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    • Pink.
    • By Pink. 25th Jan 10, 1:10 PM
    • 17,431Posts
    • 40,365Thanks
    • #1
    • 25th Jan 10, 1:10 PM
    25th Jan 10 at 1:10 PM
    Hello everyone,

    Welcome to the second Grocery Challenge of 2010.

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

    For the Grocery challenge Recipe Index please see posts #4 and #5 on this thread.

    I hope everyone has a great month!
    Last edited by Pink.; 29-01-2010 at 8:34 AM.
Page 57
  • JayJay14
    Wish I'd seen that cheese and potato bread recipe before I dropped the bowl of left over mash on the kitchen floor!!!!
    • Coxy11
    • By Coxy11 28th Feb 10, 9:09 AM
    • 2,295 Posts
    • 27,317 Thanks
    Well today will be a NSD as picking up DH and DS1 from scout camp later. They have been roughing it in bivvy bags in torrential rain - rather them than me.

    Good news is, I will be 'gifted' the leftover tins/packets from the camp. As I have to do all the shopping for it (32 scouts/4 leaders) which takes time and petrol, I'd say I deserve it. Will wait to see what goodies come back home with them.

    Just put SC on with a double load of bolognaise stylie sauce. I will cool it down and freeze later. Roast chicken for us today and may make a steamed syrup sponge too .

    Cross-stitch WIP #1: Collecting Shells by Nancy Cole
    Cross-stitch WIP #2: Pretty Little London by Satsuma Street
    • ragz
    • By ragz 28th Feb 10, 10:36 AM
    • 3,153 Posts
    • 27,335 Thanks
    45.67 gone from March budget in Lidl yesterday. Very dissapointed as they were out of all the veg I wanted, which put me off the rest of the shop and I missed loads off the list yet still spent too much! Arrghh, not a good start. Have to do Tesco today for all the bits I didn't get which will be about 30 (weekly budget is 74).
    Ragz is busy studying
    Progress is easier to acheive than perfection.
    • EC12345
    • By EC12345 28th Feb 10, 10:50 AM
    • 479 Posts
    • 1,420 Thanks
    Hello, haven't seen a new thread for the March GC yet so I will post on here.

    Please put me down for 160 for the month of March - mine includes all toiletries (although am trying not to buy any) and cleaning products.

    Thank you.

    Goo luck everyone.
    Mortgage Free
    Save 5,000 in 2017 (4,700.96/5,000): No 118

    • earthmother
    • By earthmother 28th Feb 10, 10:52 AM
    • 2,535 Posts
    • 5,460 Thanks
    Had a bit of a freezer disaster yesterday - went into the garage to find the door open. Luckily it was only the little one that holds bread and puddings, so not too much lost, but annoying all the same. It's not the first time this one has done this - I think the seal is going, so have shut it down until I can get the time to have a proper look.

    Lost two tubs of ice cream, salvaged a bag of frozen peas that had somehow ended up in there, put a roly-poly and an apple pie in the fridge (had the poly last night, will do the pie tonight then the leftovers can go in the kids lunches tomorrow), and now just have the bread to deal with - 4 dozen baps (almost a months packed lunches) and 3 loaves. I know you can refreeze bread, but this lot's been done once before already, so don't want to risk it. Luckily I have a lot of dried fruit around, so tomorrow I'm going on a bread pudding extravaganza.

    Anyway - to my question - I'd normally add candied peel etc to a bread pudding as the kids like it a bit lighter. How far past a best before would you go for these sort of things ? Found an unopened pot in the back of my baking drawer with last July on it.

    And can anyone suggest any variations on a theme or other bread-using ideas - preferably that will keep a while.
    Last edited by earthmother; 28-02-2010 at 10:55 AM.
    DFW Nerd no. 884 - Proud to be dealing with have dealt with my debts
    • ragz
    • By ragz 28th Feb 10, 10:55 AM
    • 3,153 Posts
    • 27,335 Thanks

    Anyway - to my question - I'd normally add candied peel etc to a bread pudding as the kids like it a bit lighter. How far past a best before would you go for these sort of things ? Found an unopened pot in the back of my baking drawer with last July on it.
    Originally posted by earthmother
    I'd use it, esp as it's unopened and olny 6 months or so OOD.
    But then, we ate a 7 year OOD xmas pud last year!

    If you have choc spread how about choc bread pudding?
    I expect you already freeze breadcumbs? Always handy...
    Ragz is busy studying
    Progress is easier to acheive than perfection.
    • earthmother
    • By earthmother 28th Feb 10, 11:05 AM
    • 2,535 Posts
    • 5,460 Thanks
    We do have a pot of nutella in the pantry at the moment - wouldn't normally, but it was on a '2for' at pancake time. Chocolate bread pudding sounds nice - I take it it's a bread&butter pudding (butter bread, cover with egg etc) - is there a recipe or is it a throw it together sort of thing?
    DFW Nerd no. 884 - Proud to be dealing with have dealt with my debts
    • Spiggle
    • By Spiggle 28th Feb 10, 11:19 AM
    • 1,751 Posts
    • 14,202 Thanks
    Hi All ,

    Just done the online order from MrS and had multi/special offers of 9+ and then applied the 10 evoucher so total including delivery was 48.62 which may seem high when I'm only 3 days into March but I stuck religiously to the list I had and it's all the bulky store cupboard things like flours, sugar, wash up liquid, loo rolls, etc which should get us through the month (I hope ). It could have been slightly less (about 3.80) if I hadn't ordered teabags but we are both such teapots that it seemed silly not to get them. Sig is updated.

    By the way, if you use Kenco instant coffee you may have missed the real bargain refills (150g) in MrT where they were reduced from 3.50/70ish to just 2. They don't appear to still be on offer at MrT but Mr S now has the same offer only reduced from 3.58 to 2. A super buy when the 100g jars are 2.65 (MrS) and 2.25 (MrT on offer til 2/03 when go back to 2.65). Even more so when regular 200g jars are around 4.88 but 3 on offer at both now. And saves on packaging/bin space. We don't drink anywhere near as much coffee as tea so I bought 1 for work and 1 for home and they'll last us for ages.

    Got a lovely piece of brisket in the oven cooking ever so slowly with onion, potatoes and carrots ready for a yummy meal later and for the next few days. OH yet again was extravagant and bought a piece far too big yesterday (11.47 ) but we'll take a fair chunk and freeze it ready to use in other meals at a later date. So I might forgive hime later.

    That is such a pain jayjay, I really hate waste. Yes kimmee, it does sound really mouthwatering.

    Thanks rosieben for the advice (and the recipes).

    And finally, thanks very much MrsMc for adding me to the list.

    Have a good day all,

    Mortgage Free October 2013
    • Disdisbiff
    • By Disdisbiff 28th Feb 10, 11:21 AM
    • 120 Posts
    • 1,026 Thanks
    Hi has the new thread for March started yet?
    Can i please set a budget for 340 have already spent 147 but this already includes a takeaway and a small eat out.
    Hoping to try to get a least 10 NSD this month.
    • Spiggle
    • By Spiggle 28th Feb 10, 11:28 AM
    • 1,751 Posts
    • 14,202 Thanks
    Oh, I forgot to say that having read what shopping and prices are like at MrM I am definitely off there later in the week when I need fresh things.

    Does anyone know if MrM stocks Calon Wen (or other brand) NON-homogenised milk please? It is so much nicer than the bleached out homogenised stuff which we are sometimes forced to buy. And I love having to shake it to mix again - reminds me of being a kid. (Of course if I really want a treat on the cereal I don't shake it!) Ahhh such a long time ago ........

    Thanks all,
    Mortgage Free October 2013
  • JayJay14
    Earthmother - when I had a freezer years ago which had a dodgy door I bought one of those stick on child safety locks, that kept it closed with no problem. Would save switching off and losing your freezer space (especially with all thos bread puds to find room for).
  • scotsaver
    I'm declaring 248.27 for Feb, please put me down for 250 for March, many thanks MRSMC.

    Dinner tonight is roast lamb and all the trimmings, not made a decision on pud yet - will venture off to the Kitchen in a moment.

    Have a good day everyone and good luck for those still to declare.
    GC for OH, myself, DD18 & DD16 includes Toiletries, cleaning stuff & Food.

    • OrangeFairy
    • By OrangeFairy 28th Feb 10, 11:35 AM
    • 2,629 Posts
    • 9,065 Thanks
    Spent 98 already for March and it isn't even March yet!!
    Though we have bought all the shopping for two weeks with the exceptions of a bit of milk and some ham maybe so it isn't too bad. Will help with my NSD's too if we have bought this much in one go
    Orange Fairy
    House Purchased April 19 CC1=? CC2=? DH CC= Mortgage Overpay = 0 Savings = 0 Xmas savings = 0 Weightloss = 0 lb

  • highland fling
    Good afternoon everyone,

    spent this morning emptying, washing and reorganising my freezer.
    Really thought I would need to do quite a big shop this week but after unearthing so many treasures in the freezer and making this weeks meal plan I really only need a few bits and bobs. So hopefully I may have a couple of NSD this week.

    Good luck to everyone.
    It takes a long time to eat an elephant and I'm doing it a bite at a time!!!
    • jollymummy
    • By jollymummy 28th Feb 10, 12:07 PM
    • 946 Posts
    • 4,072 Thanks
    Hi everyone
    Well I've set up a little savings account and whatever I don't spend in my grocery challenge I'm transferring for Christmas as we just can't afford to go broke every year. I'd like to set March spend at 360 again please. Going to try for 10 NSD for March really struggled this month, mind you I forgot it's a short month that included half term holidays
    good luck everyone.

    NSD 3/366
    4/366. 2016 Decluttering challenge
    • Taadaa
    • By Taadaa 28th Feb 10, 12:13 PM
    • 2,007 Posts
    • 3,309 Thanks
    I've spent 78 from the MArch budget, but this has provided us with all the meat we need for two weeks, so hopefully next week I will just need to top up the fruit and veg! Thats 78 out of 280 btw. x
    I have had many Light Bulb Moments. The trouble is someone keeps turning the bulb off

    1% over payments on cc 3.5/100 (March 2014)
    • skaps
    • By skaps 28th Feb 10, 12:19 PM
    • 2,253 Posts
    • 10,189 Thanks
    Need to go shopping but am determined not to leave the house today.
    MFW 2016 No 68 1300/8500 No new toiletries Cook sth different
    • earthmother
    • By earthmother 28th Feb 10, 12:28 PM
    • 2,535 Posts
    • 5,460 Thanks
    Earthmother - when I had a freezer years ago which had a dodgy door I bought one of those stick on child safety locks, that kept it closed with no problem. Would save switching off and losing your freezer space (especially with all thos bread puds to find room for).
    Originally posted by JayJay14
    That's a good idea - I'll pick one up in the week
    DFW Nerd no. 884 - Proud to be dealing with have dealt with my debts
  • tallullahbelle
    My feb total is 494.69 ... BUT... freezer quite full, got plenty of pet food... and Feb did include a rather lovely 'Come dine with Me' evening I held for a friends Birthday! So... Feb 494.69... I'm aiming for 500 in March.. but this will include a Birthday bash too so here's hoping... I am aware that I'm spending a lot on groceries, but we don't have any waste and I am cutting back and watching what I spend... Honest! Thanks to all who post
    2014 GC: 957.61/ 5400
    • Spiggle
    • By Spiggle 28th Feb 10, 1:07 PM
    • 1,751 Posts
    • 14,202 Thanks
    Me again

    How's this for old style? I've been perusing the forum recipe links for malt loaf (I want a dark sticky one like soreen if possible) and writing down recipes. I just went in the kitchen to find OH with the Good Housekeeping Family Favourites Cookbook from 1956 that I inherited from my Mum. It's got the recipe below and the old black & white photo looks quite like soreen though when I try it I will add more fruit. I thought others may be interested though I'm sure this isn't where I'm supposed to post it so apolgies

    Malt Bread
    8 oz SR Flour
    1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
    3 oz chopped dates or sultanas (I'll probably try doubling and will use raisins & sultanas)
    1 oz demerara sugar
    2 tbsp malt
    2 tbsps golden syrup (I'll try using treacle half and hlf or maybe just replace)
    1/4 pt milk
    1 egg

    Sieve flour & bicarb and add the fruit and sugar. Heat the malt, syrup and milk in a small pan, and add to the dry ingredients, with the beaten egg; mix well put into a greased loaf tin and cook in a moderate oven for 40-45 minutes. Serve sliced with butter.

    Not sure if this could go in the BM but sounds pretty simple to do anyway.

    Anyone know what a moderate oven would be for an electric fan oven please?

    MMmmmm, my mouth is watering again.
    Mortgage Free October 2013
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