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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 82
    • SilverBird
    • By SilverBird 16th Jan 11, 9:14 AM
    • 251 Posts
    • 2,107 Thanks
    SilverBird
    Ventured into town yesterday and spent 26.75 of the M&S voucher. Took advantage of their 3 for 10 deal on meat - 3 chickens, braising steak, 20 butcher's sausages and 4 quarterpounder Angus beefburgers. 'Saved' 7.76 here so I'm quite pleased with that.

    Also bought 4 jars of curry sauce (half price at 89p each so thought it was worth a try while on offer - will be good for making a quick meal on those days when extra pushed for time and so won't be tempted to send for a take away!), a pack of filter coffee and a bag of salad. Total 'saving' = 11.32 from total of 38.07 = 26.75 to pay.

    We had very heavy rain yesterday so this helped me focus on just going into M&S and then back to the car rather than wandering around town and buying other stuff to break the budget. Another bonus - free parking in town after 10 am on Saturdays so that's more money saved
    #Life isn't about waiting for the storms to pass, it's about learning to dance in the rain #We must be willing to let go of the life we planned so as to have the life that is waiting for us #If you focus on what you have left behind, you will never see what lies ahead - Gusteau/Ratatouille
    GC 2018: 2,104.01/2,160 total spend
    • minnie2
    • By minnie2 16th Jan 11, 9:18 AM
    • 513 Posts
    • 8,701 Thanks
    minnie2
    ill again today! but am going to have to brave the shops, finish work at 12.45pm and will be in city anyway so i will be trawling round all the shops oh the joy!!!

    one of my dogs has got a lump o his nose so got vets monday - hope its not going to be too expensive typically i stopped his insurance on 29th December!! also hoping hes just knocked it and its not a tumour!

    so the less i spend on food the more can go towards sorting his poor face out! thought i might try getting cash out and adding up as i go round and prioritising!
    Frugal living challenge - need to revisit its been.a while !! Need to reduce our debts!!
    • Gracie_1827
    • By Gracie_1827 16th Jan 11, 9:33 AM
    • 290 Posts
    • 2,487 Thanks
    Gracie_1827
    Morning everyone, managed a NSD yesterday and will resist today as well. Freezer's been audited and it should keep me going until the end of the month. Might be a bit of a problem with budget as me and DS are reducing our carbs to get rid of Xmas excess. And protein can be expensive. Might just call it no white carbs and keep to a bit of wholemeal pasta & rice. Want to lose 4kg.
    GC - Oct 36.17/31
    GC - Sep 35.56/30
    GC - Aug 30.73/31
    GC - Jul 30.80/31
    • minnie2
    • By minnie2 16th Jan 11, 11:03 AM
    • 513 Posts
    • 8,701 Thanks
    minnie2
    lump has gone so woo hoo!! had wondered if hed knocked on his bone he was playing with!! so no vet bills and definately not a tumour1!

    now plotting my course round the supermarkets!! not sure how i am going to fit them all in! dont finish work untill 12.45-1pm so ill have 3hours to do all 4shops!!

    need help does anyone make their own bolognese sauces and if so how!!

    also how do you keep silicone moulds dust and bit free!!
    Frugal living challenge - need to revisit its been.a while !! Need to reduce our debts!!
  • Emily87
    [QUOTE=rosieben;40280708]the reason some of us don't use supermarkets proper names is that it would improve their search rating!

    you can call them what you like - I frequently call them things that I couldn't repeat on this thread but usually I call them MrT and sainsbugs, other people have their own specials, just use what you prefer [/QUOTE

    Thanks rosieben
    June Grocery Challenge - ???/230
    Credit card debt - Start - 10,613 Now - 10613
    Personal loan - Start - 10,116 Now - 10116

    DFD - October 2015

  • bella121984
    lump has gone so woo hoo!! had wondered if hed knocked on his bone he was playing with!! so no vet bills and definately not a tumour1!

    now plotting my course round the supermarkets!! not sure how i am going to fit them all in! dont finish work untill 12.45-1pm so ill have 3hours to do all 4shops!!

    need help does anyone make their own bolognese sauces and if so how!!

    also how do you keep silicone moulds dust and bit free!!
    Originally posted by minnie2
    I make my bolognese sauces really simply...just cook some mince in a pan with whatever veg I fancy (or have left!) mushrooms, peppers, courgettes, onions etc, stick a can of chopped tomatoes in, and I usually put a bit of black pepper/ garlic/ mixed herbs in too, and thats it!
    January grocery challenge- 338.09/350
    365 in 365 days- 25
    January NSDs- 9
    Money made on ebay- 16.89
  • seasalt
    Realise that I have been to the shop twice since i last updated my signature, one spend of 54.51 and one of 59.15 (both "weekly" shops plus a 2.10 tin of golden syrup. Am quite pleased with this but I know that it is partly because we have been living off Christmas/New Year surplus plus the storecupboard.
    Jan 2011 GC 300/150.79 (2 adults, 2 teens, working dog, includes food/cleaning/toiletries)
  • martafdz
    need help does anyone make their own bolognese sauces and if so how!!
    Originally posted by minnie2
    I do the following:

    1. Put sunflower oil in a pan, enough to cover the base without making a pool lol. Put a middle heat.

    2. Add chopped onion (small chunks), it should go soft and yellow, not brown. If it goes brown, the heat was a bit too high.

    3. Add garlic. If you like garlic, chop it finely or use the dry minced one. If you do not like eating garlic, just put two dents without skin but whole, so you can remove them later on.

    4. Add chopped mushrooms (if you like them). They have water usually, so now it is time to put the heat up a bit. My kitchen goes from 1 to 10 and I put it at 7-8. Keep moving everything so nothing gets burn. If the mushrooms had too much water and now you have a pool you might want to either spoon out liquid and add a bit more of oil, or put the heat up for a bit until some water evaporates.
    At this point I put the other pan with water for the spaguetti to boil.

    5. When the mushrooms start to change colour and they do not look that raw, I add the mince meat. I spread it around making sure there are not big balls of mince meat. Mix everything, stir and leave it for a bit so the mince browns a bit. Then turn it and leave to brown the other side.

    6. I put the pasta to cook in boiling water in the other pan.

    7. I add a jar of tomato sauce and half a teaspoon of mixed herbs (optional) to the pan with the mince. I put down the heat to 3. Stir stir stir so everything gets mixed well. Tomato burns easily and stick to pans, so keep stirring until everything is mixed and everything has cooled a bit. If you see the tomato bubling really softly (not exploding lol), then you can leave it for a minute at low heat, then stir and leave for a bit again. I usually add the salt at this point because some tomato sauces make it sweet, so I prefer to check here how much I need. If I do not have a jar of tomato sauce, I use chopped tomato but then I start earlier because it is always really watery so I need to take all the water out and leave the tomato to fry for a bit, so I do not reduce to 3 but maybe 5 and stir most of the time until it changes colour from bright red to darkish red. I also have to add more salt. Sometimes also add tomato puree to make it thicker if I have used the chopped tomato tin.

    8. I then drain the spaguetti (after I tried and it is soft inside but firm outside) and add the mix from the pan. I stir everything and sometimes put it back to the heat for less than a minute, still stirring, just so the tomato sauce sticks even more to the spaguetti.

    9. Eaaaat! Lol

    I quite fancy doing spaguetti tomorrow now, lol. Or burritos!!! I kind of do the same but without mushrooms or tomato, adding fajita spices and draining well before adding to the tortilla and salad. Mmmmm, yummy!!
    Last edited by martafdz; 16-01-2011 at 11:56 AM.
    Quit smoking *1st January 2010*

    13/12/2012, baby girl!!!
  • Long tall sally
    Another 10.53 spent todat as I was passing a Sainsburys so went in for some of the o0ffers - Ariel liquid, sausages, muller lights plus some g/f wafers & Sainsbury's weetabix. Made a curry last night with one of Co Op's 1/2 price healthier option jar of sauce (64p?) & it was very nice so might get some more tomorrow if offer still on. It may be cheaper to completely make your own curry but I am happy using a sauce for an easy meal on Saturday nights & it's still way cheaper than getting a takeaway.

    Bolognaise - I fry onion, garlic, a stick or two of celery, a grated carrot or two, mushrooms if I have them, brown the mince, drain the fat, add tomato puree & oregano & mixed herbs & cook for another minute, add tinned tomatoes, s & p, a teaspoon of sugar (to take off the acidity of the tomotoes), a small cup of beef stock and sometimes a few squirts of ketchup. I keep tasting & adding to it until the taste is exactly as I like it!
    Grocery aim 450pm.Spent 519 August, 584 July, 544 June, 541 May, 549 April, 517 March, 517 Feb,555 Jan, 573 Dec, 465Nov, 561Oct, 493Sept, 426Aug,496 Jul, 528Jun, 506May,498April, 558 March, 500Feb, 500 Jan, 490 Dec, 555 Nov,566 Oct, 505Sept, 450Aug, 410 July, 437 June, 491 May, 471 April, 440 March, 552Feb, 462Jan
  • pension-newbie
    Mrs P-N did the shopping at Lidl today which is normally my preserve - lots of things have come back which look lovely but I tend to avoid as a bit epensive - ah well at least I didn't have to do the shopping and I get some variety for not mtoo much extra - 46.34

    My record at Lidl is 86 (just before xmas and needing a weeks supplies)
    All CC & Other Debts - Paid Off
    Fifty something family man looking to retire comfortably before he's dead or effectively so
    • OrkneyStar
    • By OrkneyStar 16th Jan 11, 12:54 PM
    • 6,672 Posts
    • 42,974 Thanks
    OrkneyStar
    Hi,
    Do I have to PM someone in particular to get my budget removed (I did not want it on in the first place- that was why it was not in red ) ?
    Thanks
    • catslovelycats
    • By catslovelycats 16th Jan 11, 1:11 PM
    • 1,684 Posts
    • 11,207 Thanks
    catslovelycats
    Hi,
    Do I have to PM someone in particular to get my budget removed (I did not want it on in the first place- that was why it was not in red ) ?
    Thanks
    Originally posted by OrkneyStar
    I don;t think you'll need to. Someone will spot this post (didn't you post one like this yesterday too?) and change it for you. Sometimes it might be some hours though.
    • fedupandskint
    • By fedupandskint 16th Jan 11, 1:15 PM
    • 10,351 Posts
    • 97,525 Thanks
    fedupandskint
    Just had a little shuffle around the freezer to fit a pork joint in before it goes OOD, yesterdays batch cook of JP and duck legs 1/2 price in S*bugs

    Then discovered a pork chop, lamb steak, mince beef and fish pie mix had forgotten about - plenty in

    Took out gravy and red cabbage to defrost to have with chicken and mash tonight

    Chicken leftovers will be - pie (have 1/2 block of pastry in there too), pasta, salad, that might be it -will see, then carcass for stock

    Meaning what else can I have this week

    Chicken pie x 2 or 3 meals
    Stir fry and rice or noodles
    Salmon and veg and JP
    Pork chop and veg
    Lamb steak and veg

    Weekend make fish pie and batch cook bolognaise and tomato sauce alongside writing assignment of 1500 words and possible marmalade making if sevilles appear
    final unsecured debt to repay currently 8333
    Proud to be Dealing With my Debt
    DFW Nerd 1154 Long Haul 155
    • OrkneyStar
    • By OrkneyStar 16th Jan 11, 1:17 PM
    • 6,672 Posts
    • 42,974 Thanks
    OrkneyStar
    I don;t think you'll need to. Someone will spot this post (didn't you post one like this yesterday too?) and change it for you. Sometimes it might be some hours though.
    Originally posted by catslovelycats
    Yes I did, but in the past things like that were normally changed very quickly, so just wondered if protocol had changed while I was away (not meaning to sound like an impatient wee pain in the *** lol).
    I have deleted it from yesterdays post and so it is just there as a single one now!
    Thanks to whoever sorts all this out (used to be MrsM, but not sure if it still that lovely lady or another lovely lady ).
    Won't be posting again for a while as no shops planned so happy GC everyone!! xx
    Last edited by OrkneyStar; 16-01-2011 at 1:24 PM.
  • Mothership
    We had a lovely fish pie last night. I used the pastry recipe from the best ever mince pies for the pastry, it was yummy. Even my 5 month old granddaughter enjoyed it. It pureed perfectly.
    If anyone wants the recipe let me know and I will post it.

    Had a yummy spanish omelette for lunch made with peppers, onions, mushrooms and leftover potatoes from last night. Really filling.

    Having Spaghetti Bolognaise for dinner tonight (mince from the freezer).

    Not much left of my Jan food budget, think I will manage though, will only need to buy bread and milk fresh veg etc, I've got enough for at least a week. I'm saving the last of my budget for nearer the end of the month.

    I got some pitta bread and stuff from farmfds just before xmas in case we ran out of bread, use by date 22nd March, went to use them yesterday and they had mould all over them. Should I take them back? You should have seen my husbands face when I gave him his bacon and tomato wrapped in fajhitas. He ate them. I'm refusing to buy or bake ANYTHING until everything that needs eaten is gone.
    1st Purse 114.19 Monthly GB
    2nd Purse 100
    Fridge Freezer 300 3rd Purse /290.94
    • catslovelycats
    • By catslovelycats 16th Jan 11, 1:27 PM
    • 1,684 Posts
    • 11,207 Thanks
    catslovelycats
    Yes I did, but in the past things like that were normally changed very quickly, so just wondered if protocol had changed while I was away (not meaning to sound like an impatient wee pain in the *** lol).
    I have deleted it from yesterdays post and so it is just there as a single one now!
    Thanks to whoever sorts all this out (used to be MrsM, but not sure if it still that lovely lady or another lovely lady ).
    Won't be posting again for a while as no shops planned so happy GC everyone!! xx
    Originally posted by OrkneyStar
    I shouldn't worry. Know how you feel OS. I felt the same Friday when I posted a NSD and I think I was too late for it to be registered. It didn't show 'quickly enough' for me and I wondered if I'd done somehting wrong like not done my post in colour . Not that any of us are obsessed with all this .... You'll be spotted. Don't worry
  • rosieben
    Hi,
    Do I have to PM someone in particular to get my budget removed (I did not want it on in the first place- that was why it was not in red ) ?
    Thanks
    Originally posted by OrkneyStar
    MrsMC keeps the list up to date, not sure how often she comes on so you could pm her?
    ... don't throw the string away. You always need string!

    C.R.A.P.R.O.L.L.Z Head Sharpener
    • catslovelycats
    • By catslovelycats 16th Jan 11, 1:32 PM
    • 1,684 Posts
    • 11,207 Thanks
    catslovelycats
    I've got 2 haddock and mushroom filo tarts defrosting for tonight.
    Mmmmm. Not a huge fan of haddock.
    Only bought them because they were reduced from 6 to 1.55 in Nov & they looked nicely made ...
    Guess the cats will eat them if I don't like 'em!
  • brodie1
    januarys total
    Hi,
    Januarys total [ my Jan ends today] is 288.72

    cheers Brodie1
    Brodie 1/ july 300/330.62August300/322.49
    September 300/239.78Oct300/258.50Nov 250/282.24 December 300/300.01 JAN 2011 300/288.72 . September 300/319.19, October 300/351.59Three adults, 1 dog and 1 cats and cleaning stuff, toiletries, beer.
  • rosieben
    well done brodie!

    Long tall sally, martafdz and bella121984, I've put your bolognaise recipes in the index, thank you
    ... don't throw the string away. You always need string!

    C.R.A.P.R.O.L.L.Z Head Sharpener
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