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MissMechante's Profile

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How much should $1000 worth of groceries last a family of 4, 2 adults and 2 teens that eat like adults? Please help!

Hmmm, I easily spend $700-1,000 on 2 adults and 4 dogs each month (including wine and beer, paper and cleaning products, etc). That is mostly shopping at our local grocery chain, but occasionally Fresh Market and Trader Joe's as well. We make homemade food for our 4 medium size dogs (approximately 10 lbs of meat a week plus some veg). We do not eat much processed food, and I don't seek out organic products, though I do buy them sometimes. Our daily diet follows a similar pattern, fruit and yogurt smoothies for breakfast, a vegetarian soup + bread or leftovers for lunch, and always some kind of meat for dinner with a few sides.

We are taking a break from drinking alcohol at home (though we still will at restaurants) between now and Thanksgiving, I am curious to see what kind of impact that will have on the bill!

I now live in a rural area, but I used to live in San Francisco, and I spent a lot LESS on groceries there. I was able to shop every day on my bicycle commute home from work,and had a huge selection of ethnic markets and farmer's markets to choose from that were much cheaper (and higher quality!) than the grocery stores.

Oct 28, 2014
MissMechante in General Topics

Single White Vegan Seeks Same

Food choices are definitely a dealbreaker for me. I couldn't be with a vegetarian or vegan (or a picky eater!), no matter how much I liked their other attributes. It's one thing to cater to specific needs now and then, but every way. So glad I'm married to a fellow omnivore chowhound.

Feb 29, 2012
MissMechante in Features

Planning a honeymoon in San Francisco and need some help...

Great idea, Dustin. My husband and I met in San Francisco (we had both been living in the city for many years when we met, he's a bay area native, I lived there for 14 years before we moved to Asheville 4 years ago), and one of our favorite things to do when we were dating was to walk to several different restaurants and have a glass of wine and an appetizer or course at each. Wonderful way to explore and pace the evening. We still do that when we are back visiting the city. We also always go to House of Prime Rib (we call it House of Meat). Classic atmosphere and great prime rib, lots of memories there.

I want to love my slow cooker, can you help?

Reheating something in an ovenproof dish in the crockpot is a great idea! I will have to try that when my oven and grill are totally full for a party. This year I kept 15lbs of mashed potatoes warm in the crockpot for Thanksgiving. Made the potatoes on the stove while the turkey was resting, transferred to crockpot. Leaves a lot more oven space open for heating the other dishes.

Jan 05, 2012
MissMechante in Home Cooking

Food delivery in downtown Cincinnati?

Is there anything like Waiters on Wheels? My brother is in the hospital (Good Sam) for 6 days, and he is a rather picky eater, there's no way he'll eat hospital food. I know he can order pizza and Jimmy Johns sandwiches, but I haven't found anything else online. I won't be able to get there until closer to xmas, or I would bring him food myself. The rest of our family will visit and bring food, but not every day.

Know of any delivery services?

Nov 30, 2011
MissMechante in Great Lakes

Thanksgiving Turkey Snob Dilemma

You just have to suck it up. Make a better turkey the next day so you can have good leftovers at home. I do a big Thanksgiving dinner every year with friends and neighbors, since we have no family in the area (been doing this for 15+ years now). Last year, I made 2 turkeys. One from a local (in the same county as me) farm that cost around $100 (it was a BIG one, forget how many pounds). The other was a free Butterball from the grocery store that my neighbor brought over for me to cook for her (she wanted to take lots of leftovers home, she's an ER nurse and doesn't get the chance to cook very often). People actually ate more of the Butterball than the other. It was a little disappointing. They were both cooked perfectly, moist with crisp skin. I won't be buying a $100 turkey again, I'll go back to the middle option of a free-range for around $2.50/lb

Nov 02, 2011
MissMechante in Features

Hot Spring/Asheville, NC

I know this is old, but I really like the Iron Horse in Hot Springs. We live in Madison County and go to Hot Springs for a soak, and then dinner at the Iron Horse.

Oct 01, 2011
MissMechante in Southeast

Average Grocery Bill-for 2

Same thing here, we don't have a budget, so I'm guessing it's around $800 for food, alcohol, and other supplies for 2 adults and 4 dogs (luckily the dogs don't drink that much ; ). Does not include eating out, that's around 4-6 times a month. I buy a lot local, some organic, and some at Ingles, the main chain here.

We actually spent less living in San Francisco (probably half the total now), where I would hit all the ethnic and specialty shops and farmers markets. Here in the Asheville area there are no butcher shops and only a few ethnic shops, and they aren't really a bargain here. But for us, the cost of living here is so low, we can spend as much as we want on good groceries.

Sep 19, 2011
MissMechante in Not About Food

Fruit Smoothie = "Bad for You"

I think a homemade smoothie is a great breakfast. I make mine with whole fruits (if I add apple, I don't peel), ice, and plain full fat yogurt (about 1/4 cup). No sugar or any other sweetener. If I'm too busy for that, I eat some yogurt, and then some fruit, and then lunch.

When I stick to that breakfast routine, it really helps me lose weight and stay full enough in the morning. The only other (what I consider very healthy and filling...I also love pancakes, waffles, all american breakfasts except eggs. no eggs for me.) breakfast for me is black beans and rice, a bit of bacon, and some fresh fruit. This is for super active days (4 hours of early morning surfing, 100mi bike ride, etc).

I think whatever your body likes is good for you. No-one has the perfect answer for nutrition. Everyone is different. If you feel good, resting and active, then your diet is fine.

Aug 04, 2011
MissMechante in General Topics

Mum's the Velveeta

I would happily serve "forbidden foods" without telling (until after they have eaten it, preferably even weeks later) to someone with religious prohibitions. Hopefully it will help open their eyes as to how silly religion is. I have zero respect for that stuff. I'll probably never get the chance, as I won't associate with anyone with strong religious beliefs. Would not do that to someone with serious allergies though. For others, I will usually describe the ingredients so they can choose to eat or not. But if a vegetarian friend has already scarfed down something with any kind of meat ingredients before I was able to tell them what was in the dish (at potlucks, etc), I'm not going to bring it up.

Aug 03, 2011
MissMechante in Features

Restaurant bans children under age 6 - What do you think?

exactly, if the parent is taking them around the room to the bathroom or to look at the fish tank or whatever, that's different. If the kid is wandering around, putting their hands on strangers tables and starting "conversations", that's a problem.

Jul 12, 2011
MissMechante in Not About Food

Restaurant bans children under age 6 - What do you think?

Total opposite of me....If I'm seated at a table in a restaurant, I definitely do not want random children approaching the table to start a conversation. Totally inappropriate! I don't want to see their drooly toys either. They should not be wandering around a restaurant, period. I really don't want stranger children in my personal space ever if there's no reason for it. Same for crawling over booths, I would ask to be moved immediately. It's not cute at all.

Now if it's in a line at an outdoor ice cream stand, or at a park for children, it's not as bad. Recently, standing in line at a waterpark I had a long conversation with an 8 year old girl about what rides were, scary, fun, what was different at the park now vs. 15 years ago. Much more appropriate.

I don't understand parents that think everyone should be interested in or want to be around their children. I am not a parent because I have no interest in kids, why would I want to be around theirs?

Jul 12, 2011
MissMechante in Not About Food

Restaurant bans children under age 6 - What do you think?

Me too! Businesses should be free to attract whatever type of patrons they want to. plus I am a dog person, not a child person ; )

Jul 12, 2011
MissMechante in Not About Food

Cooking For Our Four Legged Friends...

There's tons of info online about good dogfood recipes. It's really not that difficult. pick some menus you like and run them by your vet or another reliable source. have a good knowledge on what ingredients are not good for dogs. It's fun!

My vet says 70-80% protein is generally want you want your mix to be, and not too much organ meat. Some active dogs do well on basically 100% protein (think sled dogs).

Jul 08, 2011
MissMechante in Not About Food

Is the restaurant responsible?

off topic, buy my childhood dog was named Lupita, after Casa Lupita. We loved the food as kids and would go there for birthdays, I remember always getting some kind of shredded beef chimichanga or taco, so much better than ground beef. Later I spent many years in California, so I have a love for authentic Mexican, that I can't really get (unless I cook it myself) in Asheville, NC, where I live now.

Jun 21, 2011
MissMechante in Not About Food

Curb your kids signs?

At the bottom of my driveway, I have a sign that reads "Dogs allowed. Children must be leashed." Luckily there are no children that live on my mile long road, only 7 houses.

I appreciate seeing those signs in restaurants and stores,I have more confidence that the staff will deal with any unruly children.

Jun 10, 2011
MissMechante in Not About Food

Good restaurants and bars in Banner Elk /Boone NC?

Not many recent comments in the old threads I searched for, and the recent ones just discuss the same few places. I did find a few restaurants that sound good, but no info about bars. There's a lot you can find online, but it's hard to tell from a website.

Jan 08, 2011
MissMechante in Southeast

Good restaurants and bars in Banner Elk /Boone NC?

Heading to the area for the first time for a weekend of skiing and will be staying right between Boone and Banner Elk. Any recommendations for restaurants or bars? All kinds of food, from low to high. Not so much sports bars, but just about anything else goes. Thanks!

Jan 07, 2011
MissMechante in Southeast

Asheville: Little seafood place next to S&W?

I don't know the name, but has anyone been there? I peeked at the menu in the window and it looked good, reasonably priced, lots of seafood. Next to Steak and Wine on Patton

Nice happy hour in the East Bay?

Hubby and I have a little something to celebrate and I want to take him out for a drink and appetizer after work somewhere a bit more interesting than grabbing a beer and fries like we usually do...I was thinking something like Skates because of the view (I've never been there, and wouldn't go for dinner, but seems like a good place for a drink) and it is pretty close to where we live, but I can't think of any other options...any ideas?

We've gone to Trader Vic's with the same thing in mind (another place I wouldn't go for dinner, but it's close to us), but it was pretty lame. Our favorite bar around here is Cafe Van Kleef in Oakland, but that's not right for tonight either. TIA!

Strong cocktails + bar food in East Bay?

great suggestions! thanks everyone!
we usually go for brews, but I think we're in the mood for cocktails least I am! We ride our bikes to Lanesplitter on Telegraph, and we've been to Jupiter too.
Is there much of a difference between the Cesar in Berkeley and the one on Piedmont? I checked out their website, and the menu is slightly different, but what about the vibe?
We've lived in Oakland for about a year now, and I'm trying to explore more over here, we lived in SF for 10 years, and it's just been too easy to head there to all the places we already know.

Strong cocktails + bar food in East Bay?

Looking for somewhere that has good drinks and decent bar food in Oakland/ doesn't have to be outstanding, just good to nibble on for a light dinner while having a few at the bar.
Already been to Luka's, Trader Vics (disappointing!!), Pyramid, Triple Rock, Pacific Coast Brewing Co, Cato's, want to find a new spot. Thanks!