Northwest Edible Life has a yearly Eat from the Larder challenge in April. I only read about it on April 1, but it had been a half-assed goal of ours anyway so I jumped onboard.
Their rules are a ZERO dollar food budget and no intentional stocking up ahead. Of course without any forewarning I couldn't possibly have intentionally stocked up ahead, but I'm not interested in a $0 grocery budget--just cleaning out some of our excess pantry storage and being a little creative. We're having an issue with our freezer & fridge that requires us to minimize our perishable food stock before fixing it, besides the excessive collection of condiments and pickles in there.
- No purchasing non-perishable food items.
- Minimal purchase of perishable items.
- No opening of new condiments if they can be avoided (until after the fridge is fixed, whether that's in two weeks or May).
- Be creative!
Keep it simple, right? Bonus goals:
- Use every gadget in the kitchen. NO NO NO NOT ALL AT ONCE.
- Make at least one menu item each week that we haven't made in 6 months (totally arbitrary numbers, I just want to get out of a rut).
- New recipes are awesome.
- Be able to fit all the non-perishable foods in the food pantry shelves & designated cupboards.
- Get all the bulk-food items switched from bags to proper food storage containers.
What's the point?
NWEdible Life's goals are to pare down stores before the summer harvest & storage season. For us, it's practicing a little creativity and moderation. Our balcony garden isn't even planted for the season yet, and it's all herbs anyway, so there's not much harvest storage space required for that. We'd mostly like to make sure we're continuing to learn and hone new skills that would be beneficial in a long-term homesteading situation. We may not have the property and garden and "larder" now, but we'll be learning a lot of new skills once we do, so it seems reasonable to work on skills we can do now so we can best take advantage of different learning opportunities in the future. And of course, fitting into our available space (not being overstocked) is an issue.
Are you joining the challenge? Looking forward to a new growing season? Trying out new recipes? Just hoping to get through the week with your family managing to eat most of their meals?