Monday, March 4, 2013

'Whole paycheck' is an exaggeration

Last week, fresh, wild-caught whole fish at Whole Foods Market in Paramus included porgy and Spanish mackerel for only $4.99 a pound and $5.99 a pound, respectively.

Editor's note: Today, I discuss Whole Foods Market's reputation for being expensive, enough Chinese takeout for a few meals and The Main Dish in Hackensack.

The fresh fish, organic produce, and naturally raised chicken and beef sold at Whole Foods Market are supposed to be so expensive, you'll spend your "whole paycheck" there, if you're not careful.

Nothing could be farther from the truth, as long as you don't rely on Whole Foods for all of your groceries, and shop for sale items and specials.

Last week, two wild-caught whole fish were only $4.99 a pound and $5.99 a pound, excellent buys given the quality of seafood at the Paramus Whole Foods.

Whole Foods also usually stocks frozen organic chicken feet, backs and necks for as little as $2.99 a pound. 

If you eat poultry, they are antibiotic-free, excellent for soup and far better than those mystery parts sold in most supermarkets.

We didn't feel like going out to dinner on Saturday night -- and couldn't agree on where to go, if we wanted to -- so we had food delivered from Zen Kitchen in Teaneck, including jumbo shrimp and vegetables with fresh garlic, and dried sauteed string beans, above (201-837-7322).

The next night, leftover string beans and brown rice were perfect side dishes for leftover wild-caught Canadian flounder in Mexican green salsa.
This morning, I had more Zen Kitchen vegetables with an organic egg and leftover whole-wheat spirals from a container I found in the back of the refrigerator. We order all of our dishes with fresh garlic to avoid the ubiquitous, sodium-laden brown sauce. 

The zen of takeout

The Chinese meal we had delivered on Saturday night from Zen Kitchen in Teaneck kept on giving at dinner the next night and breakfast this morning.

There may still be some shrimp and vegetables with fresh garlic left.

A large bowl of lentil soup at The Main Dish in Hackensack was $3.95.

Soup to nuts

Today, I stopped at The Main Dish, the restaurant that replaced Naturally Good on Hackensack's quiet Main Street.

The restaurant is open for breakfast and lunch, but closes at 3:30 and isn't open for dinner.

I had a nice, filling bowl of meatless lentil soup for $3.95.

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