Low price menus: plan better to save time and money

To help our readers cope with the effects of rising food prices, among other things, our new contributor Miriam Gendron, creator of the site Just foodoffers a cheap menu every week of the week’s best grocery deals.

That’s it, autumn has settled in and I wanted to offer you a colorful menu to beat the gray a bit! This week, if you’re not into semi-lean mince (which often “melts” when cooked), is a good time to stock up! Lean ground beef at $3.44/lb and extra lean ground pork at $2.44/lb at Metro, and lean ground beef at $3.49/lb at IGA are worth the detour!

On the meat side, pork loin is at its best price of the year at $1.75/lb at Metro this week. The tenderloin is usually tender and lean and extremely flexible and economical: it can be cut into chops, cubes, strips and even very thinly to make fondue meat. This will keep very well in the freezer afterwards.

Happy eating… and bon appetit!



  • Servings: 4
  • Preparation: 10 min
  • Cooking: 15 min


3 chicken breasts, cut into strips (about 120g per breast)

1 C. tablespoons chili or Mexican seasoning

1 C. smoked paprika

salt and pepper to taste

2 tbsp. Rapeseed oil

1 red pepper, cut into strips

1 cup mushrooms, sliced

1 red onion, cut into strips

4 whole wheat tortillas

Toppings (optional)

Homemade or store-bought guacamole

Grated cheddar cheese

1 diced cucumber


Lime wedges


  • In a bowl, mix the chicken with the chili seasoning and paprika. Pepper and add a pinch of salt.
  • Pour over 1 tbsp. oil in a nonstick skillet and cook the chicken for 5 to 7 minutes over medium-high heat or until the strips are golden brown.
  • Remove the chicken and set aside in a bowl.
  • Add the remaining oil and sauté the peppers, mushrooms, and onions over medium-high heat for 5 to 7 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender and lightly browned.
  • Add the cooked chicken, then stir.
  • Assemble fajitas by arranging the chicken, vegetables and toppings on the tortilla before rolling it into a cigar.


Cook more chicken as you will need 3 cups (shredded) for the soup recipe.



  • Servings: 4
  • Preparation: 30 min
  • Cooking: 25 min


Pork meatballs

1 lb ground pork

3 green onions, finely chopped

2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped

1 stick of lemongrass, finely chopped

2 tbsp. fish sauce

1 C. maple syrup

Feeding bowls

1 package of rice noodles (250 g.)

1 carrot, finely julienned

2 Lebanese cucumbers, cut into thin strips

8 snow peas, blanched and cut into fine julienne strips

8 leaves of Boston lettuce

1 cup fresh mint leaves

1 cup fresh cilantro leaves

roasted peanuts, chopped

fresh Thai chili, deseeded and finely chopped (optional)


Vietnamese sauce

1/3 cup of water

3 tbsp. lime juice

2 tbsp. fish sauce

2 tbsp. sugar

1 clove of garlic, finely chopped

1⁄2 tsp. teaspoon fresh Thai chili pepper, cleaned and finely chopped



  • In a large bowl, mix well the pork, green onions, garlic, lemongrass, fish sauce and maple syrup. Pepper. With wet hands, shape the mixture into meatballs, about 2 tbsp. on time. Place the meatballs on a lightly oiled baking sheet.
  • Bake in a preheated 425°F oven for 20 to 25 minutes or until meatballs are no longer pink inside.


  • Meanwhile, cook the noodles according to package directions. Drain the noodles, rinse under cold water and drain again.
  • While the noodles are cooking, in a small bowl, combine the water, lime juice, fish sauce, sugar, garlic, and Thai chili for the sauce. Stir until the sugar dissolves.
  • Divide the noodles and meatballs into four bowls. Garnish with carrot, cucumbers, snow peas, lettuce, mint and cilantro. Drizzle with Vietnamese sauce. Sprinkle with peanuts and chili, if desired.


For a group dinner, the meatballs could be shaped the day before. Double them, they will also be used for wrappers lettuce for lunch.



  • Servings: 4
  • Preparation: 15 min
  • Cooking: 5 min


2 tbsp. fresh ginger, grated

1 C. turmeric

1 clove of garlic, finely chopped

4 steaks of cod or other white fish (total about 625 g)

2 tbsp. tablespoon fresh dill, chopped

Cucumber salad with sesame

2 tbsp. olive oil

1 C. apple cider vinegar

2 tbsp. soy sauce

2 cups watercress

1 English cucumber, thinly sliced

1⁄4 red onion, finely chopped

1 C. tablespoon toasted sesame seeds



  • In a small bowl, mix the ginger, turmeric, garlic and 1 tbsp. (15 ml) vegetable oil. Brush the fish fillets with the mixture on each side. Salt and pepper.
  • In another bowl, mix the olive oil, apple cider vinegar and soy sauce for the salad. Add the watercress, cucumber, red onion and toasted sesame seeds. Mix well to coat the ingredients. Pepper.
  • In a large pan, heat 2 tbsp. vegetable oil over medium-high heat. Add the fish steaks and cook for 2 minutes. Using a large spatula, carefully flip the fish and continue to cook for 2 to 3 minutes or until the flesh of the fish flakes easily with a fork. Sprinkle with dill before serving. Serve with sesame cucumber salad.


Stefano Faita, Gesture

  • Servings: 4 to 6
  • Preparation: 15 min
  • Cooking: 30 min


3 tbsp. butter

2 tbsp. tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil

1 finely chopped onion

2 carrots, diced

2 stalks of celery, diced

400g extra firm or firm tofu

600 ml marinara sauce

1 C. chili flakes (or to taste)

salt and pepper to taste

3 tbsp. 35% cream

1 handful fresh Italian parsley, chopped

454 g cooked fettuccine pasta

Freshly grated parmesan cheese (to taste)


  • In a medium saucepan, heat the butter and olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the onions. When the onion becomes translucent, add the carrots and celery. Continue cooking (4 to 5 minutes).
  • Dry the tofu with a paper towel and crumble it into the sauce. Cook until vegetables are tender (5 minutes).
  • Add marinara sauce and chili flakes, then season with salt and pepper. Bring the sauce to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer (about 10 minutes).
  • Add the cream and cook (another 5 minutes). Stir in the chopped fresh parsley.
  • Toss the pasta with the sauce and serve with freshly grated parmesan cheese.



  • Servings: 6
  • Preparation: 15 min
  • Cooking: 10 min


3 cups cooked and shredded chicken

1 can of white beans (540 ml), rinsed and drained

1 bottle salsa verde (455 ml)

1 C. Cumin

1⁄2 tsp. smoked red pepper

6 cups reduced-salt chicken broth

1 diced avocado

crushed corn chips (optional)

chopped fresh cilantro (optional)


  • In a large pot, mix the chicken, beans, Mexican sauce, cumin, and paprika to coat the ingredients well. Pour in the broth and let it boil. Reduce the heat and cook for 5 minutes or until the soup is heated through.
  • Ladle hot soup into bowls. Garnish with avocado. Sprinkle with tortilla chips and cilantro, if desired.



  • Servings: 4
  • Preparation: 15 min
  • Cooking: 15 min


1 lb lean ground pork

4 green onions chopped

4 cloves of garlic, finely chopped

2 tbsp. a tablespoon of fresh ginger, finely chopped

1 C. fish sauce

1 C. vegetable oil

2 tbsp. tablespoons of soy sauce with a reduced salt content

1 C. hoisin sauce

1 C. maple syrup

8 leaves of Boston lettuce

1 carrot, finely julienned

sesame seeds (optional)

salt and pepper


  • In a large bowl, mix the ground pork, scallions, garlic, ginger, and fish sauce until well combined. Salt and pepper. With wet hands, shape the mixture into small balls, about 2 tbsp. on time. Cool for 10 minutes.
  • In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium heat. Add meatballs and cook, turning occasionally, 12 minutes or until browned and no longer pink on the inside. Add the soy sauce, hoisin sauce and maple syrup and toss to coat the meatballs.
  • Arrange lettuce leaves on plates, overlapping 2 leaves per plate. Spread the meatballs over the lettuce leaves. Garnish with the carrot and sprinkle with sesame seeds if desired.


This is where I suggest you use the meatball supplement. It’s also perfect for an empty fridge: use up your leftover vegetables by adding them as a side dish!



  • Servings: 15
  • Preparation: 25 min
  • Cooking: 18 min


2 cups of flour

1 C. baking powder

1 C. baking soda

1⁄4 tsp. salt

1⁄2 cup butter, softened

1⁄2 cup sugar

2 eggs

1 C. vanilla

2 tbsp. lemon juice

1 cup light sour cream

1⁄2 cup dark chocolate chips

3⁄4 cup unsweetened coconut flakes, toasted, coarsely shredded

1 1⁄2 cup raspberries

1 C. tablespoon white granulated sugar (optional)


  • In a bowl, mix the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. I’m booking.
  • In a large bowl with an electric mixer, beat the butter until creamy. Add the sugar and beat for about 2 minutes or until the mixture is light and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in the vanilla and lemon juice. Add the reserved dry ingredients in two batches, alternating with the sour cream. Add the chocolate and coconut and mix gently with a wooden spoon. Gently stir in the raspberries. Divide the batter into paper-lined or greased muffin tins. Sprinkle with sugar if desired.
  • Bake in a preheated 375°F oven for 18 to 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the muffins comes out clean. Place the molds on a wire rack and let cool for 5 minutes. Remove the muffins from the tins and let cool completely on a wire rack.

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