I need to make something clear. This is not a post aimed at those with children who have misty eyed ideals of teaching their child to cook and enjoy seasonal produce…this is how to make food shopping fun for the adults who have little time and even less patience. Many of us have busy work and social lives, so food shopping comes fairly low down on the list of priorities in our spare time. It is often seen as a tiresome necessity – but I think I have found some ways to make it a fun part of your week. Try one of the below out next time you go – guaranteed to make something more of the experience than drudgery and boredom.
1. Zombie Attack
This is a Pedro invention to keep me from spending hours in the supermarket. After a certain amount of time down an aisle (you can set your own time limit – ours seems to be when Pedro gets bored while I’m trying to compare two products for price) you have to pretend Zombies are coming and run out of the aisle never to return. This is absolutely terrifying – particularly if, like me, you are ridiculously scared of them. Pedro soon abandoned this when he realised that with plenty of time to compare different products we would usually end up with the best possible value – and it takes a stupidly long time for me to get my head round cost per kg. When it comes to a toss up between budgeting and running for your life from a Zombie apocalypse (Pedro growling like a Walker), there is no competition.
2. Supermarket Sweep.
I haven’t done this one yet, but desperately want to! It does involve some planning ahead, but I reckon the result is worth it. You both need a copy of your shopping list, then take a trolley each and dash round the supermarket collecting everything as quickly as possible. The winner is the one who gets to the check out first with all the items – loser has to pay for that week’s shopping…and to get a bit of a head start you could have a basic knowledge of the layout of the aisles in order to reduce your time! (Ok, this one is a little bit sad, but everyone loves pushing a trolley really fast down an aisle).
3. Embarrassing your Shopping Partner
I apparantly do this without even realising – unbelievable I know! The trick here is not to be easily embarrassed or likely to feel any sort of shame or inhibition. I’ve won this game by yelling ‘Arrrrrrrrrrrrriba’ at the checkout when buying food for a Mexican feast, causing all shoppers to stop and stare for an awkward few seconds and Pedro to hide behind the trolley. I would also recommend talking loudly to yourself, or making up a song about different ingredients eg ‘Chipotle Paste, Chipotle Paste, it’s such a waste when I can’t find Chipotle Paste’ and so on. (As if I buy chipotle paste! Look at me pretending to be all posh!) You could also try doing impressions of different food. I do rather good ones of boil in the bag rice, and croissants.
I do find that Pedro and I rather enjoy our weekly food shop. It should be an onerous chore, potentially wrought with hissed arguments over the cost of luxury fruit and flavours of Soreen. The truth? I make a list of the meals we will eat that week, then make a shopping list, roughly in aisle order, and we go round together being very silly and no doubt highly irritating to everyone around us.
How are you going to try livening up your food shop?