I know I’m late. We went to see Watchmen last night, got home late, and I was so traumatized by it that I had to re-read the book to erase the memory of the film from my brain. NOTE TO FILMMAKERS: Simply making a film that looks incredibly visually similar to a comic book does NOT MAKE A GOOD MOVIE. Also, the screenwriter should be forced to give back whatever he was paid because he did not do anything except re-type the text of the comic into Microsoft Word, and the “visionary” director should be chained to a blackboard and be forced to write out the definition of “visionary” 500 times. In his own blood.

Anyway, I’m pulling together the roundup now. In the meantime, lots of you shared your cheap meals in the comments to Monday’s post, so you can skim those and relive the good times while you plan out your day which should NOT include going to see Watchmen.*

Dark Side of the Fridge starts us off with Egyptian rice and lentils. It involves a crockpot, an appliance I have but never use because I secretly think that Brian is too safety-cautious to comfortably leave the house with it running. It also has cumin, one of the best all-time all-around spices, and the brand of chicken stock they used is called “Fit and Natural” which kind of cracks me up. The finished soup looks warming and hearty, and I would totally make it today except that it suddenly shot up to 60 degrees here. Nice job with the consistency, weather. And since we couldn’t leave with the crock pot running, we wouldn’t be able to enjoy the weather.

Total Cost for 3 (plus leftovers): $4.29.

Perennial player (not playa) A Little Greener Every Day manages the DOUBLE WHAMMY Hobo Monday: Monday, her friends show up with free pizza, which is as cheap as it gets. Tuesday, she does the Hobo Pantry and Freezer raid (not hobo panty raid, because yuck) to produce some good lookin’ stirfry. She wasn’t sure if she actually had to cook on Monday and asked but I didn’t answer because I am a tool, but she correctly surmised that I would say something along the lines of “rules are for sissies.” (Very close. I would have probably said “Rules are for Jerkwads” or “Rules are for brainless automatons.”)

Total Estimated Cost for 4: $7.00
[eatingclub] Vancouver wins the prize for most bat-shit insanely named entry: Scoobi Doo Squid-Squidoo (Also they inform me that it is not necessary to use the brackets when referring to them. But they always use the brackets, and I am a rule-following Jerkwad.) The name of the dish is so hopelessly twee that I almost had to leave them out altogether, but I love squid too much to ignore it. It’s a lovely spicy, basil-inflected squid and pasta dish that is the number 2 thing I would like to be eating right now. (Number one is the croissant french toast from the yupster restaurant down the street. Sorry, guys.)

Total Cost for 4: $11.34 CAD, which works out to $8.86 USD
Non-blogger Tanis (yay!) joins in with this (edited slightly for length):

I sauteed chopped onion and minced garlic. I chopped the chicken, added it to the skillet, and cooked it until it was cooked through. Then I added some thawed frozen spinach. I sauteed it for a minute, then added about a half a can of diced tomatoes and cooked it just until heated . I wanted to do something to help “bind” it, but I’m not always the greatest at knowing what to do. So I added a little of the pasta water and about a couple of tablespoons of cream cheese. Why cream cheese? I have no idea. I added the pasta, seasoned with salt, and dished it up. Before I served it, I drizzled each serving with just a little bit of truffle oil, which finished it perfectly. So, in short, quick, easy, delicious, and nutritious, and best of all CHEAP.

She coordinates photo shoots for a food publisher, so she gets all kinds of free shit. I’m still not sure if that gives her a by on the free truffle oil. I leave it to the masses to decide.

Total Cost for 2: $4.20
Effort to Deliciousness‘s Margot gets a special prize for making one of my favorite things with one of my favorite foods: Sweet potato gnocchi with a side of pea shoots. She almost bought the farm on the gnocchi dough – I know how you all love a dose of schadenfreude – but they turned out damn tasty-looking in the end. Did I mention blue cheese was also involved? Because it was. Also: Damn them for already getting CSA deliveries. I AM TIRED OF LIVING OFF THE ROOT CELLER . (Just kidding. I would never do anything to jeopardize my relationship with my CSA, because I am a junkie and it brings me all my swiss chard and heirloom tomatoes.)

Total Cost for 2: $5.74. Which means, and it really does make me sad to say this, FAIL.

Vera made some kick-ass looking bean pupusas with chicken and pickled onions.  No blog, but check out the flickr set and tell me that doesn’t look good.  She MADE the frickin’ tortillas, people.

Total cost for 2: $3.18

This month’s smugness award goes to Dark Side of the Fridge, whose per-person cost came to $1.43. Kudos! Vera was a close second at $1.59.

Effort to Deliciousness, sit in the corner for a while and think about what you did.

Theme for April’s Hobo Monday: No Pasta Allowed

*I really, really hated this movie.  Total desecration.