I wanted to do my wifely duty and creep into Jason's blog to bring you a post detailing the usage of cheap "side dish" options and how to make them a meal.
Jason and I have found that once you pay your mortgage and all 7 billion utilities involved and deal with whatever surprise expenses that always seem to pop up, you can't always afford to peruse the grocery store with reckless abandon and throw anything into the cart. While we would love to hit up Market District in Robinson and gorge ourselves with all the Tofurky products in the world, it's just not in our budget on a consistent basis. Also, when getting home after a long day of work, we often do not feel like making a meal that takes an hour or two to prep and cook.
Enter PASTA SIDES !
Through some good ol' Kennedy Township Shop n' Save research we have found that Pasta and/or Asian Sides can actually make a decent meal when you supplement them with tofu and a shit ton of vegetables/beans. We have also found we are able to buy Hamburger Helper products and obviously instead of putting meat in them we use vegetables/beans/tofu. We are only spending around $1-2 on the actual sides/hamburger helper and then we buy canned beans which are only about 60-80 cents a can. Tofu can definitely get a little pricey but when you are spending a lot less on everything else it's more affordable to sneak in.
Below is our version of the Chipotle Rosa Pasta Side with the addition of black beans, tofu, broccoli and tomatoes. They made it pretty flavorful and decently nutritious. This isn't gourmet cookin y'all.
One of the many things I love about tofu is all the options you have when cooking it. We generally prefer ours to be as firm as possible but it's all personal preference. When we want it to be really firm we typically will open it, press it and then put it in a container and freeze it for at least a day before using it. Occasionally when making these quick side dish meals I do make the tofu more "home-style" and leave it softer. If you want to mix it up more and get a little CRAZY you can bread the tofu. I dip it in almond milk and then just use Italian Style breadcrumbs to coat it and then bake it for about 20 minutes.
|Usage of softer tofu|
Today Jason had the genius idea of COMBINING two different sides!!! OMG BREAKTHROUGH!!
It was pretty delish.
I know these are not the most exciting meals ever but they can be pleasantly tasty, easy to make and cheap.
Here is a picture of Jason and I from 4 years ago wearing matching clothes and shelling peanuts. You're welcome.