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

    Welcome to the fifth Grocery Challenge of 2012

    If your new month starts early feel free to join this thread, or if you're still working on your March budget, then keep on posting in the:
    April 2012 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.
    By request, here is Spiggles wonderful helpful post

    We all have different budgets that suit our households. The most important thing to remember is that you set yours according to your needs and finances. It can take time to get to where you want to be too so don't knock yourself out if you go over in the first few months. We are here to support each other and it is not a competition.

    I thought it might help to outline where we've come from and the top tips I've learned.

    When we started in March 2010 we had spent in excess of 600 in the previous month. This had to stop, (there's only me and him and our two beautiful black cats) something which thankfully my OH completely agreed with so I have been lucky that he has been on board from the start. He gave me his debit card voluntarily and I still keep hold of it until he needs to get something for the home. At the same time we set up a system of pocket money (pm) at 15 each per week which doesn't count towards the GC and which we can each spend as we wish with no comebacks or complaints. OH predominantly uses his pm on his beer and I ferret mine away mostly.

    The next step was to set up my own spreadsheet which is absolutely simple onto which I put all spends so that I have a continuous running total for the month and for the year. We initially set our budget at 280 per month and brought it down to 240 where it resides for most of the year it is occasionally increased to allow for extras e.g. Christmas to 260.

    The important 'tools' we found greatly helped and continue to do so now are:

    Stocktake cupboards, fridge, freezer - make lists and ensure that the older products get used up first. You'll be amazed at what you find squirrelled away and it will help with your shopping list as you'll realise that you don't actually need so much.

    Before you go shopping check staples - running out of milk, bread, butter, etc often leads to going into a shop for one thing and coming out 20 lighter. Always check these and if they'll run out tomorrow buy them the same time as getting other things.

    Always make a shopping list and stick to it - the supermarkets (sm) try every which way to get us to spend so having a list and strong resolve is the only way to beat them.

    Keep every receipt - and then note it down on your spreadsheet/spend diary so that you always know where you are.

    When tempted, ask yourself do you NEED it or just WANT it - now this advice goes with two things. Firstly, the things you see in store when shopping that APPEAR to be bargains - if you hadn't planned spending the money then its not a bargain. Secondly, the sm send us loads of vouchers for X off a spend of XX - if you had no NEED to spend XX then have you SAVED anything???

    Use my supermarket to compare prices (limited to four of the biggies) - The site may be used to actually do an online shop at whichever of the big four offers the best value or, if you have the time and sm availability, to make up lists for visiting each of the stores so that you can purchase all you need at different stores thus getting the best possible value. (I'd add, do a 'shop' virtually on this site and take the list you create on it with you, whichever one you shop at, it will help keep target prices in your head and allow you to spot bargains. MrM is not included but you can do a virtual list on their website so you know what you're going to be spending.)

    Always have a list - this is just as important when shopping online as shopping on foot.

    Use Approved Foods online (with a list!) - if you don't mind out of date things (ood) or you can search for only in date items. The only drawback is storing the goods as far as I can tell. Oh, and watch the delivery as it's done on a scaled charge for weight so keep an eye on it. You can of course do an AF order with friends, family, colleagues or like minded neighbours. Other GCers use Big Br*nds 4 Less too.

    Invest in a breadmaker - we have saved so much by making our own bread. The prices in the shops are extortionate for bread these days. There's loads of advice on this thread and others in the forum on this.

    Use the recipe lists - always posted at the front of a new thread. There are fantastic, tasty, healthy and economical recipes to use on them and there are a number of other threads on the forum such as Weezl's that will help you to eat well on a budget.

    Shop locally - the local greengrocer (or preferably market but I don't have one ) is usually cheaper as an option for fruit and veg (f&v) than the sm. Often the prices may look the same but when you look at the quantity for the same price the greengrocer will be cheaper. The same goes for the local butcher. Often you will have far more variety of meat available, advice on how to cook a particular meat can be offered and there is (for me at least) no comparison in terms of quality. We buy our huge FR eggs there and I'm yet to find an equivalent FR egg in a sm at the same or lower price. Obvioulsy if you have your own chicks/know someone who has chicks you can get them even cheaper again.

    Grow your own - it's quite simple to grow some f&v at home even if it's only in pots on the patio. There are also supportive threads on the forum for this.

    Cook your own - making meals at home from ingredients is far more economical, often tastes better than shop bought and is probably far better healthwise.

    Meal Plan - this is something that others can advise on as we don't do it. I have a tremendous capacity for eating the same food over many days but presented in slightly different form. For example, we could buy 7 worth of brisket from the butchers and eat it as pot roast for a couple of days, sliced for sarnies, sliced with a salad, chucked into a casserole or shredded up and fried as crispy beef.

    Don't waste food - either only make what you need or use any leftovers for other meals/creations or freeze it for another day.

    Withdraw the cash you want to spend - and keep it in a separate purse. This can be particularly effective as you have the money in front of you reducing rather than spending with plastic which is so easy to lose track of. Very useful when you first start out.

    Don't go to the shops to browse - this can only lead to pain and hardship!!!

    Keep posting and reading the thread - there really is no better supportive, wise and inspirational place to be! I think I saw that somebody mentioned forgetting to read/post. I get around this by using the Advanced button to post, below the window where your text is displayed you will see Additional Options. In the Thread Subscription box use the dropdown to select either instant email notification (this is what I use) or daily email notification before you submit your latest post. Then you will get an email into your inbox from which you can click to the thread to see what others are saying.

    Always remember the sm is not your friend - it wants to profit from you and take as much of your money as it can coerce out of you!

    So, there you go as a starting point. Others on here will offer tremendous advice on meal planning. And don't forget, the only silly question is the one you didn't ask!

    See you all later,
    Spigs
    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!

    Zip
    Last edited by zippychick; 19-04-2012 at 5:45 PM.
    A little nonsense now and then is relished by the wisest men
    Norn Iron club member #380

Page 23
    • iQueen
    • By iQueen 2nd May 12, 9:13 PM
    • 811 Posts
    • 20,201 Thanks
    iQueen
    me again, does anyone know how to make cordial..... i growing blackcurrants and my bushes are already laden with what will be blackcurrants so i should hopefully be getting quite a large harvest of them, i do make jam and freeze some for pies etc but i seem to have an exceptionally large amount this year i would love to make RIBENA type stuff that you add water to dilute pls and ty
    Originally posted by craigywv
    Haven't got a cordial recipe to hand, but I make Blackberry Vinegar, which is brilliant neat for sore throats and colds, or diluted with water for a refreshing drink. (Yes, really!)

    Blackcurrant Vinegar - R!bena with a kick!

    Rinse a quantity of blackcurrants, (no need to top, tail n de-stalk). Drain. Bring to a gentle simmer, without added water, until they are cooked.. Squash them through a sieve.

    Add 1lb of sugar and 1 pint of vinegar for each pint of juice,

    Bring to the boil, dissolving the sugar. Simmer until syrupy. Pour into scalded glass bottles. Cap tightly.

    Keeps in pantry for years. Once opened, store in fridge. Mmmmmmm!

    I know it's tempting to buy the vinegar in quantity, but I use vinegar, in pint bottles, from Mr M, because the bottles are a handy size for fruit vinegars and cordials.

    Can also be used as a sauce on puddings and ice cream etc.

    Enjoy!
    Needs, NOT wants!
    No food waste since November 2010.
    No debts.
    • ms_night_ryder
    • By ms_night_ryder 2nd May 12, 9:14 PM
    • 3,001 Posts
    • 11,582 Thanks
    ms_night_ryder
    Hiya

    Can you POP me down for 56.25 for this month, I have spent 24.50 on a shop in Mr s and 4.50 on the double packs of cathedral cheese when it was on for 2 quid odd, need to write a small list tomorrow, as I am doing a bacon joint in apple juice in sc tomorrow, will have some for dinner, with aunt bessies spurs and petit Lois and carrots and green beans, will have lasagne for lunch tomorrow, which I cooked today and is totally yummy.
    Lose 28lb 3/28lb
    SPC Member 1522/2012-264/ new pot 2013
    • Sue14
    • By Sue14 2nd May 12, 9:20 PM
    • 899 Posts
    • 10,894 Thanks
    Sue14
    1st spend today of 24.27 in A1d1.
    Weight loss challenge 3/10lbs
    Total weight loss 21lbs

    • craigywv
    • By craigywv 2nd May 12, 9:21 PM
    • 1,976 Posts
    • 27,825 Thanks
    craigywv
    Haven't got a cordial recipe to hand, but I make Blackberry Vinegar, which is brilliant neat for sore throats and colds, or diluted with water for a refreshing drink. (Yes, really!)

    Blackcurrant Vinegar - R!bena with a kick!

    Rinse a quantity of blackcurrants, (no need to top, tail n de-stalk). Drain. Bring to a gentle simmer, without added water, until they are cooked.. Squash them through a sieve.

    Add 1lb of sugar and 1 pint of vinegar for each pint of juice,

    Bring to the boil, dissolving the sugar. Simmer until syrupy. Pour into scalded glass bottles. Cap tightly.

    Keeps in pantry for years. Once opened, store in fridge. Mmmmmmm!

    I know it's tempting to buy the vinegar in quantity, but I use vinegar, in pint bottles, from Mr M, because the bottles are a handy size for fruit vinegars and cordials.

    Can also be used as a sauce on puddings and ice cream etc.

    Enjoy!
    Originally posted by iQueen
    thank-you i shall be trying that xx
    C.R.A.P.R.O.L.L.Z #7 member N.I splinter-group co-ordinater I dont suffer from insanity....I enjoy every minute of it!!.
    • Fiasco55
    • By Fiasco55 2nd May 12, 9:29 PM
    • 1,345 Posts
    • 15,364 Thanks
    Fiasco55
    I managed another NSD today . Dinner tonight was a pesto pasta surprise. Made enough for me and my friend, and dinner for tomorrow night is also sorted.
    No buying toiletries Graduated May 2017

    Decluttered 2016 2469 items, 2017 1580 items
    2018 3060 items

    Sealed Pot Challenge No 038
    • iQueen
    • By iQueen 2nd May 12, 9:30 PM
    • 811 Posts
    • 20,201 Thanks
    iQueen
    I am not grown up yet! I don't think I will ever act my age. Much more fun. I have some friends of around my age who are so fuddy duddy!
    I was at my DDs last summer - got on the trampoline with 5 of my DGC. They love it that Nan is daft.
    Originally posted by Florenceem
    Defintely a kindred spirit!

    I also have a friend like yours - lives in the past (WW2... and neither of us was born till after it ended!) She's always telling me to act my age, but why should I, when I've got me arthur-ritis to remind me!
    Needs, NOT wants!
    No food waste since November 2010.
    No debts.
    • Florenceem
    • By Florenceem 2nd May 12, 9:46 PM
    • 3,984 Posts
    • 52,562 Thanks
    Florenceem
    I wish! (actually - no I don't!). I WOULD like the salary, but everything else about the position I would hate. I like my work/life balance for instance. I would rather earn less money and have more time to myself, than be like a lot of people I know who work full time, then take home work for the evening. Yes - it's great to earn loads of money, but what's the point if you have no time to enjoy it?

    PS: Sorry if I ruined your guessing game btw.
    Originally posted by NickJW
    No problem.
    15 in 2015 1/15
    • Florenceem
    • By Florenceem 2nd May 12, 9:57 PM
    • 3,984 Posts
    • 52,562 Thanks
    Florenceem
    Yorkshire Puddings.
    Dinner looks loooevvely! I've never been able to make a good Yorkshire!. They always end up too dry and crispy so I never bother anymore!
    Originally posted by NickJW
    I use my ancient Kenwood hand mixer to make my Yorkshire batter.
    Makes 12.
    Cost approx - 24p.
    6ozs plain flour.
    1 egg.
    6 - 8 fl ozs milk/water mix.

    Whisk all together - I add in freshly ground black pepper.
    Leave to stand about 1 hour.
    Put tiny knob of lard in each muffin tin space - heat in 220c oven. As quickly as possible divide batter between the 12 spaces. Cook for about 20 minutes.

    I noticed that bought Yorkshires contain sugar and salt. Much better and a lot cheaper to make your own - takes so little time. I used to make 24 Yorkshires at dinnertime - put 10 - 12 that were not on dinner plates - on server in middle of table. Never any left!
    15 in 2015 1/15
    • mummyyof5
    • By mummyyof5 2nd May 12, 10:07 PM
    • 1,839 Posts
    • 39,830 Thanks
    mummyyof5
    First spend today of 25 in L**dls..was a NSD yesterday..even went to MrMs to take recycling this evening..DGD couldnt understand when we didnt go in the shop lol...she is only 2 and loves going to MrMs x
    Feeding 6 Adults 1 Teen a 8 year old with hollow legs and a very fussy 5 year old. Also 3 cats and 3 fishies
    To include all Food,Toiletries and Petfood.
    • S-I am
    • By S-I am 2nd May 12, 10:55 PM
    • 42 Posts
    • 877 Thanks
    S-I am
    Hi all,
    I bought lots of eggs which were whoopsied so now have 23 eggs which I need to use up and take care of somehow. I want to make quiche at some stage soon but I can't fit an actual quiche in the freezer so I was wondering if I could make the egg mix and put that in the freezer. Will the egg keep like that? It could come in handy having beaten eggs in the freezer but never heard of anyone who have done that. I was also wondering what people's views are on how long the eggs will keep in the fridge anyway. The use by date was 27th of April.
    ..
    Originally posted by EyesWideOpen
    EyesWideOpen - I dont know about freezing the quiche mixture but you can freeze eggs. Just crack into a suitable container, lightly beat and then freeze. They keep for up to three months apparently. I'd suggest freezing them in quantities of three or four for ease when using.
    So you've plenty of time to make lots of lush things

    Talking Of lush, inspired by jj and flo's recipes I made some rather tasty mini carrot muffins today. With all the pineapple, coconut, nuts, sultanas and carrots they contain I swear I can feel myself getting healthier with every mouthful

    Nite, nite

    Sx
    • jedi82
    • By jedi82 3rd May 12, 7:05 AM
    • 406 Posts
    • 3,548 Thanks
    jedi82
    Good morning everyone, still all poorly here but means we won't be going out so should be a NSD. Spent 5.34 in Boots yeterday on calpol and ibuprofen. Also bought the kids some electric toothbrushes in Boots (half price and did need new ones) and ice creams but that came out of my treat fund.

    Last night made risotto with cchicken stock from the thighs I cooked the other day. This site is really maing me think about how I do things - thanks!

    Not sure what is for dinner tonight but will be something that I have in!

    Have a good day (think mine is going to be a long one!!)

    Jedi x
    Finally getting my life on track. Onwards and upwards.
    BSC No 327
    GC Jan 336.91/450
    GC Feb 0/400
  • chelseabun
    Gosh! It's taken me two days (on and off ) to catch up with the end of this thread!

    Florenceem, I would have guessed a youthful early 60s! I have two older sisters, one is the same age as you and looks (and behaves) about 10 years older, the other is 60 this year, looks about 10 years younger, loves going canoeing! I know which I'd like to follow ...

    NSD yesterday, but Tuesday I started my second purse with a bulk purchase of cat food, tuna and sweetcorn! Is there a second purse thread somewhere? I've seen some people with 2nd Purse Challenge in their sig, but haven't found a thread yet!

    Small amount spent in Mr T on Tues - needed butter, blueberries and Maltesers which were on offer (of course!!) - will update sig.

    We're still working our way through the shepherds pie I made on Monday! DH said last night 'aren't we eating more meat than normal?' (We don't eat much meat by choice, we both like pulses and beans - weird, I know!) I explained that it was a 500g pack of mince, and I bulked it out with onion, celery, grated carrot and chopped mushrooms. So the actual amount of mince in each portion is quite small! He was impressed!

    Have a good day in the rain, everyone!
    CBx
    GC2012 May 144.65 / 200, June 50.82 / 200
    2012 NSD
    May 12 / 31, June 3 / 30
    2nd Purse Challenge #58 Purse owed 35.90, Stockpile value 217.66

    BS
    C #210
    A slow cooker is a marvellous thing!

    • Coxy11
    • By Coxy11 3rd May 12, 7:23 AM
    • 2,295 Posts
    • 27,317 Thanks
    Coxy11
    NSD yesterday, but Tuesday I started my second purse with a bulk purchase of cat food, tuna and sweetcorn! Is there a second purse thread somewhere? I've seen some people with 2nd Purse Challenge in their sig, but haven't found a thread yet!
    Originally posted by chelseabun
    CB - 2nd Purse Challenge is here:

    http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?t=3745005&highlight=2nd+purse+chall enge

    Come and join us
    Cross-stitch WIP #1: Collecting Shells by Nancy Cole
    Cross-stitch WIP #2: Pretty Little London by Satsuma Street
  • Teatime
    Chelsea Bun - great going on the Shepherds pie!

    I went to T yesterday as we needed milk. I went as soon as I got the kids in bed to see if I could get any reduced meat for the freezer. There for about half eight and everything had gone. I guess I really need to be there for about half five or something - would that be about right?

    I got the extra things I needed to make fifteens so they will be our treats for the week. Got a big block of value cheese - strangely enough, the medium sized one was cheaper per kg than the great big one! Loads of milk. My kids and I go through a lot of fresh milk but I am happy with that and am not going to change it. A few things we had run out of too so ended up spending 20. Not great for just popping in for milk. Next week, I'll make sure we get enough milk for the whole week at our weekly shop.
    GC June 78.50 / 250, May 262 / 250.
    Debt (excluding mortgage) April 2012 - 29388, May 2012 - 25588.
    Emergency Fund 0 / 1000.
    • fozziebeartoo
    • By fozziebeartoo 3rd May 12, 7:50 AM
    • 1,564 Posts
    • 12,674 Thanks
    fozziebeartoo
    Today is planned as a NSD!

    The decorator left yesterday, so I have my work cut out for me trying to get curtains up and everything back where it belongs.........dodgy knees and poorly joints mean curtain hanging for me is like mountaineering for someone
    else but I will go slowly and do my best.

    Breakie was 1/2 a hot cross bun.

    No idea about lunch yet.

    Tea will be a HM lasagne I made and froze last week, packed with loads of veggies as well as meat

    A happy side effect of joining the GC is that I have lost 5lbs since the beginning of April

    Everytime I want to pig out, I think of Florenceem's portion sizes and hear her voice (not that I know what it sounds
    like ) saying "you don't NEED a whole muffin"......priceless words!! Thank you Flo!
    • Suffolk lass
    • By Suffolk lass 3rd May 12, 7:52 AM
    • 2,899 Posts
    • 27,350 Thanks
    Suffolk lass
    me again, does anyone know how to make cordial..... i growing blackcurrants and my bushes are already laden with what will be blackcurrants so i should hopefully be getting quite a large harvest of them, i do make jam and freeze some for pies etc but i seem to have an exceptionally large amount this year i would love to make RIBENA type stuff that you add water to dilute pls and ty
    Originally posted by craigywv
    craigywv - here's a blackcurrant cordial recipe - but it doesn't keep indefinitely like the shop bought ones


    • 450g blackcurrants
    • 250g caster sugar
    • 260ml water
    • Whole lemon
    De-stalk and wash the blackcurrants.

    Place the blackcurrants, sugar and water into a medium saucepan. Melt the sugar over low heat, stirring occasionally to dissolve the sugar.
    Once the sugar has dissolved bring the syrup to a gentle simmer.
    Simmer the fruits for 5 minutes, add the juice and skin of the lemon.
    Bring the syrup back to simmer for further 5 minutes.
    Let the cordial cool for 10 minutes and sterilise glass bottle.
    Pass the cordial through a fine sieve, pour the cordial into the sterilised bottle, cool and keep refrigerated until needed.
    To serve, dilute the chilled cordial to taste with chilled sparkling water and plenty of ice cubes.
    Makes 750ml cordial


    Ok...I have just inventoried(IS that a word??) my cupboards/fridge and freezer and am sat pen in hand meal planning for the week.I'm actually gobsmacked what I just found in my cupboards!! Beans,tomatoes,kidney beans,cannelini beans ..pasta, rice,noodles galore.5 homemade frozen chilli,4 frozen shep pie bases,3 frz spag bols.Spices,sauces..plus lots lots more..gawd TONS!!!how did I not notice
    Am I starting the right way btw?My strategy is to use everything we have first so hopefully a nice cheap first week
    Originally posted by Bumpmakesfour
    Bumpmakesfour - That's a great start. The other thing I did was check all my tins and packets for any ood (out of date) stuff and I used that first. I actually keep the stuff out so I remember it but there have been 3 tins of coconut milk and 2 of condensed milk on the window sill since early Feb now so I think I may just have to use them or lose them! I meal plan now to have three or four fresh meals in the week and two or three storecupboard (cheap) ones. That way nobody has noticed a real difference and my GC has gone from 6-700 every month to under 400 for the last couple. I still struggle and try to avoid meal planning at my TOTM as I know I get greedy and desire sweet things. Others manage a square of chocolate a day but in our house, open chocolate goes in a single sitting (pigging) and no amount of hiding it helps as the hider eats the rest and just makes everyone else grumpy!

    Well done, just add a new technique to your approach on a regular basis and suddenly you will realise it works (I think I was rather conceited about my shopping (snobby?) when I started, but I'm slowly coming round). I compromise. I have sussed out where my lovely local butcher is better value and use him for those things and the real treat occasions but I buy the 3 for 10 in the sm (Waitfower is my fave) and divide packs to stretch things (red lentils in curry is my current favourite) - Oh and chopping up bendy celery to add a frozen handful to keep up the 5-7 a day without DH and DS even realising!

    A great start
    All the best
    SL
    MFIT T5 target to clear our mortgage completely (59,998) Q1 26,828 or 44.71% paid - Mortgage Free Wannabes 2019 #37 29,215.99 after May
    Save 12k in 2019 - #68 target is 7k 4,998.99 or 71.41% after May
    OS Grocery Challenge 2019 target is 3k - 36.16% spent so far, after May
    My DFD is here
  • mummybearx

    I got the extra things I needed to make fifteens so they will be our treats for the week.
    Originally posted by Teatime
    Damn it!!! I forgot we still have half a sausage shape of fifteens left in the fridge!! I had a cereal bar last night as a sweet treat, wish I'd remembered about the fifteens!!

    Guess what I'm eating as soon as I get in from work tonight



    Really need to meal plan better for myself, was really hungry last night and DH was going out. Dinner for just me seems to be really difficult. Ended up having veggie fingers and baked beans. Not great, but it filled a hole I suppose. Shouldn't complain, I was honestly >this< far away from phoning a takeaway for myself and managed to control myself!!

    It's just difficult to come up with quick dinners for myself. I'm veggie, don't eat eggs (like I wouldn't make an omlette/quiche etc for myself). Starting to get sick of soup as I make it that often. Need to think more about this and meal plan.

    Tonight will be something with butternut squash. Probably the baked squash and tomatoes dish we made last week, DH really enjoyed it and has been talking about it since I bought another squash at the weekend
    Can't think of anything smart to put here...
  • jumblejack
    NSD here - need to get in quite a few of them - don't like my May GC total!
    We had roast potatoes, roast parsnip, steak in thick gravy, HM Yorkshire pudding with roasted beetroot, onions and tomatoes for dinner. I made 12 Yorkshire puddings so 10 to go in the freezer.



    Tomorrow night is TITH.

    I have done my menu for the next 18 day's dinners - takes me up to next pension day.
    Originally posted by Florenceem
    That looks lovely. Your yorkies are a triumph
    I'm so glad that your pic proves that it is not necessary to have roast meat on a roast dinner. I really would like to go veggie but my family are hard core carnivores
    I would happily scoff the subject of your photo

    Ps, what is TITH?
    Every moment is a gift. That's why we call it the present.!
    Grocery Spend Weekly Challenge (Sat-Fri):30.50/40
    • craigywv
    • By craigywv 3rd May 12, 8:34 AM
    • 1,976 Posts
    • 27,825 Thanks
    craigywv
    craigywv - here's a blackcurrant cordial recipe - but it doesn't keep indefinitely like the shop bought ones



    • 450g blackcurrants
    • 250g caster sugar
    • 260ml water
    • Whole lemon
    De-stalk and wash the blackcurrants.

    Place the blackcurrants, sugar and water into a medium saucepan. Melt the sugar over low heat, stirring occasionally to dissolve the sugar.
    Once the sugar has dissolved bring the syrup to a gentle simmer.
    Simmer the fruits for 5 minutes, add the juice and skin of the lemon.
    Bring the syrup back to simmer for further 5 minutes.
    Let the cordial cool for 10 minutes and sterilise glass bottle.
    Pass the cordial through a fine sieve, pour the cordial into the sterilised bottle, cool and keep refrigerated until needed.
    To serve, dilute the chilled cordial to taste with chilled sparkling water and plenty of ice cubes.
    Makes 750ml cordial




    Bumpmakesfour - That's a great start. The other thing I did was check all my tins and packets for any ood (out of date) stuff and I used that first. I actually keep the stuff out so I remember it but there have been 3 tins of coconut milk and 2 of condensed milk on the window sill since early Feb now so I think I may just have to use them or lose them! I meal plan now to have three or four fresh meals in the week and two or three storecupboard (cheap) ones. That way nobody has noticed a real difference and my GC has gone from 6-700 every month to under 400 for the last couple. I still struggle and try to avoid meal planning at my TOTM as I know I get greedy and desire sweet things. Others manage a square of chocolate a day but in our house, open chocolate goes in a single sitting (pigging) and no amount of hiding it helps as the hider eats the rest and just makes everyone else grumpy!

    Well done, just add a new technique to your approach on a regular basis and suddenly you will realise it works (I think I was rather conceited about my shopping (snobby?) when I started, but I'm slowly coming round). I compromise. I have sussed out where my lovely local butcher is better value and use him for those things and the real treat occasions but I buy the 3 for 10 in the sm (Waitfower is my fave) and divide packs to stretch things (red lentils in curry is my current favourite) - Oh and chopping up bendy celery to add a frozen handful to keep up the 5-7 a day without DH and DS even realising!

    A great start
    All the best
    SL
    Originally posted by Suffolk lass
    thank-you thats great cant wait to be making it
    C.R.A.P.R.O.L.L.Z #7 member N.I splinter-group co-ordinater I dont suffer from insanity....I enjoy every minute of it!!.
  • jumblejack
    Morning everyone
    This week is flying by. (Does anyone else think that this year is racing ahead and you are left running behind it? Probably just me.)

    Today's tea is gonna be beef rogan josh and rice.
    We have used up everything that I brought very nicely so I am pleased that no more spends were necessary.

    I've not been able to post pics as I only have 3G on the phone for posting.
    The wifi here is charged so I will do without

    Have a lovely day peeps.

    Another NSD here.
    Every moment is a gift. That's why we call it the present.!
    Grocery Spend Weekly Challenge (Sat-Fri):30.50/40
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