Monday, September 10, 2012

Crock pot black beans & Lentil spinach dal

This weekend I started my budgeting adventure by making a few easy items from scratch:
Tomato sauce, black beans, and lentil and spinach dal.
The black beans I picked up for $1.79 a pound for organic black beans - I bought two pounds which ended up making about 5 cans worth for a cost of $3.58,Organic canned beans cost easily $1.29 each, so that's a savings of $2.87. Seems like a lot of work for a small savings, but it adds up.

I followed the directions over at Kalyn's kitchen - http://www.kalynskitchen.com/2010/12/how-to-cook-dried-beans-in-crockpot.html and it worked out really well. I then cooled the beans on a cookie sheet and measured them into freezer bags, squeezed out the air and tossed them in the freezer.

I also made some lentil and spinach dal. I bought a bag of red lentils on sale at Trader Joe's, cooked in the crockpot with chicken stock, which I already had on hand,  instead of water and Suki's seasoning packet. Although it is less economical to buy the packet of pre-made spices I only use these spices when I make the dal, which isn't that often, so it ends up working out so I don't have spices sitting on my shelves going bad. I cooked them on high for a couple hours and then added in 2 packages of frozen spinach that I thawed.

I then measured out the finished dal into a few Kerr widemouth jars and then sealed them up, leaving an inch at the top. I boiled the full jars and then let them cool. Once they have cooled down, I'll pop them in the freezer.

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