Monday, April 22, 2013

Enough is no longer Enough

I’ve gone through different stages in my life when it comes to cooking. When I lived in my very first apartment, it was just to eat. So I’d boil the hell out of vegetables, over cook noodles, it was a disaster. And I didn’t care. Places to go, things to do.

When I first got married, cooking became fun for me. I wasn’t working so I had more time to think about it, plan, shop, experiment. That was the time that I enjoyed cooking the most.

And one of the things that I loved about cooking (and baking) is that I had so many of my Mom’s recipes to start with. Most I made “as is”. But as I became more comfortable with ingredients and processes, I changed many too.

But now, thanks to the attempts to get more money from consumers while providing them with less product, many of my old recipes from my Mom need to be reworked. Because so many of those recipes called for a can of this or a package of that. But if a can used to be 16 ounces, and then 15 1/2 ounces and now is 15 ounces (next I’ll need a magnifying glass to see it), what does that do to the integrity of the recipe? I won’t be buying 2 cans just for another ounce, so you can cross that genius marketing tactic off of your list.



Enough is no longer Enough | www.BakingInATornado | #MyGraphics

And that got me thinking about some other items I’ve seen on the shelves lately that are, in my opinion, a thinly veiled attempt at pick pocketing:

*Aerated chocolate: I thought this was a joke but it turns out it’s not. They’ve taken chocolate bars, replaced some of the chocolate with air and sell them at the same price as the original chocolate bars. This makes sense to who? Just for the record: aerating is for my lawn.

*Boxes of snack cakes where the cakes are wrapped in twos: So your kid opens the little cellophane packet and there’s two cakes in there. What to do? Either the kid’s gonna eat both or blood’s about to spill trying to get that second one out of their tightly clenched fist to wrap up for another time. Pass.

*10 calorie sodas: I drink a lot of soda and I don’t drink the full sugar ones. I have my favorite diet sodas and I stick to those. So now you want me to try, not your new product but yet another version of the exact same sodas, just with more calories added back in. Like that’s gonna happen.

*New family sized packets: I used to buy packets of, well, pretty much anything that looked interesting to make as a side dish and it would feed the family. Lately those packets have gotten smaller and smaller. Now the companies have “introduced” family sized packets. Basically they’re about the size that the now miniscule packets used to be, but guess what? They’re almost double the price. Umm . . . no.

*Shampoo: deceit at an even higher level. Have you looked inside your shampoo bottle lately? I made that mistake. I thought that just because the size of the bottle hadn’t changed that I was getting the same amount. Think again. The bottle’s the same size but it’s only 3/4 full.  Check the number of ounces listed on the bottom of the bottle, if you can read it.

Then there’s make-up, laundry detergent . . .

It all gives new meaning to that old potato chip commercial “bet you can’t eat just one”. Of course now we actually can eat just one. That's all they’re putting in the bag.

So that’s my rant about how far your money is no longer getting you. Back to reconfiguring all of my recipes, thank you very much.



Chicken Pasta in Tomato Cream Sauce | www.BakingInATornado | #recipe


Chicken Pasta in Tomato Cream Sauce


Baking In A Tornado signature | www.BakingInATornado | #MyGraphics



This post was also published to Mamapedia as Pay More Not Less.

Chicken Pasta in Tomato Cream Sauce
                                      ©www.BakingInATornado.com
Ingredients:
2 TBSP oil
1 zucchini cut in half lengthwise, then sliced
1/2# mushrooms 
2 cloves garlic, minces
1/2 onion, chopped
garlic powder
1 can (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes
salt
pepper
1 tsp Italian Seasoning
1/3 cup heavy cream
parsley
1# boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite sized pieces
1# Mostacchioli, cooked al dente
Directions:
*Heat oil in pan at medium heat. When hot, add zucchini, mushroms, garlic and onion. Cook until the onion is soft. Remove to a plate.
*Add chicken to the pan. Sprinkle with garlic powder and saute until chicken is cooked through. Add the veggies back in.
*Add the canned tomatoes, salt and pepper to taste, and the Italian Seasoning. Bring to a boil and allow to boil for 10 minutes.
*Turn down the heat to low and add the heavy cream. Once completely incorporated, add the mostacchioli. Stir until all ingredients are warm. Sprinkle with parsley.

40 comments:

  1. OMGOSH!!! That is one of my pet peeves!!!! The Hubby gets tired of hearing me complain about it but it's ALL TRUE!!
    GRRRR!!!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have a house full of teenagers and the prices keep going up and the quantity inside keeps going down. It's just so frustrating.

      Delete
  2. I feel exactly the same way! I told my husband the other day that it is becoming impossible to live. Prices go up each year, med aid increases, housing, water and lights! But our salaries do not increase equivalently. I feel like each year that passes I'm working harder to live on less! Not that material is important but I don't feel I get my money's worth!! Don't even get me started on the gimic that is the toy industry!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah, I bet you could write an entire post on the toy industry. I'm so glad I don't have to deal with that any more.

      Delete
  3. I just had to Google "mostacchioli." Thanks, smartypants. That does look good.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The funniest part is that you don't even have to use mostacchioli, you can use pretty much any pasta you want.

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    2. I saw the green in the pic and thought it was a hip new leafy vegetable, like The New Kale or something... Duh.

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    3. I may need to work on that now, finding a hip new leafy vegetable.

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  4. OMG...all so true...hubby and I were talking about that the other day. We decided to buy the big bag of store brand chips which not on sale gave us more chips than the smaller bags on sale.

    Have to try that recipe.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We've been trying more "no name" items here. When we like them they save money for sure. When we don't though, I have to go back to the name brand name or stop buying the item. I think we're all feeling forced to make adjustments to how we shop.

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  5. I know what you mean. It's absolutely nuts the things these people are trying to get us to buy. I find it really hard to believe that they think we are that stupid, but I guess, a consumers, we tend to be. The shampoo one, though, I never thought about it, but then I'm cheap and get mine from DollarTree. That's probably why my hair is so UGH!!! lol

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Those dollar stores are popping up on every block for a reason. More and more people are making it a point to start there, especially for paper goods and cleaning needs.

      Delete
  6. That looks really yummy. You totally hit the nail on the head with this one - It's amazing how stupid they really think we are. I must admit I think it's kind of funny to see what new tactics they'll come up with to try to make us believe that less is more (and more expensive) and it's also NEW and IMPROVED. How is that even possible?? Funny!
    Jae Mac, I'm Just Sayin'...(Damn!)

    ReplyDelete
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    1. So true, I forgot about that; the use of "new" and "improved" just to catch your attention. Someone needs to look up the word "improved" in the dictionary. And it's not me.

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  7. Ice cream! You forgot ice cream! Who the heck made the containers smaller? That is not only sneaky but just plain cruel!!
    Vicky
    www.thepursuitofnormal.blogspot.com

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    Replies
    1. Yes, ice cream too. And what they're doing with some brands is making a false bottom so the container actually looks bigger than it is!

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    2. Omg Karen! Come to think of it the bottoms are higher! Very tricky!

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    3. Yes, those false bottoms are one of my pet peeves.

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  8. Oh yes, I'm with you on this rant and thank God I'm not the only one thinking this way.
    Everything in the food department has been reduced, it just makes me mad. I'll open a packet of chrisps and there's like 2 chrisps in there hiding at the bottom of an oversized bag. I also had the same issue with the shampoo that cost me so much money. I took the flaming thing back after ringing the manufacturers as I though someone has tampered with the amount inside the bottle. They really take us for fools, so I say, let them keep some of the products.

    The other stupid trick they do on a regular basis is reduce the price whilst it's on the shelf and it's obvious you will buy it. BUT when you get to the cashier till and it is swiped through, you will notice that it is NOT at the reduced price at all. You actually just bought it at the original increased price. CHECK everything mate, when you get to the tills. It's happened to me several times now.
    I better shut up now as I can see I'm getting heated about this.......... bye

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I agree, I always try to watch that things ring up at the price it says on the shelf. That often turns to be a problem as well.

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  9. You know... I have bought that extra can of whatever to get the recipe's right amount of ounces. Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr!!!

    Awesome post. Have great day, Slu

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, unfortunately that's often the easiest way to just get the recipe right,

      Delete
  10. I KNOW! I went to make a recipe of my grandmother's about a month ago and it called for 16oz. I couln't find a 16oz can anywhere ... I had to buy two! I was pissed that I had to waste the rest.
    Freaking idiot marketers and their damn ploys!

    ¤´¨)
    ¸.•*´
    (¸¤ Lanaya | xoxo
    www.raising-reagan.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So frustrating. That's why I'm trying to adjust recipes. I don't want to have to keep buying second cans and giving them more sales. . .

      Delete
  11. I like this post. What you write is so true, where is it going to all end. The pasta and chicken looks yummy!

    ReplyDelete
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    1. That's the problem, I don't think it's going to end. They just get more and more deceitful in the way they make the packaging look like there isn't, in fact, less in there.

      Delete
  12. I read the first part, and felt sad. It's true. My girls are getting bigger, portions are getting smaller, and prices are going higher. We have to fight for every morsel.

    I read the second part, and got instantly happy. That chicken dish is going on our table on Saturday, guaranteed. Just goes to show you can give me all the bad news you want, but if you follow up with yummy food ...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I guess that's why they call it "comfort food", LOL.

      Delete
  13. I am with you on this! What the heck it going on with the Ten Calorie soda trend? Really? Drink a diet soda! It's like they are trying to invent a new market and target men who are scared to drink diet sody so now they look manly. Even the commercials are dumb!

    Phil
    www.blog.theregularguynyc.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Agreed, they're just trying to invent a new market in a very uninspired and uninventive way.

      Delete
  14. My mom told me about companies changing the size to save money instead of increasing the price and that a lot of consumers wont notice. Eh, what are you gonna do? I try to stockpile when there are really good deals.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. I do the same thing. I've changed the way I shop to try to buy more of what's on sale and keep it in my pantry.

      Delete
  15. Cereal is another pisser; boxes get smaller and smaller and the prices are outrageous! I agree with each of your points. Especially the 'family size' packages; who's family?!?!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, cereal. One box of cereal lasts one kid 2 days. Unbelievable!

      Delete
  16. We have noticed it with potato chips, pasta and cereal. It's criminal. I like my food AND my money! That 3/4 full stuff is ridiculous. I've never thought about how it would compromise a recipe. Heads up to the next time I cook real food ;) XOX

    ReplyDelete
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    1. I think if we really knew all the sneaky ways we were being taken advantage of we'd be shocked. If these are the things we're figuring out, imagine how many more things we just haven't caught on to yet.

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  17. I am right there with you. One of my biggest pet peeves. This recipe however looks AMAZING, gonna fit it into the menu next week. Found you over on Bobbi's Kozy Kitchen linky party.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know, it's not just that they do it, it's how much effort they put into being deceitful.

      Hope you like the recipe. It's a favorite of mine.

      Delete
  18. I do this too. Haha so I'm glad I'm not the only one. This looks amazing! I'm going to have to try it.

    ReplyDelete

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