the picture pretty much sums it up..

August 10, 2009 at 12:35 am 1 comment

Last week I moved to the Main Street neighbourhood of Vancouver, BC, which is probably the most vegan-friendly area of town.  There’s Bo Kong, which is a vegetarian Chinese food mecca, Chutney Villa, where I had the most incredible South Indian meal of my life, and I’m only 4 blocks away from Budgie’s Burritos (do yourself a favor and order the Jame Dog, vegan style.  Roasted potatoes in a burrito? With avocado and salsa verde?  Hell, yes!)  And while this is all very exciting for the tummy, it is serious trouble for the wallet!  I’m scared to even click on my VISA bill this month.  The rent here is going to be about $350 more each month than I’m used to, so I’m looking to cut cost where I can.  Since I’ve never been a receipt-saver, if I had to estimate how much money I spend on eating out every month, it would very likely approach the $250-$300 mark (one $13 meal out each day, 5 days a week average)!  Yeeesh!!  Plus, I probably spend an additional $250 in monthly groceries.  So that’s like $500, dude!!  My new plan is to allow myself only 3 meals out a week- one breakfast, one lunch, and one dinner.  I’m going to have to become a whole ‘nother woman to pull this off, and dial my food willpower up to 10.  (I think it would be a fun exercise to review these 3 meals/restaurants out on Happycow.net or Dinehere.ca. )

But of course, all of this means I’m going to be spending a lot of time in the kitchen.  With 18 meals to prepare each week, I’m going to see if it is really possible to eat well for $10 a day like this woman and her family.  I figure since the current CND/US exchange rate is 1.0837, I can technically eat for $10.84 a day as a Canadian.  (w00t)

Here are the rules I’m giving myself:

  • only 3 meals out/week permitted.  If I don’t use them up, I either spend them on a friend or let them expire.
  • hang onto my receipts and divide the total by 18 meals…aim to stay under the $65.10/week.  Food staples that I already have on hand do not count towards this number.  (unless someone wants to come over here and calculate the per unit price of a squirt of ketchup, a chickpea, or a dill pickle)
  • No waste!!  Freeze it, Juice it, or Soup it.  Buy only what I need…I read somewhere that Americans throw out 30% of the food they buy.  Which really is depressing when you consider that more that 500 million people in this world live in absolute poverty.  Makes me so ashamed.
  • Continue to buy organic varieties the top 15 foods listed in the EWG’s list of most contaminated fruits and vegetables.
  • Shop at the farmer’s market once a week, and buy local produce whenever possible.

There.  The plan is in motion.  Your guess is as good as mine whether this really is possible (or practical!), but since it going to sharpen my organizational skills, save me muchos dollars, and (hopefully) taste great- I’m IN!

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Entry filed under: DiningOut, eatingfor$10/day. Tags: , .

Hello! Sick Boyfriend Red Lentil Stew

1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. ¡Yo Soy Liz!  |  August 17, 2009 at 6:08 pm

    This is a great plan, I’m gonna try to follow these guidelines as well. But I am only going to allow myself to eat out twice a week–I’ve been eating out so much in the past few months its out of control!!!

    Reply

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