Happy Valentine’s Day Sales

When I wrote my  “Super Bowl Savings” post, I was a bit dismissive of Valentine’s Day as a Holiday…I mentioned it’s a great time to buy chocolate. It’s also a great time to buy cards and flowers, but there are a few surprises – scroll down!

Happy Valentine's Day, Every One!
Happy Valentine’s Day, Every One!

It’s a good thing that I decided to rethink this as I looked at the sales in my grocery store this week. Check your local ad and see if you don’t find some of these special items for sale in your neighborhood store.

Cards:

  • Many greeting cards are on special
  • Some card companies are making special offers – buy 3 get one free, etc.

Flowers and flowering plants:

  • Rather a no brainer, but I saw not only flowers on sale, but several flowering plants. And at some surprising locations like Home Depot. Even if you don’t have a sweetheart, consider treating yourself.

Chocolate:

  • Yes, chocolate was on sale and on special almost everywhere, and other candies, too.
  • It will be even cheaper AFTER Valentine’s Day – if you’re a baker, consider that sales priced bags of good chocolate can be used instead of baking chocolate, and may be much less expensive!

Seafood, Steaks and Cornish Hens

  • I noticed the above on sale at my store, for the romantic dinners, I guess. If you like to entertain or just like to treat yourself, consider picking these items up at a sales price and throwing them in your freezer.
  • If you’re craving lobster, shrimp or crab, it might be on sale for a great price. Salmon, too, was on sale at my store.
  • Steaks – a number of the “fancier” cuts were on sale as well as the “no names.”
  • Cornish Game Hens, if picked up on sale can be a great option for a dinner party, especially if you use a recipe where they are cut in half.

Produce:

  • Lettuce: Look for great prices on the “pricier” lettuces. Red, Curly and Romaine were at rock bottom prices.
  • Sexy Vegetables: Asparagus was at a really good price. Not in season yet, I’m pretty sure my store must have conscripted a big shipment – and big shipments usually travel fast. It looked beautiful and fresh. Broccoli was at a bottom price and Baby Portabellas were, too!
  • Romantic Fruit: Strawberries and Pears were both on sale at very low prices. What says “I love you” more than Strawberries and Champagne or Wine Poached pears?

Miscellaneous “Luxury” type items:

  • Throughout the store, I saw great prices on some of the higher end products: Olives, Nuts, jars of little fancy items that go great in cocktails…
  • Some of the cheeses were on sale in the “near deli” aisle. Goat cheese, for one.

Dessert Items:

  • Flour, Sugar, Whipping Cream were all on sale
  • Bakery Cakes and several individual desserts were on special

General

Crackers were on sale in nearly every store I was in this week – one store had a great price on Ritz and another on their fancier Water Crackers.

The lesson here: Don’t be dismissive of the marketability of any Holiday – and take advantage of what ever sales it generates!

What to Cook for V-Day?

Recipes so Elegant, No One Will Know You’re on a Budget: – A few budget minded recipes to think about making for your sweetie or your family for Valentine’s Day…

Think about Chicken Piccata: Easy to make, it can be ready in minutes. The bright, lemony flavor is a perfect palate pleaser for the mid February Doldrums!

Chicken Piccata
Chicken Piccata

Pork Tenderloin with a wine reduction, adapted from Thomas Keller’s French Laundry, simplified a bit and brought in at a Budget Price is supremely delicious and one of our favorite special occasion meals.

Pork Tenderloin
Pork Tenderloin

It’s hard to believe that Shrimp can be a budget dinner, but these Shrimp and Kale Packets with White Beans are amazing. This recipe, served in Parchment “purses” and is so elegant! And so healthy!

The parchment seals in the flavor and does AMAZING things to the sauce that forms with the steam…so healthy you won’t have to worry about splurging on dessert. So easy, it’s a GREAT beginner dish!

Shrimp & Kale Bundles - Just out of the oven, open immediately
Shrimp & Kale Bundles – Just out of the oven, open immediately

How about a little something sweet for your sweetheart? Chocolate Pots de Crème – this one made in minutes in the blender with a two-hour chill time…

Chocolate Pots de Creme - in minutes!
Chocolate Pots de Creme – in minutes!

 

Cyclic Changes in the Market – What I call Man Made – Holidays

So many Holidays have great sales – while it “seems” to make sense sometimes to budget a set amount of money per week for food, food doesn’t cost the same every week! The amount of savings can be much greater if you can identify when to expect great sales on items, and what those items are and budget a bit extra for those weeks.

Then beat the grocer at their own game! Instead of passively being drawn into a store to pick up one or two specials and then buy whatever else you need for the week, buy as much as possible of the specials for the Holiday week and weeks or months beyond. Make up the rest of your meal from low-priced staples and such you have “banked” at home. Of course, only buy what you can store and use in a reasonable time period.

 Links for The Twelve Strategies: 

If you made it this far, what am I missing, guys? What bargains do you look for in this extended Holiday season?

Comments and discussion always welcome - tell me what you think.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s