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    • caronc
    • By caronc 13th Jan 17, 7:32 PM
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    caronc
    Cooking for one
    • #1
    • 13th Jan 17, 7:32 PM
    Cooking for one 13th Jan 17 at 7:32 PM
    ****There is now a new thread "Cooking for one (Mark Two)" which can be found here http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=5680849

    Hi, newbie poster though long time lurker trying to adjust to being an empty-nester and due to some substantial changes income-wise in the next couple of months trying to cut my costs and adjust my shopping to mainly solo dining. I abhor waste so good that way and do cook from scratch/batch cook the vast majority of the time. I do "sort of" meal plan but it can be a bit hit or miss depending on my health is on any given day. I'm reliant on on-line shopping so can't take advanage of aldi/Lidl etc. What (if any) changes did you make when changing to a single-person household?



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    Last edited by caronc; 17-07-2017 at 6:56 PM.
Page 235
    • SunnyGirl
    • By SunnyGirl 15th Jun 17, 9:47 PM
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    SunnyGirl
    Good evening everyone. I've been MIA due to the plasterer and garden gate post fixers been about. Cleaned up now and house back to normal again.

    Big news is that I've weeded the front garden I pulled the tall ones out by hand and sprayed the rest then did between the cracks on the path. I am sweeping and cleaning the paths, doorstep and front door tomorrow and my Mum is coming down to be tea lady for me which will be lovely.

    I am another baked beans in a chilli person! Thanks for the bean recipe Caronc I'm definitely going to try that one. Do you freeze them cooked or not?

    No breakfast today as usual, lunch was cheese on toast and some tomato soup that I'd made and tea was a potato curry and rice. A bar of Cadburys chocolate fell into my hand at the shop so am going to scoff that soon

    Hollyharvey I menu plan as it helps me cook and keeps me on track and away from eating rubbish. Hope it works out for you too!
    • Hollyharvey
    • By Hollyharvey 15th Jun 17, 11:05 PM
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    Hollyharvey

    Hollyharvey I menu plan as it helps me cook and keeps me on track and away from eating rubbish. Hope it works out for you too!
    Originally posted by SunnyGirl

    It has certainly helped so far this week. It may go a bit awry tomorrow though.


    My cousin and his wife are over from Canada and are coming to see me, my brother and his family this weekend. I have got to do some baking tomorrow and I wouldn't be surprised if my meal planning for Friday, Saturday and Sunday goes out of the window. I know that we will all eat out one day, and probably have one day at my brothers. But, just in case that doesn't happen I still need to have food in.
    • PasturesNew
    • By PasturesNew 16th Jun 17, 9:04 AM
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    PasturesNew
    And we're off.... couldn't face it earlier.... but I just turned the freezer off

    Now boiling kettle for some hot water to sit in it.

    The frozen food remaining I dumped into the fridge in a padded bag with a "devil may care anyway" attitude.

    EDIT 1 (9.35): Using my genius plan, the bottom shelf is already 95% clear of ice. But the top section's the worst - where it's over 1" thick. My method is "hands off/leave it mostly to it, with a bit of poking/interference". I expect it to be completely finished by 10.30 though.

    EDIT 2 (10.05): Ah, then it all kicked off .... and I had to be with it for half an hour as the ice was loose, so I was there picking it off, picking it up and wringing out the cloth at the bottom and replacing the bowls of hot water and placing dishes to catch the drips. It's nearly finished now... just that top/roof section to go - quite thick in the middle still as I was concentrating on melting from the back section mainly.

    EDIT 3 (11.15): All done. All ice melted, whole thing wiped inside, not a drop of water touched/reached the kitchen floor. Drawers replaced, power turned on.
    Last edited by PasturesNew; 16-06-2017 at 11:16 AM.
    • SunnyGirl
    • By SunnyGirl 16th Jun 17, 10:29 AM
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    SunnyGirl
    PN I am very excited about your freezer defrosting far more so than when I do mine

    Morning all. Warm but cloudy here in Manchester so I am up and ready to start the sweeping and tidying of the front garden. The house will look like it belongs to somebody again as my Mum says. Nothing to do inside today I've already swished the bathroom over when I got out of the shower.

    Lunch today will be an egg mayo sandwich and I'm at Mum and Dad's for tea which is going to be a lasagne apparently. Not much in the way of CFO here today. I will make my lunch for work this weekend later and do Saturday and Sunday's while I'm at it to save doing it twice. Easiest way to do it haha.
    • caronc
    • By caronc 16th Jun 17, 10:46 AM
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    caronc
    Good morning everyone,

    PN - oh er missus the day finally arrived, I reckon mine won't be for another couple of years
    Sunnygirl - re the bean burgers, they are fine to freeze cooked or uncooked but if freezing uncooked cook from frozen.

    Fridge clear out/ reorganisation stalled for a bit until the baskets I've ordered with my online shop arrive in a bit. However, all the shelves etc. are now sparkly clean!

    Breakfast was toast with cottage cheese, a flat peach (so are so lovely just now) and a small glass of tomato juice. Lunch will be a roll and salad.
    I've parsley sauce left over from last night so I think dinner will be this with a gammon steak and various veg. I'll pop some mustard in the sauce as it was a bit bland to pep it up a bit. I steamed extra spud last night so will either mash this or griddle slices with the gammon.
    Mar GC £131/£150, April GC £150/£160, May GC £150/£150, June GC £117/£120, July £161/£170
    • PasturesNew
    • By PasturesNew 16th Jun 17, 11:17 AM
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    PasturesNew
    I actually enjoyed the defrosting ... and as I was doing it I was wondering if anybody would pay for it to be done. The trouble is, those with the money to have it done already bought frost free (which cost more).... so you have a small pool of potential customers who only bought a cheap appliance as they're broke

    It's time-intensive, as an activity... as a lot of the time you're just standing/waiting/watching rather than "actively actually DOING something", because I wasn't "forcing" it with hairdriers or poking it with sticks.... I'd rather have the patience than get it wrong and break something.
    Last edited by PasturesNew; 16-06-2017 at 11:20 AM.
    • caronc
    • By caronc 16th Jun 17, 12:04 PM
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    caronc
    I actually enjoyed the defrosting ... and as I was doing it I was wondering if anybody would pay for it to be done. The trouble is, those with the money to have it done already bought frost free (which cost more).... so you have a small pool of potential customers who only bought a cheap appliance as they're broke

    It's time-intensive, as an activity... as a lot of the time you're just standing/waiting/watching rather than "actively actually DOING something", because I wasn't "forcing" it with hairdriers or poking it with sticks.... I'd rather have the patience than get it wrong and break something.
    Originally posted by PasturesNew
    On the rare time I've done mine - I've just popped lots of towels down and left it overnight with the door open. After a very bad experience trying to hurry defrosting along when I burst the seal so we had to get a new one, I been wary of poking at them.
    Mar GC £131/£150, April GC £150/£160, May GC £150/£150, June GC £117/£120, July £161/£170
    • meg72
    • By meg72 16th Jun 17, 12:20 PM
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    meg72
    On the rare time I've done mine - I've just popped lots of towels down and left it overnight with the door open. After a very bad experience trying to hurry defrosting along when I burst the seal so we had to get a new one, I been wary of poking at them.
    Originally posted by caronc
    This is how I do mine too as its a faff I hate. I have now got the money to replace this and am definetly going for a frost free this time
    Slimming World at target
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    • PasturesNew
    • By PasturesNew 16th Jun 17, 12:22 PM
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    PasturesNew
    The problem I now have is that I'm freed from the daunting task of eating my way through what's available .... and yet I can't think of a single "lovely bit of food" to eat today! So I'm still going to be locked into the "eat what you've got" mentality.

    I might do a cheese omelette and chips .... which would then deserve beans.

    EDIT: Well, that was the plan, but I'd forgotten I still have 4 crumpets BB today....so I've toasted two of those and .... tossed the other two in the freezer
    Last edited by PasturesNew; 16-06-2017 at 12:41 PM.
    • moneyistooshorttomention
    • By moneyistooshorttomention 16th Jun 17, 2:27 PM
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    moneyistooshorttomention
    I actually enjoyed the defrosting ... and as I was doing it I was wondering if anybody would pay for it to be done. The trouble is, those with the money to have it done already bought frost free (which cost more).... so you have a small pool of potential customers who only bought a cheap appliance as they're broke

    It's time-intensive, as an activity... as a lot of the time you're just standing/waiting/watching rather than "actively actually DOING something", because I wasn't "forcing" it with hairdriers or poking it with sticks.... I'd rather have the patience than get it wrong and break something.
    Originally posted by PasturesNew
    Personally - I think you're right. I doubt very much anyone would pay for it to be done - for exactly the reasons you've quoted.

    The standing around etc is a nuisance and I thought "darn it" myself to that eventually and recent freezer I've bought is frost-free.

    When it comes to kitchen tasks - I would be prepared to pay for someone to give a cooker a darn good clean (as they simply don't get a darn good clean left to me). However, that was all part of getting my new kitchen recently - ie I note that cookers these days have this thingie re burning off the gunk themselves in operation from their insides. Cue for me thinking "Oh good - and that's another reason to have a new kitchen and junk the very tatty old cooker I had".

    I'm of the "Life is too short to stuff a mushroom" school of thought personally and if the task can be avoided altogether = all to the good. If it can't be avoided = these days I'll think "Blow it" and pay someone else to do it if it's that arduous.

    Yep....I do do my own housework and have every intention of continuing to do so and I do most of my own gardening (but anything very arduous - then I don't have the physical strength for it anyway and will pay).
    ploughing my own furrow...the rain begins with a single drop...

    #I'mWithNoel
    • Farway
    • By Farway 16th Jun 17, 2:40 PM
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    Farway
    This is how I do mine too as its a faff I hate. I have now got the money to replace this and am definetly going for a frost free this time
    Originally posted by meg72
    I have frost free, and along with a dishwasher it is one thing I recommend to all who can afford it, although if I were stinking rich I would have servants to do it all anyway so would not care what appliances I had

    Before that de frosting was open door and towels on floor method, also washed the floor

    Warm but dull here, garden still needs watering later on though

    Usual non breakfast

    Lidl crumpet check, fail, just bog thin/flat ones still, left on the shelf. Did get a pack of 2 cod in crumb fillets, YS of course, plus sliced loaf

    Lunch was normal cheese salady sarnie. I opened the new loaf even though there are about 6 slices left of last weeks, fresh springy white bread trumped stale today. May use the old one for toast, or more likely in the freezer for rainy day CBA toast

    Dinner is one of those CFO conundrums, lots of food available but just all seems a bit of a pain in the heat. The obvious is one of today's YS fillets & chips, but then I also have the bangers opened yesterday, plus part baked baguettes past BBE day, and now broken in half due to butter fingers

    I can see me either with cheese or banger baguette, or s0d it CBA beans on toast
    • Hollyharvey
    • By Hollyharvey 16th Jun 17, 3:19 PM
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    Hollyharvey


    EDIT: Well, that was the plan, but I'd forgotten I still have 4 crumpets BB today....so I've toasted two of those and .... tossed the other two in the freezer
    Originally posted by PasturesNew

    You could always freeze them
    • Hollyharvey
    • By Hollyharvey 16th Jun 17, 3:23 PM
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    Hollyharvey


    When it comes to kitchen tasks - I would be prepared to pay for someone to give a cooker a darn good clean (as they simply don't get a darn good clean left to me). However, that was all part of getting my new kitchen recently - ie I note that cookers these days have this thingie re burning off the gunk themselves in operation from their insides. Cue for me thinking "Oh good - and that's another reason to have a new kitchen and junk the very tatty old cooker I had".
    Originally posted by moneyistooshorttomention

    I had to have a new cooker about a year ago and I was really pleased that it burns off the gunk itself. I just wipe the bottom of the oven and the door over now and again.


    The other thing I am really pleased to have is an induction hob. Just a wipe over with a damp cloth and whatever I have spilled comes off
    • Hollyharvey
    • By Hollyharvey 16th Jun 17, 3:33 PM
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    Hollyharvey
    I went for one of the normal breakfasts of scrambled egg on toast.


    For lunch I had a cheese salad sarnie.


    Dinner is going to be a lamp rump steak steamed veg and new potatoes. I am going to have that shortly because my cousin is over from Canada and everyone is coming here later and we are all going out for a drink. :J


    I have spent most of the day baking their requests, so we now have, two summer berry loaf cakes, one coffee and walnut, a batch of blueberry muffins and a batch of white chocolate and raspberry ones. This is all for everyone to eat with a sandwich and cup of tea either for lunches or afternoon tea over the weekend at my brother's house.


    I am so looking forward to seeing them because Kevin and I have always got on really well and are very close.


    Another bonus, one day we will all eat out and I one day we will all eat at my brother's so two whole days of not CFO between now and Monday.
    • moneyistooshorttomention
    • By moneyistooshorttomention 16th Jun 17, 4:33 PM
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    moneyistooshorttomention
    AGH!!!!!! - Emergency first aid needed - for my home
    There was me feeling pleased with myself that I'm now getting my kitchen so organised - down to things like getting all my different grains/pulses/etc/etc in exactly the right order (ie alphabetical order on my shelves - so that I can instantly find what I want/know if I need to buy more/etc)...

    .....and I've just spilt some soy sauce on carpet (pretty darn new - pale carpet).

    So I've mopped up what I can with kitchen paper towels. Now how do I deal with the rest to get the carpet back to normal please? Suggestions please?
    ploughing my own furrow...the rain begins with a single drop...

    #I'mWithNoel
    • Farway
    • By Farway 16th Jun 17, 4:58 PM
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    Farway

    .....and I've just spilt some soy sauce on carpet (pretty darn new - pale carpet).

    So I've mopped up what I can with kitchen paper towels. Now how do I deal with the rest to get the carpet back to normal please? Suggestions please?
    Originally posted by moneyistooshorttomention
    Borrow a dog?
    • Farway
    • By Farway 16th Jun 17, 5:00 PM
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    Farway
    Tonight's dinner is now decided, cheese on toast with beans & fried eggs on top, very CBA and too hot to bother
    • Hollyharvey
    • By Hollyharvey 16th Jun 17, 5:27 PM
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    Hollyharvey
    Tonight's dinner is now decided, cheese on toast with beans & fried eggs on top, very CBA and too hot to bother
    Originally posted by Farway

    Now put some Worcester sauce on the cheese as well and that would be my idea of heaven
    • caronc
    • By caronc 16th Jun 17, 6:38 PM
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    • 12,595 Thanks
    caronc
    There was me feeling pleased with myself that I'm now getting my kitchen so organised - down to things like getting all my different grains/pulses/etc/etc in exactly the right order (ie alphabetical order on my shelves - so that I can instantly find what I want/know if I need to buy more/etc)...

    .....and I've just spilt some soy sauce on carpet (pretty darn new - pale carpet).

    So I've mopped up what I can with kitchen paper towels. Now how do I deal with the rest to get the carpet back to normal please? Suggestions please?
    Originally posted by moneyistooshorttomention
    Dabbing not scrubbing with diluted washing up liquid would be worth a try- might take a few goes. Fingers crossed.
    Now put some Worcester sauce on the cheese as well and that would be my idea of heaven
    Originally posted by Hollyharvey
    Mine too .

    Fridge is all organised with all the bits and bobs in baskets. After I was finished that I was in "organising - mode" so resumed bedroom cupboard tidying.
    Unfortunately I've had to bin 3 of my tomato plants and another two are in quarantine on my deck. Not sure what the problem is but looks like some kind of wilt so taking no chances.....

    My new stool arrived - I'd ordered one so I could sit down in the greenhouse and there is not enough space for a chair. It was only £7 inc delivery and is pretty sturdy so that should make life a bit easier in there

    Will organised my dinner in a bit once I've put my bedroom back to rights.

    Holly - your baking sounds lovely coffee & walnut for me please
    Mar GC £131/£150, April GC £150/£160, May GC £150/£150, June GC £117/£120, July £161/£170
    • PasturesNew
    • By PasturesNew 16th Jun 17, 6:52 PM
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    • 345,782 Thanks
    PasturesNew

    .....and I've just spilt some soy sauce on carpet (pretty darn new - pale carpet).

    So I've mopped up what I can with kitchen paper towels. Now how do I deal with the rest to get the carpet back to normal please? Suggestions please?
    Originally posted by moneyistooshorttomention
    I've no idea.... my guess/starting point would be to get anti-bacterial cleaner and paper towles and microfibre cloths. Sop up what I could, then spray it with anti-bac and wait 1-2 minutes and press down with paper towels to try to get more out ... then more anti-bac and try a bit of rubbing with microfibre.

    Next stage would be to try a paste of washing powder/water and pressing/rubbing.

    But ... as I said....I've no idea, that's just where I'd start, with what I've got.
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