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Lew Larason: Thoughts from an Epicure

Comparing prices yields surprising results


When I was in elementary school, I didn’t understand why we needed math. When I got older and became a woodworker, I understood. Now, I love math. We use it daily, especially those of us who shop for groceries when comparing prices, calculating the difference between comparable items, and in ways we don’t even think about.
Recently, while shopping, I had a little extra time and decided to check out something I had wondered about: the prices of the large, “family” size versus those of the “standard” smaller package. The supermarket I shop in has price tags with a small square in the lower left corner where the price per unit is shown. It could be ounce, each, pint or other measure.
In one instance, I was looking for the best buy of laundry detergent. In the past, I always got the large, 66-load size. This time, I looked at the smaller, 33-load size, then checked it against the large one. The smaller was twenty cents less per pint. I now buy that size.
Although we don’t eat cereal, I looked at some of the boxes to compare. I found the smaller sizes to be better buys with many. Always check and compare sizes, using simple arithmetic. Of course, items like “processed” and cleaned lettuce are more costly than buying loose heads and cleaning them yourself.
Also, since I shop nearly every day, I always try to buy meat or poultry that has been marked down. By shopping each day, I can buy the protein I’m going to cook that evening.

A tip: as I wrote recently, we love BLTs. I usually make them on sturdy but soft white bread. Patti suggested we try them on potato slider rolls. I didn’t think BLTS could be improved. However, the rolls make a big and flavorful difference.
That’s what we use now. Try them.
Enjoy and stay safe!
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