SNAP challenge: Missing my pantry

The hardest part of this experiment is still not being able to access my pantry. It’s not even that I can’t access my canned goods and things like that, but not being able to use all my spices and condiments unless I decide to purchase them is really annoying.

Since I was way over budget this week, I opted not to purchase steak for tonight’s dinner. I’m trying to decide what to make instead. I think I’m going to use some of the ground beef I purchased earlier this week to make mini meatloaf. We’ve got tons of potatoes for mashed potatoes. We’ve also got bread heels to make breadcrumbs, garlic powder and onion soup mix. This could work.

Wednesday night we had tacos for dinner. I made tortillas from scratch which were amazing! They were thicker than traditional tortillas that you would by at the store, but they made the tacos more substantial. I also made snickerdoodles that night. They were the best cookies I’ve ever made. The cookies have made the challenge much better. We’ve been eating leftover spaghetti for lunch, which is fine with us since we love spaghetti.

Thursday night I made a chicken casserole (using the build-your-own casserole recipe from the recipes page). I cut the recipe in half so I could make another casserole later in the month. I used lots of frozen veggies and only a cup of chicken from the roast chicken I made Monday. With a big salad, the meal was great and there was enough left for Jeff to have it for lunch today. I’m home today so I’ll probably have a sandwich.

Another snag I’ve run into: I can’t except food from other people because “since these opportunities would not be available for the general public.” I’ve talked to a few people about this, including my mom and most people think it’s a silly rule. This week, I was offered a free ice cream cake. If my friend brings it over, I’ll put it in the freezer downstairs and eat it after the challenge is over. During the summer months, I have lots of friends and family with gardens who are always giving away produce. My mom gets free produce from a friend which she uses to make jams, jellies and other canned goods and then shares it with her friend. At my husband’s job, people are always bringing in food to share with others. My experience with current and former workplaces is the same. Stores offer free samples. People get married. Families have dinner together. These are experiences available to the general public. Our society comes together around food and sharing with each other. I can understand that you don’t want this to be excessive but to say that the general public doesn’t have access to free samples or meals with family is kinda silly.

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