Inside the Fridge is back and better than ever!

After a brief hiatus, we’re resuming our popular feature with Meme Inge who blogs over at Living Well Kitchen. I met Meme earlier this fall at our Blog Brulee event and was immediately drawn to her megawatt smile and relaxed personality. Keep reading to find out about why an unplugged mini food processor caused her tears and about her upcoming project with her Grandma Nan. I think you’ll like her, too! 

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Meme lives (and plays) in New Orleans. She works as a registered dietitian nutritionist and is also a manager and instructor at barre3 New Orleans. Meme whips up simple and delicious recipes for her readers (check out her Avocado Deviled Eggs) and has compiled them in Ecookbooks that are available on her website. Follow Meme on Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook and Twitter. 

Do you love food shopping or dread it? Why?

MI: I. Love. It! I am a pro at grocery shopping.

What is the single most important thing on your mind when you are shopping for food?

MI: Produce!! How am I going to get the maximum amount of veggies {and fruit} in my food?! — that’s my main focus

What is your weekly food budget? (If comfortable answering. If not, no worries)

MI: I spend about $25 to $50 per week on groceries. It depends on how much and what I am making that week for my blog, but I am a grocery budgeting wizard and I work those weekly circulars like it’s my job

How do you plan your weekly meals? Create a spreadsheet or fly by the seat of your pants?

MI: I want to say that I plan my meals, but the grocery store is often where I find inspiration for what I will be cooking. I typically go to the store with an idea in mind, but decide on what I will be cooking that week when I’m there.

I buy the basics in bulk to save money, so if I can’t make it to the store one week, I’ll still be safe. I always have cheese, frozen fruit and veggies, yogurt, canned tuna or salmon, oats, nuts & seeds, and eggs in my fridge/pantry.

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What is the most coveted food in the fridge right now for each member of the household? Why?

MI: I am a big fan of bacon. It reminds me of childhood, and it’s my favorite food. Yes, I’m a dietitian and yes I eat bacon. I always have some in my freezer.

That and frozen veggies + yogurt. I look forward to my post-workout smoothie everyday, no matter how cold it gets outside.

Do you believe in leftovers? 

MI: Yes! Clearly! That’s basically all that is in my fridge right now. Leftovers are one of my favorite parts of writing a food blog. I love love love having leftovers! I live off leftovers!

What cooking utensil/piece of equipment/appliance do you live for?

MI: This is tough! I started crying the day I thought my mini food processor was broken {I had forgotten to plug it in}, but I couldn’t live without my Le Creuset Dutch oven. And when it gets cold outside, I always use my immersion blender for soups. I use my Ninja blender everyday, too. Ok, so I am a glutton for kitchen accessories. My counter-top is never fully cleared off because I’m always using something. Oh and a good knife is mandatory.

What food/s are important when recalling food memories?

MI: Bacon makes me happy and reminds me of being a kid {we always had it on weekend mornings}.

Strawberries are also one of my favorites because I always ate them growing up. My grandmother always made sure to have them whenever I came to visit {and she still does}!

Seafood is another big one because I grew up right by Mobile Bay which basically gave us unlimited access to great seafood — shrimp, crab, fish, oysters, you name it!

How have your cooking/shopping habits changed over the last 10 years?

MI: I used to focus more on quantity, as in “how much can I have?” and look at the numbers {calories, carbs, etc.}

Now I focus more on quality. Local foods. High quality choices that give you the most nutrition bang for your buck. I like to nourish my body with healthy choices instead of focusing on numbers and “low” something or artificially made foods.

 

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If one person could cook for you tonight, who would it be ?

MI: My grandmother, Nan. And I would request her pan-fried fish with a side salad {made by my aunt} and corn on the cob. Or maybe I’d want her beef tenderloin and some roasted potatoes with a side salad. This is a really tough call here.

What words of wisdom or advice do you have for other folks who are doing their best every day to fill the fridge?

MI: Love your leftovers! Make extra food and save it for another day. Don’t overwhelm yourself with too many recipes. And take advantage of your freezer! My freezer is a little scary because it’s filled to the max but I know I will never run out of things to eat because I always keep leftover in it :)

What are you working on these days that you’d like to tell us about?

MI: I’m actually working on a cookbook with my grandmother Nan! It’s a long process but we are working to take her old recipes and make them a little more up to date – healthier {if possible} and accessible for the younger generation to make. I love entertaining and my grandmother is an entertaining artist. I want to put all her kitchen wisdom into one book and share it with everyone!

Thanks, Meme! 

 

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