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  • FIRST POST
    • caronc
    • By caronc 13th Jan 18, 8:48 AM
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    caronc
    Cooking for one (Mark Three)
    • #1
    • 13th Jan 18, 8:48 AM
    Cooking for one (Mark Three) 13th Jan 18 at 8:48 AM
    Welcome to Cooking one (Mark Three), time to get a shiny new thread up and running. The link to "Cooking for one (Mark Two)" can be found here http://forums.moneysavingexpert.com/showthread.php?p=73708876&posted=1#post73708876

    Cooking For One
    13th Jan 17 at 7:32 PM
    Hi, newbie poster though long time lurker trying to adjust to being an empty-nester and due to some substantial changes income-wise in the next couple of months trying to cut my costs and adjust my shopping to mainly solo dining. I abhor waste so good that way and do cook from scratch/batch cook the vast majority of the time. I do "sort of" meal plan but it can be a bit hit or miss depending on my health is on any given day. I'm reliant on on-line shopping so can't take advanage of aldi/Lidl etc. What (if any) changes did you make when changing to a single-person household?
    Last edited by caronc; 13-01-2018 at 8:51 AM.
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Page 135
    • PasturesNew
    • By PasturesNew 7th May 18, 5:43 PM
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    PasturesNew
    ... is it something you will do again?
    .... have no wish to do so ...
    Originally posted by Brambling
    I'd go if it were the same weather and if I liked the location.

    I have no idea why I said yes. It's "not for me thank you very much", but the weather did say it'd be super hot and I didn't have to "involve" myself in any of the mechanics of construction, so I kind of said "yes" and then stuck with it. And I needed to get out of the house as I have nuisance neighbours at the moment (soon to get the bang at the door with the official waving the papers under their nose and pointing them towards the street).

    The other person practically said "just be there/do nothing... and you'll get fed". That's right up my street then!
    Last edited by PasturesNew; 07-05-2018 at 5:50 PM.
    • kittie
    • By kittie 7th May 18, 7:13 PM
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    kittie
    Do you know pineapple, I think that one of the best things is a nice relaxing hot soak with a handful of epsom salts and a painkiller after you have eaten because we all know darn well that these aches from heavy gardening strike some hours later and usually when we are in bed. To do the stretching I have an inverter, had one since 2004 and it has been a life saver, it decompresses my spine, which shortens and squashes the discs when I lift heavy things or twist a lot, like when I cut long path edges or when hoeing. Apart from that, it is important to break the pain cycle. I know that my hip pains come from my lower back and when it is very squashed, like this morning, I can feel sciatic pain run down my leg. I know then what the cause is and do something about it
    • moneyistooshorttomention
    • By moneyistooshorttomention 7th May 18, 7:21 PM
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    moneyistooshorttomention
    Am guessing a good makeshift for if one doesnt have anything like an inverter is that yoga pose of lying down face upwards, with backside slap up against the wall and put both legs going up the wall.

    Meanwhile, back at the ranch, tv programme I want to watch in a minute - and I'm taking tv programmes as a good excuse to make sure I go in for a bit of "proper" deep breathing. I'm working my way up to doing breathing exercises - weight for the losing of (as, goodness knows, I've got it fairly well weighed up what new clothes to buy when....). Do hope I've still got a waist underneath the excess weight - particularly as belts are back in fashion and I do like a nice belt.
    ****************
    • caronc
    • By caronc 7th May 18, 8:00 PM
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    caronc
    Anyway, yesterday was simply the chicken with new potatoes and raita made with mint from the garden. Today, it is more of the chicken but with risotto rice and maybe a bit of red cabbage 'coleslaw'. It's simple food but I find it a bit sad that so many people seem to think that you need a 'recipe' to dish up a meal.
    My mother didn't know any recipes (apart from baking from the trusty Bero book ) but she served up decent unadulterated nutritious food and sometimes it seems that we've lost the knack. Programmes like Masterchef are fine but in everyday life people aren't going to come home from work to spend hours deconstructing some simple dish or producing fancy little towers of this and that. There, I'll get off me soapbox now
    Originally posted by pineapple
    Despite being known for the odd "cheffy" moment (or two), I couldn't agree more. Decent food cooked well is always a pleasure to eat. I tend to think "desconstructing" is a cover for I set off to make X but ran out of time/CBA/it didn't work the way I planned........ My bugbear though is the trend both in restaurants and at home is for over sized plates/bowls or using "novelty" things IMHO to serve food in/on. Please can I just have my meal in a normal sized plate or bowl!

    PN- sounds as though you had a great weekend. I used to camp loads when I was in the Guides and later teens but I think the last time I camped was in 1982.

    It's been a cracking day here, still a bit overcast at times but pleasantly warm, no need for a cardi though I think some of the "beachwear" folk were sporting in town was pushing it a bit. The town was heaving so we didn't manage to get to the tearoom we planned to go to as it was a 45 min wait for a table and we would have felt obliged to eat & run when we got one. We were considering buying sandwiches etc. and going to sit near the beach but by chance a table cleared in another cafe just as we were passing. They did advise there would be a wait for food which actually suited us fine as it meant we could get a good natter. By the time our food arrived the lunch peak was over so we were able to sit with a cuppa and continue our chat. In the end up I opted for a cheese & ham sandwich which was freshly made and really tasty.
    Apart from filling some trays to plant more peas & beans into tomorrow and some watering nothing else was done in my garden today.
    Having had cheese at lunch I don't want it again tonight so I'll heat up last night's LO roast veg and chicken and cook some sprouts to have with it. There will still be chicken left (I'll not reheat all of it) that I'll have for lunch tomorrow and probably freeze the rest.
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    • Brambling
    • By Brambling 7th May 18, 10:28 PM
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    Brambling
    Despite being known for the odd "cheffy" moment (or two), I couldn't agree more. Decent food cooked well is always a pleasure to eat. I tend to think "desconstructing" is a cover for I set off to make X but ran out of time/CBA/it didn't work the way I planned........ My bugbear though is the trend both in restaurants and at home is for over sized plates/bowls or using "novelty" things IMHO to serve food in/on. Please can I just have my meal in a normal sized plate or bowl!.
    Originally posted by caronc
    I'm another one who cooks mainly off the cuff, but I like to look for new ideas to ring the changes not usually too cheffy simple recipes via google which I often tweak to fit the ingredients I have in the cupboards. I'm old enough to have benefitted from home economics lessons at school and parents who cooked every thing from scratch on a low budget, it gave me a good foundation. My bug bear is when you see them spend ages tweaking food with tweezers, adding flowers etc. I look at it and think all that man handling of the food before it goes on the plate I'm not sure I would want to eat it oh and where's my vegetables, a hunk of meat, a smear of 'puree' potatoes and a spring onion baby leek

    I'll get off my box now

    Not so much cba today just not very hungry. Fruit for lunch, I had some chilled rhubarb and strawberries (I love it chilled rather than hot) and a small piece of salmon with a small salad for dinner. Glass of milk before bed as I don't want to wake up hungry in night

    I did bake a couple of cakes tonight a lemon drizzle and an almond slice so not a totally cook free day
    Last edited by Brambling; 07-05-2018 at 10:33 PM.
    • kittie
    • By kittie 8th May 18, 6:58 AM
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    kittie
    [QUOTE=moneyistooshorttomention;74257307]Am guessing a good makeshift for if one doesnt have anything like an inverter is that yoga pose of lying down face upwards, with backside slap up against the wall and put both legs going up the wall.
    .[/QUOTE

    not quite, you still get compression. Alternative would be to lie flat on back on the floor right up to a kitchen chair, knees on the edge and lower legs flat on chair. This at least would relax the back without compression but it does not pull the spinal joints apart like gravity does with an inverter. Back feels good this morning and no hip aches waking me up. I must remember to use the inverter more often, to keep the discs hydrated. Like everything I forget until I creak

    I had cottage cheese with chives/leaves/tomato again and glad to say that the tub is now empty and salad bag too. I am nicely full. Lunch will be a meat, maybe lamb cutlet and a mix of steamed veg. I still have 2 jersey royals left in the vac tub, they lasted a full week. More coming tomorrow but no more after that. I like JRs small, buttery and very young. Same with the asparagus. I love simple unadorned food, the pure taste of organic veg and grass fed meat

    I am looking forward to the next few cooler days and a bit of rain, perfect for growing my veg on. Salad leaves will be put out on wednesday, I will protect them with LO slug wool pellets
    • wort
    • By wort 8th May 18, 8:10 AM
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    wort
    A great day Sunday, i took dgson to the park and met brother snd sis in law, then other sister as the local football team was celebrating winning the league. It was hot and only stayed a couple of hours, then cut the lawn at home,and did the prep for bbq.

    The bbq was lovely, dd1 came up with the meat, lamb kofta s with pitta bread, hm steak burgers, plain/ tikka chicken kebabs, black farmer sausages. I did a huge amount of salad and baby potatoes, dips and sauces, and crisps for later.

    The weather was boiling but we only started about 5.30 so only too hot for my brother and dds partner who were cooking!! There was about 25 of us and the last left about 11.30, I'd tidied as much as I could and went to bed but then woke at 4 am and couldn't get back off.

    After dd1 left at 11 am had a good clean, and changed the beds and got them washed and dried.then i had a ham salad sandwich, with a few lo crisp.
    Then had solero style lolly whilst reading later.
    Tea was a big salad with lots of bits and dips, olives, sun blush tomato, coleslaw, jacket spud ,yummy. Then I had Greek yogurt with raspberries.

    Back in work today and it's grey and overcast, lunch will be a repeat of yesterday,not decided on tea yet.
    Last edited by wort; 08-05-2018 at 8:18 AM. Reason: Add
    Focus on contribution instead of the impressiveness of consumption to see the true beauty in people.
    • wort
    • By wort 8th May 18, 8:12 AM
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    wort
    Kittie, my yoga teacher mention the legs up wall pose, I will try it with a chair that sounds better thanks.
    I often wish I had a rack !! Standing in my job doesn't help.
    Focus on contribution instead of the impressiveness of consumption to see the true beauty in people.
    • PasturesNew
    • By PasturesNew 8th May 18, 9:17 AM
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    PasturesNew
    ... think all that man handling of the food before it goes on the plate I'm not sure I would want to eat it ....
    Originally posted by Brambling
    That's always the thought in my mind. I'd rather go to the chippy where a shovel has been used to shovel chips into a bag, than some "posh place" where god knows who has been leaning over the food, breathing all over it, touching it all, poking it all about.... puts me right off it!

    I started at 6 this morning, weeding a 2.8m x 1m strip, laying down weed suppressant sheeting, then shovelling bark on top. Of course, you never quite have enough to get to the end do you, so I need to pick up a small £1-2 bag of bark at some point, rip that open and just toss it in the general direction of the exposed sheet areas.

    I also tackled a small patch that's about 1.2m x 15cm - it had long grass, small brambles, old dandelions, etc.... so I ripped all that out by hand, took the secateurs to the root of the brambley bits ... then reached for the weedol and gave it all a good soaking. Some time in the next week or so I'll cut a strip of suppressant sheet and cover it with 1-2 bags of slate chippings from £land.

    Then I went food shopping. I wanted bread rolls + whatever I saw that took my fancy. I had in mind "get food in that you like, that's nice in this hot weather" (it's sunny/hot here again today).

    I ended up getting a 400g pack of beef cubes that were on YS to half price + a pack of muffins YS to half price. Beef's already in the freezer, although I didn't rebag it (which I normally do to save space) as I CBA. Muffins will be frozen later, I'll probably toast one for breakfast. I got the bread rolls I wanted, 10 large eggs, a frozen meat feast pizza, a pack of 40 cooked cocktail sausages and a bag of chocolate covered peanuts.

    I've always liked/bought cheap supermarket multipack choc ices, usually 8 or so for £1 or less. Last year 4ldi sold some, but they've not reappeared this year... which is a nuisance. I'd have got a box of those if they'd been for sale today. It's just nice to have a quick 10p ice cream ... I've never been one for buying pricier branded posh ices.

    I then decided to drop into L1dl for sausage rolls and to get a 6-pack of the fizzy pop I like (I still have two bottles from last time, but I'd rather get them when I'm in the mood and the shop's almost empty, than struggling with 12 litres of fizzy pop on a busy day). I also got a pack of veggie samosas, only because they were YS to 30% off (so 60p I think they were).

    Today I will be eating .... anything and everything that takes my fancy.
    Last edited by PasturesNew; 08-05-2018 at 9:21 AM.
    • kittie
    • By kittie 8th May 18, 9:52 AM
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    kittie
    My favourite is magnum, which I only have very rarely. I will never forget my very first white magnum, I thought I was in heaven. Could easily become an addiction but isn`t. I confess to being an ice cream addict but am restraining myself

    Back from planting out, almost all bed areas are now planted up. I need to shower and change as am muddy

    re food handling, you see it all the time on tv and sometimes you see them touching their faces with the same hands. I hate it, pure hot from the cooker is safer, like fresh cooked fish and chips. I don`t even handle my own food much, only salad and only with pristine clean hands
    • PasturesNew
    • By PasturesNew 8th May 18, 9:58 AM
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    PasturesNew
    My favourite is magnum, which I only have very rarely....
    Originally posted by kittie
    Years ago there used to be a lolly called Lord Toffingham. It was a layer of soft/runny toffee round the stick, surrounded by chocolate ice cream, then the top half of the lolly was coated in chocolate. They stopped making those decades ago.

    I don't buy ice cream because you then get into that whole raft of "having to think about it" and choosing, then realising you need a 1 litre tub to get "value for money", then realising you have to eat the whole lot .... so those little cheap choc ices just "hit the spot", without the financial overhead and saving hours of decision-making time.
    • caronc
    • By caronc 8th May 18, 9:58 AM
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    caronc
    Good morning everyone,
    Sounds as though you had a smashing bbq wort
    It's much cooler and very overcast here this morning, I think the forecast for rain this afternoon will be right.
    I've not much planned for today, after being out and about yesterday I'm a bit off kilter/unsteady so a quiet day is needed to get things back on track. I'm going to cook a beef olive and make root veg mash for tonight. Not particularly summery fare but I think summer has disappeared again. Lunch will be peri peri chicken, salad and a mug of pea & ham soup.
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    • meg72
    • By meg72 8th May 18, 10:07 AM
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    meg72
    Grrrrr was up at 6am to have a bath wash my hair and get dressed up for a day out with my DD She was picking me up at 9am. Right 9.20 and message to say its now 11.15. So here I am wondering what I can do that wont mean me getting messy. The garden is calling but will get dirty, likewise housework.

    Soooooooooo decided on a freezer sort out and menu plan for next week. I really really want to get rid of this freezer and buy a fridge freezer but everytime I think I`m getting there it gets filled up again.

    Have now set myself a deadline of 18th August, my Birthday, to do this .

    By a dint of shuffling about, taking out what I can use up in next three days and putting in fridge, I have one empty drawer. As I was putting it back in I thought Nooooo it will just get filled up again so have put it in the greenhouse to hold pots. Lol I cant fill a drawer that's not there, can I?
    Slimming World at target
    • PasturesNew
    • By PasturesNew 8th May 18, 10:57 AM
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    PasturesNew
    ...As I was putting it back in I thought Nooooo it will just get filled up again so have put it in the greenhouse to hold pots. Lol I cant fill a drawer that's not there, can I?
    Originally posted by meg72
    Seeing it missing every time you open the freezer will continually remind you not to buy food to freeze, or buy frozen food, or freeze food too.... as you say, if the drawer's there it's easy to just slide something into it.
    • caronc
    • By caronc 8th May 18, 11:24 AM
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    caronc

    By a dint of shuffling about, taking out what I can use up in next three days and putting in fridge, I have one empty drawer. As I was putting it back in I thought Nooooo it will just get filled up again so have put it in the greenhouse to hold pots. Lol I cant fill a drawer that's not there, can I?
    Originally posted by meg72
    Oh er that's brave meg, love what you've used the drawer for
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    • caronc
    • By caronc 8th May 18, 11:26 AM
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    caronc
    Forecast was right it's absolutely tipping it down now, hope it lets up a bit so I can put my recycling bin out without getting drenched.
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    • PasturesNew
    • By PasturesNew 8th May 18, 11:44 AM
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    PasturesNew
    Still scorchio here

    I've not bothered checking the weather ... so I'll take a peek now ...

    It says sunny/cloudy for the rest of this week, then it'll rain Friday, Sunday and Monday.

    19° now, rising to 21° by 1pm.
    Wednesday and Thursday will peak at 14° at lunchtimes.
    • caronc
    • By caronc 8th May 18, 12:05 PM
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    caronc
    My outdoor thermometer is showing 12C, I have a jumper on....
    Wet for us for the rest of the week apart from Thursday. Hopefully it will be showery spells rather than continually wet. I think the fleecy blanket will be getting popped over my duvet tonight as it's supposed to drop to about 6C. Thankfully no sign of frost forecast so hopefully my recently planted plants will be ok.
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    • moneyistooshorttomention
    • By moneyistooshorttomention 8th May 18, 1:56 PM
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    moneyistooshorttomention
    Very grey and threatening weather here again today - after 2 days of decent weather (cue for taking the opportunity quick to get the garden sorted). Temperature down some degrees again

    Re uses for freezer drawers. I had precisely one detachable freezer drawer from the fridge/freezer I had to bin just after I moved here. Cue for keeping it "in case it came in handy" and it has now been re-purposed to put spare cosmetics in and keep in my (former) airing cupboard. So I've got spare soap/toothpaste/etc/etc all readily to hand and can just pull it out from where it's sitting on the floor.

    Though the airing cupboard itself has basically been re-purposed in the first place. There was a very odd mixed set-up (par for the course then on this house) set-up when I bought this house. So there was an airing cupboard sitting in my hallway that had a water tank in that was storing water for "Oooh....I don't know...summat or other out of the odd cobble-together system the house had when I bought it". Cue for previous boiler (elsewhere in house) being ripped out and replaced with "normal Do Everything boiler" in that place. So airing cupboard was left sitting there half-filled with slatted shelves. Duly ripped out and re-purposed with all "gaps" filled with new slotted shelves floor to ceiling in it and it's been repurposed as a storage cupboard.

    Lunch today - well voluntary work stuff again this morning and included an unexpected "ambush". Sorted/done and dusted/dealt with successfully - and lunch today was 2 squares of expensive luxury chocolate and a couple of glasses of wine - as reward for "staying Cool/staying firm" after no preparation whatsoever. Unexpected ambush stuff seems to be the "name of the game" in recent weeks on the voluntary work front - hopefully all will now finally "calm down and go back to normal". It was one of those "buy a lottery ticket or scratchcard with BIG prize" mornings - lottery ticket for this Wednesday's draw duly sitting there in purse thinking "I know exactly which house I shall buy if The Universe smiles on me" Yep....it's about £400,000.....right road/right house/right area/looks pretty good to me. Any positive vibes going for Wednesday night and I shall put in a generous bid sight unseen for that house and then get a train ticket/hotel reservations to go and check it out - as I know the area well enough to know it would suit me rather well.

    My mother has a phrase she has used occasionally of "I'm sure this is all very good for Character Development - well haven't I developed enough Character by now?" Well - I guess I'm learning to "think on my feet" by now...
    Last edited by moneyistooshorttomention; 08-05-2018 at 2:03 PM.
    ****************
    • Farway
    • By Farway 8th May 18, 2:51 PM
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    Farway
    Weather today was supposed to be cooler, feels even hotter to me, sun out & hot. Killjoy hoping for rain some time this week, water my beans & bedding plants

    Yesterday's baked spud / cheese & LO beans was ideal CBA food, and tasty

    Nil breakfast, not much luck in L's either, I was hoping for some YS inspirational bargain, nothing I fancied.

    However my luck changed at volunteering, I was given some small, new style, spuds, which changed my planned dinner from LO cauli cheese to steamed salmon

    Lunch was another PB baguette, with cheese salady filling

    That salmon, I made a foil package around it, the gathered sides at the top and I stood it in the steamer and started adding veg after 10 minutes and then different veg after another 10 minutes. All on one hob and it had to be one of the nicest, easiest meals ever. I love these spring veggies and only ever want them steamed or raw
    Originally posted by kittie
    I mentioned I fancied salmon yesterday, and now with the free new spuds, today is the day the dream becomes reality.

    I'll cook it same as Kittie, steamed, but with new spuds in the base of the pan, with fresh mint from my volunteering patch
    I'll have it with salad, not got fresh veg and frozen just does not seem the same

    Salmon is defrosting, extra spuds prepped and will be cooked to give some left overs

    No GnT, but there is a bottle of posh ginger beer in the fridge, part gift from dog sitting volunteering the other week
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