Ask me anything - the cost of ice, whipped butter, etc.

Ask me anything – the cost of ice, whipped butter, etc.

Dear Mary: My husband says it costs more to make ice in the freezer than to buy it in bags. I find that hard to believe. Do you know the answer?

– Jm

Dear GM: Let’s say a 10-pound bag of ice at the store costs two dollars. Two dollars worth of water from tap is approximately 350 gallons at an average price in the United States of about 0.0058 cents a gallon—enough to make plenty of ice. You’re already keeping your freezer at zero degrees Fahrenheit, so it won’t take more energy to make ice in it than you spend now freezing other things.

Your husband’s theory might hold if he’s talking about buying a separate ice maker that will be an extra appliance in your home and powered by electricity. Otherwise, I think it’s all wet.

Dear Mary: I love the smooth texture of whipped butter, but the stuff in tubs costs a fortune when compared pound for pound with sticky butter. My favorite is the butter, whipped with olive oil. Do you have any suggestions on how to make whipped butter myself? I have no idea what kind of proportions I would need, or if a third ingredient would be necessary for it to spread easily.

– Sara

Dear Sarah: You will need 2 sticks of real butter (1 cup, and please do not substitute ghee), 1 cup of canola or olive oil, ½ teaspoon of sea salt and an electric mixer. Let the butter come to room temperature in a medium mixing bowl. Blend with an electric mixer on low speed for about 30 seconds, or until creamy. With the mixer still running, add the oil in a small, steady stream. Add salt. Keep mixing until it looks very light and fluffy. Store the softened butter in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Even enjoy the ability to spread it directly from the refrigerator. By the way, the nutritional value of canola oil and olive oil is almost identical. However, you may find it more cost effective to use canola oil.

Dear Mary: How long will turkey keep in the fridge? I still have an uncooked turkey in the freezer from Thanksgiving 2007. Should I toss it, or can I do something with it?

– Lena

Dear Lena: You just did a double take! I thought I read 2017, but now I see you’ve had this bird in your freezer for 11 years. You might have a collector’s item on your hands – a petrified turkey! No, seriously, you need to get rid of it. My best sources assure us that frozen solid turkey in its original packaging is good for up to one year. After that, it decomposes into a horrible, tasteless, poorly textured, so old piece of poultry that must be thrown away.

Dear Mary: I was reading a Spanish newspaper cover of a flight from Madrid to Miami. El Pais publishes articles from the New York Times, the Washington Post and others every week. Well, in one of the articles there is a quote from you. Talk about reaching readers! On a recent extended visit to Spain, I didn’t have as much internet access as I did at home, but I did check your column at least three times a week in that paper while I was there. Thanks for the work you do and for inspiring us. Congratulations on all of your achievements. You are a blessing in my life

– Carmen

About Cheapskate Daily

Mary invites you to visit her at EverydayCheapskate.comThis column is fully archived with links and resources for all recommended products and services. Mary calls for questions and comments at, “Ask Mary.” Advice can be provided at This column will answer questions of general interest, but messages cannot be answered individually. Mary Hunt is the founder EverydayCheapskate.coma frugal living blogger, and author of Debt-Proof Living.

#cost #ice #whipped #butter

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