Exciting news, everyone: I ate a bowl of Rice Krispies tonight!  Of course, it wasn’t all that long ago, so there might still be gastro-intestinal repercussions.

It goes without saying that I’m not cooking tonight.  Unless you count opening bottles of Gatorade as cooking, in which case I’ve been cooking up a storm. (Also: Gatorade is VILE. How do they fool so many people into buying it?  Do people really drink it, or is it used mainly as an industrial solvent?)  Instead, I bring you the Hobo Monday roundup that I was meant to have brought you on Saturday morning except that I didn’t want to sully the new MacBook Pro by bringing it into the shitter with me.

I’m starting off with Meagan, because not only do I love it when non-bloggers play along, but she also send a PICTURE.  See this, non-bloggers? YOUR BAR HAS BEEN RAISED.  Blame Meagan.

This is some kind of delicious chickpea-feta-tomato-garlic naan thing, and it was dirt cheap.  Meagan lives in Toronto, where apparently everything costs $0.32 cents, with some ingredients coming in as low as FOUR CENTS.  Which is why I’ve put my apartment on the market, because even though we haven’t lived there long enough to make any money out of it, I’ll be able to rapidly make up the loss when my grocery bill goes down to $4.76 a week.  Toronto: Who knew?  (That one’s free, Toronto Tourism Board.  I’m such a whiz with the taglines, I’ve decided to be philanthropic about it.) (Meagan’s recipe at the bottom of the post.)

Pantry Raid: Forcing me to be vigilant against panties again, and again making it totally worth it because holy CRAP do I love spaetzle.  Spaetzle with corn and sage brown butter, doubly so.  Spaetzle when the cooking involves anger and burning oneself, triple-y so. That is, when it happens to someone else and I get to read about it after the fact.

Every once in a great, great while, my mother could be convinced to back away from the monster shelf of self-jarred tomatoes for a night, and often those nights would involve roast beef and spaetzle with gravy.  And while today I recognize the wonder of all her cooking, I LIVED for spaetzle night when I was little.  I think I could happily live on spaetzle, until the intestinal blockage finally got me. But it would be a happy death.

Too Many Cookbooks wins the Miss Congeniality award, because:

#1, Cheese,
#2, Onions, and
#3, Tart.

She apparently lives in California, a state that could fall into the sea at any moment but where one can purchase eggs for $0.99/dozen.  Why do my eggs cost triple this?  Are they outer space eggs imported to New Jersey via shuttle? (I’m assuming no, but if they were? AWESOME.  Except for the carbon footprint part, but SPACE CHICKENS!)  It’s also warmer there than in Toronto, so I might have to rethink my relocation plans.
lentilsAs evidence of my complete lack of attention to detail, I’ve once again left someone out of the roundup; this month it was Robbing Peter, and their red lentils and rice.

It is all the more shameful, because they are the rightful winners of the Smugness Prize, which I prematurely awarded to the next entry.  I don’t feel right wresting the crown away from them, so I make my amends by subtracting $0.25 per person from Robbing Peter’s next entry, assuming they don’t give up on me entirely.  Which I hope they don’t, because even though they’re hard on themselves for “copping out” with lentils and rice, ain’t nobody don’t like no lentils and rice.  Even better: when she shaped the leftovers into patties and fried them into rounds of crispy delight.  3, please.

I bow my head in shame.  Know in your heart that your are the rightful victor.
Along with Too Many Cookbooks, I always know I can count on Dark Side of the Fridge.  The blogopolypse could come or my excessive cursing* could finally drive away the many extremely literate users of the internet, but they would still be here.

This month, her Calpurnia Salad combines garden fresh lettuce, pasta, bacon and a working knowledge of Roman history, all while kicking everyone’s asses in the cost department AGAIN.  Seriously, y’all: $0.505 a serving.  She wonders how she keeps spending so much money at the grocery store, and I have to ask the same question. Also, the rest of us should have such a garden. (Spoken in Jewish grandma voice.  If you don’t know what this sounds like, maybe there’s a hotline you could call or something.)

*Which, I haven’t yet, so: FUCKITY FUCK FUCK.  Behold my lack of literary creativity! And yes, I know I already said “shitter,” but since it was a synonym for commode it does not count as an expletive.
Last and least comes loyal reader Kay at the Keyboard, who has earned her demerits due to (1) lack of photo, (2) her temerity at getting pissy over this month’s $3 guideline and (3) calling me a heifer.  I could disqualify by decreeing that her leftover tuna does not count as a pantry staple, thus pushing her citrus-rice salad with grilled tuna over the $3 limit, but I will not because I like being the bigger person; it allows me to feel superior.  Apparently, I actually am the bigger person anyway, what with being a heifer and all.


So there you have it: some very, very, very cheap food.  Congratulations again for Dark Side of the Fridge for successfully defending the smugness crown.  As your prize for this two-fer, you pick the guideline for July!  This is a very valuable prize, and not me being lazy.  Leave your challenge in the comments!

The first Monday in July is the 6th, entries due by the end of the day on the 10th, and roundup, barring another unforseen bout of possible E.coli, up on the 11th.

Take it away, Dark Side!

Meagan’s recipe:

– 1 can of chickpeas: $0.67 (on sale);
– 1 leftover President’s Choice garlic naan: $0.99 (from a package of 2);
– the dregs of a hunk of feta: $0.49;
– approximately 1/3 pint of grape tomatoes: $0.33;
– approximately 1/4 bunch of leftover chives: $0.31;
– 2 bird chilis: $0.04 (for the love of jebus, take the seeds out and mince the shit outta the peppers so they are evenly distributed!); and
– a glug of olive oil, a couple of squeezes of lemon juice, one or two grinds of salt and pepper, some dried dill, a knifeful of whole grain mustard: all staples.
Grand total: $2.83. And minimal effort: I just put the ingredients in a bowl one by one, stirring between some additions, and stuck the bowl in the fridge until the naan was ready. Then I ate, and ate, and ate.