We have a stressful week coming up. We run an events and jobs website, and our main employee is out of town all week (I miss you already, Wendy!). We are down to J, myself and our part-time worker. I’m hoping I can continue my budgeting efforts even though my finger is going to be itchy for the takeout button.
Brunch is coffee with bacon, eggs and toast for J and a cheese quesadilla for me. I don’t know if it’s the heat or what but I’ve been craving the simple foods that I ate as a child. I probably could have added some veggies but a plain, gooey cheese quesadilla just hits the spot for me today.
I decide its pizza for dinner and we go to our favorite spot for slices, two for there, two for later. Plus some cocktails, obvs.
Total spent on pizza night: $26
Coffee first and then a salad for J and my leftover slice from last night’s pizza run. I have a trick for reheating a slice that makes it taste fresh from the pizza oven: place the cold slice in a cast iron pan and cover. Heat the slice on medium for 7-10 minutes until cheese is bubbly. Boom.
After lunch, I throw my boneless, skinless chicken thighs into a shallow baking dish and cover them in….PICKLE JUICE. This was a tip I picked up from The Kitchn that promises juicy meat, with the pickle juice acting as a brine. A simple prep step, like brining, makes it harder for me to hit the delivery app since I know I have sometimes great marinating for dinner.
I take the thighs out of their brine and cook them in the smoker. As promised, they are VERY juicy and tender. I chop up pickles to serve with them, and also whip up a buttermilk potato salad with red potatoes I had in the pantry and buttermilk from the fridge that was about to expire.
As promised, we are working late hours this week and are bushed already. Lunch is coffee, salad and leftover potato salad.
My inner child is screaming again and it wants sloppy joes. My mom’s sloppy joes (which I loved) were always ground beef with the spice packet from McCormick. I want mine to be a little healthier so I use ground chicken and add more veggies (recipe to come later this week). I have some nice rolls in the freezer that I defrost and toast for buns. So comforting and we have plenty of leftovers.
We have coffee and I make J his salad. I reheat some sloppy joe meat and have it alongside some tortilla chips I had in the pantry.
We are having a friend over for a belated birthday dinner so I swing by the fish market for some salmon and shrimp.
Total spent at seafood market: $26.51
We are also out of a few essentials so I order the following from New Seasons Market via Amazon Prime:
Organic super greens: $3.99
3 Organic limes: $1.80
12 oz Raspberries: $5.99
Goat feta: $5.99
Boneless skinless chicken thighs: $8.65
Total spent on Amazon/New Seasons: $40.41
Ok… so the berries and cheese weren’t essential necessarily but who doesn’t love fresh summer berries with cheese when the weather is hot?
I cook the salmon and shrimp in the smoker and grill a few ears of corn. We have a nice evening catching up with friends on the deck and it not even too hot!
It’s the home stretch and also the busiest day of our work week. Today, breakfast/lunch is a repeat of yesterday.
It is so hot and I can’t even fathom turning on my oven or smoker. There’s a new poke place that is very affordable and I find out they have a cheap delivery fee via Postmates. Score! The portions are very generous so we both have leftovers for tomorrow.
Total spent on poke delivery: $25
We have coffee, salad and leftover poke bowls for lunch. It’s our last day without our employee and I am psyched.
I think we did pretty well on our own this week so I decide to treat us to dinner at the new Vietnamese restaurant near our house. I am hangry by the time we get there and order….everything. Steak salad, betel leaf rolls, sugarcane shrimp, fish chips and a few other small plates. This place is amazing and for the amount of food we ordered, a pretty good deal. We will definitely be back!
Total spent on Vietnamese dinner: $68
J has his weekend breakfast of bacon, egg, and avocado toast, as well as some slices of fresh tomato. I have leftovers from our dinner last night.
I do a spice rub on my chicken thighs and cook them in the smoker. I really like John Henry’s East Texas Mesquite Rub which you can procure on Amazon. It’s great on everything from chicken, to fish and even on veggies. I serve the thighs with a simple cucumber salad.
I’m definitely over my eating out budget this week but am going easy on myself since I had less time to cook and meal prep than usual due to work. Have a great week and thank you for reading!