Weezl's phase 1- recipe testing and frugalisation- come one, come all!

edited 4 April 2010 at 7:33AM in How much have you saved?
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  • FrankieMFrankieM Forumite
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    Allegra and weezl and lesley that looks great! Well done and thank you.

    Just a quick question weezl will you be giving us an idea of how many snacks are available per person per day and also how much bread?
  • FrankieMFrankieM Forumite
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    My shopping has arrived and as first thought, I'm really not sure where I'm going to put it all!
    I've just kind of 'stuffed it in' for the moment. I'll start dealing with it properly on Monday...DH has just said 'I hope you bought bacon...its not on the plan says I....you mean we could have been having bacon sandwiches all this week....!

    Mmmm, wish me luck, ladies...I think my DH could be the closest we have to a real-life Bob ;)
  • pammyj74pammyj74 Forumite
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    I have been given a breadmaker off a kind freecycler today :D
    Is there a very basic recipe for white bread?
    What ingredients do I need, I have read I need fast action yeast and strong bread flour. do I need milk powder? if so, are there different sorts?

    thanks
    MPs left feb '08 276- Dec 13 36 :T MB Jan 10 ~ £82,377 Dec 13 ~ £29987
    EMFD was Feb 32 :eek: NOW Dec 2013 its Dec 2016
    MF new target Dec 16 REACHED!! :j
  • edited 14 April 2010 at 1:14PM
    AllegraAllegra Forumite
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    edited 14 April 2010 at 1:14PM
    Warning ! Work in progress !

    Okay, just general ideas atm to help testers - I plan to keep adding to this as new tips/ day by day suggestions etc. come in. Weezl, if anything of importance for the Tuesday start needs to be added in at this stage, let me know and I'll do it straight away :)

    Bake 4 loaves of bread at a time; leave one loaf out and freeze the other 3. Options: slice all the loaves before freezing them to avoid the last minute panic when you forget to defrost a loaf in time. Individual slices defrost in minutes. Breadcrumbs can be swept up into a container kept in the freezer and used in recipes at a later date.
    Slice one loaf and make it up into sandwiches - they can be popped into a lunchbox straight from the freezer and will be defrosted and ready to eat by lunchtime; freeze the remaining two loaves whole or as half-loaves and defrost as needed.

    You can get ahead on any recipes that require shortcrust pastry by making a big batch of pastry and freeze in recipe-sized portions; defrost the night before and the next day the pastry will be ready to roll and fill. Delia's onion tart can be made up whole in advance and frozen.

    Pizza dough can be made in a triple batch and dough frozen in individual batches, as can pizza topping sauce. Take out of the freezer the night before so the dinner becomes no more than a quick assembly job. Or, if you have a lot of space in the freezer, you can be really organised and roll out and spread with topping a month's supply at once and freeze individually. Can be cooked straight from the freezer.

    Amatriciana sauce can be cooked as a large batch and meal-sized portions frozen in empty margarine tubs or tupperware containers until needed. And if you are only cooking for one or two, silicone muffin moulds are great for freezing small amounts of food - just pop the rounds out once frozen and store in a plastic bag in the freezer. You can also use moulds to freeze small amounts of pate, hummus and the like.

    If you grate your block of cheese as soon as you get the shopping home and pop it into a container in the freezer you will avoid it disappearing in clandestine sandwiches. as well as saving time when preparing the evening meal. Same goes for bacon - slice or chop and freeze in meal-sized portions. And if you can't face all the weighing out and portioning up at this stage, don't worry - just chop up small, spread on baking sheet and freeze. Once frozen, remove with a spatula or fish slice and pop in a plastic bag - just take out of the freezer and weigh out as necessary for each dish.

    Pulses can all be soaked and cooked in one big batch, then frozen in meal-sized portions. Cooked pulses weigh roughly twice as much as their dried counterparts, so bear that in mind when following a recipe.

    Bacon and onion pudding takes a long time to steam, so it's best to steam one in the batch cooking day then put the other one in overnight and freeze it. (If you have a humongous slow cooker you might be able to steam both at once).

    The order you use your food processor in is pretty important, doing the tangy bean pate and then the liver pate-no need to wash up in between, not so the other way around. Ditto apple curd then seed butter.

    Chicken and onion pies can be made in a single batch and frozen until needed. Make stock with the carcass of the cooked chicken. Stock can then be refrigrated for up to 4 days, or frozen.

    You can get ahead on endless onion chopping you can let the food processor take the strain and do loads in that, and then fridge some in a sealed container and freeze some.

    And if you only cook for one, or have trouble making your onions yield exact amounts, just use what you need from a chopped onion and freeze the rest. If you keep a bag in the freezer and just add to it you can then use the amount needed straight from frozen.

    Getting ahead on spanish omelette: you can freeze eggs. For the omlette you could make the filling and leave it to cool then portion it out in bags, beat the required egg in a cup then pour onto the filling, seal and freeze. When you need it just get them out in the morning and leave to thaw, cook as normal. You can also slide a cracked egg onto a plate and into a ziplock bag for fried eggs. They look a bit cloudy on the yolk before cooking and they are not runny yolks but they are fine otherwise.

    Mince can be braised in single batch then made up into cottage pie/chili as required and frozen.
  • AllegraAllegra Forumite
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    pammyj74 wrote: »
    I have been given a breadmaker off a kind freecycler today :D
    Is there a very basic recipe for white bread?
    What ingredients do I need, I have read I need fast action yeast and strong bread flour. do I need milk powder? if so, are there different sorts?

    thanks

    Here is the basic white bread recipe for my breadmaker (morphy richards).
    To make a 2 lb loaf you will need

    Water 1 1/2 cups
    Skimmed milk powder 4 tbsp
    Sunflower oil 4 tbsp
    Sugar 3 tbsp
    Salt 2 tsp
    Strong white bread flour 4 cups
    Fast action yeast 1 1/4 tsp

    Use setting 1 Basic
  • edited 3 April 2010 at 4:02PM
    weezl74weezl74 Forumite
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    edited 3 April 2010 at 4:02PM
    FrankieM wrote: »
    Allegra and weezl and lesley that looks great! Well done and thank you.

    Just a quick question weezl will you be giving us an idea of how many snacks are available per person per day and also how much bread?

    thanks frankie :) it was a bit of a labour of love I've spent nearly 7 hrs on that yesterday and today!:eek::o

    Bread wise I can be very helpful: there are 5 slices per person perday spread out over the month, but often it's more like 3ish for brekkie and 4 ish for lunch because on half the brekkies you don't have toast because you have a bowl of porridge :)

    snacks-wise, I'll publish what they are and let you guys apportion them out, only thing is there's enough carrot cake for a piece a day :D so I've put that in the planner.

    How do you think it's looking frankie, is DH scared?

    xxx
    Allegra wrote: »


    To avoid the remains of roast chicken disappearing, you can make the chicken and onion pies straight after Sunday roast chicken dinner, then freeze. Make stock with the carcass.




    Absolutely loving the batch cooking list- what a lot of hard work you've done today-thank you :)
    no longer a roast chicken allegra, I'm afraid :( 2 meals of chook with bubble and squeak and stuffing and 2 of pie :)

    :hello:Jonathan 'Fergie' Fergus William, born 05/03/09, 7lb 4.4oz:hello:
    :)Benjamin 'Kezzie' Kester Jacob, born 18/03/10, 7lb 5oz:)
    cash neutral gifts 2011, value of purchased gifts/actual paid/amount earnt to cover it £67/£3.60/£0
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  • FrankieMFrankieM Forumite
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    weezl I think DH is a bit scared, but if it gets too much for him then I'll make sure he's got food that he definately likes for breakfast and lunch and see how he goes for the dinner.
    I have explained that we want honest feedback and in some ways he's perfect for the challenge cause he's probably slightly less accommodating. That doesn't mean he's a nightmare...I wouldn't want anyone to think negatively of my lovely DH!
  • FrankieMFrankieM Forumite
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    I'm really excited, so hopefully it all goes really well.

    Allegra The batch cooking guide is fabulous. It gives me loads to be getting on with come Monday morning.
  • weezl74weezl74 Forumite
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    apple curd recipe now published to the usual place :)

    :hello:Jonathan 'Fergie' Fergus William, born 05/03/09, 7lb 4.4oz:hello:
    :)Benjamin 'Kezzie' Kester Jacob, born 18/03/10, 7lb 5oz:)
    cash neutral gifts 2011, value of purchased gifts/actual paid/amount earnt to cover it £67/£3.60/£0
    january grocery challenge, feed 4 of us for £40
  • artybearartybear Forumite
    978 Posts
    Oh god im scared.

    Im not sure if my cooking skills are up to this
    In art as in love, instinct is enough
    Anatole France

    Things are beautiful if you love them
    Jean Anouilh
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