Like everyone I am trying to stretch my dollars in these hard times. I have become skilled at watching for deals and places to buy food for less. Here’s one example.
Sweet potatoes and yams are something I really enjoy. They can be expensive at the co-ops, where organic food is easy to find. Their quality is good as is the flavor. I bought a bag of them at Aldi along with a honey goat cheese log, mozzarella cheese, dried mixed fruits, and dried apricots for a total of 10 dollars. (Yes, $10!)
A recent Internet search on different food outlets tells a story. My main concern is where does all the food come from that Aldi sells?
Aldi is a no frills food-company originating in Germany. I used to shop there when I lived in the Netherlands. I once purchased an Italian olive oil at Aldi, that I still recall to this day because it had the most beautiful taste and fragrance.
It took sometime to track down the information. After reading about the German operation – Aldi Sud (South) and Aldi Nord (North) – divided up the business in Germany, to their markets in Europe, Australia and the US. I looked further for some opinions about the stores. There was some Internet traffic about Aldi employees suing in the US. People who were hired as managers but who spent most of their time at the cash register overworked and underpaid. (Distressing circumstances and something to consider.)
The most surprising information was that Aldi owns Trader Joe’s. There was a message board from 2008 where people raved about Trader Joe’s and one consumer berated Aldi – never knowing they are one and the same company. Trader Joes carries organic foods and more items that appeal to the cost conscious and foodie tastes. (I bought Almond Meal at TJs this past week for $3.99, for an upcoming recipe challenge – Apple Pie Normandy from Sabina Kookt!. Try to find it for that price anywhere.)
As it turns out the food at Aldi and by logical reasoning that would include Trader Joe’s, unless otherwise labeled, is sourced from US companies. Here’s the result of the sweet potato pie recipe.
Sweet Potato Pie Recipe
1 (1 pound) sweet potato or 2 cups
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 cup white sugar
1/2 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 (9 inch) unbaked piecrust
Boil sweet potato whole in skin for 40 to 50 minutes, or until done. Run cold water over the sweet potato, and remove the skin.
Break apart sweet potato in a bowl. Add butter, and mix well with mixer. Stir in sugar, milk, eggs, nutmeg, cinnamon and vanilla. Beat on medium speed until mixture is smooth. Pour filling into an unbaked piecrust.
Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 55 to 60 minutes, or until knife inserted in center comes out clean. Pie will puff up like a souffle, and then will sink down as it cools.