An Italian-American living la dolce vita in the Deep South

An Italian-American living la dolce vita in the Deep South

Friday, October 26, 2012

What is Not in My Shopping Cart ... in 7 quick takes

1. Canned anything. With the exception of canned tomatoes and canned beans (cannellini, etc.), I do not buy anything canned. No canned corn, peas, green beans. Not even soup. Too much sodium (even if its reduced).

2. Bagged lettuce. While there have been times in which I have resorted to purchasing lettuce that has been triple washed (really?) and bagged, for the most part I buy a whole head of lettuce and wash it myself. Besides, bagged lettuce doesn't even smell like lettuce.

3.  Fruit and veggies that have already been cut, sliced, diced, or handled in any way. Too many variables (hands, cutting surfaces, knives) for contamination, and who knows how well they have been washed?

4. Frozen dinners. No chicken nuggets, TGIF meals, Lunchables, or Lean Cuisines. What about pizza? you ask. Sometimes, but mostly I make my own.

5. Soda. Truthfully,  occasionally I do buy  soda, but mostly when we are having company or we are hosting a dinner party. If it's in the house the boys drink it, and since they don't need it I try not to get it.

6. Snacks that are packaged into individual portions. Let's face it, the portion sizes are ridiculous for my boys. A small bag of potato chips containing 10 chips is just not enough for my growing boys (they would need 2-3 bags!), so I purchase the large bags and then use Ziploc bags to make more appropriate portion sizes.

7. Sugar substitutes. Ever. There are too many unknowns about sugar substitutes; I'd rather use 1/2 tsp. of the real stuff than a packet of Sweet n' Low or Splenda.

Finally, I am a big fan of the deli and the bakery. I prefer to buy lunch meat from the deli, where meat is sliced on the spot and is fresher than the pre-packaged kind; I also prefer to buy a loaf of bread from the bakery and have them slice it. Believe me, sandwiches taste much better with freshly baked bread than with Wonder Bread which has a shelf life of two weeks.

P.S. If you want to know what does make it into my shopping cart, check out this post.

For more quick takes fun, go visit Jen at Conversion Diary!


Beth F said...

This is my grocery cart as well.:) I make most things from scratch around here :)

You never heard about e-coli related recalled on a regular head of romaine lettuce do you? Bagged stuff gets recalled quite a bit :( said...

I also avoid sugar substitutes like the plague...what do you think about Stevie/Trivia being marketed as 'natural'? I haven't seen any good research but a lot of other natural food eaters are using it (like the clean eating fad). I won't use only sweetner variations are honey, sugar in the raw, and agave nectar which I tried recently, don't love the taste though.

I can only imagine how your boys would starve with those "snacks!" even I have to have more than that!

Anonymous said...

I stopped buying bagged lettuce when I realized that not only were heads of lettuce far less expensive, but they stayed fresher longer. I also read that once you cut lettuce, it starts releasing nutrients, so you don't get all your vitamins with bagged lettuce.

I've been trying to eat better for health reasons and to save money. Good stuff here, good stuff. :)

Do Not Be Anxious said...

I agree with everything you wrote, except I do buy cans of pork and beans occasionally (I guess it's a guy thing). But I find my local market makes specialty salads daily, in portions which are double what I want, but then I may use them for two days straight. I know the people involved, and love their specialty meals also --- made that day.

The only thing I miss locally is homemade perogi's (I don't have time to make them myself anymore). The market has frozen ones (which don't cut it.) I've found some non-frozen ones by Kowalski that are pretty good, but hard to find.

And sometimes I just wander through your blog, and pick out a recipe!

Lisa said...

Ditto, ditto, and ditto -- on really just about everything. It's not only better for us, but usually cheaper to do things the old fashioned way. I do keep diced tomatoes and tomato sauce in the cupboard, too, though -- and ginormous cans of emergency chili and peaches in case I have a sudden onslaught of teenagers (which has happened often enough that I have to have a fifteeen meal for twenty ready at all times...) Oh, and pickles and olives. I like deli meat best -- but need a lot, so it's just cheaper to get the big "sub meat kits" for our gang because they're so well priced. Love your lists, Bia! And your recipes really are the best.

tiziana said...

Mamma mia come cambia il abbiamo messo anni ad imparare dagli americani a mangiare scatolette e cibi già pronti e adesso non vanno più bene???!!!
Scherzo Maria, sono perfettamente d'accordo con te anche se qualche volta adoperare cibi surgelati o scatolette è veramente comodo e pratico.
Ho apppena guardato dentro la mia cucina.....sono piena di scatolette...aiutooo!!!

Ellen aka Ellie said...

Shame on me. We're not going to talk about my cart...