couponing in the holy land

Frugal food shopping for the Anglo Israeli

“I’m…dreaming of a white…new year”

I am well aware that Rosh Hashanah is when everyone makes their special roasts, sheep’s head, and meat tzimmes (depending on your minhag), and I know the saying “אין שמחה אלא בבשר ודגים” , but being in the supermarket last Friday during the Tnuva dairy wars got me thinking.

I don’t know if anyone else had the same experience, but throughout the entire supermarket I was plied with samples of yogurt made with goats milk, had my cart inspected by young Tnuva sales reps, and was notified of every one of their dairy specials. I went home quite full that day, with a lot of dairy products in my basket. Of course, it didn’t help that the line for fresh meat stretched all the way to the fresh cheese section. Looking in that basket, I decided that it wouldn’t kill our family to break from tradition and have a few dairy meals this holiday season. After all, we have a three day Yom Tov coming up. Let’s take advantage of these low prices and create some delicious meals!

That is what frugal shopping is about: purchasing what is affordable, and not be swayed by the manufacturer’s idea of a “must have.” In fact, it might even be looked at as being even more spiritual by eating dairy (or more specifically, not meat). We were vegetarians in the desert before we learned the laws of kashrut, and we were only allowed to eat meat as a leniency that was given to us because we complained too much. (For a more in depth discussion of vegetarianism in the Torah, check out this article on the blog Animals in Halacha).

So this year my freezer is stocked with my traditional leeks and meatballs and my lubiya with plenty of meat in it.  It is also stocked with cheesecake, spanikopita, pashtidot, fish in matbucha sauce, and lots of other ‘white” foods I found on sale these past weeks.  To let you in on a little secret- I spent more on the meat than all of the other meals combined.

I’m feeling pretty good right now. My bank account hasn’t suffered too much so far, so we will be able to splurge a bit on those Sukkot tiyulim.  In fact, I think I will go look for some discount restaurant coupons now…

Shana tovah u’ metukah!


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