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    • Pink.
    • By Pink. 24th Feb 11, 9:52 AM
    • 17,431Posts
    • 40,365Thanks
    March 2011 Grocery Challenge
    • #1
    • 24th Feb 11, 9:52 AM
    March 2011 Grocery Challenge 24th Feb 11 at 9:52 AM
    Hi everyone,

    Welcome to the third Grocery Challenge of 2011, it's almost spring so hopefully this will be a new beginning for all of us.

    If your new month starts early feel free to join this thread, or if you're still working on your February budget, then keep on posting in the February 2011 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.
    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, #7 and #8 on this thread.

    I hope everyone has a great month!

    Last edited by Pink.; 27-02-2011 at 11:01 PM.
Page 32
    • Robson65
    • By Robson65 10th Mar 11, 3:23 PM
    • 103 Posts
    • 727 Thanks
    "Cheats Chicken Cassoulet and rice (will use meat from roast)
    Harry Potter Stew "

    This sounds interesting !!! Could you post the recipe ?
    Does it involve dragons ??


    I almost had a psychic boyfriend but he left me before we met.
  • martafdz
    I am making the "All in One Apple cake" from the index (thanks Rosieben again for tiding it up!). It smells gorgeous! I have never made an apple cake, so I am looking forward to it. I had a few apples that were going off and this recipe has all basic ingredients and no fuss, so it was worth to try. helen jelly, my mixture is quite thick, I hope I did it right!
    Quit smoking *1st January 2010*

    13/12/2012, baby girl!!!
  • Hippeechiq
    Welcome Aldahbra, MumOf2Beasties, Silvermaid & tigerfeet2006

    tea tonite- pork loins, mash veg and gravy.
    need to do a meal plan again for another week. keep up the good work all
    Originally posted by findingmyfeet
    We had Sticky Pork Loin Tuesday night. Smeared loin steaks with wholegrain mustard, then rolled in dark brown sugar and grilled - new recipe I found last month, and it's very, very nice

    Another NSD here - I'm doing better than I thought I would this week considering I started the week with £8.68.

    I see £idls have Diced Pork and Pork Loin Medallions on offer this week and weekend. I need some diced pork for my Boston Casserole in a couple of weeks time but even though the Diced Pork is on offer, it will work out cheaper for me to buy the Pork Loin Medallions (which are on an even better offer) and dice those for my casserole - it'll be better quality pork too!.......I love it when a plan comes together
    Aug11 £193.29/£240

    Oct10 £266.72 /£275 Nov10 £276.71/£275 Dec10 £311.33 / £275 Jan11 £242.25/ £250 Feb11 £243.14/ £250 Mar11 £221.99/ £230
    Apr11 £237.39 /£240 May11 £237.71/£240 Jun11 £244.03/ £240 July11 £244.89/ £240
    Xmas 2011 Fund £220
    • Kitchenbunny
    • By Kitchenbunny 10th Mar 11, 3:51 PM
    • 1,860 Posts
    • 20,252 Thanks
    Whoo hoo, first NSD of absolutely ages. Managed to occupy myself at lunchtime with something other than going round the shops, so I am feeling rather pleased with myself at the mo. Have also got in and talked myself out of having a tin of pop by having a cup of tea instead. The bin is in, so all I have to do tonight is move my car so DH can park on the drive (someone parked where I normally put mine so it's out of the way) and then have a hot bath. Tea is going to be a stir fry of some description.

    Must have a look through the threads relating to cabbage. A friend asked me for some cabbage recipes so that's what I'll do. I'm going to try and avoid going to the shops tomorrow lunchtime too, so I shall have to slightly rewrite my mealplan - not a problem. Just got to come up with something exciting. I'll have a look through the index (thanks, rosieben, for keeping it up to date!). Have a nice evening, everyone. My thoughts are with those who aren't 100%. (((hugs)))

    KB xx

    • tigerfeet2006
    • By tigerfeet2006 10th Mar 11, 3:55 PM
    • 13,812 Posts
    • 29,889 Thanks
    "Cheats Chicken Cassoulet and rice (will use meat from roast)
    Harry Potter Stew "

    This sounds interesting !!! Could you post the recipe ?
    Does it involve dragons ??


    Originally posted by Robson65
    It's on the menu list on page 5 of this thread. It uses ale but I am going to use beef stock. It looks a good way of using up the last of the veg. I will have.
    The only stupid question is an unasked one
    I now live in a country that is 4 hours ahead of the UK so you may now find I post at weird times
  • sazzledazzle
    Cant believe I am still under the £30 mark. Hoping I can keep this up and keep it well under budget. Going to do a Mr T shop tomorrow as I have a £4 off a £20 spend and a Mr S voucher for £2 off a £20 spend I hope they will take off me. If I do this every week I should be able to shave £24 off my montly bill.
    MAY NSD's

    • mummyjane
    • By mummyjane 10th Mar 11, 4:13 PM
    • 381 Posts
    • 3,682 Thanks
    A NSD for me today. Was going to make some choc chip cookies with the kids but Mr T didn't bring any Tuesday night so will have to have a rethink. I definitely need to make something to pad their lunches out. I am trying not to make any of twink's hobnobs as they have a tendency to vanish mysteriously especially when they are still warm If anyone has any other good recipes that do not need choc chips or peanut butter (as we have none of that either) I would be very grateful

    I am quite proud of myself this week, whereas before I would have run out to the shops if I ran out of anything I now put it on my list and try very hard to make do with other things until my weekly/fortnightly shop.

    Angel - I hope today went well, have been thinking of you x

    Spiggle - to you as well, sounds like you need them too at the moment x
    Last edited by mummyjane; 10-03-2011 at 4:19 PM.
    Groceries Challenge 2019
    Jan £462.44/£400
    Feb £210.10/£450, 2/10 NSDs
    • tigerfeet2006
    • By tigerfeet2006 10th Mar 11, 4:17 PM
    • 13,812 Posts
    • 29,889 Thanks
    Well dinner tonight was a sucess It was a "what have I got that I can make a meal out of" meal

    Bacon and Veg Risotto.

    I melted some butter in a pan and bunged in some butternut squash cut into small squares (half left over from another meal in the week). Threw in some finely chopped leeks (found them in the back of the fridge looking the worst for wear, don't know how old they were [blush].) A chopped onion that had seen better days, bashed about a bit. Some garlic. Some button mushrooms left over from something last week. Some chopped bacon slices left over from another meal. Fried it all off. Add another good chunk of butter and melted it through. Bunged in a packet of risotto rice. Stirred it for a minute or two. Chucked it in the SC, poured on 1ltr of veg stock. Left it in the SC for an hour or so, until the liquid had been absorbed and the flavours had nicely come together.

    So a lot of chucking and bunging but it seemed to work. I have enough to go in the freezer for another 2/3 meals. My DH will either take them to work for lunch or they will be used at the end of the month for pot luck dinners if money is tight.
    Last edited by tigerfeet2006; 10-03-2011 at 4:21 PM.
    The only stupid question is an unasked one
    I now live in a country that is 4 hours ahead of the UK so you may now find I post at weird times
    • sistercas
    • By sistercas 10th Mar 11, 4:19 PM
    • 4,841 Posts
    • 58,661 Thanks
    been missing for a while
    Angelatgraceland (((hugs))) to you and dh hope you get some good news x
    Spig (((hugs))) to you too , hope you are ok
    Helenjelly hope you are doing ok hon

    had a bit of worrying news at work , they are going to make one of us redundant ,there are 4 of us so its a 25% chance it will be me
    although i dont earn much we really cant manage without my wage
    will find out in 2 weeks

    been to l!dl today and spent £33.53 i still need to get plain flour 'cos i forgot to get some and cat food and yoghurts ( i have about £20 left in the kitty for this week so it should be doable )

    made a chicken pie ( from weezls website) and some braised mince to make into a cottage pie and a chilli or lasagne , so 3 meals for the next week , plus i have some gammon, egg and chips, pasta and sausages
    sig updated
    • mummyjane
    • By mummyjane 10th Mar 11, 4:23 PM
    • 381 Posts
    • 3,682 Thanks
    Ooh bacon and veg risotto - sounds yummy. I have some diced bacon and leeks to use up in the next day or so, might just be cheeky tonight and poach your idea
    Groceries Challenge 2019
    Jan £462.44/£400
    Feb £210.10/£450, 2/10 NSDs
  • cat_smith
    Mothership's oxtail stew in the SC. Smells great.
    GC Mar 13 £47.36/£150
  • helen jelly
    Sistercas Thanks for asking - all is going ok here, kiddies are doing ok, Mum is struggling but I spend time with her every day and try to get her out and about, we are having the ashes buried on Tuesday so that will be a hard day, just me and Mum doing it as thats all she wants. I'm keeping my fingers crossed for you about your job, do they work on a "first in, first out policy" if so maybe you could work out who would go first - hope you are safe although its sad that another person will loose their job!! But I'm thinking of you and hoping that you are safe [what a lot of waffling hehe]

    Martafdz - mine was thick too, infact I didn't think it would work but it did, I'm making another tonight as we have alot of apples and some are going crinkly, hope you like it

    Helen x
    Last edited by helen jelly; 10-03-2011 at 5:05 PM.
    Projects made for craft fair - 40
    1st fair on 13/4/14
    • freakyogre
    • By freakyogre 10th Mar 11, 5:36 PM
    • 1,454 Posts
    • 9,410 Thanks
    30p on a KitKat at work yesterday.

    99p on some leeks at Lidl today.
    Grocery challenge - Nov: £52/£100
  • cat_smith
    Ooooh. DH taking me out to dinner for a treat tonight so Oxtail will wait for tomorrow
    GC Mar 13 £47.36/£150
  • rosieben
    tigerfeet, I've added your Bacon and Veg Risotto and Peanut Butter Cookies recipes to the index
    its useful to see so much good feedback on our recipes

    cat_smith lucky you, enjoy your meal out - and no washing up

    Spigs and Helen

    sistercas for your job
    Last edited by rosieben; 10-03-2011 at 6:21 PM.
    ... don't throw the string away. You always need string!

    C.R.A.P.R.O.L.L.Z Head Sharpener
    • quintwins
    • By quintwins 10th Mar 11, 6:31 PM
    • 5,003 Posts
    • 29,347 Thanks
    i just had the yummiest tea good job i made extra for lunchs tho cause my mum and 2 bro's turned up suprising how far you can strech food
    DFW £7632/£28996 26.3%
  • M0neysav3r
    YUM YUM YUM YUM YUMmmmmmmmm - We've just had sweet and sour chicken balls from the front page recipe - DELICIOUS! (if i may say so!) DH is addicted to these from the chinese so I was sure i'd be told how rubbish mine were on comparison...... how wrong i was, it was yummy!
    Home made sweet and sour sauce and HM batter (can i freeze batter btw?)
    Highly recommended if you haven't tried them

    Top moneysaving too as most of the ingredients were store cupboard

    Only downside is my house now stinks due to the frying ANy tips on how to get rid of the pong?
    No Debts (Other than HUGE mortgage! )
    Generally trying to cut back where possible
    GC - March £143.82 / £200 Feb £156.03 / £150 Oops! Jan £180.78/£200
    • tigerfeet2006
    • By tigerfeet2006 10th Mar 11, 6:59 PM
    • 13,812 Posts
    • 29,889 Thanks
    tigerfeet, I've added your Bacon and Veg Risotto and Peanut Butter Cookies recipes to the index
    its useful to see so much good feedback on our recipes

    cat_smith lucky you, enjoy your meal out - and no washing up

    Spigs and Helen

    sistercas for your job
    Originally posted by rosieben
    Cor! thank you very much. That was a surprise, didn't expect that.

    I've just taken the frozen mince off my shopping list and changed it to normal mince. It was 3 for £10 which has pushed my bill up to £89 but at least I have some for meals other weeks.
    The only stupid question is an unasked one
    I now live in a country that is 4 hours ahead of the UK so you may now find I post at weird times
    • Pinwheel
    • By Pinwheel 10th Mar 11, 7:36 PM
    • 63 Posts
    • 1,138 Thanks
    Just updated signature, £6.90 spent in L**l on milk, blueberries, bananas, cucumber, peppercorns, mozzerella and apples. Talking of apples thank you Hippeechiq and Spiggle for your replies about apples. I am going to take your advice Spiggle and try the market on Saturday, I'll report back!
    My thoughts are with everyone who is struggling at the moment.
    Oct GC £36.72/£220.00
    Sep GC £223.58/£220.00
    Aug GC £200/£200
    Jun GC £192.73/££220 - Jul GC £296.88/£220
    Apr GC £230.40/£200 - May GC £230.40/£220 -
    Feb GC £200.19/£200 - Mar GC £203.37/£200 -
    • JulieGeorgiana
    • By JulieGeorgiana 10th Mar 11, 8:04 PM
    • 2,467 Posts
    • 12,987 Thanks
    Just finished another 4 week cycle £158.34/£180.00. I carried £10 over last period and £20 over this period so I have extra for a Butchers shop next period.My total year to date is:

    We spend money we don't have, on things that we don't need, to impress people we don't like. I don't and I'm happy!

    Mortgage Free Wannabe
    Overpayments Made: £5400 - Interest Saved: £11,550 - Months Saved: 24
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