First thing yesterday (Thursday) morning, I once again headed to aduana on the Progreso pier. Traffic was quite light and I got to Progreso too early, so I swung into a Pemex to take on a bit of gas. It was about 8:50 when I got to the entrance to the pier and the guard recognised me! I was processed in record time and pulling into the parking lot at 9:00. At aduana, it was just a matter of presenting my receipt from the last trip and signing for the final paperwork. The attendant confirmed that I’m done, but should check my request for the truck permit extension in a few months to make sure that the paperwork was duly processed.
What a relief. The only truck matters to worry about now are a bit of maintenance, renewing my insurance every year, and then, in about 2.5 years, figuring out how I’m going to get her out of the country. That’s a load off my mind. No more trips to Progreso for me, yay. I really dislike that town.
Last night, I took a couple of hours to find a freezer-to -crockpot meal plan with shopping list, pared it down to the recipes I knew I’d like and could find ingredients for, and then made a shopping list. I stopped at Costco on the way home from Progresso to get the meat on my list and some veggies and spices, plus peanut butter. It was a huge haul, but I’ll get get close to 50 meals out of the shop (12 dinners x 4 portions)!
I’ve had my Costco membership a year now and have renewed. It’s completely worth the membership fee to me. Here are a few things I get at Costco more cheaply than in supermarkets or that simply aren’t available elsewhere reliably:
-coloured sweet bell peppers;
-Chihuahua cheese (this cheese subs both as mozzarella in browning applications and a medium cheddar so I go through a lot of it!);
-almond milk (both non-sugar plain and individual portions of chocolate) — the savings on this alone pay for my membership!;
I’ve never had any waste from buying in bulk at Costco and I always stick to my budget. Of course, a Costco run can cost a lot for only a few items in the cart, that’s just simple math. It’s just part of my budget every month.
I then went almost next door to Chedraui to get the rest of the ingredients, mostly produce and spices. I’m really getting to know my way around the supermarkets here and found the Thai coconut milk exactly where I thought it would be. I’ve been wanting to learn to cook with coconut milk for years and I’m finally going to do it! Of course, I had to make some recipe substitutions for what I can get here, so jalapeños for New Mexican green chiles and poblanos for green peppers.
Two of the recipes required oranges and I was shocked to find oranges like we’d find up north marked at 86 pesos each. WTF???!! A produce worker confirmed the price was correct. I asked him about juicing oranges instead and he took me to an area past the veggies that I hadn’t made my way to yet. There, I found yellowy-green oranges at the sort of price I’d expect to pay here. I remember how shocked I was the first time I had an “orange” that colour, but, really, they taste the same! Here’s a picture of a slice of one from a meal I ate in Maz (oh, I miss Sinaloan cuisine so much…):
I worked late and then pretty much conked out after dinner, going to bed super early (around 9) after giving Bonita some attention. I set the alarm for 7:00 but was thrilled to wake up on my own at 6:30. This was so I’d have time to chop all the produce to make “Thai curry” chicken before getting to work as I had some early deadlines.
The curry bubbled away all morning. Here it is halfway through, minus the sweet potatoes and green beans I added later.
It was ready by lunchtime and soooo good. The coconut milk in it added such a lovely taste! I ended up with so much that I put half in the fridge and half in the freezer.
I continued with my work day and then prepped the rest of the meals. About 100CAD and four hours total of work yielded me a very full freezer! The meals are quite varied.
I am in love with this method of feeding myself — it sure beats having to meal prep, cook, and clean up every night! Thing is, it’s actually not cheaper or much healthier than eating out!
Of course, now that all this work is done, I want a pizza, but I’m sure I’ll find the strength in a bit to go reheat pasta or curry. 😀