It hasn’t rained in a while, and there has been a weather advisory for the past week. It’s been well over 35 degrees Celcius (95 degrees Fahrenheit ) for 5 days now. It’s stinkin’ hot!
We don’t have air conditioning, so Peanut and I spend our days as couch potatoes. We sit on the couch, watch Netflix, and point our floor fan directly on us. Even the dog doesn’t want to move from laying down on the cool floor tiles.
We’ve been avoiding cooking as much as possible during the day. Having to cook over the stove or use the oven on is like torture. I just hate cooking in this heat. Plus nobody wants to eat food that I literally sweated over (EWWWWW!!!!).
We’re also planning a major purchase (more details later!) so I am trying to focus on how to create a meal plan so that Hubby can take food to work with him rather than spend $50 a day on lunches or dinners (remember, we’re in the Caribbean, $50 here is about $7 US or $10 Canadian). This means I need to come up with dishes that are filling and can reheat well.
I stumbled across Busy Mom’s Guide to Home-Cooked Meals and for the price, I couldn’t resist! It seems to have some great recipes, and very kid friendly too! I bought it, printed it out, and can’t wait to try it out! It covers breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks, Yay!
I also found Mom’s Bistro that offers free monthly meal plans for people on a budget. They come out at the beginning of each month, and sometimes includes recipes too! I printed out the one for April and it definitely has some great ideas.
The only problem is that what is inexpensive in North America can be extremely expensive here. For instance, a tin of Campbells cream of mushroom soup is $1.25 in the USA, but here it would cost $2.54. Snack packs of 4 pudding cups are about $1.30 in the USA, but here they are $3.00! Let’s not even think about applesauce! Heck, even apples!!!
Remember, what is exotic to us is normal here, and vice versa. Here on the island, apples, peaches, pears, etc are considered exotic. Fresh strawberries? better take a second mortgage!
So what’s a Canadian girl to do? I’m used to meals like chili, tacos, poutine, and lots of casseroles with various “cream of ____” as the base. Here, meals like Pelau, stew chicken, and lots of beans and rice are the norm. And spicy dishes, wow do the Caribbean people like pepper!
I’ve decided to try out a menu plan using both the above plans, picking out dishes I think may be yummy, but not too expensive to make. My goal is to keep under $900 (or $135 USA) a week if possible. Let’s see how it goes!
I’ll post my meals as we go, I’m hoping to start either tomorrow or this weekend!