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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
    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 Former MSE Jessica; 02-05-2017 at 3:14 PM.
Page 239
    • meg72
    • By meg72 19th Jun 17, 11:16 AM
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    meg72
    Can I join you.....

    Now that my son has more or less moved out I will be pretty much cooking for one.

    I will go back to the beginning of the thread and learn all your tips and wheezes.

    I have already done a kitchen declutter and am currently working my way through the food stash. I am trying to lose weight and eat for health so try to avoid too many starchy carbs. So things like dried pasta, rice, cereals etc will only get used when my kids come to visit.

    I was thinking about getting a mini oven for my solo meals and save the big oven for family gatherings. I won't be using it for baking etc.

    Anyway DS2 will be her for dinner tonight, not sure what we are having but as it's going to be a scorcher, probably something with a salad.

    Although I have loved living with my son and enjoyed cooking for him it will be nice to see the food bill go down.......
    Originally posted by lessonlearned
    Hello and welcome, a mini oven is a great idea for singles. I bought a halogen one and rarely use my big oven these days.
    Slimming World at target
    GC Nov 16.50.
    GC Dec 24.89
    GC Jan 2.50
    • caronc
    • By caronc 19th Jun 17, 12:44 PM
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    caronc
    Good afternoon everyone,
    Welcome lessonslearned

    I managed to tip my recycling wheelie bin over when putting it out - what a mess think I've got it all now. It hadn't been out for a few weeks so was pretty full.....I
    I need to do something with the diced pork cheek that is now defrosted. I was thinking thai red curry but have a notion for chilli - think it was our chat the other day re kidney beans/baked beans sparked that. Either way it will be for tomorrow as the meat is quite fatty so I want to cook and chill it so I can lift any fat off it, consequently I'm not sure what to have for dinner tonight. I think the chilli may win as I the veg I have lurking in the fridge is probably more suited to that.
    Breakfast was a re-run of the last few days and lunch will be the same as yesterday- mini pork pies and salad
    Feb GC £122/£100, Mar GC £131/£150, April GC £150/£160, May GC £150/£150, June GC £117/£120
    • meg72
    • By meg72 19th Jun 17, 12:53 PM
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    meg72
    Well my trip to CS went well, the lady in there was amazed that I had managed to fit so much in and on my trolley. We had a nice chat and she is going to get one herself. I managed to come out with a spend on 50p on a sun hat for in the garden.

    As I had to pass the Taste Not Waste Shop called in to see what they had and got this lovely lot for £2, the bananas, apples and bread were free. The large silver thingy is a bag of 67 orange flavoured hot chocolate, 2 of which are now chilling in the fridge

    Slimming World at target
    GC Nov 16.50.
    GC Dec 24.89
    GC Jan 2.50
    • PasturesNew
    • By PasturesNew 19th Jun 17, 2:12 PM
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    PasturesNew
    ...lady in there was amazed that I had managed to fit so much in and on my trolley....
    Originally posted by meg72
    Be careful ... they have a weight limit, even though most are quite robust. ..... don't break it and wish you'd been more careful!

    It's hot, hot, hot here today, although I've had the curtains closed and several windows open for a through-draught - and now the sun's moved round the side, so it's cooler.

    I've scoffed randomly, including:
    - one choc ice
    - a portion of honey/peanut cornflakes
    - 1½ tomato sandwiches
    - an egg/salad cream sandwich.
    • Farway
    • By Farway 19th Jun 17, 2:44 PM
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    Farway
    Loving this 45p loaf compared to the 36p loaf ... I might convert, I can afford an extra 9p a fortnight
    Originally posted by PasturesNew
    Careful PN, that is the more expensive pizza & bread found to be tastier than the cheapo stuff, next thing will be M & S + Waitrose

    Meg72 Hope you are on trolley commison. I think as many on here have found just how handy and enabling [word pinched from PN] they are

    Hello & welcome Lessonlearned

    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.

    Nil breakfast then into town.

    Had a slight mishap with the trolley, it 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

    Asda is still being refurbed, now everything is shuffled around and shelves empty. Found the YS section but waste of space, nothing took my fancy or needed

    Lunch was standard cheese salady sarnie again

    Waitrose provided tonight's dinner, YS small steak pie. Had them before, OK at reduced price not at full one though

    So despite heat I will pop it in the oven and have it with Actify HM chips and the LO beans from the other day. I am going to use the Lild on offer bakers for the chips, slightly MSE 'cos they are 49p Kg, as opposed to Lidl frozen chips at 58p Kg

    Gardening is just the watering, and those cherries are now getting to the nearly black stage. I feel a photo coming on in next few days
    • 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
    • 11,966 Posts
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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...
    ******************
    • Hollyharvey
    • By Hollyharvey 19th Jun 17, 5:48 PM
    • 385 Posts
    • 2,656 Thanks
    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......
    Feb GC £122/£100, Mar GC £131/£150, April GC £150/£160, May GC £150/£150, June GC £117/£120
    • 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.
    Feb GC £122/£100, Mar GC £131/£150, April GC £150/£160, May GC £150/£150, June GC £117/£120
    • 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.
    Feb GC £122/£100, Mar GC £131/£150, April GC £150/£160, May GC £150/£150, June GC £117/£120
    • 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.
    ******************
    • caronc
    • By caronc 19th Jun 17, 9:49 PM
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    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
    Feb GC £122/£100, Mar GC £131/£150, April GC £150/£160, May GC £150/£150, June GC £117/£120
    • 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.
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