I love to cook clean and fresh and almost always from scratch. So last night while shopping for tonights meal, I notice a reoccurring theme. It's kind of obvious, but here it is:

When shopping, I hit the meat section, followed immediately by the produce section. Since I grow 95% of all the herbs I use in my back yard, I rarely hit any of the other isles. Maybe dairy, maybe a grain, but not much else.

In my mind, that's when I know I'm doing it right. Simple (unless you're doing French lol) good ingredients, letting the food speak for itself.

Does anyone who cooks notice this?
Original Post
Funny you should mention this. We're hosting a wine dinner tomorrow evening and I just returned from shopping. Because of the number of wines (at least 11) and the number of people (7), I've planned five courses, two appetizer courses, a main course, a cheese course, and dessert. With each course, I focused on the central ingredient. For the main course, it was the meat. Next I looked for appropriate accompaniments. Produce came next, along with the dairy ingedients for one of the appetizers. My wife is making what I consider to be one of her best three desserts. Now pardon me whilst I go slave in the kitchen.
quote:
Originally posted by ArieS:
Another observation would be, each time I shop for a dinner I usually have to hit 2 or 3 stores and that's a pain in the a$$.


I truly hate this, especially when I'm not planning on multiple stops or if time is tight. There is an exceptional market a good drive from my home (30 minutes off peak) where I'll go if I want to be 100% sure that I'm only going to need to stop once. They're expensive, but worth it. Balducci's.

PH
I guess I must be the exception. I start at one end of the store, then methodically tread every aisle until I reach the other end.
I do this for two reasons; 1) I often forget to write something on the list, and if I see it, odds are it'll jog my memory; and 2) It drives my wife nuts. Especially in Costco.
quote:
Originally posted by Board-O:
5 now, but I'm finally finished.


That is what makes cooking exhausting for me. For a nice Sat. night meal for 2 I end up going to the local farmer's mkt, butcher, luxury produce (hard-to-find spices, etc) and sometimes a traditional grocery store. Whew, that was exhausting just writing it.
I have no idea what you guys are talking about. Last night I was too tired to order and pick up take out from my usual place where carne asada is usually the main ingredient. I had a Kit Kat, some pepperonis and a coke. Later my stomach hurt so I decided to not drink any Chinati and I fell asleep real early.
I have a "go to" grocery store that I get the basics from. I always supplement that with a trip to our "local" gourmet grocery store that is 30 minutes away in which I get good butter, organic milk, fresh breads, etc. It's a 50/50 split.

I always pick up produce first since it's the first department that whacks you in the face as you walk in most grocery stores. Then dairy, then meats. Then I wander into the middle aisles.

All meats I cook at home are either natural or organic that we purchase from Whole Foods.
quote:
Originally posted by Bella Donna:

I always pick up produce first since it's the first department that whacks you in the face as you walk in most grocery stores.


My favorite gourmet grocery has you walk the gauntlet through the bakery first. Plenty of free samples every day too..... Mad F___ers!! Razz

PH
Stop 1:Local butchers for pasture raised beef
Stop 2:truck on side of road selling very fresh veg: spuds, carrots, greenest celery you ever saw, perfect onions
Stop 3:grocery store for a pint of cream, butter
Stop 4: back yard for some herbage
Stop 5: my basement for some vino rosso
Four hours in kitchen, one bottle of "prep wine" and dinner is served.
quote:
Originally posted by Bowser:
Stop 1:Local butchers for pasture raised beef

Gee, I thought all beef was raised in garages.

Stop 2:truck on side of road selling very fresh veg: spuds, carrots, greenest celery you ever saw, perfect onions

I can get that in many markets here. I don't like my celery deep green.

Stop 3:grocery store for a pint of cream, butter

No stop at the dairy?

Stop 4: back yard for some herbage

Hard to argue with that.

Stop 5: my basement for some vino rosso
Four hours in kitchen, one bottle of "prep wine" and dinner is served.

Is "vino rosso" Italian? Why ruin the meal?

quote:
Originally posted by Board-O:
quote:
Originally posted by ArieS:
Another observation would be, each time I shop for a dinner I usually have to hit 2 or 3 stores and that's a pain in the a$$.


You said it. I was in 4 today.


We do this on purpose. Meat, fruit and veg come from the local Whole Foods, fish and shellfish from a local small supplier, which we are lucky enough to still have and the rest from the stop and shop...

One observation though, we buy no processed foods, all meals freshly prepared, but this is a pretty expensive way to live. Luckily there are only 2 of us, but if we had several kids there would be no way we could do this. Depressing really, this should be the cheap way to live, rather than off the junk in boxes filled with chemicals

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