Cheap Eats at Bloglander

Your guide to eating cheap including tips, recipes and techniques

Archives for Free Food


11/16/10 | JITB 2 Free Tacos


[ Currently Eating: Quixotic Quinoa ]

As a measure of how out of touch this blog is, I didn’t even know about the Jack in the Box two free tacos until just a few days ago. And I had to find out about it the same way that a normal shmuck would – through one of their TV commercials.

After 2:00 pm today, on Tuesday November 16, 2010 you can get two free tacos at Jack in the Box.

Back in “The Day” (bloggin circa 2005), fast food companies like Jack in the Box were beating a path to my email inbox. They would’ve probably sent me a notice about the free tacos 2 months ago. It was all I could do to keep up with the amount of submissions, press, free food and beg letters coming in.

I am SO glad that’s over with.

Even spammers have left, seeking fresh blogging morsels elsewhere. I only got 28 fake comments last week, all saying “nice job, how come your blog doesn’t work on the new google browser.”

Though I found out about it awhile ago, I just decided to post it the DAY of, like 20 minutes before it’s about to go into effect. Because, I like to procrastinate. And you probably shouldn’t be eating too many JITB tacos. I’ve sworn off them myself.

But once every 3 months or so, in a moment of great hangry weakness, I will schlep my way through the drive through and stun my stomach with Grade QuestionMark ground beef mishmash ladled into oil-drenched corn shells, sprinkled with warm shreds of lettuce.

I just can’t help myself.


[ Currently Eating: Portagee Sausage ]

Hello. Howzit.

To be honest – and when am I not honest – I’ve had a hard time reverting back to non-Hawaiian-vacation mode. Sitting on a beach in a tropical paradise will do that to you.

To be completely honest – I was trying to think of what kind of post would take the least amount of effort and brainpower. I’m still on Hawaii-time and the old bastard brain is not really functionallying correctly.

To be completely, absolutely honest – I would like to end this post right now and run back to the islands. I would set up a shack selling Cheap Eats of Hawaii.

To tell you the absolute, unequivocal, daring, honest truthfully truth – I have run out of ideas. What, you no like?

So here are some words and pictures of fish from Hawaii, and their resulting crispification (this is probably not a word, but I honestly challenge you to refrain from googling it with your itchy trigger finger).

I’ve been a fisherman since birth, and come from a long line of ancient mariner fisherpeoples (Gramps was a well-known handline angler in Hawaii – picture Hemingway’s Old Farking Man and Da Sea). So when I say that catching your own fish for food qualifies as Cheap Eats material, you should believe me.

Honestly, would I tell one lie? Cherry trees, I goin chop ‘em.

There is a large, large issue with catching your own fish – and that is, in most states you’ll need an (expensive) license to fish. Then there are all sorts of boring regulations and limits and size requirements to follow. I’m not even going to tell you how much the California DFG regulation book weighs. Holy crap, I can’t believe the amount of restrictions there are.

And trust me, DO NOT take above the limit and please follow all the farking regulations. Speaking from experience, would you like to know how much the fine is for not having a license or taking more than your limit?

Let me tell you, it is quite a bit more than a speeding ticket.

But in Hawaii – there is no license (no marine license, that is – I believe you need a freshwater license). The limits and regulations are nowhere near as restrictive as the mainland. (By the way, a lot of residents moonlight as commercial fisherman – you just need a $50 commercial license, and you’re ready to go. Sign me up.) And there are obvious “pollution” aspects from chemical factories here in Cali that don’t really exist in Hawaii (well, ciguatera was an issue for awhile.)

It’s a farking fisherman’s paradise. No bulai.

And it makes “subsistence fishing” very, very attractive. My uncle in Hawaii, who is a retired semi-famous chef (no, not Sam Bok Choy), actually says that nowadays, he’ll just go down to the beach in the morning and catch a few fish for dinner. I think a lot of people do that, or if not, damn they should.

Everything is expensive in Hawaii, especially if you’re a tourist. But if you live there, you can get by just catching your dinner and picking fruit.

Trust me, would I lie or exaggerate greatly to da max?

We actually went down to the beach twice to fish – once to try catch some hagi (triggerfish), and the other time it was at night for delicious upapalu (a type of cardinalfish). No luck on the hagis, but we did catch some moana (goatfish) shown in the photo at top.

But then, our nice neighbor brought over some menpachi (u’u, or soldierfish) that were leftover from his commercial fishing venture. Nice guy. Menpachi are a pretty popular fish around here.

Menpachi have a distinct smell, so you really gotta fry ‘em. No boil or steam the buggahs. Also, try watch the bones. But ho, they ono.

We fried em up outside the house fo’ prevent da kine stink. Ono, with light beer and smiles all around. Uncles and aunts, all talking story.

[Editor's Note: This post was brought to you by honesty and Hawaii. Much Mahalo-ness to you. I am sure that I've over-simpified fishing in Hawaii versus fishing in California. I'm sure there are other ramifications and hidden cost of living issues. I'm sure the grass is always da kine greener. However, I just want to say that if you gave me a choice, I'd choose fishing in Hawaii. One of my fondest memories is handlining uku with dad and grandpa from a small boat off the Kona coast. I don't even know if that's possible any more.]


[ Currently Eating: Oatmeal ]

True Lem - Cheap Eats at Bloglander

Dear readers,

I’m still not all there yet after a weekend of stomach problems, so you might see some lightness in the posting schedule for awhile on Cheap Eats. I would get into the actual quality and texture of the stool (not furniture), but I’m sure that this is TMI. I’m just hoping this is not a redux of the very bad intestinal ailment I had from a few years back that put me out for several months.

Anyhow, here is another freebee for you to pre-occupy your email address with.

You can get some free samples of True Lemon, True Lime or True Orange. I’ve never tried this stuff, but apparently it’s not the kool-aid mix that I thought it was. It’s supposed to be “100% natural crystalized citrus” that you can use in cooking, drinks, etc. Zero calories, zero carbs, but in reality is that so hard to believe with powder?

I hear some people also mainline the stuff straight into their mouth. Yum. I think those people must have a stronger stomach than I do.

Free True Lemon


[ Currently Eating: Coffee ]

Free Country Potatoes - Cheap Eats at BloglanderI’ve occasionally been asked why a lot of the food news and reviews I feature are “West-coast” oriented.

That would be because I live in California – home of the 42 billion dollar debt. Oh, and the Governator.

However. Just to show you I’m willling to give a shout out to companies east of the Rockies, I’d like to tell you about the Free Country Potatoes Day at Hardees tomorrow (Friday February 20, 2009). Yep, no purchase necessary apparently. You just walk in and they give you a free order of country potatoes.

Yes, I know we do have their sister chain Carl’s Junior in my neck of the woods. However, they aren’t serving up the free goods as far as I know. But I would, in fact, be willing to make a road trip to visit Hardees for the free potatoes. I’ve been known to do crageee things like that. (If eating potted meat from the dollar store doesn’t qualify as crageee, I don’t know what does.)

However, it appears that the nearest Hardees is 1063 miles away. In Casper, Wyoming, to be exact. I googlemapped it, and it’s a bit of a far drive even for crageee ol’ me. About 16 hours 27 minutes if I drove it straight.

So, I’m going to sit this one out. But I’d like to hear how the free potato event goes if you happen to have a Hardees near you.


[ Currently Eating: Turkey Burger ]

Grand Slamming It - Cheap Eats at Bloglander

Hey, brah. I not going lie to you.

I watched parts of the Stuporbowl. Yes, that testicularosterone fest with guys grabbing the other team’s ball(s) that happens every January or February. Great excuse to go to the beach, by the way. But yeah – I watched it for the commercials.

And when the commercial for Denny’s came on about the Free Grand Slam Breakfast, hells bells did I hightail it over to the site to see if it was true. Of course the site had crashed – I guess too many frantic senior citizens were online.

I did get on eventually. And it’s fo real, brah. 2 Eggs, 2 Pancakes, 2 Bacon Strips and 2 Sausage Links. For everyone in America. If you’d like to watch the commercial, here you go.

The terms ring thusly: Dine in only. Offer limited to Tuesday 2/3/09 6am to 2pm at participating Denny’s Restaurants while supplies last. Restrictions apply.

As you know, I’ve been supersickboy the past 2 weeks. I can’t hear anything in my ears and this congestion makes Nyquil a necessity. Bubbly Bronchial Buggin’. So, I might not make it out tomorrow for breakfast – I guess we’ll see.

Free Breakfast at Dennys

Update 6:30pm 02/03/09 – Well, the turnout was huge as expected. I gotta say I give them credit for doing this type of free thing in a time when the Eeekconomy is down. News coverage of the free breakfast here.


[ Currently Eating: Theraflu ]

DP - Cheap Eats at Bloglander

I’m sorry folks, still under the weather over here. So I’m just going to post more free food stuff found around the web. I caught this one over on Iateapie – thank God I finally figured out how to setup rss feeds in Thunderbird so I don’t have to visit 86 different blogs every day.

Anyhow, it seems like Dr. Pepper didn’t get enough love from giving away free soda with Guns and Roses. So, they’re going to give away 2 million more bottles of free soda. Diet soda, that is. Yuck, count me out. I can’t stand it. But if you’re into it, head on over from now until the end of March. You can get either a free 20 oz or a 2 liter bottle – weird, why the metric choice?

Of course, you have to REGISTER to get the free soda. Yada, yadda, yaddda, give away first born son. And so on.

And now, back to bed for me. See you in the springtime. Potweet.

Visit: FreeDietDrPepper.com


[ Currently Eating: Soft foods ]

One doughnut from Krispy Kreme – available to everyone. Yep. Cashing in on various historical events is great business in case you haven’t noticed. On this day, January 20th, 2009, a rather historic day I think you’ll have to admit no matter what side of the political fence you’re on (Cheap Eats HQ tries not back any political party publicly), you can get one free doughnut of your choice. No purchase is necessary, but how could you not buy more doughnuts. How?

Like I’ve said before, let’s stimulate the economy with doughnuts, baby.

Krispy Kreme thanks you for your support. And I do not work for Krispy Kreme. Get that through the noggin, trolls.

[Editor's Note: You may notice this year an increase in shorter "cheap eats news reporting" posts rather than full reviews. I've decided to try and focus on both for now, though I know that people like the reviews, especially those of the dollar store variety. But I'll need to work out a bit to get in shape for all the canned foods I need to consume. Here's to many sets of 200 sit-ups and 5 mile jogs in the new year...]




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