Wednesday, 31 July 2013

What a good idea: Picnic for a pound

. . . or as Beth calls it, P4P.

The inspiration for this came from our Facebook group, Responsible Frugality (name is due for a change) which started when we were doing Living Below The Line.  Several others also then did LBTL and at the end people wanted the group to continue, so we did!  (find us and ask to join - it's an open group)!  

We have an August 'event' - 

The rules:
1) Organise a bring and share picnic. It could be an extended family gathering, a toddler group outing, something private, something more open... you decide.  If the weather is bad, it could be an indoor picnic instead! 2) Bring along food to the value of £1 PER FAMILY, so a multipack of crisps, a baking of scones, half a loaf worth of sandwiches, some squash... whatever you decide.3) Bring at least one item for the local food bank- may be worth contacting them to find out what they especially need. You can bring more than one item, of course, the more the better!  You could work out roughly how much you would normally spend on a picnic and donate the rest in food.4) Share what you have brought along! And afterwards, someone takes the donations down to the food bank. 

We're having one.  Others are organising a P4P too - why don't you?  Wouldn't it be great if this idea took off and there were P4Ps all over the country this summer?  

And when the weather closes in, have a P4P (Party for a Pound) instead!!

Mind you, the way prices are going up, it might soon have to be Picnic for £1.50, which doesn't have the same resonance about it at all, does it?

Tuesday, 30 July 2013

Just to say I won't be posting in  here for a few days as holiday life (yay) means that it's not possible to plan my meals all that well.  I'll be back though, in a few days.  :-)

Monday, 29 July 2013

Cheaper than chips menu: 29-7-13

Breakfast:  marmite on toast
Lunch:  mushroom omelette, salad, apple
Dinner:  fish goujons, fries, salad, fruit yoghurt
Plenty of water, even though it does feel cooler today, some mint tea, a few decaf coffees.

Sunday, 28 July 2013

Cheaper than chips menu: 28-7-13

I don;t really have one.  At nine a friend is arriving  I have no idea when, what or how we will be eating.
Looking forward to it though.

Saturday, 27 July 2013

recipe: courgette bake: Cheaper than Chips providing . . .

OK, so here's the background info first to explain the 'providing':

The courgette was given to me - thanks, Beth
The chives, parsley and thyme are out of the garden.  Dried would be fine.  Other herbs would be fine
The not-parmesan is a value product, as is the soft cheese.
The roll was left over from the meal I provided for guests yesterday and in the bad old days I would have chucked it out.
The tomatoes were also left overs, but they wouldnt have been chucked!
The amounts are vague because I used that I had and what I felt would work.  Go with the flow, so to speak.

Courgette bake

1 courgette, thinly sliced
a knob of butter (or oil - I like butter with courgettes)
two or three mushrooms, thinly sliced
some chives, snipped into little bits
some soft cheese - not the very light version because it doesn't melt all that well
some tomatoes, sliced.  I used leftover mini plum toms
garlic puree (not fresh garlic for this)
a finger roll (hot dog size)
some fresh thyme
some fresh parsley
freshly ground nutmeg
some not-parmesan (because it's value and also because vegetarians can then eat this and they couldn't if it was the real deal)
salt and pepper

Place the thyme, parsley and bread in a zizzer and zizz until it all looks like breadcrumbs.  Grate the not-parmesan and stir it in.  Add some freshly grated nutmeg and stir it in.  Then set aside.

Heat the butter in a pan and gently fry the courgettes until they are starting to brown.  Lay half of them in an oven proof dish.

Lay over the sliced mushrooms and sprinkle over some chives.

Lay over the rest of the sliced courgettes.
Add some dobs of soft cheese and some tiny dobs of garlic puree.

Lay over the tomato slices and some more chives.  Grind over some salt and pepper.
(Almost forgot to take a photo at this point, hence the breadcrumbs.  Ooops)

Finally, add the breadcrumb mixture and even off the top.

Bake in an oven at 180C until the top is browning and it all smells 'done'.

It was delicious.

Cheaper than chips: 27-7-13

Breakfast:  pancakes with bacon, banana and maple syrup.  A Saturday favourite!
Lunch:  egg salad, fruit and yogyurt
Dinner:  chicken, vegetables, pineapple and yoghurt.

Snacks: trying for none
Drunks:  Mostly water.  Lotsd and lots of water!

Friday, 26 July 2013

Cheaper than chips menu: 26-7-13

There isn't one!  I have family a-visiting for lunch and there are sure to be leftovers for dinner.  No plan for today!

Thursday, 25 July 2013

Cheaper than chips menu: 25-7-13

. . . except that it isn't going to be because I'm round at a friends today and I think we will be going out for lunch somewhere.  very nice too.

So today sort of looks like this:
Breakfast: porridge and fruit
Lunch: no idea - something yummy
Dinner:  chicken and gravy (from the freezer) with veg of some kind or other, most likely courgettes.

Wednesday, 24 July 2013

Cheaper than chips menu: 24-7-13

The 'Italian type' pasty thing worked very well.  The only problem was that I rolled it too thin so it went a but funny along the 'fold' where the filling was pushing.  But jolly good and I will do it again.  The filling was some savoury mince (from the freezer) enriched by the remains of the pizza sauce from Sunday.  I meant to add a bit of grated cheese but I forgot until the edges had been sealed!

Today's food plan:
Breakfast:  porridge with banana and yoghurt
Lunch: something small-ish from the freezer
Dinner:  steamed or baked salmon with lemon, salad, couscous

I pushed the boat out yesterday and bought some salmon.  Just a little fillet but goodness, it's expensive and will break the bank on its own but tough.  I haven't had salmon for ages and I love the stuff.  Every now and again Morrisons has sides of salmon on special that can be extremely good value.  The trouble is you have to be there to see it and I'm trying not to be 'there' all that often.

Tuesday, 23 July 2013

Recipe: Delia's pizza dough converted to Thermomix: cheaper than chips

As always, due credit to the original creator Delia for a great recipe which you can find here.   The only change I have made is to adapt the recipe for Thermione.

Ingredients to make two or three ordinary single portion pizzas, although that depends on how thick or thin you like the crust - we like it thin.  If you prefer a thicker base, it should make two
6 oz (175 g) plain white soft flour
1 level teaspoon salt
1 level teaspoon easy-blend dried yeast
½ level teaspoon golden caster sugar

1 tablespoon olive oil
230 ml hand hot water

Pile the lot into the Thermomix in the order given above.
Mix at speed 4 for about 5 seconds
Knead on dough setting for four minutes.

Now, this is the clever bit.  On Sunday I then transferred the dough to a bowl for rising but it has occurred to me that you don't need to do that.  Just leave it to rise in the Thermomix until it has about doubled in size, keeping the lid and cup on.  Saves on washing up and also it rises faster this way because it hasn't had a chance to cool down at all during transfer to working surface and then to bowl
That's about how high using double quantities
Once it is twice the size, knock it back down on dough setting for about 30 seconds.
It knocks down to about this.

It's a very soft dough and it will help to either oil or flour your hands before scraping the remains out of the bowl after the main part of the dough has fallen out with the blades.  I prefer oil.

As I made double quantities, I separated it into six equal bits.  Each bit was carefully wrapped and rushed into the freezer.  Each bit but one, that is.  That one is for tonight with a filling of savoury mince, courgettes and so on.  I'll let you know how that goes in due course, if it works OK.

And, using value flour, each single portion comes to a fraction of a penny over 5p.  Each!  That's what I call frugal.  Used to make a calzone with vegetables and a chopped tomato based sauce, that's a pretty frugal meal.

Cheaper than chips menu: 23-7-13

Breakfast: remains of Chinese from last night.  It didn't last as long as putting half in the freezer for another day - ooops!
Lunch:  egg salad with coleslaw, pineapple yoghurt
Dinner: something from the freezer with courgettes from Beth's allotment, strawberry yoghurt

Monday, 22 July 2013

Menu adapted

Lunch:  really didn't fancy soup, etc, so I had egg on toast instead.
Dinner:  I went into town to spend some of my gift cards and in M&S they have a special offer - two mains and two sides in their Chinese range for £8.  Who could resist?  So now I'm having some of that and the rest can freeze for another time (it does freeze, I checked)  So it's not frugal in one sense but given that it was a gift card it's not cost me, personally, anything.  Can't be bad!

So that's why the changes!

Cheaper than chips menu: 22-7-13

Breakfast:  bacon and tomatoes
Lunch:  soup, bread and butter, strawberry yoghurt
Dinner:  something from the freezer with a side salad (left over from yesterday), pineapple and yoghurt
Drinks: tea, coffee, loadsa water

I have a jug of water in the fridge and aim to empty that and more!

The pizza was lovely, as I said in the previous entry, but I forgot to mention the topping.  Definitely non-authentic.  I fried some onion in oil, added some frozen peppers, sliced courgettes (from Beth's allotment) and mushrooms.  The tomato sauce was from the freezer, home made and frozen several weeks ago and the cheese was grated cheddar, again from freezer supplies.  On mine and Alex's I added some pepperoni.  Beth had hers without.
Interestingly, I didn't add any herbs or seasoning and it was still delicious!  Next time I might remember!

Sunday, 21 July 2013

Recipe: Delia's basic pizza dough: pretty frugal!

I made pizzas for lunch today.  They were really nice and a big part of that was the dough so I thought I'd post it here.  I used value plain flour and it made enough for three so it really is a very frugal base.
This is copied more or less direct from Delia's site and the original is here.
It was a doddle to make and with Thermione doing all the kneading, it didn't take all that long either.
Oh, and I didn't heat the flour.  Or use a pizza stone.  Or polenta, because I don't have any.
I might very well do as suggested and freeze some.

Basic Pizza Dough

Pizza dough is made in almost the same way as white bread – by hand or using a food processor, except that you add olive oil and a little sugar to the flour mixture and there isn't a second rising. You might consider making double the quantity and freezing half to make another pizza at a later stage.

Just pop the dough, after knocking out the air, into a polythene bag, seal and freeze.

Basic Pizza Dough 
 6 oz (175 g) plain white soft flour
 1 level teaspoon salt
 1 level teaspoon easy-blend dried yeast
 ½ level teaspoon golden caster sugar
 1 tablespoon olive oil
To roll out:
 2-3 level tablespoons polenta (cornmeal)
 Pre-heat the oven to its lowest setting.
You will also need a pizza stone or solid baking sheet measuring 14 x 11 inches (35 x 28 cm).


Begin by warming the flour slightly in the oven for about 10 minutes, then turn the oven off.

Sift the flour, salt, yeast and sugar into a bowl and make a well in the centre of the mixture, then add the olive oil and pour in 4 fl oz (120 ml) hand-hot water water. Now mix to a dough, starting off with a wooden spoon and using your hands in the final stages of mixing. Wipe the bowl clean with the dough, adding a spot more water if there are any dry bits left, and transfer it to a flat work surface (there shouldn't be any need to flour this).

Knead the dough for 3 minutes or until it develops a sheen and blisters under the surface (it should also be springy and elastic). You can now either leave the dough on the surface covered by the upturned bowl or transfer the dough to a clean bowl and cover it with clingfilm that has been lightly oiled on the side that is facing the dough. Leave it until it looks as though it has doubled in bulk, which will be about an hour at room temperature.

Having made the dough and left it to rise, pre-heat the oven to gas mark 8, 450°F (230°C), along with the pizza stone or baking sheet.

The next stage is to tip the dough back on to a work surface that has been sprinkled generously with polenta to prevent it from sticking. Knock all the air out of the dough and knead it for a couple of seconds to begin shaping it into a ball. Then dust your rolling pin with polenta and roll the dough out to a circle that is approximately 10 inches (25.5 cm) in diameter. Then finish stretching it out with your hands, working from the centre and using the flat of your fingers to push the dough out; it doesn't need to be a perfect round, but you want it to be a fairly thin-based pizza, with slightly raised edges.

Using a thick oven glove, very carefully lift the baking sheet or pizza stone out of the oven and sprinkle it with polenta. Now carefully lift the pizza on to the stone or baking sheet and cover with toppings of choice.

Bake the pizza on a high shelf for 10-12 minutes, until the crust is golden brown.

Cheaper than chips menu: 21-7-13

Breakfast:  Fruit salad and yoghurt
Lunch: home made pizza, chips and a side salad
Tea: beans on toast

Lots of water, mint tea.

Saturday, 20 July 2013

Recipe: summer chicken salad

I made this today, just eaten it for lunch and it was so delicious I'm sharing it.

Summer chicken salad
Ingredients:  (for one)
1 chicken thigh, bone in.
1tsp maple syrup
1 tsp lemon juice
1tsp grain mustard
1 tsp smooth cranberry sauce (I have some home made sauce left from Christmas.  You could use shop bought or something like marmalade.  It would taste different but still good)
a squidge of garlic puree

Method part 1
Mix the marinade ingredients together.  Remove the skin from the thigh.  Place the thigh in a non metallic bowl and cover with the marinade.  Rub it over a bit, place the chicken upside down so it's lying in the marinade, cover and leave for a couple of hours.

Place the chicken on some foil and spoon over the marinade.  Wrap it up in the foil, making sure there are no leaks.  I cooked the chicken for 20 mins at 180 in my halogen oven so I guess it would be more or less the same in a standard oven with extra time for heating up.

When the chicken is cooked, unwrap the foil, shred the chicken from the bone, mix it with the marinade left in the foil and leave to cool a bit.

For the salad:
Salad leaves
A bit of cucumber
A bit of courgette, peeled
2 tomatoes, quartered
half a stick of celery
some cooked broad beans, skinned
a new potato, medium sized, cooked
a small carrot, peeled
some mayo

Method, part 2
In a bowl place the salad leaves, the cucumber and courgette sliced to preferred size, the tomatoes, the celery, sliced, the broad beans, the potato cut into chunks and the carrot, also sliced into small chunks.
Add the mayo and gently toss, then arrange in a bowl or on a plate (I like salad in a bowl).  Over the top spread the shredded chicken and marinade.


I didn't add any salt or pepper but you could.  It was good without added salt apart from the salt that was in the mayo..

Now, I have to confess the following:
The leaves were from my living lettuces
The courgette was from Beth's garden/allotment, as were the beans and the potato.
The mayo was home made, using the Bamix method (takes about one minute max!
However, the chicken was bog standard stuff, not corn fed or whatever, as were the other ingredients

It's not super economical, but on the other hand it wasn't terribly expensive either.  And so delicious

Cheaper than chips menu: 20-7-13

I'm back.  The school year has finished and I now have time to get things organised again.  Three cheers!

So here's today's plans.

B:  a banana and some coffee.  It's been so hot overnight I don't fancy much.  In fact I may very well sleep through breakfast
L: chicken and salad (a chicken thigh from the freezer, marinated in a concoction made with a bit of this and a bit of that)
D: a freezer meal.

Loads of water!

Thursday, 18 July 2013

I'll be back

The next few days will be manic as we hit the end of the school year.  Frugality is taking a back seat right now.  But I will be back - on Saturday!

Tuesday, 16 July 2013

Cheaper than chips menu: 16-7-13

Breakfast:  some pringles (ooops), baked beans left over from yesterday
Lunch:  soup, fruit
Dinner:  savoury mince, broad beans, new potatoes
(yesterday I forgot I was going out in the evening so dinner had carried over to today!)

Plus lots of water

Monday, 15 July 2013

Cheaper than chips menu: 15-7-13

Breakfast:  toast and jam (all home made, of course!)
Lunch:  Home made baked beans on toast, pineapple and yoghurt
Dinner: vegetable chilli, rice, broad beans.

Snack: playtime fruit
Drinks: loadsa water!

Sunday, 14 July 2013

Strawberry (or any other soft fruit) liqueur: absolutely definitely NOT cheaper than chips in any shape or form

. . . but so, so nice.  A gift of a recipe and dead easy!  It's hard to go wrong with this one, to be honest.
  I've hunted around and there are lots of recipes on the internet but I come back to this one every time.  It's easy, it always works and my dad gave it to me!  Three very good reasons, especially the last.  After the minimum of work this afternoon, I now have two litre bottles full, one with a vodka base and one with a gin base, starting their long, six - no - five and a half-ish - month journey to Christmas (sorry) delight.  That is, assuming I don't drink it before then, of course!  Oh, and if you're feeling very generous and kind hearted, it makes lovely Christmas gifts, decanted into small bottles.

I've given the quantities for strawberry and the figures in brackets are for any other soft fruit, such as raspberries, blackberries, black/redcurrants, etc.  Maybe, in a couple of years, I can use my own tayberries.

Enough daydreaming!  Here's the recipe!

200g strawberries, hulled  (150g)
160g granulated sugar  (same)
750ml gin or vodka, reasonable quality - don't use the molto cheapo stuff but you don't have to use top of the range either.  I used Morrison's stuff, medium priced. (same)

A very clean 1 litre bottle with an air tight lid.  I used a Pimms bottle and a vodka bottle - remember to label them.
I also used a potato masher, a narrow necked funnel, a wide based bowl and the handle of a spoon.

Pick over the fruit discarding any bad bits and wash if necessary.  
Put the weighed fruit and sugar in a bowl and mash well together.
Put the funnel in the neck of the bottle and slowly pour (or ladle) in the resulting mush.  If it sticks, push it through with a spoon handle or whatever comes to hand.
Pour in 750mls of vodka or gin (it should come more or less to the top of the bottle).  Screw on the lid, wipe the outside if necessary, label (e.g. Strawberry gin (or vodka), July 13) and give the contents a jolly good shake.

Shake every day until the sugar is dissolved and then store in a cool, dark place until you can resist it no longer (or until Santa comes a-calling).  I give it the occasional shake when I remember.  The longer you leave it, the better it is (they tell me - I haven't tried this myself).

Before drinking, pour through muslin or a coffee filter.  That should get rid of the tiny little strawberry pips.  Drink on its own (very powerful stuff which slips down rather too easily) or diluted with tonic or sparkling white or champers (so, so gorgeous)
The debris makes a jolly good tipsy trifle - don't throw it away!

Dad says:

If you are making blackberry gin remove the fruit after 3 months (pour through muslin) to stop the woody taste developing and mature for at least a year (yeah, sure!!).  
He also says the only really crucial thing is the ratio of sugar to gin/vodka.  If it's not trifle material, I would push the residue through my mouli to get rid of the seeds and use it for something if only a sauce for ice cream.  No point in wasting jolly good stuff, after all!  See - there's a little bit of frugality there!

I'll drink to that.  Cheers!

Cheaper than chips menu: 14-7-13

Breakfast: scrambled egg on toast.  It was going to be porridge but one of the eggs I got yesterday is a little cracked.
Lunch:  Cheg and salad, fruit and yoghurt
Dinner:  vegetable chilli, pasta, broad beans, pineapple and yoghurt

It's rather too hot to do much faffing around in the kitchen so I'm thankful for the freezer meals.

Saturday, 13 July 2013

Cheaper than chips menu: 13-7-13

Breakfast:  home made baked beans on toast
Lunch: egg salad, strawberries, yoghurt
Dinner:  chicken or turkey (from freezer), new potatoes and broad beans (both from Beth's garden/allotment). strawberries, yoghurt
(I'm going strawberry picking today!)

I'm very aware that i have posted no recipes for a while.  the truth is I have so much to use up that I'm not trying many new ideas right now.
Wait until the summer holiday comes!

Friday, 12 July 2013

Cheaper than chips menu: 12-7-13

Breakfast:  porridge with banana and yoghurt
Lunch:  Digestive biscuits with butter and  jam, fresh fruit
Dinner: a freezer meal followed by pineapple and yoghurt

Drinks:  decaf, herbal tea and water
Snack:  playtime fruit

Thursday, 11 July 2013

Cheaper than chips menu: 11-7-13

Today's menu plan is:
Breakfast:  Toast and scrambled eggs
Lunch:  Soup and fruit
Dinner:  Bacon and home made baked beans , pineapple and yoghurt

I don't have the time to cost it out but it won't be all that bad.  back to normal asap, it may be not until the end of term, depending on how busy it stays!

Wednesday, 10 July 2013

Cheaper than Chips menu: 10-7-13

So sorry for missing yesterday.  Things are quite busy right now.

Today's food plans:
Breakfast:  Porridge with banana and yoghurt
Lunch:  Salad and fresh fruit
Dinner;  Something quick from the freezer

I know it sounds a bit vague - I feel a bit vague at the moment as well!  :-)

Monday, 8 July 2013

Cheaper than chips menu: 8-7-13

Breakfast:  Porridge with banana and yoghurt
Lunch:  chickpea and apricot curry with rice (leftovers), fruit salad (also leftovers), yoghurt
Tea:  pork, sage and apple burger (2) with salad, coleslaw and potato salad, pineapple and yoghurt
Snack: playtime fruit
Drinks: decaf, herbal tea (probably mint), loadsa water.

Jack's curry was a success although I did tweak it a bit (when do I not?).  The chilli I bought was so mild as to be virtually not heat producing, unfortunately, but I didn't know that until almost at the end when I tasted.  I looked at what I had and decided to add a spoonful of tikka masala paste and some tomato puree to give it more depth and I also added some chopped mushrooms as they needed using up.  And when it had finished on the hob I popped it into the oven on a lowish heat to give the flavours some long slow encouragement.  It seemed to work.  And there was plenty.  It fed me, Beth and Alex (who had seconds) plus my son who turned up and became an extra guest and there was enough left over to make two lunches, one today and one in the freezer for later on in the week.  Now that's definitely frugal!

Now I am looking forward to some decent chillis from the plant I bought on Saturday.  Fingers crossed!

And finally, to my delight, when Beth and Al came over, they were bearing gifts - some rhubarb for the jam we are going to make and, great delight, a bowl of freshly dug new potatoes.  Fantastic!

Sunday, 7 July 2013

Cheaper than chips menu: 7-6-13

Today's plans are:
Breakfast: porridge with banana and yoghurt
Dinner:  Jack's chickpea and apricot curry (with a few added veg) and rice, fruit salad made with some pineapple, some strawberries and the left over apricots from the curry recipe.With yoghurt!
Tea:  boiled eggs and toasty soldiers, banana bread, satsuma
Snack: none
Drinks: decaf, herbal tea (probably mint from the garden, water

If I stick with this, it should add up to around £1.30.  Not bad for a delicious day's eating!

Diane commented that I seem to have endless supplies of pineapple and yoghurt.
The truth is, I got rather fond of Morrison's value tinned pineapple while I was doing Live Blow The Line.  I can split a tin into four portions and, at 5p a portion, it makes a good way of getting my F&V.
As for the yoghurt, I have a yoghurt maker that I can totally recommend - if you like yoghurt, it will certainly earn its shelf space.  I make a litre batch for 60p (value/basic long life milk, a spoonful of the previous batch as a starter and two spoonfuls of dried skimmed milk powder which makes it go all creamy and thick) and I get through it in around ten days or so.  Apart from the bit in my porridge, that's the only way I'm having milk at the moment so I'm quite happy to eat loads of the wonderful stuff.
And anyway, a portion of pineapple with 30mls yoghurt on the top makes a great dessert without being either expensive or calorific.  Win/win all the way!

Saturday, 6 July 2013

Cheaper than chips menu: 6-7-13

I'm off shopping this morning but there's very little food on the list and I want to do another week of  living off what I have stored away.  I do need to get some fresh stuff in though.

Today's food is:
Breakfast:  bacon and tomatoes
Lunch:  cheg and salad, pineapple and yoghurt
Dinner:  pasta bolognaise with a side salad, strawberries and yoghurt

I'm trying for no snacks and drinks will be decaf, mint tea and/or water

Friday, 5 July 2013

Cheaper than chips menu: 5-7-13

First of all, the Moroccan pork mince recipe was really, really tasty.  I will definitely be doing it again, even if I can't find bargain pork mince.  I had it with rice left over from the previous day so it really was just a case of heating up and mmmmmmmmm.

Also mmmm was this.  I got home from school after Infants sports day yesterday feeling tired, achey and very, very thirsty.  After a bit of thought, I made some mint tea and it was just about the most refreshing thing ever.  I downed three cups full of it (made in a teapot) and it was so good.

Today's menu plan for the last day for this No Spend Week is:
Breakfast:  baked beans on toast
Lunch:  egg salad (hard boiled egg, leaves, tomato, celery, cucumber, coleslaw), pineapple and yoghurt.
Dinner:  Savoury mince with pasta and broccoli
Snack:  playtime fruit
Drinks: mint tea, coffee, water

I haven't posted costings this week as it's really not been possible what with using up old stuff that wasn't priced, but I have kept tabs on the things I could keep tabs on and each day has come to less than £1.00 except for Tuesday when I went out for a meal.  I'm pleased with that!

I have to go shopping for a few bits and bobs but I will do the same the again soon!

Thursday, 4 July 2013

Cheaper than Chips menu: 4-7-13

Breakfast:  porridge with banana and yoghurt
Lunch:  Baked beans on toast, carrot sticks, banana bread
Dinner:  Moroccan pork mince with rice.

Snack: playtime fruit
Drinks: coffee and water.

Wednesday, 3 July 2013

Cheaper than chips menu: 3-7-13

Breakfast:  Porridge with banana and yoghurt
Lunch:  a hunk of soda bread, 1 had boiled egg all mashed up with butter, fruit
Dinner:  butternut squash and chick pea curry with rice, pineapple and strawberries with yoghurt

Drinks: coffee, mint tea, water
Snack:  fruit at playtime

Yesterday worked!  Yes, I spent an awful lot of money (comparatively speaking - before I would have said that it wasn't very expensive - perceptions change) on the evening meal but it could have been a lot worse.

The free lunch at the conference was quite nice and was salad based and there was no dessert.  Sad, but much better for me  Also, they had the loveliest lemongrass, ginger and citrus fruit tea bags.  I have to get some, it made the most delicious drink.
Then in the evening I had my usual 'small plate' choice, about which I was mildly teased, but no-one wanted dessert so, again, much better for the healthy consideration as well as for the pocket!
I forgot, until just now, that I am off caffeine and I had two diet cokes.  That would explain why I felt quite bright and breezy during the meal instead of falling asleep.  Ooops!

Tuesday, 2 July 2013

Cheaper than chips menu: 2-7-13 - ooops!

Breakfast:  Banana porridge with yoghurt.  Good
Lunch: Out at SENCo conference.  Free lunch.  Very good!
Dinner:  Here's the ooops part.  Out to the Hare with friends for a meal.  Good and ooops too.  That's the week's money saved from having a freezer and store cupboard week blown in a couple of hours.  Ah well . .  I am thankful that I can!
Borrowed from Google
Drinks::  Probably endless coffee and they'd better have decaf!  Water.  Maybe fruit tea if there's any at the conference.  I'm driving this evening so I'm off the alcohol but I'd not have any anyway!  Not at the moment.

Monday, 1 July 2013

Cheaper than Chips menu: 1-7-13

Today's frugal food plans:
Breakfast:  porridge with yoghurt and banana
Lunch:  egg salad, piece of fruit
Dinner:  carrot, cumin and kidney bean burgers (aka Jack burgers), salad and coleslaw

Drinks:  coffee, mint tea, water
Snack:  playtime fruit

Yesterday Beth brought round some apple mint roots to plant.  They're now in a pot due for some TLC as, finally, are the tomatoes.  Already there's some little fruits, despite the cold weather, and I am hoping against hope that this year the dreaded blight will keep away.  I'm armed and ready though, with Bordeaux solution and sprayer.  Given the price in the shops, tomatoes have to be the ultimate in frugality when things go well, despite the need for weekly feeding and occasional spraying.  The last couple of years have been a disaster though so I'm mentally crossing my fingers and hoping!