Friday, December 20, 2013

You Mean There's Still More Ham Left?!

This week’s ads look an awful lot like last week’s. Ham is still king. I’ll give a run down on ham at the various stores first, and then move on to other things. It looks like a lot of the price differences are based on whether you’re getting a “name brand” or a “store brand,” as well as on how much water is added in the processing. I’ll let you know what I find about the type of ham (how much water is added), but be sure to check the packaging, too. I’m just relying on the little bit of information given in the ads.

Kroger has Kroger Spiral Sliced Ham for $1.27 a pound, limit of two with $25 in additional purchases. Cook’s Shank Portion Ham is 97 cents a pound, limit of 2 with $10 in additional purchases. Cumberland Gap Semi-Boneless Whole Ham is $1.99 a pound, and Hickory Hills Boneless Ham is $2.49 a pound. John Morrell Spiral Sliced Ham is $2.69 a pound and Private Selection Spiral Sliced Ham is $2.99. Whew! That’s anywhere from 97 cents to $2.99 per pound!

It’s a similar story at Marsh. Hormel Cure 81 Spiral Hams are $1.37 per pound, limit of one, with $25 of additional purchases. Sugardale Prestige Fully Cooked Shank Portion Hardwood Ham (water added) is 97 cents a pound, limit of one with $25 in additional purchases. Indiana Kitchen Heritage House Spiral Sliced Ham with Glaze Packet is $2.49 a pound. Alexander Hornung boneless hams and semi-boneless hams are $1.99 a pound. Marsh Honey Gold Spiral Sliced Glazed Ham is $10 off a half ham or $20 off a whole ham, but they don’t say how much the ham costs to begin with, so there’s no way to tell how much it ends up costing per pound. You’ll have to do the math when you get there.

Aldi has Appleton Farms hams on sale, $1.49 per pound for a spiral sliced half ham, 99 cents for a shank portion, or $1.19 for a butt portion.

IGA in Ellettsville has Best Choice Spiral Sliced Half Ham for $1.89 per pound, limit of one, with $15 in additional purchases, Field Kentucky Legend Boneless Whole Ham for $2.69 a pound, also with a limit of one and with $15 in additional purchases. Emge E-Z Carve Boneless Half Ham is $3.19 a pound and Boneless Whole Ham is $2.99 a pound. Carolina Pride Super Trim Half Ham is $1.39 per pound. Cumberland Gap Semi-Boneless Half Ham is $2.19 a pound, and Semi-Boneless Whole Ham is $1.89 a pound. Kretschmar Boneless Half Ham is $2.69 a pound, and Whole Boneless Ham is $2.49 a pound. Baking hens, roasters and whole fryers are all 99 cents a pound.

Other sales at Kroger include pints of sour cream or dip, 10 for $10, but it doesn’t look like you have to actually buy 10 items. Tennessee Pride breakfast sausage is 2 for $5, with packages ranging from 8 to 16 ounces. Various cheeses are $1.99 per 6 to 8 ounce package. Private Selection or Kroger turkeys are 99 cents a pound, and fresh Honeysuckle turkeys are $1.69 a pound. Cantaloupe are 2 for $3, or $1.50 each. That’s a great price, even for the summer. Fresh green beans are 99 cents a pound.

Marsh has fresh Florida strawberries, two pounds for $5, or $2.50 per pound. Various canned veggies are 49 cents a can. Thursday through Saturday only, whole pineapples are 99 cents each, limit of two with $30 in additional purchases. Indiana Kitchen bacon is $2.99 a pound. Zucchini is $1.29 a pound. Butterball Fresh All Natural turkeys are $1.99 a pound, and Norbest Fresh All Natural Family Tradition turkeys are $1.69 per pound.

Aldi’s vegetables are about the same as they have been. Potatoes are $1.89 for 10 pounds, sweet potatoes are $1.49 for 3 pounds. Oranges are $2.49 for a 4 pounds (but they were actually only $1.99 when I was there on Tuesday!), and mixed fruit (apples and oranges) are $2.49 for a 3 pound bag. Grapefruit are 49 cents each and pineapples are 99 cents each. Butter is $1.69 a pound and cream cheese is 89 cents for 8 ounces. If you’re interested in things like canned sweet potatoes, stuff to make green bean casserole, cranberry sauce, stuffing, mashed potatoes, etc., you might want to take a look at Aldi. They have most of that stuff on sale, too.

IGA has turkeys for $1.19 a pound, while supplies last. Oranges are $3.99 for an 8 pound bag. Canned veggies are three for $1, limit of nine cans. Various Kraft cheeses are buy one, get one free, but it doesn’t say how much they cost. Sour cream and dips are 99 cents for 16 ounces (one pint). Best Choice Fresh Turkeys are $1.49 per pound. Cooked Perfect Meatballs are 99 cents for 14 ounces. Birds Eye frozen vegetables are 10 bags for $10, or $1 each, for 10 to 16 ounce bags, and so are Steamfresh frozen veggies. Red Delicious apples are $5.99 for 8 pounds.

Since ham is still on sale, I’ll do another column working with that. Again, I’ll be mostly talking about the leftover ham. There can be lots of leftovers and it can get pretty old! However, it does freeze well, and then you can use it later when you’re looking for a break from chicken or whatever. I’m figuring on 60 cents a cup again, like last week, when I cost out the recipes and menus.

This first recipe, HAMAND SPINACH CASSEROLE, does have grain in it, both in the white sauce and in the buttered crumbs on top. (As you may know by now, I don’t eat grains in any form.) I left them in the recipe in case you do eat them, which most people do. If you don’t want the wheat, you can substitute one can’s worth of the Campbell’s Soup Casserole Sauce Mix (I gave the recipe last week) for the white sauce, and add the cheese to it. As for the bread crumbs, you could use some slivered almonds if you wanted to, or more cheese, or just leave the topping off altogether, which is what I would do.

If you make this with half and half cream, the total cost will be about $4.50. With the soup mix or with milk it would be a bit less. Some CARROT SALAD would be good with this and would brighten up the plate. With the Carrot Salad, the meal would cost about $5.50, or a bit less than $1.50 per person. Or you could serve fruit and still keep it under $1.50 per person. Fresh fruit is best, of course, but canned without sugar is good, too. You’ll want something with it, anyway, because the servings are a bit smaller than I usually give.

Here’s a really easy way to use up some of that leftover ham. HAM AND BROCCOLI SAUTE is just ham and broccoli and cheese. You can’t get much simpler or quicker than that! Sometimes, especially in the middle of getting ready for the holidays, you just don’t want to spend much time or energy getting a meal on the table. Here’s the answer. This costs under $4.00, leaving a bit over $2.00 for things to go with it. How about some sweet potatoes, either baked or boiled, than whipped with some butter? You’d still be under $5.00 for four servings, or a bit under $1.25 per person.

And finally, BAKEDYAMS, APPLES AND CANADIAN BACON (OR HAM). As you might guess from the name, I took a recipe that calls for Canadian bacon and made it with leftover ham, instead. If you have sliced ham, go ahead and use it but follow the directions for Canadian bacon. This costs right about $4.00 and makes four generous servings. How about serving some coleslaw to go with it? I’ve given my recipe a few times (shredded or chopped cabbage, chopped onion, mayo, lemon juice, sweetener), but you’ve probably got your own favorite way of fixing it. However you do it, a basic coleslaw shouldn’t run more than $2.00 (mine would come out closer to $1.50), keeping the total cost of the meal for four people at less than $6.00, or  less than $1.50 per person.

Okay, so this next one is really the last one. HAM, POTATOES AND GREEN BEANS is a concoction that Mom used to make. And with ham, potatoes and green beans all on sale this week, I just have to include it! At this week’s prices, this would run about $3.60 and makes four generous servings. What would really go best with it would be corn bread (less than $1.00 for Jiffy Corn Muffin Mix and butter), but since I said I wouldn’t be including bread in my menus, let’s have some devilled eggs (eggs were $1.29 a dozen at Aldi on Tuesday) and carrot sticks, and a pineapple or cantaloupe for dessert.

If you have just a dab of ham left, you can add it to lots of other things as an accent. It goes great in potato soup, or in a salad. You can chop it up small and add it to corn bread before you bake it. Throw it in some eggs and either scramble them or make an omelet out of it. Put it in mashed potatoes or scalloped potatoes. Make fried rice with it. Fry it up with some cabbage or put it in green beans. Or just eat it!

And whatever you do, don’t throw out the ham bone! Use it to make bean soup. Or make HAM BROTH and freeze it to make soup with later.

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