Cheaper than storebought

beer can chicken

beer can chicken

I am constantly amazed at the number of people who honestly believe that precooked foods (whether restaurant or supermarket) are cheaper than raw ingredients and cooking.  The latest bit of propaganda reinforcing this misinformation is a fast-food fried chicken commercial:  a suburban white-lady-mama and her two kids attempt to shop for equivalent ingredients to make a fried chicken dinner, and they (gasp!) quickly bust their budget and retreat to the discount option, food cooked by someone else.  I’m beginning to understand the origins of the sub-prime mortgage crisis:  Americans are financially illiterate.

Obviously, it is complete hogwash.  If Americans actually believe this, math skills must be at an all time low, along with homemaking skills.  Pictured is last night’s entree at my house:  a $4 chicken, roasted over a beer can, served with tomato-basil bruschetta and grilled asparagus.  Total cost of this meal was $6.75, it produced enough food (and calories) for five adults.  If I bought the chicken already roasted from the supermarket, the cost would have increased from $4 to $6.75 (or $8.99 at Whole Foods).

Maybe home economics should be a mandatory class in Louisiana, ’cause students clearly aren’t learning much from free enterprise/economics.

6 thoughts on “Cheaper than storebought

  1. I totally agree with your premise here, and you even humbly left out how much better your chicken probably tasted than the store bought/fast food chicken. All I want to know is where you got the asparagus and bruschetta ingredients for the reamaining $2.75. Tomatoes from your garden? You baked the bread?

    Don’t even get me started on that high fructose corn syrup commercial.

  2. I did bake the bread–it was the panmarino from the weekend, sliced & toasted on the grill. A lone storebought tomato diced, with homegrown basil and a splash of balsamic vinegar topped the bruschetta. And the asparagus was on sale, I had to trim it some.

    I think most Americans are so prosperous that we’ve forgotten the basic principles of thrift.

    If you like cost comparisons between homemade & storebought, King Arthur’s baking blog always lists the per-ounce cost of two or three purchased items alongside the cost of home-baked. I think it’s a great feature.

  3. We’ve also forgotten that homemade just tastes better, not to mention is better for you. Where did I real recently that the people who spend the most time planning and preparing meals are far less likely to be overweight?

    But thrift isn’t the only issue. Propserous people often feel like they don’t have time to make things from scratch, which is why WF can charge the outrageous prices for prepared food.

    Love the King Arthur Blog. For some reason I’m now reminiscing about the Robin Hood pizza crust mix that my mom uses for pizzas. Can you still get that?

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