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    • Pink.
    • By Pink. 26th Dec 08, 11:15 AM
    • 17,431Posts
    • 40,365Thanks
    January 2009 Grocery Challenge
    • #1
    • 26th Dec 08, 11:15 AM
    January 2009 Grocery Challenge 26th Dec 08 at 11:15 AM
    Hello everyone,

    Welcome to the first Grocery Challenge of 2009.

    If your new month starts early feel free to join this thread, or if you're still working on your December budget, then keep on posting in the December Grocery Challenge

    As always this challenge is to reduce your own grocery budget to levels that you will be pleased with, not forgetting that we always recommend that you stay inside your own comfort levels and take things gently one step at a time. Remember that this is not a's designed to take you and your grocery spending to a level you are happy with.

    If you are new to the challenge I have quoted the advice from Galtizz below which will help you get started.

    Please post into this thread for help and advice and support at any time. Good luck to everyone taking part!

    I have said this before, but for all the newbies to the challenge;

    For the first month I took a guess at the budget but I really had no idea how much I was spending.

    I found the best thing is to have a guess the first month but SAVE ALL OF YOUR RECEIPTS (and yes, that does include the ones from the local shop when you run out of milk ), then at the end of the month add them all up and have a look if you were on budget, if not, it doesn't matter because your budget was a guess. For the next month you can use the total of your receipts and take a bit off to get a realistic budget, just shave off as much as you think you can, it could be £1 a week or £20 a week.

    If you are currently spending £200 a month don't suddenly drop it to £100 - you'll never do it but if you cut £20 a month off for a few months you'll get there eventually without feeling you're missing out on anything.

    You might think you've done everything you can in the first month but someone always comes up with a new idea and, if you try it you often find you save a bit more (unless you are SarahSaver who is an expert at this and could only save more if she turned her back garden into a paddy field and lived on rice ) In the first month I thought, I'm planning meals, I couldn't possibly save any more, but then I started double cooking and freezing, and making soup instead of buying it in tins.

    I've been doing this since Feb but only saved ALL of my receipts last month, it has given me a much better idea of where it is all going. Budget for next month is £80 for 2 of us, I'll start on 30/4. I could probably save more, by eating different foods but I can afford to live on £80, I have saved a lot of money since Feb. and I don't waste food or money any more. So I'm happy with my budget.
    by Galtizz
    For guidelines on posting in this thread please read the second post in this thread.

    For everyone's targets and totals for the month please read posts #3 and #4 on this thread.

    For the Grocery challenge Recipe Index please see posts #5 and #6 on this thread.

    I hope everyone has a great month and can I take this opportunity to wish you all a very Happy New Year.

    Last edited by Pink.; 28-12-2008 at 12:18 PM.
Page 45
    • kalojac
    • By kalojac 8th Jan 09, 7:21 PM
    • 422 Posts
    • 5,363 Thanks
    Went shopping again last night in Tesco still working within the budget and am totalling around £131 at present will need to spend around £7-8 on the butchers for mince and vegetables from the local farm shop but got the rest of the ingredients to keep us fed and watered until at least next Thursday! Got reduced yum yums from MR T last night for 20p for 4, the boys enjoyed them, also got Tesco Value pancakes (mini) ones 6 for 29p and they've been scoffed so if anyone else is like me and tends to buy mid-high range brands definitely give these a go, they taste great and they do the job.
  • gillst
    Managed another nsd which is a good thing seeings as how I have already spent more than half the budget. DSs had chinese takeaway that they got themselves and DH and I had the leftover fish pie, baked beans (again) and grilled tomatoes topped with cheese. It was torture having leftovers with the smell of chinese in the house. Still need to get some veggies and a joint of meat for the weekend. Probably get chicken which is cheaper than other meat. Will also get a sack of potatoes tomorrow which are £7 a sack from a local farm shop - a lot cheaper than the supermarkets, and we need to go out tomorrow in the car and will be passing, so will save fuel getting them now rather than making a specific journey next week, when we need them.
  • orchid-96
    Just had my (small) Mr T delivery and was pleased at what I got for my money...I had a £10 voucher to use up (freebie for them messing up my order at christmas) bit annoyed as had ordered a pack of the nappies on offer at 7.33 but they substituted them with a pack of very similar ones but which were 8.98 and with 8 less in them grrrr.. I also got a pack of those butchers choice sausages (the pork ones) for 99p as we really like them......

    I have got a question, I got some Port loin chops (fairly thin) and I had wanted to do a pork stew (jamie olivers new book) but it says stewing pork - does anyone know, could I just chop this up to use? or does anyone have a good way to cook it with cider as pork loins? I wanted to cook something tomorrow that I could freeze for next week as ds is out tomorrow and we alwasy have fish and chips (from the freezer)

    anyway any ideas would be appreciated...
    Jun GC £250.00/£12.40 NSD 3 / 30

    January 200/198.91 February 200/239.28 March 200/230
    April 250/no idea May 250/265.95

    Sealed pot challenge number 648
    Hi Orchid

    I do a mustard pork concoction- for 2 I do (approx measurements)
    you seal the 2 pork steaks in a frying pan with a little oil
    add a pork stock cube -beef is too strong -
    a good spoon of whole grain mustard
    and about 1 cup cider/apple juice heat until combined (check for seasoning and if its a little too sweet add another stock cube)
    put a lid on and simmer until pork steak is cooked through (be carefull not to overcook as the meat will go dry)
    remove the lid and reduce the sauce down -it should go sticky and thick
    Its lovely with crushed potatoes and veggies
    -6 -8 -3 -1.5 -2.5 -3 -1.5-3.5
  • WelshWoofer
    Was desperately trying to hang on until Saturday to go shopping but I had to admit defeat and pop to MR Ts for a few bits - milk, chick peas, grapes, onion, garlic were on the list and 3 packs of SnackaJacks leapt into the basket too! Wasn't too bad I suppose - came to approx £4.50 (now added to sig)

    Have written the big shopping list for the weekend and meal planned for next week - it'll be quite an expensive one as I'm running low in the cupboards and freezer and the fridge is basically empty!

    Made a potato, lentil and chickpea curry for tea - was OK but could have done with being a bit spicier. There's plenty left over so I'll see if it develops a bit overnight but if not does anyone have a suggestion on how to rev it up a bit?
    January grocery spending - £82.73/ £120
  • dink1
    Hi guys!
    Done a good two week shop so far so good and hope to keep on target. good luck to other users. Dink1
    JanGC £250/£82 far:weight loss 1lb cc250/£86/cm40/£9.50
  • Julimk
    OK I have done it! I have ordered a 2nd freezer.:rolleyes: The freezer space in my fridge/freezer is permanently stuffed & it limits how much I can batch cook or pick up whoopsies, as no space.

    Today’s ‘top up’ shop was just 1 loaf of bread! I do have everything in to make bread but as 1 loaf last 2-3 weeks it really is not going to make a huge difference. And DD has always declared that she doesn’t like the HM bread, however much fun she has had making it.

    Rachelmk – I would suggest garam masala (Indian spice mix) and possibly yoghurt, I have Anjum Anand’s ‘Indian Every Day’ which has been checked by Indian ex as being authentically Indian & quite a few recipes make up curry & then at the end (ie after cooked) add just ½ tsp or so of garam masala. Yoghurt would tone it back down & make it more creamy. HTH
  • TheBees
    Orchid 96 -I'm sure you can use the pork you've got for the recipe. It might cook a bit quicker if its less fatty so you could cut down on the cooking time to stop it going rubbery or tough. I've also got that new J Oliver book. Have you tried the Chicken Korma recipe.? We really liked it and amazingly everyone liked the chickpeas in it. Also did the fish wrapped in smokey bacon which everyone liked too.

    Today I made savoury mince roughly following the J Oliver recipe from the Ministry of Food book. Managed to smuggle in two carrots, a courgette, half a swede and onions into the mixture with 500g minced beef and two handfuls of oats. Made a suet crust pastry topping for half of it and froze the rest.

    Tom night we're having macaroni cheese. I normally make the cheese sauce in the microwave and always do double quantity so I can freeze a spare for the future.

    The Lidl washing liquid smells lovely and seems to be doing the job well.

    Good luck everyone.
    Mortgage Free in 3 part 2 challenge - pay off £9000
    Sealed Pot Challenge 416 - target £500
    • Sylvan
    • By Sylvan 8th Jan 09, 8:53 PM
    • 344 Posts
    • 2,090 Thanks
    Managed another NSD today (6th this month), thanks to poor DH. I rang him to say there was hardly any semi-skimmed milk left and, since he really couldn't be bothered to go all the way down to Mr T's, he promised he would forego having cereal for the next 2 nights (well, he did have some just now, but used skimmed) so there'd be some there for DS4 in the mornings and we'll get some of the cheaper milk at the weekend.
    That does commit him to taking me to a supermarket on Saturday though:rolleyes:
    Time flies like an arrow.
    Fruit flies like a banana.
    Money talks, but chocolate SINGS

    "I used to be snow white but I drifted" (A seasonal quote from the incomparable Miss West)
    • Toonie
    • By Toonie 8th Jan 09, 9:38 PM
    • 727 Posts
    • 3,514 Thanks
    Well, BF got milk and bread today, so have updated my sig. Will be going out tomorrow and may get a few veggies and a bit of fruit at the market whilst shopping ( have to get birthday presents-I've got four in the next three weeks to buy for). I haven't had a chance to go to a market for a while, so hoping to get some potatoes, carrots, apples and oranges.
    Took part in the Cancer Research Shine Half Marathon on 27th September...5 hours and 24 minutes
    Old Style Resolution - Make soup once a week to use up bits from the fridge.
    • MoneyQueen
    • By MoneyQueen 8th Jan 09, 9:42 PM
    • 907 Posts
    • 4,205 Thanks
    Hi, Hope everyone is doing good

    Haven't posted this week.. here I am with my figures £16.01 spent till now this month.. I guess I have been doing well considering I have a budget of £100 this month

    I and DH have changed to Lidl Porridge instead of ReadyBrek/ Oatibix and TBH we can't tell the difference.

    I have shopped at Farmfoods this week and have found them very cheap for frozen food in comparison to ASDA. All the stuff bought will last us two weeks atleast.

    I created a shooping list on MySupermarket with Asda Prices and took it along to Farmfoods yesterday. Bought all the stuff that was cheaper in there.

    Will buy the rest from Asda tomorrow. I pass both of them on my way home so no extra fuel spent.

    Good Luck everyone
  • elizabunny
    Hi everyone, just updated my signature as I popped into Mr T's tonight. Nothing much doing in the bakery reduced items, 9pm ish. All I could see were a few bits reduced by a few pennies -afraid that doesn't do it for me Mr T. Wondering if they just dump everything now. Still I bagged a few bargains from the Christmas leftovers. Got jars of Cranberry Sauce greatly reduced and long sell by dates. Jars of Pickled Onions greatly reduced long sell by dates. Jars of Chesnuts -all reduced and long sell by dates and 2 jars of pickled quails eggs for around 62p each -should have been around £2.70p each not sure what to create with these :confused: but I'm sure I'll think of something.......... unless any of you know better. Also got 2 packs of decent sausages, 2 litres of milk, 500ml Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Kitchen Roll, Loo Roll, Hair Conditioner £1.06 instead of £4 something and Chick Peas. So I don't reckon that's too bad for £13.79p. Night all.
    Sealed Pot Challenge 7 Member 022
    5:2 Diet started 28/1/2013 only 13lbs lost due to Xmas 2013 blip.
  • mummy2mygirls
    oh noooo i have been looking on the aproved foods website and have a basket load of things to order!!!! going to wait as he is going to put some more things on the website tomorrow!!! i just no i wont resist and get all the lovely nice things at really good prices..........
    GC: Nov: £60.22/£450 Oct: £338.48/£450, July: £363.05/£450, June £447.98/£500
    £2 savers No68: £104/£100

    mummy to: 8yr, 5yr, 3yr, 2yr, 1yr. No6 Due Mar 2013 My world.
    • MoneyQueen
    • By MoneyQueen 8th Jan 09, 9:52 PM
    • 907 Posts
    • 4,205 Thanks
    Hi Rachelmk, As JulimK suggested , Garam Masala is always good for curries. If you don't have some at hand then the following also works

    If you have dry red whole chillies. Break 1 in 2 pieces(don't break in lot many pieces as it won't taste good if you eat one by mistake). Fry it in a little oil (1 tsp will be enough). Add the curry to that. and it should be hot (very hot actually) by morning. You can add some cumin seeds also in hot oil before mixing it with the curry.

    Also just wanted to mention - if you do add yogurt, heat the curry at a very low flame as high heat may curdle it and spoil the texture.. DH mentioned this. He is Indian.
  • fallen angel shelley
    I made my quiche's tonight and have had a taste or two of it and it's yummmmmy, just gona do abit of tweaking with the recipe next time and make my own pastry case, I was amazed a how easy they are to make. just put the bread maker on, washed-up and cleaned up the kitchen, gona have a brew and then head for bed, DS has to be up half an hour early in the morning because he has an exam. DS shocked me when he got home tonight, when he finished college at lunch time he went to his mates house and they made pasta, told me he used a tin of meatballs in sauce, tin of toms and put chillies in it as well and he cooked the pasta and informed me "yes mother it was cooked right, not soggy and not hard" I didn't even know he could cook , well thats it know he can start cooking some meals round here from now on.

    Shelley x
    Back on MSE again! to take control of my finances and not let it control me. May grocery challenge £41.96/140
    • Baileys Babe
    • By Baileys Babe 8th Jan 09, 10:42 PM
    • 2,517 Posts
    • 13,070 Thanks
    Baileys Babe
    Need to update my signature as this morning went out for my regular weekly coffee (£3, 2 drinks) & chat with friends. I have also placed an order with the wholesalers but won't have to pay for that until the end of the month (approx £60, will update when I know the exact figure).
    • angelatgraceland
    • By angelatgraceland 8th Jan 09, 10:48 PM
    • 3,318 Posts
    • 23,074 Thanks
    Tracked my order with Approved Foods and there was a problem with it due to me ordering duplicate items-plus he said he didnt really know wht it got delayed. Emailed them at about 8.30 and had email back 15 mins later! So-a few emails back and forth and all sorted-its top of his list for attention tomorrow. didnt expect it sorted tonight! Wish Id done it earlier now!
    mummy2mygirls-Do they change the offers on a Friday then? I will see what I think of this order when it arrive-dont know how long delivery takes???
    I seem to think I will be ordering regularly from Approved foods! Cancelled Asda order rather than moving it to another date as if Im buying like this I may need to rethink shopping habits!
    Annual Grocery budget 2018 is £1500 pa £125 calendar month £28.84 pw for 3 adults
    • Kiwisaver
    • By Kiwisaver 9th Jan 09, 4:03 AM
    • 1,159 Posts
    • 10,807 Thanks
    Kiwisaver.... was it you doing the Greek evening?

    If so -let me know if you get stuck for recipes -I got a lovely book when I went to Kefalonia -so I might be able to help
    all I can say is "stiffado" or "kleftico" (sp?) droolllllll
    Originally posted by MRSMCAWBER
    Yes, t'was I. Thanks very much mmmm yes been years since I went to Greek Islands, but still have vivid memories of Stuffed Tomaroes, Kleftico and Stifado - I love them. I have a few books (possible I have the same one as you!) so I'm all sorted, but thanks for your kind offer.
    Start January 2017: $268,012
    Latest balance $266,734
    Reduction: $1,278.45
    • sharronej
    • By sharronej 9th Jan 09, 6:49 AM
    • 563 Posts
    • 4,784 Thanks
    Just had my (small) Mr T delivery and was pleased at what I got for my money...I had a £10 voucher to use up (freebie for them messing up my order at christmas) bit annoyed as had ordered a pack of the nappies on offer at 7.33 but they substituted them with a pack of very similar ones but which were 8.98 and with 8 less in them grrrr.. I also got a pack of those butchers choice sausages (the pork ones) for 99p as we really like them......

    I have got a question, I got some Port loin chops (fairly thin) and I had wanted to do a pork stew (jamie olivers new book) but it says stewing pork - does anyone know, could I just chop this up to use? or does anyone have a good way to cook it with cider as pork loins? I wanted to cook something tomorrow that I could freeze for next week as ds is out tomorrow and we alwasy have fish and chips (from the freezer)

    anyway any ideas would be appreciated...
    Originally posted by orchid-96
    hmm I'm not sure, when you're stewing something it generally works better with thick chunks of meat rather than the thinner and sometimes better quality meat.
  • justpeyton4now
    hopefully next month you'll be under!
    Originally posted by sharronej
    Thanks Sharrone, I really needed to hear that this morning.

    Peyton xx
    Take the first step.
    Even if you cannot see the whole staircase,
    Just take the first step.
    ~MLK, Jr~
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