Friday, September 9, 2011

Introducing the 50-cent lemon

The rind of a lemon is exceptionally bitter, w...Image via Wikipedia

My wife called from the ShopRite in Englewood, where she was picking up an Ace bandage and a painkiller for our son, who saw a doctor for his sprained foot. Did I need anything?

I also saw a doctor in Englewood on Thursday, and picked up 4.5 pounds of fresh king whiting at H Mart for a fried-fish dinner ($3.99 a pound). But we had run out of lemons, so I asked her to pick one up.

When she got home, I looked at the receipt and was shocked to see a single lemon cost 50 cents.

We usually buy them at Costco Wholesale in Hackensack, and today, I went there to pick up photos and get more lemons.

I bought a 5-pound bag of lemons from Chile for $6.79. That works out to about 57 cents for each of the dozen lemons in the net bag, although these are almost twice the size of the ShopRite lemon.

When did lemons get so expensive? 

H Mart credit

In an earlier post, I described how I returned a stainless-steel pot that started to rust to the H Mart in Little Ferry and how getting a $19.99 credit wasn't easy.

But I made sure to ask whether I could use the credit at other H Mart stores, including the ones in Englewood and Fort Lee. I was told I could.

I put the credit slip in my wallet and wanted to use it in the Englewood store on Thursday, when I bought the whole whiting, a 20-package box of spicy Shin Ramyun, green-leaf lettuce, a freshly made seaweed-rice-vegetable roll, white peaches and Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce. 

My total was $46.32. The cashier accepted a few H Mart coupons, but wouldn't take the credit slip, saying it wasn't good at that store.

She got on the phone, and another woman came over, but she said I couldn't use the slip, either. I protested, and said I was told it was good at any H Mart.

Finally, she called over another employee and he OK'd it.

There must be a lot of bureaucracy in Korea.

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  1. The produce at the grocery store chains usually have some ridiculous prices attached. You can usually find a decent price or two at Shoprite. Both Pathmark and Stop & Shop really have some over the top prices on produce unless they have something on sale. I once was preparing Syrian style kefta kebab the night before Christmas eve and needed a medium sized red bell pepper and went to the Stop & Shop by home and ended up paying nearly $2 for a single pepper.

  2. What rock have you been living under for the last five years? The price of lemons shot up a few years ago and never came down. And there's nothing the government can do about it because they already passed a lemon law, but it's for cars. Which brings me to the next question: When's the last time you bought a potato?

  3. And @Shakuey, you could have gotten a green bell pepper, grown in the USA rather than Holland, for a third of that price, even on the night before Christmas. Then you could roll it in aleppo pepper, which is red, and your guests wouldn't have known the difference. As long as you kept several gallons of water on the table.

  4. The one on Rock Road.

    And several years ago, extra-virgin olive oil shot up, too, without explanation.

    As for potatoes, my wife usually buys them.

  5. Aaron, Aleppo Pepper was the best cure for potty mouth growing up as a child in my family.


Please try to stay on topic.