In the spirit of budget friendly eating and with Thanksgiving coming up, are there any budget friendly meals or hacks that you would be able to recommend, in general, for the upcoming fall holidays?
I know this sounds nuts. It’s not even October. I just did my generic ideas of what I want to cook for Thanksgiving. The reason that I do that now is when turkeys roll out, and at whatever time they do in November, when they start filling up [in] great quantities, the price is going to be at peak. The turkey companies want to make their money. Right now is the time to be doing things like buying turkey, either whole, frozen, or small ones, to roast and make gravy. You can slice the meat. You can eat turkey more than one day of the year. I live in Minnesota, which is the number one turkey producing state in America.
I love turkey. We make turkey sandwiches all the time, and I don’t buy deli meat. Once a month, I roast a turkey, and I take the legs and I make pot pies with them, and I roast the breasts and slice them and put them in the fridge and we make turkey sandwiches. I’m specifically going to get a turkey and make my gravy and freeze it, so that I have that done ahead of time. Number one, the price is lower now for turkeys, but in addition, it’s one major thing off my list and in the freezer.
Cranberries are going to start showing up in the supermarket. It takes a little while. The weather needs to turn a little colder, but there are frozen cranberries. I’m talking about whole fruit — not sweetened, just the cranberries themselves. There are going to be frozen cranberries from last year that are going to be in grocery freezers, and if you’re making sauce from them, they’re going to break down when you’re cooking them anyway. Why not use the frozen products and save the money?
They’re going to be very expensive this year; the two big states that were producing cranberries had fairly dry summers. Cranberry bog production relies on water, so the price is going to go up. These are the traditional items that we have that saves time and money, because remember, you save dollars, but we’re all time poor. If I can make whatever dip because my uncle loves it, and I have to have that at Thanksgiving as an hors d’oeuvre, I’m going to make it next week and throw it in the freezer. To make my pie crusts, because I needed four of them, I am going to go to my website. That’s how pathetic it is. I go to my own website, because I don’t make pies that often, so it’s not in my head.