Unemployed Gourmand

Fresh and Direct in Just 4 Minutes

When you just can't bear the grocery store anymore
Oct 7, 2011 1:01 pm
Fresh Direct Truck
Photo: arvindgrover on Flickr

As readers of this column (hi, Mom) are well aware, I’m a guy who loves food, hates spending money, has no idea how to cook, and tends to be more than a little lazy. All of which not only makes me a great date, but also keeps me on high alert for cheap, easy grub that doesn’t make me feel terrible about myself after (Dollar Menu, I’m talking to you). I’m no health...

A Cheap Eater in Paradise

Go native: Vacation eating doesn't have to be pricy
Sep 30, 2011 1:01 pm

I write this from my cubicle.

Yesterday, I woke up to the gentle sounds of breakfast being set up on my balcony. You know, the one overlooking the Caribbean Sea. Today, I woke up to the soothing notes of my upstairs neighbor stomping around. You know, the one who gives electric guitar lessons six times a week directly above my bedroom. In other words, I’ve...

Eat Like An Intern

Ashley’s Quick & Easy Gringo Chili
Sep 23, 2011 2:01 pm
Intern kitchen

With the recent temperature dip in the East and the related depletion of my summertime energy levels, I’ve found myself spending a lot of time on the couch, dying for something to get excited about. Or, in lieu of that, a great steaming bowl of something awesome to eat, requiring minimal effort and minimal investment, of course. As I so often do in times of need,...

Frugal Vs. Cheap Eating

How to not look cheap while saving money on food
Sep 16, 2011 1:01 pm
Photo: cafemama on Flickr

How Not To Look Cheap

As much as I like being cheap, I don’t like looking cheap. When you love food but hate spending money, you have to be vigilant in order to keep up appearances. Eating cheap is a lot like being a superhero, except without the powers, adulation and damsels in distress. OK, it’s not much like being a superhero at...

What Would You Eat With Your Last $10?

Desperate times call for desperate eating
Sep 9, 2011 1:01 pm
Illustration: Nora Murphy

I was reading something online the other day about the last meals selected by prisoners on death row. There were sad little photos showing institutionally prepared versions of down home favorites, like fried chicken and biscuits on a forlorn plastic tray.

The Layoff Diet

Out of a job? Get creative, eat your way through it
Sep 3, 2011 12:01 pm
Illustration: Nora Murphy

Here at the ad agency office where I work, rumors of a shakeup have been swirling for much of the summer, which tends to put a crimp in one’s appetite. As someone who routinely spends 75% of their income dining out (hence my lack of retirement savings), the very real possibility of soon finding myself just another out-of-work freelancer has forced me to reconsider...

Trying to define the cheap in Cheap Eats

Can 5 bucks buy you a minimal yet satisfying meal?
Aug 26, 2011 1:01 pm
Illustration: Nora Murphy

Cheap eats get a lot of press, but how do you define cheap? It’s incredibly subjective, dependent upon what you make, where you live, what your tastes are, whether your trust fund is large or very large or nonexistent. What’s more, the definition of cheap fluctuates not only from person to person, but also from purchase to purchase. I’ve been known to visit four...

When I Was Poor Vol. 2

Chef Jason Alley on dressing up ramen and more
Aug 19, 2011 2:01 pm
Jason Alley

In this installment of  “When I Was Poor,” Chef Jason Alley of Comfort restaurant in Richmond, VA, discusses growing up broke, dressing up ramen, and the finer points of good old-fashioned hangover food. Alley, who first tried cooking when he was just 4 years old, has manned the stoves at...


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