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Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Emergency Holiday Meat and Cheese Tray

Your spouse calls you at home at 9am and says, "Whoops, I signed up for a meat and cheese tray for the work holiday lunch and I forgot to get one, can you bring me one at 11AM?"

So at Walmart at 10AM the deli lady says, "It can't be ready until 2PM."

So, I dash off to throw together an emergency meat and cheese tray which could be assembled in the back of the van!

Swiftly checking and relying on the grocer's accuracy of price per pound. I bought swiss, provolone, white american and pepperjack cheese slices and Monterrey Jack/Colby Cheese cubes.

Then I bought roast beef, salami, pepperoni, chicken and ham slices and a summer sausage - 2 of which were on sale, yeah!

The summer sausage needed to be cut! So off to buy a knife. I have to decide between el cheapo or one I think I could use again. So I think, which knife do I always wish wasn't dirty or have to clean off to use again. The chef knife. So I choose a decent chef knife, but I was not going to buy a cutting board that I absolutely didn't need. So I figured I would use the hard plastic container one of the cheeses came in as my cutting board.

Then for the tray. I look in the Christmas party aisle and find the cheapest tray. It was some flimsy red or green ugly plastic thing for $4. So I run over to the other kitchen aisles. I find a sheet cake tupperware-like storage container with lid with handles for $5. That I could use again!

So, I rush out with this stuff, pull into the work parking lot 15 minutes before lunch time. Grab my germ x to wash up and assemble it by pulling them all out of the packages and trying to make it look nice. I pull the last cheese out as hubby is coming to get it.

Then I was curious of what I could have gotten and what I did actually purchase in the heat of the moment. I called to ask what their largest meat tray contained and cost. It was three choices of meat and three choices of cheese for about 25 people according to the sign, and would cost $36 bucks.

I spent $50. And had 5 cheeses and 6 meats, a $12 chef knife that I could use and a $5 storage container that will come in handy. So $33 dollars for food (which some returned to me for lunches and fed more than 25 people) and 2 semi-needed kitchen items and no big ugly flimsy plastic black tray in the landfill - as inconvenient as that was, I think I didn't do too badly!

I have learned one thing - I will not buy a prepared meat and cheese tray if the spouse ever volunteers that again - even choosing the convenient already sliced stuff, it cost less for the food to do it myself. And not to buy pepperoni - no one touched it! :)

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