My shopping style

I like grocery shopping because I enjoy picking out the foods I need to cook, but I hate the tedium that is the act of shopping itself. However, this time of the year I rarely venture into the grocery store. I do buy milk (organic!) and browse the flyers to see who has what meat on sale (a particular favorite is the buy-one-get-two boneless, skinless chicken breast special one local store frequently offers). Other than that, there are no major expeditions to stock the pantry and deep freeze. As a matter of fact, I have vowed to get to the bottom of the freezer and back of the pantry using every last thing I may find on this sort of archeological dig. Why?  For starters, I tend to hoard, stockpile, gather - whatever you want to call it - food items and need to thin the herd, so to speak. And, secondly…from early May to late September I primarily “shop” at the local farmer’s markets and fruit stands – and there are so many to choose from in this area.

Take my latest haul. I hit one market, the Old Beach Farmer’s Market, last Saturday morning and literally spent every penny I had on me. I went for steamer clams and corn but walked away with much, much more. After I secured the clams (I paid 30 clams for 100 clams - haha) and a baker’s dozen ears of corn (as well as eight beautiful peaches and two plump ‘maters from the same stand), I started thinking how good a loaf of the fresh baked French bread would be as an accompaniment. After I picked up a loaf, I remembered the dairy stand around the corner and figured fresh butter would go nicely with the clams, the corn and the newly acquired bread.
Both reusable grocery bags were packed to the top when I walked past the organic veggie stand and spied the most beautiful red, white and blue new potatoes. Of course I needed to get a couple containers. They were $4.00 a quart or two for $7.00 tax included. I wanted to get a pack of white and a pack of blue. Alas, as I scrounged around in my pocket, I found I only had $6.90 left. The kind lady running the stand spied my pile of crumpled ones and assorted change, and I confessed my shortfall. She smiled and gave me a quarter off the register left by a previous customer. I returned the favor by leaving my extra 15 cents in the same spot and left with taters in tow.

Back home, my bounty spread out on the counter, I contemplated lunch. As is often the case, I bought too much, so I opted to skip the potatoes after all. I warmed the bread in the oven, dropped the corn in my biggest pot (with some sugar and salt added to the boiling water) and the clams in my next largest (steamer bucket installed), melted a little butter and rallied the troops.

As we feasted, I decided I liked my shopping style.  It was good for my patience, the local economy and my stomach!   

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