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  • FIRST POST
    • Pink.
    • By Pink. 25th Dec 10, 2:15 AM
    • 17,431Posts
    • 40,365Thanks
    Pink.
    • #1
    • 25th Dec 10, 2:15 AM
    25th Dec 10 at 2:15 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 10:09 AM.
Page 75
    • cha97michelle
    • By cha97michelle 13th Jan 11, 8:22 PM
    • 5,622 Posts
    • 67,627 Thanks
    cha97michelle
    Thanks for the cake recipe mandco. I have a huge 400g tub of mixed spice which i got at costco for only 47p last autumn, and i have very few recipes that use it to be honest so i am glad to have another one, particularly as my boys love fruit cake.

    Has anyone else got any great mixed spice recipes? I have been adding it to tomato based home made pasta sauce which has gone down well, but i am intrigued how i will use up all of this great big tub without being too repetitive.

    I thought i would also share our recipe for cowboy hash that we had tonight as i realised it is something i use quite regularly. I'm not sure how cheap it is, but it would depend on what brands you use i guess, and it is a different way to use mince when you are bored of spag bol/chilli/shep pie.

    Cowboy hash (originally sampled in a pub in Sheffield when we were students, and the recipe cribbed at home)

    saute an onion till soft, before adding mince. (Tonights was about 200g, but i have used more if i wanted to make more for the freezer.)
    when the mince is cooked, add one tin of oxtail soup, one tin of baked beans, and about a tins worth of sweetcorn, and heat it through thoroughly.
    Originally served in the pub with a giant yorkshire pudding, but we mostly have it with rice, or it would work with a jacket spud or mash.

    Not too pricey, very filling, appeals to kids and it has a lovely taste.

    I hope that appeals to someone as i would like to feel i am making a worthwhile contribution.

    I was also going to say, for anyone who lives in the south yorkshire area, we have a local place called factory foods which is very similar to approved food with food near or past its best before date. It mainly deals with frozen food though, and every weekend they have great cheap bargains. We get a lot of stuff from there and it is really cheap and it definitely helps my budget.

    EG. This weekend there are WW meals for 39p each, frozen ham joints 500g for £1.50. In the summer they were doing 30 branded ice creams for £1. They let you go in on a day pass, or you can sign up and become a member. They are about to start charging for membership. The people who run it are lovely, and always have food to sample so you can try certain things before you buy. Thought that might help someone too.
  • mfwin2019
    bought milk etc & now total £58.29 for the month out of a target of £125.

    I need to get fruit & veg tomorrow as I have just used the last odments for tonight's tea
    mfwin2019
    MFiT2 no 184
    Starting at £181,869Target is £150,000 achieved £147,772
    MFiT3 no 20
    Start £147,772 - £96924 July 2015 target £90'000
  • gdyr1945
    Haven't been able to read posts as my broadband has been even slower than usual. Pages get stuck or take 10mins to change! I end up screaming at computer and give up.

    Well, freezer now sorted (pat on back) and meal plans organised. Feel so much better and more in control.

    Had surprise visit from DD1 and her partner at the weekend. They could get gold medals for eating. Annoyingly there isn't an ounce of fat on either of them.

    Had some soft carrots left so made carrot and lentil soup for my lunches.
  • Hippeechiq
    cha97michelle I think everyone makes a contribution is some way, shape or form every time they post hun
    i would just like to say that since ive been doing this GC since last year i have not come in on budget once yet, it just means i try harder the next time but when i do your all going to know about it
    Originally posted by guccigoo
    Fab post guccigoo
    Well done ebayqueen on how well you're doing, and also great that you're able to treat yourself as a result
    Love the sound of your fruit cake mandco - shame it's in cup measurements though as I don't have any. I know there are numerous sites on the web that will supposedly convert to the gram equivalent, but on the couple of times I've converted a cup recipe, they really have turned out well at all. Does sound yum though - I love fruit cake

    Gutted that yet again £idls new weeks offers don't include any fresh Chicken Breast or Thighs. Not sure what's going on there, but they've not had either on offer down here for a good couple of months so I'll have to get some fresh chicken breasts from Icel@nd again, just the one pack, and hope they're on offer come next Thursday - I can but hope

    Just checked my menu plan, and I don't actually need any Chicken Thighs until Wednesday 26th Jan so I may just tough it out. £idls do have Gammon Joints on offer this week though. I bought a couple of smoked joints at Christmas and they were lovely, and as it's one of the few things DD fancies eating, I make get one and replace my planned meal on the 26th with that instead.

    Anyone know or heard from Katholicos? She used to regularly take part but has not been on the forum since 14th December - I hope she's ok.

    Also LongTallSally hasn't been around for a couple of weeks - if you're browsing hun and see this - hope you're ok
    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
  • SilverCo
    Hippeechiq - those recipes sound yummy, must try them!

    Mothership - sorry to hear you're down at the moment, sending hugs and best wishes

    HM sausage and bean stew for dinner this evening, nom nom

    £10 spend in M&S on their 3 for £10. Bought 2 chickens (rummaged around for the biggest ones I could find!) and a gammon joint. That's the freezer full for the time being and a bigger selection of food than we've had in a long while. Think I might be starting to get the hang of this!

    Now to draw up next week's meal plan...

    Hugs to all those that could do with some TLC

    Silver x
    1st LBM 21.12.09 Total Debt - £21049.95.
    Final LBM 16.8.13 Total Debt - £16583
    DFW Nerd #1282 - Proud to be Dealing with My Debts!
    SPC Member #1182
    • PennyGrabber
    • By PennyGrabber 13th Jan 11, 9:10 PM
    • 1,268 Posts
    • 22,438 Thanks
    PennyGrabber
    NSD today. Had the children, so could have guessed it would be. Don't have the children tomorrow night, but it's all ok, as I'm going to visit my bf. He's taking me out to dinner (from his own pocket!) and I'll have breakfast in the mess (he's RAF), which again he'll pay for. Lunch will prob be sangers either in the mess or from SM, and then I'll be heading back for dinner as the children will be back by then. This is good, because I won't be spending any money in SMs, but bad because my freezers and fridge are fit to burst, and I won't be using anything from them!!

    Have wandered gone completely off track with my meal plan, so after watching eastenders on iplayer, i'm going to go and sort out the fridge and do a new plan. Only have £23.74 left for this month, with 18 days left. Hmmm

    PG x

    PS am going to try cheesy chicken pasties out over the weekend - I'll post a recipe if they're any good.
    Grocery challenge for family of three - me, dd(12) and ds(11), feeding dp 2 or 3 x a week too. Only food, not toiletries. Jan £87.97/£100 Feb £0/£100
    Frugal 2018 needed! Saving and NOT spending
    • meanmarie
    • By meanmarie 13th Jan 11, 9:25 PM
    • 5,146 Posts
    • 50,056 Thanks
    meanmarie
    Have now spent €108.23 of my €190, think that I have enough spuds for rest of month, we will have sausage casserole to-morrow, freezer is full so need to spread out the things in there, milk in fridge went out of date on 02 Jan, so OH had better get half a litre to-morrow, might use up what's left to make scones, haven't had any for a long time.

    Marie
    Weight 08 February 86kg
  • gdyr1945
    Thanks for the hugs.


    Here's a link from an online butchers I buy from,when I've got a few spare pennies, (usually at xmas, as its quite expensive) I think the link might be for their beef for braising. I got a similar offer recently and was blown away by the quality, it is second to none. I'm getting 3 lots of this for the freezer.
    What I noticed particularly about this suppliers meat was the old fashioned taste, all meat used to taste like this, before they started pumping the animals full of all sorts of antibiotics and stuff.

    http://www.donaldrussell.com/p/ShopByCategory_Beef_Beef%20Selections/beef-for-braising-d883.htm
    Originally posted by Mothership
    Yes I also love Donald Russell's meat. We particularly like the beef rib trim for any stews/casseroles/curries. I don't buy other stewing meat anymore as we are always so disappointed by the flavour and texture. Every so often they do a free postage offer and you can also get 'cash back' from 'Top Cash Back Site' - every little helps!
  • pension-newbie
    popped in to local Mr T for some pop crisps and got some 1/2 prince crunchy nuts and woopsied bread and malt loaf £6.44

    have lost track of my total but do all my SM shops on my bank card so will balance the books later
    All CC & Other Debts - Paid Off
    Fifty something family man looking to retire comfortably before he's dead or effectively so
    • PennyGrabber
    • By PennyGrabber 13th Jan 11, 9:51 PM
    • 1,268 Posts
    • 22,438 Thanks
    PennyGrabber
    PS I love the people on this thread so friendly and full of information, its the same on both the thrifty gifty make money and presents thread, plus the knit your sqaure infact every thread I post on is full of really great people.
    xx

    just had a great night with friends and feeling all warm and fuzzy no alcholol required either
    Originally posted by happycrafter
    I'm really rubbish at finding threads on here. How do I find these?!!
    Grocery challenge for family of three - me, dd(12) and ds(11), feeding dp 2 or 3 x a week too. Only food, not toiletries. Jan £87.97/£100 Feb £0/£100
    Frugal 2018 needed! Saving and NOT spending
    • boultdj
    • By boultdj 13th Jan 11, 9:54 PM
    • 4,529 Posts
    • 33,382 Thanks
    boultdj
    Love the sound of your fruit cake mandco - shame it's in cup measurements though as I don't have any. I know there are numerous sites on the web that will supposedly convert to the gram equivalent, but on the couple of times I've converted a cup recipe, they really have turned out well at all. Does sound yum though - I love fruit cake
    Originally posted by Hippeechiq
    Hippeechiq, don't bother with weight, govolume, pick a cup out of your cupboard and use that, my Gran had a lot of recipe's that used cup as a measurment and she never had the measure's, just used what she had,normaly a mug.hth.
    Grocery Challenge Nov £300/£175.15
  • rosieben
    ... I thought i would also share our recipe for cowboy hash ...
    Originally posted by cha97michelle
    That sounds good, thank you I've added it to the recipe index
    ... don't throw the string away. You always need string!

    C.R.A.P.R.O.L.L.Z Head Sharpener
    • angelatgraceland
    • By angelatgraceland 13th Jan 11, 10:29 PM
    • 3,318 Posts
    • 23,074 Thanks
    angelatgraceland
    Had a no spend day today and actually received money-for the sale of a jar of honey! I also got given a new halogen cooker from one of my Freecycle members so I will be experimenting soon with that! Any ideas-timings-gratefuly received as the instructions carry some basic timings but no recipes-it was originally a club book freebie. Cooked up 2 packets of wild mushroom and risotto rice from my AF order with the intention of having them tomorrow. DH ate half-Ive now had some-errr-well there is a portion I will take to work tomorrow for lunch with a flask of soup.
    Trying to ensure I have a variety of menus and use up a few bits. We all seem to eat different things lately-menu planning would probably create wasted meals in our house most days-shame-as I enjoyeed menu planning!
    Ive been copying and pasting everyones delicious recipes as they pop up-I paste into word and save as soon as I read them!
    Ive got about 50 recipe books but usually end up using a recipe from here! Nothing wrong with my books but books are often too fussy with expensive ingredients. I get a lot of fun from moneysaving as I experiment with menus and different idea which pop up on here.
    Just signed up for Hughs fish fight channel4.net. I think Ive been put off fish after seeing this waste! I was aware of it before the programme but didn't realise just how much of the catch was "discarded".
    Last edited by angelatgraceland; 13-01-2011 at 10:31 PM.
    Annual Grocery budget 2018 is £1500 pa £125 calendar month £28.84 pw for 3 adults
    • catslovelycats
    • By catslovelycats 13th Jan 11, 10:48 PM
    • 1,684 Posts
    • 11,207 Thanks
    catslovelycats
    pension_newbie
    love your signature!
  • Hippeechiq
    Hippeechiq, don't bother with weight, govolume, pick a cup out of your cupboard and use that, my Gran had a lot of recipe's that used cup as a measurment and she never had the measure's, just used what she had,normaly a mug.hth.
    Originally posted by boultdj
    Thanks for that suggestion boultdj - much appreciated
    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
  • martafdz
    This thread moves too quickly!! Lol
    I am doing crazy overtime. 1 NSD yesterday and 0.89p spent today!! Still within target, really excited to get to the end of the month and see how much less I have spent! This is my first!!
    Quit smoking *1st January 2010*

    13/12/2012, baby girl!!!
  • ~moneysavingnovice~
    Another £57 spent on the weekly shop in Mr S, £10 of which was toiletries!

    Have kept up the not drinking, but OH seems to be drinking more to compensate grr!
    Mortgage£148,725 Student loan£13,050 HSBC loan£12,221
    AprGC:£/£320
    • Sue14
    • By Sue14 13th Jan 11, 11:39 PM
    • 899 Posts
    • 10,894 Thanks
    Sue14
    Another trip to Mr M yesterday, and another £25.61 spent, then £14.29 spent in A1di today.

    This week I have been very good at using stuff up. On Monday, I made J.O.'s sausage and roast veg to use up a sweet potato and some peppers which wouldn't have lasted much longer, on Tuesday I used the last of the mince to make a lasagne, (made enough for four meals and froze half), then yesterday I used up most of the veg that I had in the fridge to make a batch of veg soup, which is now in the freezer in 5 double portions, and used the rest to make a lamb casserole, with a couple of lamb leg steaks, which were due to go out of date at the end of the month.

    Very pleased with myself on the using up, but not on the amount I've already spent this month!
    Weight loss challenge 3/10lbs
    Total weight loss 21lbs

  • Hippeechiq
    I'm really rubbish at finding threads on here. How do I find these?!!
    Originally posted by PennyGrabber
    Hi PennyGrabber - I think if you try clicking on the links below, they might be what you're after .....perhaps happycrafter can confirm this?

    (click me) LINK FOR NEW THRIFTY GIFTY THREAD

    (click me) LINK FOR HANDMADE GIFTS FOR CHRISTMAS & CELEBRATIONS 2011 THREAD
    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
  • youngmummy
    i cant remember how much i spend exactly but have updated my sig so ive got it logged .... its not looking very good tho xxxxx
    (#80 save 12k in 2015) aim £10,000
    make £10 a day in 2015 £261/£4000
    emergency fund aim £100/£1000
    £1 a day for xmas 2015 £0/£365
    NSD feb 0/16
    feb GC £0/£120
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