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Miércoles 5 Enero 2022: Digging out and meatless burgers

Just in case anyone harbored any doubts, this photo should illustrate one of the things I am most looking forward to avoiding next year when I live in a place where the temperature rarely hits 0 degrees celsius (32 F). Yes, this is my auto and yes, in this photo I am in the first stages of clearing away the more than 15 centimeters of snow from Monday.

In a better situation I wouldn't have dug out at all. I would have just let the warming weather free my car and fed the Husband and I from the pantry, supplemented by an occasional GrubHub delivery, until the pavements were clear again. But a combination of just coming back from my Mom's over Christmas (so no fresh food in the house) and early negative feedback from the Husband on pantry-foraging compelled me to go in search of sustenance.

To be fair, he is not opposed to pantry-foraging per-se, and has often speculated that I could create a feast out of what has been shoved to the back of the upper shelves over our years here. But last night I made us a delicious (it really was very good) split-pea soup from a bag of split peas in the pantry, combined with slices of homemade cornbread toasted, and while he ate both with satisfaction, he later reported the soup had not been as easy to digest as something else might have been.

So I added split-peas to the somewhat growing list of Problematic Foods and went to clear out the car. Normally I might have waited a day or some more for the shelves to get restocked, but I hoped to reap a reward of discounted meats and fish that people didn't buy because they were all home, away from the storm. And, it worked. I walked with deeply discounted meatballs, sausage, chicken breast and tuna steaks.

The only meat group that appeared impervious to the demand (and price) drop was beef. Even cuts whose packages carried stamps that said "Marinate" and "slow cooker friendly" ( read tough, tough, tough) carried prices of $18, $19 and $21. Imagine paying $21 dollars for something you will need to marinate and beat with a mallet for ten minutes just to make sure it doesn't feel like shoe leather when you bite into it.

If you ask me, this is golden opportunity for all those meatless meat producers out there. I have had some of their meatless burgers and other meatless products and they've been darn good so now, when your competition has priced itself into the stratosphere, you have the chance to come in and at least get your foot in the door. I can see the spot now:

Scene: Supermarket beef section. Sad, carnivorous-looking man gazes despondently into the meat counter. A little green eco-angel pops up on his shoulder.

Angel: "So what's it gonna be Stan?! Chicken again? Or something... vegetarian?"

Stan keeps walking.

Angel: "Or you can try this....meatless burger. Why not? Even if it's only half as meaty at the real thing, aren't you coming out on top when beef's priced at the top of the market?"

Stan stops. Walks back a couple of feet and picks up a package of the meatless burgers.

Angel; "Good job Stan!

Later images of Stan and family eating the meatless burgers with smile all around.

Announcer: "Meatless, for when ground beef hits five dollars a pound again."

Fade to black.....

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