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March 2011 Grocery Challenge

edited 28 February 2011 at 1:01AM in Old Style MoneySaving
1.5K replies 167.1K views
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  • rosie383rosie383 Forumite
    5K posts
    NickJW congrats on being debt free. How great does that feel?

    I'm sticking with £240 for this month again. I failed miserably last month, going £20 over. NOT happy with myself.:mad:

    This month I have done a complete meal plan including work lunches for dh and made a proper shopping list and stuck to it. Have already spent £130 but that is all my fish and meat for the month and includes stuff from AP and swinco that will do for more than the month. It feels great looking at the menu and knowing exactly what I am cooking for that day or the next, and knowing what to take out of the freezer in plenty of time.

    Does anyone else do like me? I made a really comprehensive shopping list according to my menu, and I already have 3 things that I need to go and buy, like salt.:( I should be ok though, as I have these wee bits to get and should just need fresh fruit and veg and milk the rest of the month. :cool:
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  • quintwinsquintwins Forumite
    5.2K posts
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    rosie383 wrote: »
    NickJW congrats on being debt free. How great does that feel?

    I'm sticking with £240 for this month again. I failed miserably last month, going £20 over. NOT happy with myself.:mad:

    This month I have done a complete meal plan including work lunches for dh and made a proper shopping list and stuck to it. Have already spent £130 but that is all my fish and meat for the month and includes stuff from AP and swinco that will do for more than the month. It feels great looking at the menu and knowing exactly what I am cooking for that day or the next, and knowing what to take out of the freezer in plenty of time.

    Does anyone else do like me? I made a really comprehensive shopping list according to my menu, and I already have 3 things that I need to go and buy, like salt.:( I should be ok though, as I have these wee bits to get and should just need fresh fruit and veg and milk the rest of the month. :cool:

    i'm trying this this month altho i havent been shopping yet and have most of my meat in already, at the end of last month i decided to go fortnightly to see how it went and it went really well, i did my meal plan for the month yesterday and will be going shopping on friday for the few extra bits we need then hopefully teh rest of the month will be in the farm shop

    congrates NickJW bet you feel great now it's time to jump on the savings wagon :) were lucky to never have been in any debt but were trying to save for a house (or plot of land it was orginally a plot of land but right now that seems very far fetched) i'm sure once we manage that we'll be saving again to build or be mortage free lol theres always some goal to push us foward and give us focus :)


    todays another NSD for me :)
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  • mrs-moneypennymrs-moneypenny Forumite
    15.5K posts
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    re breadmakers mines a hinari it wants the water in first but once youve put the flour in it seems to float and the other ingredients sit on top of it so the yeasts the last thing in and stays dry.
    glad the person who asked the question has now found their instructions inline. they are brill bits of kit once you suss them out, i wouldnt be without mine now.

    got to go out for eggs at some point today so will edit sig after ive shopped. i havnet had to start a march one yet
    SPC~12 ot 124

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  • Winged_oneWinged_one Forumite
    610 posts
    I had a lunchtime seminar across the city yesterday, so I took an extra 20 minutes while there (from my actual lunchbreak time) to dash into Ald* and get some "super 6" veg. French beans, baby corn, mangetout, parsnips and courgettes. We use a lot of veg, I was already planning 3 stir fry dinners, and for €3.45 I was delighted to get a bagfull!

    I do get the S6 when I can (at least, whatever's on that we eat), but I am rarely near an Ald* so it's great to get them like that. Used a handful each of mangetout and french beans last night, and end of the previous courgette (macaroni cheese), and will use some of those 3 and the sweetcorn tomorrow night in Nasi Goreng.

    I was impressed too with the milk lasting this week. As we were without DD last week, I had dropped from 6l to 4l, but we still hadn't used it all. We had a rice pudding on Sunday to use some, I made mash potato on Mon, we all had extra milk to drink or cocoa the past few days, but it was officially out of date Mon. But it was still fine in cheese sauce last night (I tasted before using) and that used up the last of it. My other plan, if it was gone over, was to make a batch of scones (might do that at the weekend as I still only bought 4l this week, and we only started that last night so by use-by of 5th, we might not be finished).

    Leftover mac'n'cheese for lunch today, after 3 days of leftover roast beef sambos. Yum for all 3!
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  • natzininatzini Forumite
    561 posts
    ✭✭
    Can you put me down for £130 for 2 please?

    Need to get back on budget!

    Thanks :)

    Un sou est un sou
  • [QUOTE=rosie383;41645988]NickJW congrats on being debt free. How great does that feel?

    I'm sticking with £240 for this month again. I failed miserably last month, going £20 over. NOT happy with myself.:mad:

    This month I have done a complete meal plan including work lunches for dh and made a proper shopping list and stuck to it. Have already spent £130 but that is all my fish and meat for the month and includes stuff from AP and swinco that will do for more than the month. It feels great looking at the menu and knowing exactly what I am cooking for that day or the next, and knowing what to take out of the freezer in plenty of time.

    Does anyone else do like me? I made a really comprehensive shopping list according to my menu, and I already have 3 things that I need to go and buy, like salt.:( I should be ok though, as I have these wee bits to get and should just need fresh fruit and veg and milk the rest of the month. :cool:
    [/QUOTE]

    hello! :wave:
    This month i have done exactly as you have - i have written my 4wk meal plan, written the list of food needed for that plan, and then checked the cupboards and ordered what i needed. it worked out that my shop came to more than it usually would for a monthly shop but i look at it like this:
    - because last month my challenge was to not buy anything until the cupboards were empty it means they are now.... EMPTY... so i have had to restock on a lot of essentials.
    - i am cooking EVERYTHING from scratch which means we are all eating far healthier, i get to try new recipes, and it costs less than buying processed foods,
    - i am cooking in DOUBLE quantities. so when i make a pie for example, i am making two and freezing one - this means that yes it is costing me more this month, but next month i will have saved on those ingredients.

    so really, my big shop should last me for two months (except milk, fruit, eggs and marge). i am making my own bread, and have a couple of loaves and rolls in the freezer that were reduced on last day, and i have parcooked and blanched loads of veg so i have fresh veg all month. i have even made biscuits and cakes and frozen them so we have treats for lunches instead of buying penguins or whatever.

    so this is the trial month and i guess it will pay dividends next month when i have a freezer full of delicious home made ready made meals. lol. i agree with you - it makes you feel so much morre organised knowing you have all the ingredients in that you need, and you know what you're having for tea, and what meat to take out, and... eventually OH may get the hint, use his initiative, and put tea on before i get home... hahahahahahaaa :rotfl::rotfl::rotfl::rotfl: wish there was a smiley of a pig flying. lol.

    hope this helps, and hope you are successful with your plan. you will have to keep us updated with how it is going. :T
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  • natzininatzini Forumite
    561 posts
    ✭✭
    I need to do this to stay on track!
    hello! :wave:
    This month i have done exactly as you have - i have written my 4wk meal plan, written the list of food needed for that plan, and then checked the cupboards and ordered what i needed. it worked out that my shop came to more than it usually would for a monthly shop but i look at it like this:
    - because last month my challenge was to not buy anything until the cupboards were empty it means they are now.... EMPTY... so i have had to restock on a lot of essentials.
    - i am cooking EVERYTHING from scratch which means we are all eating far healthier, i get to try new recipes, and it costs less than buying processed foods,
    - i am cooking in DOUBLE quantities. so when i make a pie for example, i am making two and freezing one - this means that yes it is costing me more this month, but next month i will have saved on those ingredients.

    so really, my big shop should last me for two months (except milk, fruit, eggs and marge). i am making my own bread, and have a couple of loaves and rolls in the freezer that were reduced on last day, and i have parcooked and blanched loads of veg so i have fresh veg all month. i have even made biscuits and cakes and frozen them so we have treats for lunches instead of buying penguins or whatever.

    so this is the trial month and i guess it will pay dividends next month when i have a freezer full of delicious home made ready made meals. lol. i agree with you - it makes you feel so much morre organised knowing you have all the ingredients in that you need, and you know what you're having for tea, and what meat to take out, and... eventually OH may get the hint, use his initiative, and put tea on before i get home... hahahahahahaaa :rotfl::rotfl::rotfl::rotfl: wish there was a smiley of a pig flying. lol.

    hope this helps, and hope you are successful with your plan. you will have to keep us updated with how it is going. :T

    Un sou est un sou
  • SunnydaySunnyday Forumite
    3.9K posts
    Part of the Furniture Combo Breaker
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    M0neysav3r wrote: »
    Oh dear, another failure on the bread front :( It smelt nice whilst baking but when I tipped it out the bottom of the loaf was an inch thick of flour!! I've found the instructions online and like you say the water should go in first - I will try again tomorrow :o

    Hi M0neysav3r - I always put the water in the bm first, add the salt and butter to the water and then put the flour on top, i level the flour off right up to the edges so that the water can`t be seen and then add the sugar and dried yeast on top in a little heap. This makes sure that the yeast doesn`t get wet before its supposed to, i always use the timer on mine and doing it this way has stopped me getting the occasional duff loaf.

    HTH

    SD
    Planning on starting the GC again soon :p
  • M0neysav3rM0neysav3r Forumite
    237 posts
    hello! :wave:
    This month i have done exactly as you have - i have written my 4wk meal plan, written the list of food needed for that plan, and then checked the cupboards and ordered what i needed. it worked out that my shop came to more than it usually would for a monthly shop but i look at it like this:
    - because last month my challenge was to not buy anything until the cupboards were empty it means they are now.... EMPTY... so i have had to restock on a lot of essentials.
    - i am cooking EVERYTHING from scratch which means we are all eating far healthier, i get to try new recipes, and it costs less than buying processed foods,
    - i am cooking in DOUBLE quantities. so when i make a pie for example, i am making two and freezing one - this means that yes it is costing me more this month, but next month i will have saved on those ingredients.

    Great Idea! I've never actually thought of doing a 4 week meal plan, although do a weekly one. Do you find you're eating the same things a few times that month though?

    Re the Breadmaker - 'touch wood' this mornings has gone according to plan! I just put the water in first etc and left the yeast on top, so far it looks good and has actually mixed well, yesterdays was a pile of yucky mush at this stage, but has about an hour left to bake yet.
    :j No Debts (Other than HUGE mortgage! :eek: )
    Generally trying to cut back where possible :j
    GC - March £143.82 / £200 Feb £156.03 / £150 Oops! Jan £180.78/£200:D
  • edited 2 March 2011 at 12:06PM
    never_too_oldnever_too_old Forumite
    3K posts
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    edited 2 March 2011 at 12:06PM
    Hippeechiq wrote: »
    Well done you Penny :T
    jammydodger Sorry to read about cat hun :grouphug:

    Well, my eggs were fine, so a NSD here :)

    Can I ask what people use to make their shortcrust pastry with? I know my oven is playing up, and has been for several months, but I don't seem to be able to make a decent pastry -or at least pastry for a quiche - to save my life lately.

    I've used ½ Marge & Lard all my adult life, but was just wondering what everyone else uses? as regardless of handling as little as poss, keeping my hands & kitchen cool, and chilling 30mins before rolling out, it still shrinks and is as tough as old boots :(

    Yet the pastry I made for my pasties on Saturday, whereas not as good as I used to make, wasn't bad at all. And interestingly, on Saturday I used MgD0ugals flour which I bought a while back when it was on offer. Have used McD0ugalls all my adult life too, but in and effort to cut down, have been using SM Smart Price Flour.....hmmm :think: maybe I've answered my own question there...perhaps it's the flour??

    i made pastry last night for my chicken pie, 8 0z flour ( basic mr t)
    2 0z lard and 2 oz marg, all whizzed in mixer and cold water added then chilled in fridge, so sounds exactly same as you had no complaints at dinner last night,:D

    well done NickJW it must be an amazing feelingx
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