm dehydrating it.

You read right - I'm drying it out.

About 15 years ago I picked up a Mr. Coffee Food Dehydrator, used it a couple of times and packed it away. I pulled it out the other day because I had some produce getting ready to go bad. I dried banana slices, apple slices, and tomato slices. I got the idea for the tomato slices from a fellow couponer at CouponSense. She suggested drying them down to chips, so I did.


I mean, WOW!

So sweet and nice. Next time I get tomatoes for cheap I'm going to salt the slices before dehydrating and enjoy the crisp, sweet, salty flavor. I'll also dry some to a more pliable state for sun-dried tomatoes.

Here's the deal - I like dried fruits, but I don't like the price tag. I also don't like the added sugar and preservatives often added to them. My dried apples contained apples, nothing else. The bananas were made of banana. In the future, I plan to try my hand at fruit leather and I'd like to try pureeing cooked vegetables, salting them and making dehydrated veggie chips - no oil.

Do some googling on dehydrating food. See if it's something you'd like to try. Before you purchase one, try out a friend or neighbor's unit. When you do purchase one, go cheap and see what you can find at Salvation Army, or St. Vincent dePaul or Goodwill for a few dollars. Run it during the cheap electricity hours to cut down those costs. My understanding is that more expensive units use less power because they work faster, so it's a trade-off, but best to be sure you like this kind of cooking before making a big investment.

Dried fruits and veggies keeps beautifully and are great for a stockpile. You can reconstitute them in water, add them to soups, use them in baked goods, endless possibilities. Because the fruits are so sweet, they make great snacking for the kids. Also great for backpacking because they're so much lighter.

Other great deals for this week:

Milk is $1.43/gallon at Basha's, $1.39/gallon at Albertson's and $1.37/gallon at Fry's. All are for the first 2.

Fry's is running it's Case Lot sale. You can buy by the unit. Tuna is 47c/can and the Value Brand sugar is $1.69/4 pounds. Fry's tomato sauce is 15c/can. Check the ads, lots of good prices. If you'd like to get a lot of the sale items for way cheaper than the ad, check out CouponSense. It's only 4 dollars for the first month. Please use my referral number 1707971 when you join and choose me, Mindy C*** as your instructor. I'll show you how to get the most for your money.

EDITED TO ADD: Raspberries are $1 for 6 oz at Fry's. Y'all know how much I love raspberries, so enjoy!

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