Family with a budget

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Grocery shopping – Christmas sales

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This time of year in Denmark the grocery stores are packed with great sales on everything you will need for Christmas. Foods like pork roast, butter, heavy cream, milk, cabbage, sausage, potatoes, cheeses, eggs, bacon, soda, chips etc. go on super sale. So this is also the time of year that I stock up on certain things. We have a large energy efficient freezer, and I highly suggest that. This means that I will stock up on butter for pretty much the entire year (butter is right now a fourth of the normal price), and milk and cream (also a fourth of the price) I’ll buy for months to come and freeze. (Yes, you can freeze milk!) Milk is just as fresh and tasty when you take a carton out of the freezer and defrost it, as if you had just gotten it fresh from the store. Heavy cream get a bit lumpy when frozen, so it’s not good for whipping. But it’s still great to use in cooking, like sauces, stews, bread dough, soups etc. I like to freeze heavy cream in smaller containers or even ice cube bags, so I can take out exactly the amount I need for a meal, like just enough to make a sauce or soup a little bit creamier and flavorful without loading it with extra calories. But in my experience, if you use heavy cream, you won’t need as much cream as if you use the low fat kinds. Cheeses you can also freeze, although cream cheeses will do what cream does and get a bit lumpy. But again, still great for cooking. Solid cheeses, brie, blue cheese etc. freeze fine.

Another item I like to stock up on is the meats that go on sale. I’ll cook it up and freeze as meat balls or packages of sliced cooked pork for maybe a quick pork burger dinner, or I might just freeze the meat uncooked. But it allows for some mealprepping that could save you time and energy on busy days.
In my family, however, we do try to eat less meat. I have been vegetarian and pescetarian for years, but gave it up when it became too timeconsuming to cook two separate meals many days, as my family liked to have meat sometimes. But my daughter and I actually aren’t big meat eaters, so we will also have vegetarian meals throughout the week. And I do like to use meat a bit more sparingly sometimes, so that I use a little bit for flavoring a dish. For instance 5 slices of bacon to flavor a big pot of stew or as “spice” for a quiche. This will stretch the meat a bit further.

I highly recommend having a big freezer if you are a family, so you can get the sales when they are available, stock up and plan ahead. If the freezer is newer and uses little energy, this will save you a lot of money in the long run. And you will be surprised how many things freeze well!

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