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    • zippychick
    • By zippychick 4th Jun 11, 11:19 AM
    • 9,343Posts
    • 17,889Thanks
    • #1
    • 4th Jun 11, 11:19 AM
    4th Jun 11 at 11:19 AM
    Hi everyone,

    Welcome to the first Grocery Challenge of 2012

    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.
    For quidelines on posting in this thread please read the second post in this thread.

    For the Grocery challenge Recipe Index please see posts #3, #4, #5 and #6 on this thread.

    For everyones totals, see post #7 on this thread

    I hope everyone has a great month!

    Last edited by zippychick; 27-12-2011 at 12:52 PM.
    A little nonsense now and then is relished by the wisest men
    Norn Iron club member #380

Page 66
    • Suffolk lass
    • By Suffolk lass 7th Jan 12, 4:48 PM
    • 3,305 Posts
    • 29,392 Thanks
    Suffolk lass
    Did my big weekly shop in Sainsbob and thanks to everyone on here referring to vouchers, I remembered to pay with Nectar points and ended up with most of a week's shop for 2.05 instead of 82.05.

    Took back the expensive water filter cartridge to Mr T and when the NYM on the Customer Service Desk asked if it was the wrong one I had the b***s to say no, it was just 2.50 more than somewhere else (TDS mortified but Mr T NYM smiled and said well done!) 5.50 in but then bought 2 cereal, meatballs (2 for 5) and freezer bags for 10.43

    Got most of next week's meals planned and using meat from the freezer. Trying not to buy things I don't need, even if they are on offer as think I have an offer addiction...

    Finally had to throw some of the Christmas cheese mountain away (part smell, part running around on its own) - grated lumps of cheddar and frozen these for sauces and toppings.

    Loving the freezer storage solutions but resisting the bags as would need to pay for these whereas some ice cream, fridge BB and fruit in juice pots are brilliant for stocks and soups.

    Well done everyone. Really interesting thread
    Save 12k in 2019 - #68 target is 7k 8,766.30 after Sep
    OS Grocery Challenge 2019 target 3k - 57.28% spent after Sep
    Mortgage Free Wannabes 2019 #37 108.23% 43,292.24 including Sep - reducing now to avoid fees
    MFIT T5 target to clear our mortgage completely (59,998) Q2 30,085 or 50.14% paid
    My DFD is here
    • tigerfeet2006
    • By tigerfeet2006 7th Jan 12, 4:49 PM
    • 13,826 Posts
    • 29,891 Thanks
    Dinner yesterday was LO gammon in a herb sauce with mustard mas (GF and DF )

    For the herb sauce I made a roux from two tblsp butter (marg or DF spread can be used) and Two tblsp flour( I use Doves Farm GF flour) Then slowly add 300ml of chicken stock ( I use Bisto Best or HM chicken stock) just a little at a time stirring until all incorporated, add extra water if needed. Then stir in 2tsp of mixed herbs. I spooned this on the heated LO gammon.

    For the mash, make as normal and then add 2tsp of Dijon Mustard, or to taste (I use Tesco own Dijon as it is GF ).

    Also caramelised some apples to go with it. Toss peeled and cored and quartered Granny Smiths in lemon and sugar. Melt some butter in a pan and bung the wedges in to cook, turning frequently.

    Served this with green beans.
    Last edited by tigerfeet2006; 07-01-2012 at 5:03 PM.
    The only stupid question is an unasked one
    Loving life as a Kernow Hippy
  • 98jdougl
    NSD today
    Made gammon with pineapple, rice and a white sauce for dinner tonight - only used a tiny bit of gammon, shredded up so went quite far - I loved it (even if the sauce was thinner than I planned ) think it's because we had this with chicken quite a lot when I was at home so reminded of my mum. However... I overcooked the rice - I have a problem with rice, for some reason I can NEVER get it right - usually leave it to OH who declared that dinner was basically rice pudding with bacon pmsl. he ate it all though so I'm not complaining!
    Off for a nice bath and then need to split the gammon and chicken I cooked yesterday and put into portions and in the freeer - must not forget to do this tonight!
    • Old Meanie
    • By Old Meanie 7th Jan 12, 5:07 PM
    • 81 Posts
    • 333 Thanks
    Old Meanie
    I think I read somewhere back when on this thread someone had made sausagemeat hash? If so does anyone have the recipe. Sounds delish. Thanks
    • nannygladys
    • By nannygladys 7th Jan 12, 5:09 PM
    • 1,265 Posts
    • 13,717 Thanks
    Hi everyone
    Tigersfeet your dinner sounds lovely and beats my fish cakes, jacket pot and mushy peas, even writing it down doesnt make it any more appealing but Im trying to eat out of the cupboards etc so Im having right peculiar concoctions

    Tomorrow Im out dinner that was paid for by others so thats good I think the main course is mushroom stroganoff cant remember what the first course and pudding are

    Been a no spend day for me but have bought my daughter a couple of things so spent 3.28 will adjust my sig in a mo.
    Budgeting again, must try harder!!
    Sealed pot challenge no.31
    Frugal challenge 2019
    • SueP19
    • By SueP19 7th Jan 12, 5:12 PM
    • 1,706 Posts
    • 14,488 Thanks
    SueP19 Hi sue, here is the name, it sounds really easy, here is the link, somewhat different to how i described.
    Originally posted by Save Dosh
    Mort Oct 15 70,353 66,422 58,804 MF Dec 31 Jun 31(191 176 mnths)
    EF 2016 700/1,000 Debt May 09 30,217Oct 17 14,093Nov 18 6,336.12[/B]
    • nannygladys
    • By nannygladys 7th Jan 12, 5:14 PM
    • 1,265 Posts
    • 13,717 Thanks
    oh just remembered I put 25.00 fuel in the car
    Budgeting again, must try harder!!
    Sealed pot challenge no.31
    Frugal challenge 2019
    • tessie bear
    • By tessie bear 7th Jan 12, 5:15 PM
    • 4,364 Posts
    • 30,028 Thanks
    tessie bear
    hi...spend in lidl today i got some of there edam cheese that is on offer...its nice i know as we had some for lunch

    i am going to try and not shop next week and really get to grips with the stockpile...i have enough fruit to last and will just go to the local shop for milk if i need to

    done a meal plan for next week which is using up big packs from the freezer...still a fair bit left though

    take care tess
    onwards and upwards
    • tigerfeet2006
    • By tigerfeet2006 7th Jan 12, 5:25 PM
    • 13,826 Posts
    • 29,891 Thanks
    Tonight's dinner Pork Chops marinated in a HM BBQ sauce ( GF and DF)

    To make the sauce put 9 tblsp of ketchup in a bowl ( I use Tesco own). Add 1 or 2 cloves of garlic, crushed. Two tblsp olive oil, 1 tblsp Dijon mustard ( I use Tesco own), 2 tblsp honey, 1 tblsp worcester sauce ( I use Life Free From Worcester sauce), 1/2 tsp chili powder, 1 tsp vinegar. Mix it all together and spoon over chops. Turn chops over and spoon over last of the sauce. Put in the fridge, these can be done the day before or up to an hour before. Bake in the oven for 20-25 minutes, turning halfway.

    I served this with mustard mash, as I had some left over from yesterday. Just made a bit more to make it up. Also carrots and green beans.

    The only stupid question is an unasked one
    Loving life as a Kernow Hippy
    • baroley
    • By baroley 7th Jan 12, 5:27 PM
    • 39 Posts
    • 545 Thanks
    First visit to a major supermarket this year, and my first big shop. Feeling well in control of my finances so far, and although there is not a lot left in the bank, having done a budget and checked when direct debits etc go out, we should get to the end of the month in one piece! And peace of mind feels good!
    Grocery challenge month runs from 25th to 24th
    January 100. 96.20
    February 100. 1.64
  • zebbeddee
    Hi all,

    Can I join the grocery challenge please, as its a 5 week month can I put down 250 for the month please.

    Many Thanks

    Rachel J
    • Need2bthrifty
    • By Need2bthrifty 7th Jan 12, 5:47 PM
    • 1,205 Posts
    • 10,117 Thanks
    Well done everyone, lots of useful tips and bargains coming through this thread.

    I've just been for my second shop of the year and spent 3.76 at @ldi for some fruit and veg (sig been updated) and have to say I'm really pleased so far with my spends.

    Like others I have decided its time to seriously try shifting some of the extra weight, so got some citrus fruits and salad stuff after all the heavy, winter veg etc I have been eating lately I'm really craving lighter meals.

    Got the basis of my weekly plan drawn up using freezer stocks and should only need to go out and get some fresh fish later on in the week, although what with the holidays and the high winds I doubt if the boats have been out, so it may well be a tin of tuna or salmon instead.
    • Hiddenidenity
    • By Hiddenidenity 7th Jan 12, 6:04 PM
    • 5,208 Posts
    • 26,759 Thanks
    First week of Jan over nothing to report here NSD number 7 here x
    • audiopineapple
    • By audiopineapple 7th Jan 12, 6:07 PM
    • 12 Posts
    • 85 Thanks
    Stopped counting after the first day and had a few junk food binges I'm back counting ww points now though so eating less junk and saving money that way (unfortunatly only since Thursday but hopefully will show over next three weeks.)

    I kept my reciepts though and have spent a total of 29.57 / 80 and 11 of that was tonight because I was craving fruit so I'm still happy and might still make my target this month (and even if I don't I'm still spending less than I was!) I'm so pleased I've joined in on this challenge
    • wannabee_in_credit
    • By wannabee_in_credit 7th Jan 12, 6:08 PM
    • 1,735 Posts
    • 7,832 Thanks
    Hi everyone.
    Just done the second shop of the month 35.15 in Tesco, plus 20 at my butcher (which should last the rest of the month easy). So just reporting in with my new total.
    The thread is moving really fast - I'll try and catch up properly tomorrow.
    Ninja Saving Turtle
    • looie
    • By looie 7th Jan 12, 6:09 PM
    • 701 Posts
    • 5,749 Thanks
    Been and done the first shop of this year.

    Spent 21.43 which was mainly on coffee. Also got some milk, yoghurts, bread and some rice
  • lemmings1986
    just a quick question im just cooking stirfry and was going to add amoy thread fine noodles and i wanted to freeze the leftover stirfry,can the thread noodles be frozen or not??? thanks in advance
    Last edited by lemmings1986; 07-01-2012 at 6:34 PM.
    VSP#17 2.34
    debt free 26/10/2012
    • SueP19
    • By SueP19 7th Jan 12, 6:20 PM
    • 1,706 Posts
    • 14,488 Thanks
    Bought the value basics toilet Roll 1.31 for 4, why not! have removed wrapper before family notices they haven't got a dog on the packet.
    Originally posted by luvabargain
    We are not on main sewerage and it hates the expensive fluffy stuff
    Mort Oct 15 70,353 66,422 58,804 MF Dec 31 Jun 31(191 176 mnths)
    EF 2016 700/1,000 Debt May 09 30,217Oct 17 14,093Nov 18 6,336.12[/B]
  • SuzieY
    Hi everyone,

    Had a takeaway this evening. But it was only fish and chips, so for the two of us it only came to 6.70. That takes this months total up to 29.76. I'm going to aim to have a little more self control of the rest of this month.

    Last edited by SuzieY; 07-01-2012 at 8:27 PM.
    Grocery Challenge
    Jan 129.83/130 - Feb 130.51/130
    - March 138.26/130 - April 150.16/130
    - May 196.78/130 - June 127.74/130 - July 133.51/130 - Aug 132.21/130- Sept - 78.89/130 - Oct 165.44/130 - Nov - 65.30/130
  • majjak
    I think I read somewhere back when on this thread someone had made sausagemeat hash? If so does anyone have the recipe. Sounds delish. Thanks
    Originally posted by Old Meanie
    Twas me

    Easy peasy to do, layer sausagemeat at the bottom of a glass baking dish (doesn't stick to the glass dishes), add a few herbs if you want to, our sausagemeat had them in already. Cook for 15 mins in oven. While that's cooking, make up some mashed potato. Take out sausagemeat from oven, pour over a couple of tins of baked beans, top with the mash and some grated cheese. Pop back in oven for another 10 mins or so. Voila ! Basically, sausages, mash and beans but in one pot - less washing up too .
    Save 12K challenge 2015 # 173
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