Eating Alone

Is it just me, or is it difficult to make food for one person? I just recently started living in my own studio apartment, and I’ve noticed it extremely hard to find recipes that make just one serving. I am used to eating mostly junk food or eating with friends or roommates. I’m trying to live a little healthier, and it has been told to me, that grocery shopping and eating at home is cheaper than going out to eat. I can see that point, but so far it has not been the case. I went shopping today and bought a bunch of great food, and it being the weekend, I actually have time to stand over the stove for a while and actually make myself a full meal. But now I’m contemplating running down to the local Burger King or something to that effect, because everything I have makes 3-6 servings. I don’t want that much. I just want to eat one serving. I don’t want leftovers. I don’t have a microwave, nor do I want one, and frankly, my refrigerator wasn’t really designed to hold much more than a six-pack. So what to do? Spend the next hour preparing a meal, just to have 4 times more food than I can possibly eat? Or invite some people over to help me eat all the food I’m going to make? Attempt to cut all the recipes in half, and have a bunch of half full packages of ingredients laying around? What a hassle, all that is. Plus, I spent a lot more on groceries for two full meals, than it would cost me to just go down to the local pub and grab a burger and fries 4 days in a row. So.. how is that any cheaper? I guess its going to be Ramen Noodles for me.

6 Comments

TrabbaJuly 24th, 2006 at 12:55

It’s only cheaper if you eat left-overs or keep cooking the same thing. Otherwise it really is cheaper to eat out every mean if you are alone. In Prague it is cheaper to eat out no matter what. You just can’t buy a steak and dumplings for a dollar in the store.

Jean PierreJuly 25th, 2006 at 02:48

I try to buy “single household” portions most of the time that are quite common in german supermarkets (although we are married, my wife and I have to live [work-related] on different cities and we’re not travelling those 450 miles every evening to eat together). Unfortunately the bigger portions often have the same price or are even cheaper.

It might be much more difficult to find smaller portions in the US — well, we don’t have serving sizes like “2 gallons” of orange juice here in Germany 😉

So I try to buy (e.g.) 500 grams of ground meat, put one half in the freezer for later usage and take the other half to make some burgers or lasagna.

As I don’t like left-overs very much (especially eating pasta or lettuce three days in a row…) I also often end up eating not at home. Sometimes I go to the canteen at my work place or at university or visit one of Berlin’s 5 million Döner Kebap stores 😉
The prices are quite moderate (about 2 euros for a large kebap with bread) and you can combine your Döner with everything: Döner with kraut salad, spicy as hell, as pizza topping, with french fries, cheesy, …

jabbaJuly 25th, 2006 at 06:06

Yeah, I think if I should be living in Germany while I’m single. Obviously if there were any Döner stands on this side of the ‘big pond’, I would eat nothing else. But seriously, I enjoy the small supermarket portions available in Germany, and it is nearly impossible to find here. Here, bigger is better, and more is better, etc. And I think it is cheaper for me to buy enough food for a family of four and throw most of it away, rather than buy single portions.

KarenJuly 29th, 2006 at 01:39

OK, I think you should just break down and buy a microwave, or microwave oven if that suits you better. There was that one time when that pizza went to waste… I don’t know. You see, I have no problems with the extra ingredients laying around. So I guess I don’t see either side of your story. 😉 You and I have had this conversation before. You’ll figure something out… you’re pretty smart. :)

FredAugust 5th, 2006 at 17:54

But only get a microwave oven if it is compatible with pop-corn. You know, the one we got here just doesn’t pop it right — quite frankly defeating the whole purpose of having such an appliance in the first place. 😉

KarenAugust 6th, 2006 at 20:04

Fred, popcorn doesn’t just take a microwave. How about a popcorn popper? I still stand on my issue. :)

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