cheese IS dairy

Today was chore day - laundry, ironing, carpet cleaning, meal planning and grocery shopping. Although I am a chronic planner, I just cannot master meal planning. Part of the problem is that it involves cooking (I shudder just typing that word). But, today, I tried again... attempt 42 at planning meals for the week.

I sat down on the couch with my favorite cookbook (Better Crocker's healthy AND hearty - 'cause what is the point of eating healthy if you are just hungry after your meal?) and picked out a few recipes. I wrote down the ingredients, confirmed the items in the house (surprisingly, a lot of them), and added the needed items to my grocery list. I KNOW... a list. Novel idea, and not usually something that accompanies me to the store. I generally wander and grab the usual suspects: milk, eggs, cheese, deli meat, fruit, bread... and whatever else looks good along the way.

I entered the grocery store with an air of confidence. I had a list! And in a bout of energy before I left, I organized my list by aisles in the store (since when am I type A?) Rather, where I thought they might be in the store; I didn't actually know, since some of the things were items I had never purchased before.

Before I continue, let me explain something about the grocery store I frequent - it is not your typical grocery store. It is humongous. They have a section that sells dinnerware - not paper plates, not plastic plates, but actual real pottery plates. They have wine tasting on Friday nights. It is so big that you can't just run in to quickly grab a gallon of milk, because the milk is located in the back 40. So they added an end cap in the front of the store stocking milk, butter, yogurt and other quick pickup items. It is so big that they have a convenience store inside the store!

I was quickly filling my cart and crossing off items on my list: milk, yogurt, mozzarella cheese, and then I encountered cottage cheese. I looked through the entire cheese section, but it was nowhere to be found. One of the helpful employees was stocking the cheese, so I asked her where the cottage cheese was located. She replied, "In the dairy section." Huh? As far as I know, cheese IS dairy. I recognize that the FDA has changed the food pyramid a hundred times since I learned it in 6th grade, but I seriously doubt they reclassified cheese. I stood there with a blank look on my face, and she added, "by the milk." Of course... why would cottage cheese be in the cheese section? It would be too obvious.

I would also like to add the fun tidbit that there is a second cheese section - the GOURMET cheese section. No wonder I never want to cook - too much effort to find anything at the store! Oh, and the effort of cooking.


Tahoe said...

Wow. Even I the Lactose Intolerant one knew that Cottage Cheese in the Yogurt/Dairy Section as opposed to the "cheese" section.

Good luck w/the meal planning. Mine usually looks like this: Monday - fend for yourself, Tuesday - Jacks/take out? Wendnesday - okay, I will attempt something . . . maybe.
Thurday - left overs from Wed OR fend for yourself. Friday - eat out again, Sushi? Saturday - no planning Sunday - something but also the take out option. :-)

Suzanne said...

I love all things cheese, but cottage cheese gives me the willies. So I'm glad it is far away from my cheddar and brie. And asiago and jack. And the curds and the gouda.

- J.L.O. said...

I have to admit, when I was younger and more energetic (without a kid) I made a blank shopping list. I went down every aisle at the grocery store I shopped at and wrote down everything I would ever imagine buying. I then typed it up (by aisle) and would go through the list at home before I left. When I got there, all was in order. This happened until they moved all of the food around at the store. Like I said, I did this when I was younger and more enthusiastic. Now, the list doesn't even happen. LIke you, I attempt to do meal planning, but I still have meals tacked to the fridge from my weekly list from 3 months ago that still haven't gotten cooked. They need one of those prepare your meals things here. It is like a party. . . you go, they have all the food there you can use (pre-cut and ready to go)and you put it together into meals and pack it up for the freezer. Walaa!!!! An hour later you have meals for the week. Better yet, if I could hire someone to do that for me and just bring me the meals would be great.

Alisa Hamilton said...

Let me applaud your efforts at meal planning. I have been making weekly meal plans for several months now, and I cannot recommend it highly enough. It has greatly reduced my stress, reduced my weekly food costs, and broadened our meal horizons. Let me offer three suggestions:

1) Invest in a programmable crock pot. You throw the stuff in before you leave in the morning and it's done when you get home...what could be better?!?!?

2) Go to www.grocerylists.org. They have a .pdf master grocery list so that you can just print it out and check off the things that you need.

3) Let Greg pick a night to cook and make him responsible for submitting his ingredients to you before your shopping. That way he will have greater appreciation for the aggravation that you are going through on a weekly basis.