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  • FIRST POST
    • Pink.
    • By Pink. 25th Dec 10, 1:15 AM
    • 17,431Posts
    • 40,365Thanks
    Pink.
    • #1
    • 25th Dec 10, 1:15 AM
    25th Dec 10 at 1:15 AM
    Hi Everyone,

    Welcome to the first Grocery Challenge of 2011, a new decade and a new beginning!

    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 2010 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 competition....it'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.
    For quidelines 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, #6 and #7 on this thread.

    I hope everyone has a great month and may I take this opportunity to wish you all a very Happy New Year! Hope it's a good one for all of us.

    Pink
    Last edited by Pink.; 29-12-2010 at 9:09 AM.
Page 111
    • Rhealea
    • By Rhealea 25th Jan 11, 11:05 AM
    • 51 Posts
    • 187 Thanks
    Rhealea
    Well as you can see from my signature I've got just over 40.00 left for a full shop at the weekend!

    Hoping its manageable? Only started the challenge a couple of weeks into Jan, so didn't spend wisely at the beginning of the month!
    Grocery Challenge - Jan 426.06 / 435.00
    Feb 376.37 / 435.00
    March 0.00 / 435.00
  • Mothership
    Prawns peppers with saffron with rice
    1/2 cup of rice per person, put this on to cook, by the time its ready, the other dish will be cooked.

    Ingredients

    2-3 Garlic cloves (grated, or two teaspoons jar or dried)
    1 in pieceGinger (grated, or two teaspoons jar or dried)
    Fry above in a little butter or oil,

    2 onions (chopped)
    Add above to pan , fry for a few minutes

    Peppers I use two decent sized ones of red & yellow or green & Orange
    slice and add to pan cook for a few minutes.

    a few star anise or (some five spice about 1/2 a teaspoon)

    Saffron

    1 Veg/ or chicken Stock cube, (if you have fresh stock all the better)
    3/4 of a pint of water
    Add to veg simmer for about 5 minutes.

    Prawns add them to veg simmer for a few minutes.

    Mix 1 tablespoon of corn-flour to a little water and stir through.

    Garnish with chopped coriander and serve with the rice.


    This dish is really easy and quick to cook. It looks amazing and tastes divine.
    1st Purse 114.19 Monthly GB
    2nd Purse 100
    Fridge Freezer 300 3rd Purse /290.94
  • LittleMissHappy
    Spent 12.13 today at Mr T's and that should do me apart from maybe milk and possibly bread. It will have too, anyway, as I am NOT going to go over budget I still have 7.25, so not too worried really. Plus, my sister and I cracked when our sm does it's whoopsies Yay! So from now on, we are shopping at 11-ish in the morning as that is when they were reducing everything. I know they are reduced further at about 5pm, but I just can't get to the shops then unless am willing to take DS1, DS2 and DD which isn't fair on them (or me!)
    Be the change you want to see in the world - Gandhi
    OU - DD100 (P ), DSE141 (D ), DSE212 (P ), ED209 (02/12), DXR222 (07/12) SD226 (02/13)
  • rosieben
    Mothership, I'm sorry to disagree but the How Not to Make Marmalade just has to go into the index

    Prawns peppers with saffron with rice recipe has been added too
    ... don't throw the string away. You always need string!

    C.R.A.P.R.O.L.L.Z Head Sharpener
  • bella121984
    Hi everyone! My computer hasnt been working properly over the last couple of days so ive not been able to update my spend over the weekend...I sent DH to Sainsburys with a list and told him he must stick to it and he must stick to the budget...but then he left the bleach behind!! Customer services didnt have it, so I need to get another one now

    Other than that, he didnt do too bad, he spent 22.74, which leaves me with 11.81 left for the month, and tonight I need to buy bin bags, T bags, onions, and some more bleach...and Ill need some more milk before the end of the month too, and bananas, itll be tight but I think we will do it
    January grocery challenge- 338.09/350
    365 in 365 days- 25
    January NSDs- 9
    Money made on ebay- 16.89
  • wssla00
    Afternoon all a quick update on spends! 29.75 spend today in Morissons. However that did include baking dishes, lock and lock boxes and some microfiber tea towels. Will update the total in a mo.

    Going to have fruity curry tonight! I am looking forward to it. I am trying to try one new meal a week to see if I can change my palate any. Would really like to incorporate more fun foods into my diet. Plus me and OH are joining WW on Saturday so I need to get into the gear of the WW cooking!

    Anyway best be off to update my sig

    Have a good afternoon folks!
    Feb GC: 200 Spent: 190.79
    • Pernicious
    • By Pernicious 25th Jan 11, 12:51 PM
    • 1,786 Posts
    • 8,895 Thanks
    Pernicious
    Phew! Finally caught up with the thread lol.

    I think we will come just under budget this month - Feb starts on the 28th for me so can I please be put down for 150 in Feb.

    I also have a question for all you clever cooks out there - I have some mushrooms & carrots that need using up soon, any ideas? I will use as much as I can this evening for our spaghetti bolognaise but I think we will still have lots of mushrooms left & I really don't want to waste them. Can I freeze them??
    We have a lot of potatoes too actually so if anyone can think of something using mushrooms, carrots & potatoes please let me know!
    Debt at July 2012: 12,862.57
    Current Debt: 0
    100% paid off!
    Savings Goal for November 2016: 5000
    Current Savings: 1176.24
    23.52% Saved!
    • MummyEm
    • By MummyEm 25th Jan 11, 1:13 PM
    • 573 Posts
    • 5,144 Thanks
    MummyEm
    Did what should be our last shop of the month today, spent 10.80 at L**L. Bought 6 pints of milk, squash and 2 packs ham. Exactly what was on my list. Tried not to look at any shelves as I walked down the aisles as I knew I'd put things in my trolley! Also needed facewash so got this using points in Boots. I usually save them for Christmas but didnt use all that I had saved this year so I don't mind using them to stop me going over.
    Then had to go the Mr T to pick up some beers which will be expensed via volunteer role that I do. Was very tempted by a very full looking reduced section but decided to not even look at what was there as I'd only have bought something and I'd now be really mad with myself.
    Very proud of myself. Just need to not spend anything until next Tuesday.
    Don't want to declare yet though as I feel this might be tempting fate
    MFW original end date 295000 Nov 2039 currently 224,824.58 Jul 2035 Dream end date Nov 2025
    2017 Target EF 20,000/ 20,000 OP 2390.10/1900
    TOTAL OP 2014 1042.60 OP 2015 3357.75 OP 2016 6480.98 Family Loan 17000.00
  • rosieben
    ... We have a lot of potatoes too actually so if anyone can think of something using mushrooms, carrots & potatoes please let me know!
    Originally posted by Pernicious
    Soup or Stew/casserole?

    you can freeze the mushrooms to use later in a sauce, soup or other cooked dish

    have a look at thriftlady's meal building blocks for the freezer - if you look in the first post under veg base, she used all sorts of things including carrots and mushrooms

    potatoes should keep for a while if they're kept in the dark - I put mine in an old shopping basket and cover them with newspaper
    ... don't throw the string away. You always need string!

    C.R.A.P.R.O.L.L.Z Head Sharpener
    • pipersky
    • By pipersky 25th Jan 11, 1:30 PM
    • 949 Posts
    • 15,015 Thanks
    pipersky
    Have got a glut of newly made marmalade the mo'!..thanks to all the Seville recipes and helpful tips I found on here.

    So today, have made my mum's Spiced Marmalade cake ...soooo easy!..and each time, it comes out so well (except the sultanas always sink to the bottom). I think the recipe may have originally come from a Yorkshire WI recipe book, but not sure. As a result, I use the old-style 'big' tablespoon measure IYSWIM.

    Heres the instructions:

    6 oz SR flour
    1 tsp mixed spice
    3 oz margerine
    3 oz sugar
    3 oz sultanas
    3 tbs hot water
    1 egg
    2 tbs marmalade
    2 tbs golden syrup.

    Heat marg, sugar, marmalade and golden syrup in microwave.
    Add sieved flour and mixed spice and stir well.
    Add the hot water.
    Stir in floured sultanas
    Lastly, add the beaten egg.

    Put in well-greased tin and cook for about 20-30 mins 160 degrees C.
    Originally posted by Jolaaled
    I have made this with the marmalade I made yesterday (***proud***). It is in the oven as we speak. I'm a little bit excited!!!
    Part time GCer, NSDer, Comper and (Bad)Flylady

    A big shot is just a little shot that kept shooting ...
    • Pernicious
    • By Pernicious 25th Jan 11, 1:48 PM
    • 1,786 Posts
    • 8,895 Thanks
    Pernicious
    Soup or Stew/casserole?

    you can freeze the mushrooms to use later in a sauce, soup or other cooked dish

    have a look at thriftlady's meal building blocks for the freezer - if you look in the first post under veg base, she used all sorts of things including carrots and mushrooms

    potatoes should keep for a while if they're kept in the dark - I put mine in an old shopping basket and cover them with newspaper
    Originally posted by rosieben
    Thank you Rosie - I must admit I'm still learning when it comes to cooking from scratch so I don't really know how to make stews or soups yet but I will take a look in the recipe index & try a simple one!

    I think I have about 10 dishes I can make from scratch without needing a recipe now - apparently that's good for a 23 year old

    Hmm once I'm debt free I shall be putting food processor on the list of things to buy - I like the sound of these building blocks!

    Thanks for all your help
    Debt at July 2012: 12,862.57
    Current Debt: 0
    100% paid off!
    Savings Goal for November 2016: 5000
    Current Savings: 1176.24
    23.52% Saved!
  • Mothership
    Chicken and Bacon pasta
    1 slice of bacon per person , chopped and fried in a dry pan till crispy
    2 Garlic Cloves (Grated or 2 teaspoons of jar or dried) add to pan fry for a few seconds. (you don't need oil of fat)

    If the food sticks free it with a little water.

    1 Chicken breast sliced 1 breast does 2 people (not too thick) if using uncooked add now. Fry for a about 5-10 minutes, until cooked.

    1 Red onion thinly sliced, add to pan and fry for a few seconds

    If you have any peppers you can add this to the dish too. (But not needed its just as nice without. I've used mushrooms in this dish too, I fry them in a separate pan until crispy if using) and add here*

    1 Chicken Stock cube diluted in about 200 ml hot water, (or fresh stock)
    Small Carton of cream
    White wine. ( I freeze leftover wine and add the cubes)
    If your using cooked chicken add it now. *

    Simmer for a few minutes, if you want the sauce thicker add about a desert-spoon of corn-flour to a little milk and stir through sauce.

    If your using more than 1 chicken breast add more milk, about the same quantity as the cream.

    A few chilli flakes and seasoning if liked

    Stir sauce into cooked pasta (Bows look pretty).

    Sprinkle with a little chopped parsley just before serving.

    Quick easy, looks great and tastes yummy!
    Last edited by Mothership; 25-01-2011 at 2:22 PM.
    1st Purse 114.19 Monthly GB
    2nd Purse 100
    Fridge Freezer 300 3rd Purse /290.94
    • Mooloo
    • By Mooloo 25th Jan 11, 2:26 PM
    • 10,682 Posts
    • 55,544 Thanks
    Mooloo
    I am not sure I put down an amount for this month, as I was hoping to just use up store cupboard things. But I have been updating my spending on the Spreadsheet, and have spent 195 this month on food/toothepaste etc. So it really is a very bad way to carry on. Just getting bits and bobs. False lull of security there then.
    I will still need to get Milk and bread on going.
    There really isnt anything fresh left in the veg box and only apples in the fruit drawer.
    So I will really need to keep my purse closed more in February!
    When I die I will know that I have lived, loved, mattered and made a difference, even if in a small way.
  • ebayqueen
    Hi mothership
    I do like that recipe. My kids love creamy pasta dishes whilst me and hubby love tomato based dishes. So I will be trying that one out. Could you use EMLEA as I have carton in fridge needing used up?

    Just had my final shop of Jan delivered by Mr T (i am down with flu and this was the most sensible option). Did what I usually do...Mysupermarket and onto Tesco site ... this was the cheapest option and that was including delivery.
    Have lots of whoopsies from last week in freezer so total including deliv 41.35. For me this is amazing. Did stock-take of freezer etc and meal-planned accordingly and this is me until next tuesday.

    So I have to say thank you to all contributers on this thread for all the tips and comradeship throughout the month. If you had have told me last Jan that I could feed a family of 5 for month, with great food and extras for my final sig (see below as I am going to update it shortly) I would have said def no way JOSE!!!

    So I start with the same budget next tuesday and take it from there.
    What will happen to this thread as its named JANUARY Groc challenge...sorry if its a dumb question

    take care all
    "You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream" C. S. Lewis
  • Mothership
    Hi mothership
    I do like that recipe. My kids love creamy pasta dishes whilst me and hubby love tomato based dishes. So I will be trying that one out. Could you use EMLEA as I have carton in fridge needing used up?

    Just had my final shop of Jan delivered by Mr T (i am down with flu and this was the most sensible option). Did what I usually do...Mysupermarket and onto Tesco site ... this was the cheapest option and that was including delivery.
    Have lots of whoopsies from last week in freezer so total including deliv 41.35. For me this is amazing. Did stock-take of freezer etc and meal-planned accordingly and this is me until next tuesday.

    So I have to say thank you to all contributers on this thread for all the tips and comradeship throughout the month. If you had have told me last Jan that I could feed a family of 5 for month, with great food and extras for my final sig (see below as I am going to update it shortly) I would have said def no way JOSE!!!

    So I start with the same budget next tuesday and take it from there.
    What will happen to this thread as its named JANUARY Groc challenge...sorry if its a dumb question

    take care all
    Originally posted by ebayqueen
    Elmlea will do fine. Enjoy!
    1st Purse 114.19 Monthly GB
    2nd Purse 100
    Fridge Freezer 300 3rd Purse /290.94
  • elfen
    Spent about 20 on lunch items, so have around 10 left til end of the month....think I can do this!
    ** Total debt: 6950.82 May NSDs 1/10 **
    ** Fat Bum Shrinking: -7/56lbs **
    **SPC 2012 #1498 -152 and 1499 ***
    I do it all because I'm scared.
    • OrkneyStar
    • By OrkneyStar 25th Jan 11, 2:44 PM
    • 6,672 Posts
    • 42,974 Thanks
    OrkneyStar
    1 slice of bacon per person , chopped and fried in a dry pan till crispy
    2 Garlic Cloves (Grated or 2 teaspoons of jar or dried) add to pan fry for a few seconds. (you don't need oil of fat)

    If the food sticks free it with a little water.

    1 Chicken breast sliced 1 breast does 2 people (not too thick) if using uncooked add now. Fry for a about 5-10 minutes, until cooked.

    1 Red onion thinly sliced, add to pan and fry for a few seconds

    If you have any peppers you can add this to the dish too. (But not needed its just as nice without. I've used mushrooms in this dish too, I fry them in a separate pan until crispy if using) and add here*

    1 Chicken Stock cube diluted in about 200 ml hot water, (or fresh stock)
    Small Carton of cream
    White wine. ( I freeze leftover wine and add the cubes)
    If your using cooked chicken add it now. *

    Simmer for a few minutes, if you want the sauce thicker add about a desert-spoon of corn-flour to a little milk and stir through sauce.

    If your using more than 1 chicken breast add more milk, about the same quantity as the cream.

    A few chilli flakes and seasoning if liked

    Stir sauce into cooked pasta (Bows look pretty).

    Sprinkle with a little chopped parsley just before serving.

    Quick easy, looks great and tastes yummy!
    Originally posted by Mothership


    I make something similar to this, but often use thinly sliced chorizo instead of bacon- gives a lovely smokey taste to it. I occasionally add peas too as DS (aged 3) loves his peas! I sometimes do a tomato sauce instead of creamy......oh the wonders of pasta lol!
    Haggis, neeps and tatties for Burns night tonight- I have veggie haggis and DH has normal (half of his stowed away in freezer for another night as was a 6 slice pack), DS will have a sausage!
    Last edited by OrkneyStar; 25-01-2011 at 2:46 PM.
  • Mothership

    I make something similar to this, but often use thinly sliced chorizo instead of bacon- gives a lovely smokey taste to it. I occasionally add peas too as DS (aged 3) loves his peas! I sometimes do a tomato sauce instead of creamy......oh the wonders of pasta lol!
    Haggis, neeps and tatties for Burns night tonight- I have veggie haggis and DH has normal (half of his stowed away in freezer for another night as was a 6 slice pack), DS will have a sausage!
    Originally posted by OrkneyStar
    That sounds yummy, I will try that , I have two chorizo's in the fridge (one is dated 22nd Feb) was going to make paella with one, was wondering what on earth to do with the other one. Thank You!
    1st Purse 114.19 Monthly GB
    2nd Purse 100
    Fridge Freezer 300 3rd Purse /290.94
    • OrkneyStar
    • By OrkneyStar 25th Jan 11, 2:56 PM
    • 6,672 Posts
    • 42,974 Thanks
    OrkneyStar
    That sounds yummy, I will try that , I have two chorizo's in the fridge (one is dated 22nd Feb) was going to make paella with one, was wondering what on earth to do with the other one. Thank You!
    Originally posted by Mothership
    No worries, for some reason chorizo and chicken compliment each other. I tend to stick the chorizo in first and fry it a little, then remove, cook the chicken in same pan, and then add chorizo back just before adding cream and pasta. hth
    I think it can also be used in jambalaya, kind of similar to paella but not quite lol! I have used it on pizza too, in place of pepperoni!
    • laineyc
    • By laineyc 25th Jan 11, 4:20 PM
    • 907 Posts
    • 5,215 Thanks
    laineyc
    Hi everyone. I took part in the challenge in 2009 but was not around much last year. Anyway, I would like to take part again, if that's alright. I've missed January but could you put me down for 450 for February. I buy for a family of 6. Thanks
    Last edited by laineyc; 25-01-2011 at 5:49 PM.
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