Costco Shopping – February 14, 2020
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John
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10th Costco Shopping in 2020 – $40.69 today / $654.91 this year
Member Only Savings – $5 today / $130 this year

Happy Valentine’s Day. I went for a quick Costco shopping after work. Traditionally, Valentine’s Day is when we start seeing St. Patrick’s Day items at Costco. The most popular St. Patrick’s product at Costco is Bill Bailey’s Irish Brand Corned Beef Brisket. I found the briskets today… but there was a twist.

Costco now sells fully cooked corned beef briskets as well as ready-to-cook version that we are familiar with. Fully cooked briskets are $5.59 per pound, whereas ready-to-cook briskets are $3.99 per pound. There was a large shelf area dedicated for fully cooked briskets, with hundreds of boxes of briskets neatly displayed. In contrast, shelf space for ready-to-cook briskets was considerably smaller, about 90% smaller than that of fully cooked ones – maybe even smaller. I guess most people buy fully cooked meat and microwave them.

But… pre-cooked brisket? Do you really want to microwave your special meal? St. Patrick’s Day dinner has to be more than just nuking a packaged meat for 7 minutes and turning it over once. We only have a handful of special days where cooking is part of tradition. It’s sad to think that St. Patrick’s Day is becoming the day we microwave our dinner. I am already taking a short cut, because I don’t season the brisket myself. Perhaps, in the future, I will succumb to the concept of pre-cooked holiday meals. Perhaps I will celebrate change of the season by opening up my microwave oven. Maybe, in the future, we will all have multiple number of microwave ovens in our kitchens so we can prepare meals for special family gatherings. That, to me, sounds grim and dystopian.

This Saint Patrick’s day (2020) I will proudly slow cook my corned beef brisket for ten hours. I will pay respect to Irish history and tradition as I put my body into ritual.

Update (Feb 18, 20) – I went back to Costco just 4 days after and saw a complete opposite. There was a much larger shelf area for ready-to-cook briskets. And shelf area for fully cooked briskets was considerably smaller than that of ready-to-cook versions. I find this intriguing. I am sure Costco is studying this case.

Update (February 20) – I ate the pineapple after leaving it out on kitchen table for 6 days. It was possibly the best pineapple ever.

Bill Baily Corned Beef Brisket, Ready to cook. Costco
Bill Bailey's Fully Cooked Corned Beef Brisket, Costco
Kirkland Signature Atlantic Salmon
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John
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9th Costco Shopping in 2020 – $153.38 today / $614.22 this year
Member Only Savings – $35 today / $125 this year

I went for a quick Costco shopping to pick up two items.

Kirkland Signature’s Atlantic Salmon (#46340) is a handy food item that I wish to keep in my freezer all the time. 3 pound bag is currently on sale for $5 off (Feb 2020). They are individually wrapped and frozen to accommodate people like me who don’t live next door to a fish market. For next several month I will have salmon whenever I feel like. Constantly having a wide range of food option at home is an indication of living a good life. It is satisfying to keep good food in the freezer. I mean, this is why some people hate Americans. Regular price of a bag of salmon is $26.99. This is still a good price, but I tend to buy them when they are on sale. One bag has 7 portions of salmon. After $5 saving, sale price on each piece of salmon is $3.12. Now, steam up some vegetables, and you have a good meal. It’s Kirkland Signature quality, money saving, healthy, and you can avoid going to restaurant.

FYI: I HATE restaurants, mainly because they give me bad tables. I will eat out more often if they stop sitting me by toilets. Don’t get me started.

You are recommended to thaw frozen salmon by unwrapping it first, and place in refrigerator for 8-10 hours. But, I often put it in cold water while it’s still in wrapper for quick thaw. Personally, I cannot tell the difference how I thaw it.

Below is cooking instruction from the package.

Bake: Heat oven to 400 F. Place in a well-oiled baking dish. Bake portions for 10 to 12 minutes or until internal temperature reaches 145 F.

Grill: Heat grill to medium high. Place on a well-oiled grill and cook for approximately 5 to 7 minuets, turning once, or until internal temperature reaches 145 F.

Microwave: Remove thawed salmon from packaging. Place in a microwave-safe dish that has been lightly coated with oil or cooking spray. Cover with plastic wrap and peel back one corner to allow steam to escape. Microwave at high power 4 to 5 minutes turning once. Make sure the internal temperature reaches 145 F. Remove from microwave and let sit for 3 to 4 minutes before serving.

Kirkland Signature Atlantic Salmon, Costco
Costco Shopping – February 4, 2020
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John
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7th Costco Shopping in 2020 – $9.83 today / $344.88 this year

My favorite colleague came to work really late today. I figured she was not having a good day. So I made a Costco run and got an Acai Bowl for her. This made her feel better.

I worked 11 hours today. So, I treated myself with a Caesar Salad. Costco’s Caesar salad is guaranteed good meal. The trick is to eat the least amount of dressing possible, or completely avoid it. Chicken seemed to contain a lot of salt. And, I don’t see anything good about croutons.

iPhone picture. Not good.
San Francisco Bay Coffee – French Roast
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John
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San Francisco Bay – French Roast Coffee (Costco item #100039943).

My visitors know I am a coffee guy. Coffee brings me joy. Good coffee can make moments more special just like good music. For that, I put effort in finding good coffee.

I’ve been enjoying San Francisco Bay’s French Roast coffee. French roast is one of the darkest coffee roasts. French roast can be little too dark for some people, but coffee lovers appreciate dark and smoky taste of French roast.

San Francisco Bay’s French Roast has the most ideal French roast taste that I know of. There are other coffee makers out there. My problem with other name brand French roast coffee is that they lack flavor and/or they are acidic. They leave you with bitter after-taste. Not only that, they are expensive. Some coffees simply taste cheap. San Francisco Bay’s French Roast is strong with full flavor, and it doesn’t have bitter after-taste. This Kosher certified, 100% Arabica coffee finishes smooth. In short, this coffee is enjoyable.

San Francisco Bay French Roast ciffee
San Francisco Bay French Roast coffee. Available at Costco.

Glorious Sunday morning.

I enjoy folding and ironing laundry on Sunday morning. Last Sunday, I started my lazy morning by grinding SF Bay French Roast coffee. Smell of fresh ground coffee was exotic and deep. I spent next few hours in my closet room folding and ironing. I also hemmed two pairs of pants. I enjoyed that quiet and glorious Sunday morning – just me and my coffee. Life is good.