Why Is Everything So Big?

I spent part of today cleaning out the refrigerator. That was a gruesome job. Every time I throw out what was once perfectly good food I flip back to the day when all I had in my house was a pound of cheese and two pounds of soda crackers until the next payday two weeks away. But that’s another story for another day about the kindness of friends.

As I was throwing out the jar of spaghetti sauce, I kept thinking about the small jars I used to be able to find in stores. I keep looking for them, but they are nowhere to be found. I got to thinking, “Where have all the small cans gone?” I can understand someone with a normal-sized family using a large jar of spaghetti sauce. I can understand the regular-sized can of corn being used for a family dinner. I can even see going to the large discount stores and buying the 24-count packages of pork chops and the double sized cans of juice. But what about those of us who live (and cook) alone?

Last week I got hungry for a roast. I got the smallest one I could find: one and a half pounds. After three meals, I still had enough for two more. I just couldn’t face another meal, so into the freezer it went, along with the three servings of chili, the four servings of enchilada casserole, and four of beerocks (German hamburgers) I made last August. But they just don’t taste the same once they have been frozen. The tortillas in the casserole get soggy, not to mention what happens to the potatoes I had with the roast.

But it’s the cans of vegetables that get me the most. Friends keep telling me to make one serving and put the rest in the refrigerator for the next day’s meal. Well, that’s fine for the moderately sized cans of niblets corn, but it doesn’t work for the garbanzo beans I want for a salad. By the time I get finished with those, I don’t want to see another chick pea for months.

Veggies for salads also get me. By the time I get the bag of lettuce, a head of cauliflower, a couple of heads of broccoli, a small bag of carrots, a box of mushrooms, and a cucumber, I have so many fresh veggies that I know will be thrown out, all for a couple of meals. I have come up with a solution for this one. I go to the fresh salad bar at the grocery store. True, it’s $6.95 a pound, but by the time I get everything thrown out, I have wasted that much.

So, where have all the small cans gone? What happened to the small can of green beans that was just the right size for one person for one meal? Where is the small jar of spaghetti sauce? All I can find on the shelves is the super-sized ones. And don’t get me started on bread. It seems the loaves have got larger.

I kept getting told I need to eat more balanced meals. How am I going to do that when everything is so large? If you have a family of 6, go ahead and get the super-sized box of cereal. The small one gets stale even sealed up.

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