Sloppy Josephines

In our attempt to follow through with a meat-free Lent season, Robert and I made Mama Pea’s Sloppy Josephines last week.

For those of you that know my beloved husband, you know he’s not a bean eater.  The only beans Mr. Rader will eat are baked beans because, and I quote “They taste like bacon and candy.”

Umm. Okay.

Just to get this out in the open, my life would be much easier, as would this meat-free business, if Robert ate beans.  Not to mention cheaper, healthier, etc. Alas, I married for love and not for bean affinity… right?

Still, I held my breath and cooked them anyway.

Like I’ve told everyone before, we’re broke frugal, and therefore, our groceries aren’t always organic or “the best quality”. Hence, the Kraft BBQ sauce.  Still tasty, mind you.  Also, one can of Hunts, one can of organic.  Compromise? I think so.  And that’s the fancy red wine vinegar, thanks.

While I was on my way home, I had Robert start boiling up a cup of green lentils.  They go in for about 30 minutes and come out tender, but with enough texture to go great in these faux-sloppy-Joes.

In addition to the above ingredients, get your hubby to chop up about a half a cup of onions.

While the onions brown a bit, chop up two cloves of garlic, and then throw them in along with the chili powder and oregano.  Let them heat things up a little bit together.

After that starts to smell lovely and delightful, add the tomato paste, tomato sauce, red wine vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, and BBQ sauce.  And remember your measurements! Don’t try to pour the whole bottle of BBQ sauce… like I almost did.

Stir stir stir!

Get your teeny tiny Lentils ready.  Lent. Lentils, hah! I just put that together.

Let them join the party and stir to combine.

If you feel, at this point, that you need a little salt and peppa, go for it.

Mmm, served up on a toasted whole wheat hoagie.  Robert added pickles to his for the true blue BBQ experience.

I served mine up with a simple salad of spinach, sunflower seeds, goat cheese, and balsamic vinegar.

Oh, goat cheese.  I could never say no to you.

I would eat it on a dish, with a fish… in a boat with a… goat? Awkward.

Y’all, it was like a glorified sloppy Joe, for real.  You know the Manwich stuff that we all grew up on? Same basic flavors but pumped up times a thousand.  The hint of oregano does beautiful things.  And the lentils are the perfect texture to go in a sandwich.  I’m curious as to how this would do with tempeh…

And guess what? Mr. Rader LOVED them! Maybe there’s hope, yet.

Did you give up something for Lent? How’s it going?

I’m pretty much a failure this Lent season, but this recipe was a success!

Grocery Shopping & Weekly Menu

Hi!

Remember me?

I know it’s been a while…

But I’m all yours, once again.  Promise.

Last week, we spent every night trying to get our apartment situated and boxes unpacked… and my sister came over and spent the weekend with us and helped us get more stuff situated.  Y’all, this is going to take forever.  We still have a few things at the old apartment but with work and the gas prices we haven’t been able to go back and get anything.

$3.50 a gallon has me on edge about everything.  I have been most unpleasant due to financial stress caused by the ridiculous gas prices.

When will it end? When will the madness end?

Feels that way, huh?

Anyhoo…

We had our first grocery shopping adventure on Saturday.  Robert was off all day so we had a late breakfast and made out a grocery list.  We are still trying to figure out where is the best place for us to get our groceries.  In Rome, we pretty much stuck with Kroger and Wal-Mart… not ideal for clean foods, but excellent for our budget.  Unfortunately, the Wal-Marts near us are… shady, to say the least, and there’s not a Kroger for 30-45 minutes.

However, we are lucky to have several amazing whole foods stores nearby like Earth Fare and Fresh Market, as well as a Publix (!!) and Target.  A little more expensive? Yes.  Totally worth it? Yes.

Earth Fare is more for fun and exciting foods, to be quite honest, and I don’t plan on buying staples there any time soon.  Also, a great selection of vegan-friendly foods and beautiful fruits.  I bought a bucket of watermelon for less than three dollars and it was like eating little bits of heaven.

Fresh Market was much better for staple items, produce, and meat! We bought almost a pound and a half of antibiotic and hormone-free natural chicken breasts for less than seven dollars.  I made baked chicken tenders with it last night and I can’t express how clean and delicious it was.

Just beautiful.

Will definitely be getting our meat from there from now on.

Our last stop was Publix… which I love dearly.  I have fond memories of my Grandmother and Publix ’cause, well, she lives in south Florida, and she’s a little old lady meaning that it’s kind of unsaid that she frequents Publix, right?

While a little expensive, it was very clean and well-organized and had an excellent organic section, and we will probably be back for lunch items and canned goods.

Unfortunately, we went about $11 over our budget because we picked up a treat at both Earth Fare (Mexican Coke and Steaz) and Fresh Market (Fresh cookies!), but it was well worth it.  It also rained on us all day, so we dried off and enjoyed some tacos and burritos at Salsarita’s to make ourselves feel better.

All in all, a very nice Saturday :)

This week’s menu:

Monday: Spinach and Feta Turkey Burgers with leftover collard greens and sweet potato fries

Tuesday: Homemade pizza with Trader Joe’s whole wheat pizza dough

Wednesday: Sloppy Josephines and steamed green beans

Thursday: Philly “Cheese” Sandwiches and spinach salads

Friday: Black bean burgers and steamed broccoli

Saturday: Chana masala

Sunday: Leftovers!

Seemed like a Mama Pea and Jenna kind of week.  Obviously I was blogstalking them as I was preparing my grocery list… PUMPED about tonight’s turkey burgers! Yumm…