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  • FIRST POST
    • 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?



    If you haven’t already, join the forum to reply!
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    Last edited by caronc; 17-07-2017 at 6:56 PM.
Page 239
    • Doom_and_Gloom
    • By Doom_and_Gloom 19th Jun 17, 2:45 PM
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    Doom_and_Gloom
    I'm still around. Been caching up on reading and watching anime so haven't posted.

    Cooked 6 vegetable koftas on friday. I will be having the last one in a sandwich later with houmous to use up the last of the bread I have for lunch. PicturesNew you will be horrified at how much I spent on the loaf; £3.69 as it's vegan and gluten free. However it's soo good that I'll treat myself to this loaf once a fortnight or so as a loaf lasts me a week.
    I have 180g of cooked cut up potatoes that will be turned into potato salad later for dinner.

    For now I'm drinking coffee but as I need to be up at 5:30 tomorrow morning I'll have to switch to a tea soon (green or mint probably) or I'll have an even harder time getting to sleep. The heat and the works near us make it hard enough, don't need to add to the problem. It's 28.1C in the flat right now, the chinchillas are not amused and neither am I. It's been 23C+ at night in here. I don't do well with heat, I'm like a human chinchilla, lol.

    Edit: as to the heat I have been making ice as we have cube makers as part of the draws to the freezer. Also got some trays going. I can't believe the amount of people buying ice when I'm at work. It's not difficult to think 'oh it's gotten hotter, I should make some ice'. Use a zip lock freezer bag to store the ice and fill the trays etc again. This time of year I'll willingly give up freezer space for ice!
    Last edited by Doom_and_Gloom; 19-06-2017 at 2:56 PM.
    28 year old vegan woman. My OH is a lovely omni guy
    • greenbee
    • By greenbee 19th Jun 17, 4:10 PM
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    greenbee
    Edit: as to the heat I have been making ice as we have cube makers as part of the draws to the freezer. Also got some trays going. I can't believe the amount of people buying ice when I'm at work. It's not difficult to think 'oh it's gotten hotter, I should make some ice'. Use a zip lock freezer bag to store the ice and fill the trays etc again. This time of year I'll willingly give up freezer space for ice!
    Originally posted by Doom_and_Gloom
    I have an icemaker. On days like this it really pays for itself!
    • PasturesNew
    • By PasturesNew 19th Jun 17, 4:22 PM
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    PasturesNew

    It is hot hot hot here, 80 plus in the lounge which is the coolest room, 100 ish in the conservatory with windows & doors open. Wish I was not forbidden booze, a long G & T would go down well, could even chuck one of my borage petals in as part of the 10 a day.
    Originally posted by Farway
    Here too, it's been consistently over 80 since about 10-10.30 this morning. First I drew the curtains and opened windows... then about noon or so the sun moved round the side and the air feels a little cooler in here, but the thermometer says it hasn't changed. I've got a bucket of cold water and an old thin tea towel and have spent the entire afternoon draped in a wet teatowel....

    .... slipped it's tow and went down clunk behind me . Empty at the time so no harm done, hitched up and sauntered onwards like I meant to drop it
    Originally posted by Farway
    Yeah, "cool dude" it out ....
    It's easily done.
    • PasturesNew
    • By PasturesNew 19th Jun 17, 4:27 PM
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    PasturesNew
    .... loaf; £3.69
    Originally posted by Doom_and_Gloom
    I refuse to believe this exists.... tis a hoax ... decimal point's been moved

    It's not difficult to think 'oh it's gotten hotter, I should make some ice'. Use a zip lock freezer bag to store the ice and fill the trays etc again. This time of year I'll willingly give up freezer space for ice!
    Originally posted by Doom_and_Gloom
    There are many reasons some people might buy it .... but it'd be very sad if some of those had a freezer and space and time and simply had no idea you can make your own .... but I bet they're out there.

    I got a nice ice cube tray from £land the other month - silicone, so you can poke them out easily Not filled/used it though. I got it "in case" I ever wanted to make ice cubes.
    • Doom_and_Gloom
    • By Doom_and_Gloom 19th Jun 17, 4:27 PM
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    Doom_and_Gloom
    I have an icemaker. On days like this it really pays for itself!
    Originally posted by greenbee
    That's the dream but not possible, I don't think, here as we rent. Still it's £1 for a 2kg bag of ice. I'm not paying that for frozen water! Making it this way will just have to do.
    28 year old vegan woman. My OH is a lovely omni guy
    • Doom_and_Gloom
    • By Doom_and_Gloom 19th Jun 17, 5:02 PM
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    Doom_and_Gloom
    I refuse to believe this exists.... tis a hoax ... decimal point's been moved


    There are many reasons some people might buy it .... but it'd be very sad if some of those had a freezer and space and time and simply had no idea you can make your own .... but I bet they're out there.

    I got a nice ice cube tray from £land the other month - silicone, so you can poke them out easily Not filled/used it though. I got it "in case" I ever wanted to make ice cubes.
    Originally posted by PasturesNew
    I wish a decimal point was in the wrong place but no. It really is good though. Better than the one I would pay £3 for, last time I bought that one I bought it reduced. Still cost me over £1 reduced though and I have done of that one in the freezer. This one is so good it hasn't ever made it to the freezer lol. As you may remember I gave up on bread. But this is real bread, simular to artisan, just gluten free.

    Sad thing I bet there are those that don't realise you can make ice, or think it's too time intensive as ice is a waiting game.

    I have a silicone one too. It does spherical ice. That is in the freezer right now. With your freezer rather empty now would be a good time to make ice. It would help with keeping the running costs down to as the freezer works harder when empty/not very full.
    28 year old vegan woman. My OH is a lovely omni guy
    • PasturesNew
    • By PasturesNew 19th Jun 17, 5:14 PM
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    PasturesNew
    ....the freezer works harder when empty/not very full.
    Originally posted by Doom_and_Gloom
    That is probably most true for people who open theirs a lot. Generally, my freezer door's open for 4seconds, twice a day.

    I've just made some ribena lollies.... it was a "gifted" bottle somebody bought and probably didn't like.... I opened it, made a drink, didn't really like it ...and it's been fridge clutter.
    • moneyistooshorttomention
    • By moneyistooshorttomention 19th Jun 17, 5:32 PM
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    moneyistooshorttomention
    Oh yes loaves can cost that much PN - ie not far short of £4 and that's without them being gluten-free or the like. The downside to buying nice sourdough craft type bread is that you tend to not even be very keen on your own homemade bread after that. As for even standard homemade type wholemeal bread - it comes to resemble cottonwool so to say in the mouth.

    On the icecube front - thinks....I read an idea recently about using bits of frozen fruit as icecubes. Hmm....I now have rather a lot of strawberries there in my freezer now. Now there's a thought for cool drinks Maybe I could make some of my lemon/ginger tea and stick that in the fridge and then serve with a frozen strawberry or two in there....must try that...
    ploughing my own furrow...the rain begins with a single drop...

    #I'mWithNoel
    • Hollyharvey
    • By Hollyharvey 19th Jun 17, 5:48 PM
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    Hollyharvey
    Here too, it's been consistently over 80 since about 10-10.30 this morning. First I drew the curtains and opened windows... then about noon or so the sun moved round the side and the air feels a little cooler in here, but the thermometer says it hasn't changed. I've got a bucket of cold water and an old thin tea towel and have spent the entire afternoon draped in a wet teatowel....
    Originally posted by PasturesNew

    I came home and from where the house had been shut up most of the day it was 87 in the coolest room, it's currently 84.4 and I really don't feel that good because of it.


    Like you I have got all the windows open and curtains closed and am covered in wet towels. I've already had two cold showers this afternoon.
    • caronc
    • By caronc 19th Jun 17, 7:03 PM
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    caronc
    Good evening everyone,
    No heatwave here - around 19C in full sun which is warm but pleasant.

    Meg72 - that was a good haul for £2

    Farway - what about just the "T" with ice and a slice. I have that quite often and it's nice and refreshing especially if you add a couple of slices of cucumber.

    Good point re the ice - I must make some more before the weekend when I've visitors coming. I do very rarely buy bagged ice - mainly to pop in a bucket with water to cool down beer etc. if we are having a bbq.

    I don't mind paying for decent bread but even the artisan stuff round here can be hit or miss. I do like HM though if I can CBA making it. My everyday loaf is the Burgen Soy and Linseed. Yes it's more expensive than many sliced loaves but it tastes good, keeps well and has lower salt than many of the other ones.

    The chilli won out and I've just switched off the SC. I'll chill overnight, lift any fat off and add baked beans tomorrow. For once I've not made loads so reckon with the beans there are 2-3 portions .

    I'm still undecided re tonight......
    Mar GC £131/£150, April GC £150/£160, May GC £150/£150, June GC £117/£120, July £129/£170
    • caronc
    • By caronc 19th Jun 17, 7:28 PM
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    caronc
    Nothing is ever perfect........

    Just picked my first lot of radishes - I only plant a few at a time so I don't get overrun with them. I could have done with sowing batch 2 earlier as they've only just started to peek through.
    Mar GC £131/£150, April GC £150/£160, May GC £150/£150, June GC £117/£120, July £129/£170
    • caronc
    • By caronc 19th Jun 17, 9:17 PM
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    caronc
    Dinner ended up being a spanish type omelette as I discovered I had 4 eggs that I thought were use by 22/06 and it was actually 12/06. They passed the "float" test but 2 have gone in the omelette and I've hard boiled the other two.
    Mar GC £131/£150, April GC £150/£160, May GC £150/£150, June GC £117/£120, July £129/£170
    • moneyistooshorttomention
    • By moneyistooshorttomention 19th Jun 17, 9:22 PM
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    moneyistooshorttomention
    It's cooler now the sun's completely disappeared - I lose sight of it in the back garden ~4.30pm ... and can only see the roof of a nearby house with sun on it after that. After 8, peak summer, that's it entirely as the sun goes down behind the industrial units

    Sitting here now there's no sun at all to see .... at all. Nothing. Gone.

    It'd be nice if we could "choose" everything about our house wouldn't it .... no compromises/niggles, just a house in budget that's in keeping with the local market ... but with all the "wants" still existing.
    Originally posted by PasturesNew
    My house is 24.5 degrees currently. Errr...whoops it was 24 C - until I took it into my head that dinner should be that very rare thing for me (ie a ready meal). This time it was quorn curry. So I guess that's not too bad - as my ideal indoor temperature is 22 C.

    I'm quailing at comments about 19C and 20C constituting a "heatwave" in other parts of the country. My own definition of heatwave probably starts at around 26C. Remind me not to head for parts northwards - I'd freeze my little (well - a tad bigger than it should be) !!! off. This area is a bit colder on average than I'm used to personally - but I guess the loads of insulation I have in this house does double duty. It helps keep the house warm in winter - and stays that bit cooler in summer.

    Compromises on house PN - sighs in recognition. A house "in keeping with the local market" is where I would definitely weaken though if I had the money. I had my eye on one for some time that I would have bought sight unseen (as I knew the area very well - and so almost didnt care about the house per se) and it costs twice a reasonable price for my home area and 4 times as much as what I paid for the one I have. So I have to admit whatever house I got wouldnt be "in keeping with the local market" if I had a free choice about it....

    Anyways - and back onto food - and I really must get some lettuce going out in the garden. Not sure how well at all I'll do for tomatoes. Loads of strawberries and should be okay later on for apples and plums for a bit.

    .....and I'm eyeing up various diet books now and telling myself "You know you should - and you have no excuse now that the kitchen is sorted at last.....".

    I've got a new frying pan recently - of the GreenPan variety - and that will help with calories (as just a smidgen of oil is enough to do the trick in it). New omelette pan (ditto - Green Pan) to try out shortly - to see if that cuts back the calories.
    Last edited by moneyistooshorttomention; 19-06-2017 at 9:24 PM.
    ploughing my own furrow...the rain begins with a single drop...

    #I'mWithNoel
    • caronc
    • By caronc 19th Jun 17, 9:49 PM
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    • 12,238 Thanks
    caronc
    My house is 24.5 degrees currently. Errr...whoops it was 24 C - until I took it into my head that dinner should be that very rare thing for me (ie a ready meal). This time it was quorn curry. So I guess that's not too bad - as my ideal indoor temperature is 22 C.

    I'm quailing at comments about 19C and 20C constituting a "heatwave" in other parts of the country. My own definition of heatwave probably starts at around 26C. Remind me not to head for parts northwards - I'd freeze my little (well - a tad bigger than it should be) !!! off. This area is a bit colder on average than I'm used to personally - but I guess the loads of insulation I have in this house does double duty. It helps keep the house warm in winter - and stays that bit cooler in summer.

    Compromises on house PN - sighs in recognition. A house "in keeping with the local market" is where I would definitely weaken though if I had the money. I had my eye on one for some time that I would have bought sight unseen (as I knew the area very well - and so almost didnt care about the house per se) and it costs twice a reasonable price for my home area and 4 times as much as what I paid for the one I have. So I have to admit whatever house I got wouldnt be "in keeping with the local market" if I had a free choice about it....

    Anyways - and back onto food - and I really must get some lettuce going out in the garden. Not sure how well at all I'll do for tomatoes. Loads of strawberries and should be okay later on for apples and plums for a bit.

    .....and I'm eyeing up various diet books now and telling myself "You know you should - and you have no excuse now that the kitchen is sorted at last.....".

    I've got a new frying pan recently - of the GreenPan variety - and that will help with calories (as just a smidgen of oil is enough to do the trick in it). New omelette pan (ditto - Green Pan) to try out shortly - to see if that cuts back the calories.
    Originally posted by moneyistooshorttomention
    I've not got any of the GreenPans but I do have a green coloured ceramic frying pan which is pretty good. That said I used my trusty old omelette pan tonight it is just the right size for CFO .

    Round here 19/20C is a heatwave..... though it does very rarely go above this. I suppose it depends what you are used to, anything above 22-24C and I'm flagging
    Mar GC £131/£150, April GC £150/£160, May GC £150/£150, June GC £117/£120, July £129/£170
    • PasturesNew
    • By PasturesNew 19th Jun 17, 10:33 PM
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    PasturesNew
    . My own definition of heatwave probably starts at around 26C.
    Originally posted by moneyistooshorttomention
    It's been 28C all day today since a little after 10am-ish until the sun disappeared. That's with the curtains closed to keep the sun out and windows open to try to generate a through-draught or at least blow away some of the heat.

    Right now it's 26C, which is a perfectly pleasant relief.

    My skin's felt as if it were sun-burnt all day, even though I've not been out in the sun at all and spent most of today with a tea towel on my head.... last used about an hour ago.
    • Hollyharvey
    • By Hollyharvey 19th Jun 17, 10:55 PM
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    Hollyharvey
    My house is 24.5 degrees currently.

    . My own definition of heatwave probably starts at around 26C. - and stays that bit cooler in summer.

    Originally posted by moneyistooshorttomention

    My house got up to 29.9C throughout this afternoon. Far too hot for me, it has made me feel quite ill


    It is currently 27.5C in this room and I think it is about the same througout. That's with all of the windows open.


    As it's a bungalow I can't leave the windows open all night.


    The forecast is for it to get hotter tomorrow and Wednesday, which is not good for me. I also have a hospital appointment with a cardiologist on Wednesday and outpatients is really hot.
    • Hollyharvey
    • By Hollyharvey 19th Jun 17, 10:59 PM
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    Hollyharvey
    I don't know about the rest of you, but I don't think I will feel like cooking anything in this heat.
    I think I will just get some bread out of the freezer and live on sandwiches for the next few days. I have enough salad bits in to last until Thursday so should be ok. I may go up to Aldi or Sainsburys tomorrow and get a few things like pork pies, and quiche to have cold, if it isn't too hot when they open at 8.00am.


    I would quite like some choc ices or something like that. I have ice cream but it is a tub. I quite fancy some scones as well and if I go out I will probably get some. I don't want to make them myself because it is too hot to put the oven on.


    This heat sure will change my meal plan for this week
    • Doom_and_Gloom
    • By Doom_and_Gloom 19th Jun 17, 11:17 PM
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    Doom_and_Gloom
    About to go to bed, just read the temperature and it's 27.9C! This is a heatwave. I am not giving much hope for a good sleep tonight. If I have time before work in morning I'll see what the temp is before I go. Hoping not to high, I got early shifts to help as I know heat doesn't help me.
    Caronc I do okay in those kind of temperatures, these ones are making me want to give up.
    28 year old vegan woman. My OH is a lovely omni guy
    • Anne_Marie
    • By Anne_Marie 20th Jun 17, 4:42 AM
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    Anne_Marie
    Sorry for all of you who are suffering from the heat. It's hot here, but am bracing myself for really hot in July and August, so trying to do without the air conditioning on, although had to put it on in the bedroom one night last week, as it was so still and humid. Great yesterday as it was pretty windy, which brought down the heat, and even had a few spots of rain. Unfortunately, I was driving at the time, or would have gone outside to enjoy it!
    I keep curtains closed during the day, one side of the house in the morning, other side early afternoon, and completely if I am going out, so that the dog doesn't suffer. Really makes a big difference. It's nice to have a through draught too, so I have windows on opposite sides of the house opened. Not always practical for everyone I know.
    Ceiling fans help a lot, have them in all bedrooms and living room, and invested in one for the kitchen last year.....was fed up using a floor standing one in there, as it's another hazard for me to trip over. Have also got a table top one, which I can use on the worktop if I am standing at the cooker, which is as little as possible just now. This does me at the moment, until I have to use the air conditioning.....it's expensive to run in the summer months, so try to put off using it until absolutely necessary. If I can make it without for another week or so, I will be quite happy.

    Been having a few G&T's of late, was about time that I cracked open a bottle of gin that had been lying for way over 5 years! Been having it with chunks of cucumber. Also drinking lots of water, slugging it back, but for just sitting having a drink, like soda water with cucumber and ice in, it's very refreshing. Peppermint tea is back on the menu again, seem to only drink it in the summer, very refreshing. A friend suggested having iced peppermint tea, so will give that a go at some point.

    Strawberries - season is over here, but I bought extra and blitzed them with a little bit of icing sugar and put in small containers and froze. Will be nice later in some yoghurt or a drizzle over a lemon cheesecake....that's if it's not used up when DD and family come over next month. I might even try growing my own next year, if I remember to plant in time.
    My rocket and salad leaves that I planted are coming through nicely, won't be long until I can be munching away. Must get some more on the go this week, so that I have a continuous supply.

    Can't be bothered cooking at the moment. Past two nights I've had hard boiled egg, bit of grated cheese, some olives and a bit of salad with a slice of home made tomato and olive bread, and a dipping oil (olive oil and balsamic or pomegranate vinegar). I'm a bit limited as not really buying anything, as the fridge/freezer has still not been repaired....I'd forgotten that I had to do residency stuff last week, which is a right pain in the toenails, but has to be done, and a lot of faffing about. Anyway, will call the repair people today, and hopefully get it sorted this week. Had brunch out yesterday, was lovely - toasted cheese, tomato and pesto panini with some salad, and a few chips which were thrown on to my plate - friend had far too big a portion with her burger.

    Only time I have bought bags of ice is when we have had a crowd round, and the FF is not big enough to store loads of ice. No crowds round any more since hubby died, can't cope with that these days, just a few people is good. However, I may have to buy some for cool box this week to keep food cold. Have a couple of 5 litre containers filled with water in the freezer just now, as well as a load of those thingies you get for keeping food cool in cool box.

    Half strimmed the dog on Sunday, until she got fed up and wouldn't stay at peace any more. Was going to finish her off yesterday, but it was too windy, and didn't want to be running about picking up hair all over the garden. Hopefully will manage to finish the job today. At least she will be a lot cooler without that thick coat.

    PN...You mentioned slicing scones before freezing, great idea, as sometimes they are so big, you just want half. I cut pitta bread in two before freezing. Sometimes I just want a half, and also because halves fit nicely into my toaster, rather than flopping over.

    Love Caronc's tip about soaking waste documents to obliterate writing....genius!
    • PasturesNew
    • By PasturesNew 20th Jun 17, 5:56 AM
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    PasturesNew

    PN...You mentioned slicing scones before freezing, great idea, as sometimes they are so big, you just want half.
    Originally posted by Anne_Marie
    LOL... they're not big when the ones you buy are 10 for 50p at 4ldi

    I just do it because things get floppy/uncuttable directly after nuking, so it makes sense to me to slice anything that's going to need slicing at the point of eating.

    I've been up since 4.30 this morning, it's lovely and cool. Just 70°F/21°C.
    Last edited by PasturesNew; 20-06-2017 at 6:00 AM.
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