Happy 2012! Does anyone have any resolutions or goals with regards to food? I'll go first.
For the month of January, my goal is to not eat out. It looks like I spent about $180/month at restaurants last year, but I didn't count the calories. I'm hoping that I can cut expenses and pounds by cooking my own meals. Wait wait, I just checked my supermarket purchases for last year, and they averaged around $260/month. I don't know if eating at home will save me any money, but I do know that I have an overstocked pantry right now that I could probably eat on for a month. Which brings us to goal #2...
My goal is to keep my kitchen pantry organized. No expired foods. No partially opened bags spilling in the cupboard. No pushing unwanted items to the back of the cupboard to be forgotten for years. I'm doing a pantry purge now and it is not pretty. I was well past the point of needing an intervention. I realize that I can be a hoarder. I'll try to combat it with an inventory list and by trying to make do with ingredients I have on hand, Chopped-style, no matter how crazy the combinations may seem. I accept the culinary challenge.
I'll evaluate my success with not eating out at the end of the month. I already know I'll make an exception if I go out of town. And I'm not offering to cook at my house if I am asked out on a dinner date. It could happen. I'm not very confident in my motivation to maintain the pantry inventory list, but as of now I'm resolved to do it. I hope it will reduce the amount of food I let go to waste.
As for the pantry purge, I think the winner, or rather, loser, of my game of expiration date roulette was the seaweed package with a use-by date of July 26, 2006. I know I didn't buy that because I can't read ANYTHING on the package except the expiry date. I assume the rest of the characters are Japanese. Now I'm trying to remember why someone gave me seaweed.