May 23: Yeros Wraps; Crunchy Thai Salad with Beef Jerky

Lunch

For lunch we went back to our gyro/yeros meat in a wrap.

  • The fully cooked sliced gyro/yeros meat is $3.99 per 10oz pack. There are really four serves, so each serve is very slightly cheaper than the chicken, at $1.00 per serve.
  • The flatbread is 50c per serve
  • Hummus is $3.99 per container and we used about 1/6 or 33c per serve
  • We served 1/4 of the tabouli salad or 67c per serve.

Lunch today cost $2.50.

Dinner

A return to a favorite:  Crunchy Thai Salad. We simplified a little, leaving out the bock choy and cilantro and nuts.

In the past we’ve topped the salad with seared tuna, or rare steak, but tonight we tried some thinly sliced beef jerky from our Prather Ranch source. Sliced thin across the grain so it wasn’t ‘chewy’ in the salad.

  • 3 oz of spicy beef jerky is $6.40 or $3.20 per serve.
  • Snow peas are $3.99 and we used half, or $1.00 per serve
  • Mint came from our garden
  • An organic bell pepper was $1.63 and we used half, or 41c per serve
  • Mung beans sprouts are 79c and we used a tiny fraction, or 10c per serve
  • A Persian cucumber is 97c, or 24c per serve
  • Green onions cost 79c for the bunch and we used about 1/3 or 14c per serve
  • Add 30c for the dressing ingredients.

This is an amazing salad, and the beef jerk added an interesting texture and beef flavor to the dish. Dinner tonight cost $5.39.

May 22: Popeye’s Fried Chicken with Vietnamese Salad; Mustardy Chicken in a Packet with Asparagus

Lunch

A change in Monday’s schedule had both foodies at home for lunch, so it was time to finish the Popeye’s chicken, and use up the last of the Vietnamese salad from last night.

  • 10 pieces of dark and spicy chicken is $16.99 or $3.54 a serve with tax
  • The salad is 96c per serve, but we shared one or 48c per meal.

Lunch today was $4.02.

Dinner

With asparagus and roast chicken legs in the refrigerator Greg decided to prepare En papillote: in paper. A cream sauce of mustard, labné, and white wine based on Serious Eats Mustardy Salmon provides a moist environment for the asparagus to cook and the chicken to reheat.

  • The chicken leg (thigh and drumstick) cost $2.75 per serve
  • The asparagus was $4.07 but we used half, or $1.02 per serve
  • Labné, wine and mustard add 45c per serve
  • Wild rice blend ads 35c per serve.

Another advantage of cooking in a paper parcel: no washing up!

Dinner tonight was quick and easy and cost $4.57 per serve.

May 21: Roast Chicken Bagel Sandwich; NY Strip Steak with Vietnamese Salad

Lunch

For some variety on our chicken wrap, we swapped to an onion bagel sandwich with tomato.

  • The onion bagel is 50c per serve
  • The roast chicken is $9.99 for the bird, but we used 1/2 one breast, or 63c per serve
  • We used one kumato, or 29c per serve
  • Add 10c for vegan mayo.

Lunch today cost $1.52 per serve and a nice variation.

Dinner

This month’s Prather Ranch meat delivery included three 6oz NY Strip steaks, and since we had a guest for dinner, we kept all three whole and cooked them on the griddle.

We served with Nigella Lawson’s Vietnamese Chicken Salad without the chicken!

  • The steak was an average of $9.53 per serve
  • The shredded green cabbage was $1.29 for the pack, or 33c per serve
  • The ingredients for the sauce add another 35c per serve
  • Organic mint came from our garden
  • The bunch of carrots was 89c but we used half in this dish, or 15c per serve
  • The limes for the dressing were 19c each (bargain) and we used four, but only about half the juice was used, leaving the rest for a later Gin and Tonic – 13c per serve.

Dinner tonight cost $10.49 per serve and was very good.

May 20: Chicken, Avocado and Blue Cheese Wrap; Braised Beef and Mushrooms with Cheesy Grits and Asparagus

Lunch

The chicken, avocado, blue cheese and bacon wrap was so good, we repeated it, but without bacon because we ran out!

  • The flatbread is 50c per serve
  • The roast chicken is $9.99 for the bird, but we used 1/2 one breast, or 63c per serve
  • The avocado was $1.50 or 75c per serve
  • Blue cheese crumbles are $3.49 for the pack but we used only a fraction or 12c per serve.

Lunch today cost $2.00 per serve and was still a great wrap without the bacon.

Dinner

Greg has been wanting to try this Braised Beef and Mushroom recipe for more than a week, from back when the weather was more suitable for stews, unlike today’s hot temperature.

The original recipe uses four pounds of beef, while we had about 3/4 pound. Mushrooms were also reduced, but other elements stayed the same for a flavor packed meal. Served with cheesy grits and asparagus spears.

Counter-intuitively asparagus is more tender when the spears are thick and these were excellent, simply steamed.

  • The cross rib steak cost $6.64, or $3.32 per serve
  • Shitake mushrooms are $2.99 or $1.50 per serve
  • The carton of beef broth was $2.49 and we used half, or 63c per serve
  • Add 50c for onion, garlic and seasonings
  • The asparagus was $4.07 but we used half, or $1.02 per serve
  • The 10 grain ‘hot cereal’ is $5.99 for a 25oz pack, but we used about 1/4 or 75c per serve.

Dinner tonight cost $7.72 and was delicious. The cereal alternative to grits isn’t as sweet, which we prefer. The asparagus was steamed to perfection with great flavor and exactly the right texture.

May 19: Popeyes Fried Chicken; Editor’s Lounge Meetup

Lunch

An unplanned trip to Burbank to pick up a package had us coming back quite close to a Popeyes, so fried chicken for lunch it is. I’m constantly surprised how much more expensive Popeye’s in the San Fernando Valley is over Popeye’s in Burbank, which is usually about $2.00 cheaper.

  • 10 pieces of dark and spicy chicken is $16.99 or $3.54 a serve with tax
  • Half the Large Red Beans and Rice is $2.15 with tax, per serve.

Lunch today cost $5.69 per serve.

Dinner

Foodie Philip attended the monthly Editor’s Lounge at Alpha Dogs in Burbank, where food is hosted by Alpha Dogs (and tonight came from Portos nearby).

Foodie Greg had a vegetable Biruani with Dumplings from Trader Joes, that cost $2.49.

May 18: Chicken Wraps; Thai

Lunch

Back to our routine chicken wrap, but with a twist: avocado, bacon and blue cheese.

  • The flatbread is 50c per serve
  • The roast chicken is $9.99 for the bird, but we used 1/2 one breast, or 63c per serve
  • The avocado was $1.50 or 75c per serve
  • Blue cheese crumbles are $3.49 for the pack but we used only a fraction or 12c per serve
  • The bacon was $6.99 for 12 slices, and we used three, or 88c per serve.

Lunch today cost $2.88 per serve and was a great wrap.

Dinner

An unplanned power outage saw the foodies abandoning their home and visiting a friend for power and internet. In return we paid for Thai food at Krua Thai – our favorite Thai place. Tonight’s meal of roast duck on rice; eggplant with ground pork and Thom Kha Gai was really good for $12.10 per serve, with tax and tip.

May 17: Meatloaf Rolls; Miso Udon Noodle Soup

Lunch

For lunch we prepared two par-baked rolls, smeared them with spicy mayonnaise (left over from the sushi) and sandwiched in a slice of the Turkey, Bacon, Chipotle meatloaf, which finishes the meatloaf.

  • The roll is 63c
  • The meatloaf is $3.50 for a full serve, but we used 1/3 serve per roll, or $1.17 per serve
  • There was no net cost for the spicy mayo.

Lunch today cost $1.80 per serve and was really good.

Dinner

A new recipe tonight: Miso Udon Noodle Soup. As there are only the two of us, we made a half batch, which was more than enough as neither of us completely finished.

  • Chicken stock cost $1.99 or $1.00 per serve
  • Sugar snap peas were $2.49 for the pack, but as we only used half, 63c per serve
  • Roasted seaweed adds 30c per serve
  • Shitake mushrooms are $2.99 or $1.50 per serve
  • The udon noodles were $3.89 but we used 1/3 or 65c per serve
  • Organic baby carrots were $1.69 for the pack, of which we used half, or 28c per serve
  • Add 15c for ginger
  • Miso Easy is $5.99 for the bottle that we used about 1/8 of in this dish, or 38c per serve.
  • Add 10c for rice wine vinegar as a substitute for mirin.

Dinner tonight was tasty, and meat free for $4.99 per serve.

May 16: Yeros Wrap; Soutzoukakia with Rice Pilaf

Lunch

For lunch we went back to our gyro/yeros meat in a wrap but we added some shredded cheese we had in the refrigerator. Cheese in a yeros wrap is very common in Australia.

  • The fully cooked sliced gyro/yeros meat is $3.99 per 10oz pack. There are really four serves, so each serve is very slightly cheaper than the chicken, at $1.00 per serve.
  • The flatbread is 50c per serve
  • Hummus is $3.99 per container and we used about 1/6 or 33c per serve
  • Shredded cheese mix was $3.49 for the pack but we less than 1/8, or 22c per serve
  • We served 1/4 of the tabouli salad or 67c per serve.

Lunch today cost $2.72.

Dinner

The Soutzoukakia (Greek style meatballs) was such a success last time we had it, that we had to do it again, but with ground lamb instead of beef.

Tonight we served three.

  • The ground lamb was $7.99 or $2.67 per serve
  • An egg is 45c or 15c per serve
  • 8 oz Panko breadcrumbs are $2.99 and we used half, or 25c per serve
  • Shaved Parmesan blend cost $2.99 but we used about 1/8  for this salad, or 13c per serve
  • 1/4 cup and a tablespoon of red wine – halved – is 34c per serve
  • Canned crushed tomatoes were $1.69 for the can, or 57c per serve
  • The eggplant, tomato and onion is $2.69 or 90c per serve
  • Onions, shallot and garlic adds 25c per serve
  • We doubled up the fresh mint came from our garden and dropped the parsley
  • Tomato paste comes in a 90c can, but we used 1/8 or 5c per serve
  • Add 30c for the spices
  • Rice adds 50c per serve.

Dinner tonight was excellent: even better than last time. The addition of the eggplant mix was a step up. Tonight’s meal cost $6.11 per serve.

May 15: In and Out; Burger Truck!

Lunch

Another Burbank Monday saw Foodie Philip at In and Out for the usual Double Double Animal Style for $4.08.

Dinner

We currently live between two parts of a large redevelopment of the canyon around us. The developers work pretty hard to keep good relationships with the residents of Twin Lakes and tonight hosted some food trucks and put on a little party for the residents (and before them, the workers).

A nice gesture and, of course, no cost to the residents. It’s not often you get to eat beside a partially constructed bridge – just one of three they’re constructing.

Food trucks, bridge construction, and neighbors.