Thursday, June 10, 2010

Day 116- In Which I Think About Changing the Rules

Not in any kinda huge way. Honest.

Well, ok, maybe it is a kinda big change, but really? I'm pretty much doing this already, and just haven't added it. I'm going to try to make this more "fair", and I think by limiting things like this, might come a bit closer to by budget.

What am I changing?

I'm adding one official "cheat" each week.

Bag of chips, meal out, chocolate bar, pint of coconut milk ice cream, that vegan cupcake they sell at whole foods that's the size of my head, whatever.

It just has to either be a single item, or a single meal. So 1 bag of chips, or cupcake, or combo at the falafel shop. Not "a bag of groceries". I want to further limit it to being something that's eaten by itself if I bring it home- so choco or ice cream, but not "cheese" or "meatballs", so it's like a tasty luxe splurge, rather than really "cheating" on what I can make on this budget.

I think "allowing" myself to cheat, within a set system, will cut back on the actual cheating itself, and, with the reward available, I should end up cooking more... Not so much endless slog, more "w00t, I had a break, how can I do that at home cheap and easy".

Related to that, I cheated yesterday. I was at the mall, filling out applications (and looking for jeans- the great extra-super long jean hunt has begun... again...) when, on my way out, I saw it- the gyro shop.

They had falafel. I *like* falafel.

I'm not even going to pretend I hesitated. i thought about it for all of 2 seconds before i was at the counter, ordering tasty falafel pita.
Mexi-Falafel Pita thing
Ok, it wasn't the tastiest falafel pita I've ever had, but what can you expect from a place in the mall with two Mexican guys and a Korean dude working behind the counter? But... I didn't have to cook it, and other than being a bit bland, it wasn't bad.

In other news, I ended up frying half a sweet potato (the other half had gone strangely woody), with half an onion and most of a head of garlic for breakfast yesterday. It was yummy, but I definitely prefer my garlic roasted. I'm trying to find the perfect balancing point of garlic consumption. Somewhere the mosquitoes don't want to eat me, but less than the point at which I'm barred from entering public establishments. I don't think such a sweet spot exists, but I'm trying.

Also, I have the code monkey song stuck it my head. It makes me want Fritos. And geeky code-monkey types. Should have moved to San Jose....


  1. Sounds like a good plan, J.!!

  2. I think an official "cheat" will be good for you. I think you'll be grabbing chips a little less.

    We all need a little cheat anyway, right?

  3. Yeah, at least this way I'm putting some kind of limit on it... or trying to, anyway.

  4. Have you ever heard Oxhorn's "It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like This Raid Isn't Going to Happen" or "Creepy Doll" (dang gnomes!) all WoW related videos. I think Creepy Doll is done by the same guy who does Code Monkey. Yeah, tunes that can easily get stuck in our heads.

  5. I don't know what the cost of chickpeas are in your area, but I made home-made falafel that was amazingly good.

  6. MrsG- I haven't seen those. I'm rather fond of "Ninja Raiders", myself... keep trying to find it at karaoke. Also enjoying "Fett's Vette"- trying to learn the words so I can run thru the whole song and get it out of my head.

    Kim- chick peas aren't really worse than any other beans here- I can get them at the vegetable bin for like $1.20 or so a pound, dry. I even have a can in the pantry. Problem is, I am falafel impaired.

    srsly. I can make hummus like you wouldn't believe. baba follows orders and whips into nice creamy spread. Falafel, however, eludes me. It taunts me. I can make it ok from a mix, but real falafel? Haven't managed it yet.

  7. I cooked them with the appropriate herbs until soft, smashed 'em up with a hand blender, mixed in enough flour to get a meatball like consistency, formed small patties, dredged them in more flour, and then sauteed them on med-high heat in a little oil for 3 minutes on each side. For me, the key was having enough flour in the mix so that the patties held together when I cooked them. After that, it was a piece of cake.

    I also know of a vegan baked falafel recipe, that I haven't tried.

  8. That's a good plan, ya can't live in complete denial all the time. plus you'll have something to look forward to and will have less little 'cheats' along the way.