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do you buy "ends" (rejects)?

One supermarket routinely has packages of bacon ends... usually not the prettiest & NEVER even remotely lined up like regular packages... but seriously reduced in price. Occasionally will buy a package, chunk up, cook and end up with a LOT of REAL bacon bits and enough bacon grease to last me a LONG time.

Today, bought a package of cheese ends... thinking mac & cheese. Half the price of even store brand American cheese. Looks to be mostly AC but some Swiss and provolone in there, too. Much prefer this to that mystery yellow powder in the box of mac & cheese.

REALLY miss supermarket that always had discounted produce. NEVER anything squashed or gross... just maybe not "perfect" anymore?!? Bought a 5 lb bag of "organic" apples... a few had some very MINOR bumps/bruises. Made a messa apple sauce for very little $$. One time bought a BIG bag of baby artichokes. Not picture perfect, but ya toss about anything that's on the ouside anyway. Once bought a big bag of RIPE bananas... not soft/mushy... just totally yellow with the beginning of brown spots... which you WANT!?! Had read/seen/heard something about freezing them IN the peels. When they thaw... totally soft, squeeze out of peel like toothpaste and perfect for banana bread.

Do you buy things that others might just turn their noses up at?

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  1. I buy turkey and roast beef ends to feed my dogs when we are on the road and can't cook for them.
    I specifically look for brown bananas for baking

    1. The bakery @ Stop & Shop started putting out day old bakery items about a year ago. It's one of the busy freestanding racks in the store. Bread, cupcakes, whole cakes, pastries all marked $1.50 to$3.00 each. Fresh all. A great bargain for many.

      Bananas definately and root veggies for soup, stock, etc.

      But my favorite ends buy is flowers. If you like fresh flowers to brighten your home or desk ask the floral Mgr. when they deeply discount their supply. Great deals.

      1. Yep. I buy my perishables at a local store that prides itself on quality. The "discount" rack is full of fruits and veggies that need to be eaten NOW! Yum. Last week i bought about 4kg of really ripe bananas. They are in my freezer, waiting for banana bread and smoothies. My family is also a fan of salmon burgers. So I buy the trimmings from when they fillet the whole fish. Perfect, since I'm going to mince it anyway. I'll have to look for cheese ends; never thought of it!

        1. I can't resist meats with $2-3 dollar off stickers to cause immediate sale prior to expiration.
          Last week was $3 off $5.79 1lb pack of ground turkey. I cook it same day anyway, so its not going to go past expiration, but i still feel guilty doing it.

          2 Replies
          1. re: sbs401

            Why? I regularly shop the discount meat section and freeze what I don't use immediately. Now if I'm going to cook a rare steak or tuna steak, I don't do discounted meat.

            But for chili meat or ribs, aw heck yeah!!

            1. re: Crockett67

              Me too. I hit up the store extra early and happily stock up on roasts, steaks, pork chops, chicken parts, etc at 35% off. I freeze them and they taste delicious when I use them.

          2. The bacon ends are a great deal. I've never seen cheese or salmon ends. I get "reduced" (1/2 price) meat and fish all the time, and use it fast or freeze it. I can get some nice stuff that way. Two weeks ago I got 1-1/2 pounds (after removing it from the shells) of crab for $5.00. It wasn't old, but was smaller legs and the white sections (that have so much meat). I also get the flowers and veggies, if they look good. Got a ton of cheap basil recently and now have pesto in the freezer. I don't get the bakery stuff cuz it seems like it'd be stale by the time I finish it, but maybe I should try.

            1 Reply
            1. re: juster

              Bacon ends are definitely a great deal, as are prosciutto ends. Perfect when you want flavor but don't necessarily need bits of meat in a dish. Salmon ends are not as great... they are usually sliced haphazardly and sometimes contain pinbones, but they'll do fine if you chop them up and make your own salmon cream cheese or lox and eggs.